Update/ Watch this!

Hello readers,

Sorry for the long stretch without content. I have been unwell for a while now and it has been in the way of updating this blog with new posts. That being said be on the lookout for a lot of delayed posts and music reviews, including a very special video game soundtrack review/opinion piece of a game that just celebrated it’s 20th anniversary!

In the meanwhile Music Core released a compilation video of all of SHINee’s live performances on music from 2008-2018! I watched it while it aired live on youtube and it was a lot of fun.

 

and of course part 2!

 

and while on the subject of SHINee check out ONEW’s debut song Blue!

beautiful both visually and vocally.

That’s it for this update be on the lookout for much more this December!

Advertisements

Watch This! Lay -Give Me A Chance

Just in time for his 27th birthday EXO member Lay released a track entitled Give Me a Chance from his upcoming U.S. debut album NAMANANA due to be released October 19th.

Its a surprisingly   chill electro tinge midtempo song (in English!) that showcases Lay’s clear high notes in the chorus. (I wont give a full review until the album is released. lol)

What do you think of the song and mv?

 

Top Ten underrated SHINee songs

Top Ten underrated SHINee songs.

When a album has a star track that’s a blazing hit sometimes other not so popular songs get left in the dark. These songs are just a good or sometimes even better than the title song but are allotted no such luck. Given a chance some of these songs could’ve been hits themselves and sometimes the songs are ahead of there time or “too creative” or “unsual”.

This list is our top ten underrated and unrecognized SHINee songs.

read to see the list!

Top 5 SHINee Concepts

How fitting I post this list now after my strong opinions about SHINee’s latest teaser images.

To start I love concept albums particularly hard concept albums meaning an album that truly keeps the theme not only through images and the design of the packaging but also in the music videos and the tracks on the album.

Artists like David Bowie, Lupe Ficaso and Daft Punk have pulled this off well, in Kpop I would say Sechkies welcome to Sechkies land.

SHINee has done a decent job of picking unusual concepts and sticking to them ( like for odd they were unusual colored eye contacts even for SNL). So below I listed my top five SHINee concepts to date.

 

My to date favorite SHINee concept to date would be ……

shinee married2

Album:  Married to the Music

Song:  Married to the Music

Concept: Horror/Camp

 

SHINee everybody

Album: Everybody

Song: Everybody

Concept: Toy solider

 

 

shinee 90s

Album: 1 of 1

Song: 1 of 1

Concept: fake 90s/confused 80s

 

shinee-get-the-treasure

Album: Five

Song: Get the treasure

Concept: Heist/ freeze frame

 

shinee 3,2,1

Album: 3,2,1

Song: 3,2,1

Concept: comics, fun, Disney lol

 

What is you favorite SHINee concept?

 

 

 

 

Top Ten SHINee songs

SHINee who is celebrating their 10th anniversary this month has been probably one of the hardest working kpop groups in the last decade. There discography is extensive not even including their Japanese releases!

In honor of SHINee’s 10th anniversary J.R.’s Musical Adventure has created a list of their top ten SHINee songs which is no easy task as SHINee has released 11 albums! It wasn’t easy but I tried and here are the ten!

  1. Love like oxygen

While not the first SHINee video I saw with its euro music and melody it made me nostalgic which surprised me as the members of the group were so young themselves! Jonghyun’s Michael Jackson styled vocals and SHINee’s chair dancing sold me on the group. With this song and music video I just knew this group was going places!

2. Romeo+Juliet

This song is a close second as it is my all time favorite song of SHINee. The music, vocals (and stylization of vocals)and lyrics embodied what made me fall in love with kpop in the first place. Each member’s “role” vocally is showcased well (more so  than other songs from this era) and they invoke the sadness and  despair of the forlorn lyrics so well I am touched every time I hear it, even to this day 9 years later.

3. Odd Eye

 

This song sounded like no other song (in kpop). I love its beautifully smooth synth melody and the creative use of Jonghyun’s, Taemin’s and Onew’s “My eyes on yooou” in the chorus. A added bonus is the bridge reminds me of Pumpkin Hill (Sonic adventure). Even non kpop fans seem to be taken in by the hypnotic chorus! “hey what song is that with the guy going “oooo” in the chorus?” someone once asked me.

4. Replay

Especially now this song holds a special place in any SHINee fan’s heart. For most its the song that introduced the group to the world.  With lyrics many people can relate to (being in love/like with someone older than you and/or liking someone who does take you seriously.) To me its low tempo and catchy melody that wears off on you after a while Replay stood out amongst a lot of the other debuting artists in 2008 and is by far one of the best debut kpop songs ever. Replay is now a new classic.

5. One Minute Back

From the dramatic drumbeat layered with rhythmic breathing in the beginning I sensed One minute would be a fierce, enjoyable song. The whole vibe from the lyrics,  vocals to the music channels the intense feeling one may experience seeing their partner cheating on them with someone else. The change of lyrics in the end surprised me but goes to show how well the song kept to its theme.

6. Close The Door

This another song that was a little different than most kpop songs that were out at the time (2010’s). I was struck by its enchanting  electro-string melody making like a song that would play in a futuristic ballroom.  SHINee’s vocals shine brightly in the chorus which is a great feat in such a slow and delicate song. The lyrics also take the spotlight as well adding to the romantic atmosphere.

7. Password-(Japanese song)

One of the Japanese releases that really stood out was Password. Once again SHINee distinguishes itself from the bunch with a song not typically heard in kpop.  With 80s rock/pop flavor Password invokes bands like Duran Duran.  The lyrics with lines give me the password are even reminiscent of late 80s songs that often referenced computers and technology ( Automatic, Computer love). In the live version Jonghyun’s solo is just beautiful.

8. Hold You

 

This is the song I always dreamed SHINee would do. With it’s classic 80’s/90’s r&b sound it fits SHINee’s retro style to a t.

9. Symptoms

This song is one of the best SHINee songs done live. Like One minute the emotional intensity is conveyed through every aspect of the track from the lyrics, vocals and music. Like I stated above when performed they just hit it out of the park.

 

10. SHINee in The House

Clocking in at only one minute and a half this isn’t exactly a song … more of an intro, one that SHINee needed from the beginning! I first heard this awesome Intro watching my SHINee world 4 dvd. With its cute opening fooling the listeners and audience beginning with the melody and chorus from replay to then switch to some great harmonizing. Jonghyun, Onew and Taemin tell us to get ready for a great time because shinee is performing tonight and they’ll make us happy, love it. I kind of hoped they would open all their following concerts with this song but alas. Great anthem for a great group.

 

Well that’s it! For now, who knows with the new album coming out there may be some news songs on this list!

What about you? What are your favorite SHINee songs?

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHINee Memories #1

 

shinee1

What is your first memory of SHINee? Read my (long) answer below.Tell me yours in the comments!

I can pretty much remember back in ’08 sitting in the back room my bro playing  video games behind me while I would multi-task on the desktop. By multi -task that meant typing stories, reading emails and watching videos on youtube lol.

Somehow I came across SHINee and said in my mind hmm “Shiny? Whelp why not?” I was always on the lookout for new music so I clicked the thumbnail and the rest is history.

I was struck by how young they looked and the “cuteness” of the overall video which usually isn’t my style. As a fan of rock music (among many other genres) I fell in like with kpop back in the late 90’s with groups like H.O.T. and Shinhwa, Sechkies, TVXQ to name a few ,which was definitely still pop though with rock and visual kei elements added. However, their vocals sounded pretty strong for a rookie group, I loved the toe and swing move (dance move gif #2) and the melody just had the perfect feel of nostalgia and melancholy. After a few weeks of hearing the song play in my head, I decided to buy the mp3 from iTunes to learn I couldn’t find it (kpop was as popular back then).After much digging I finally found the album in hangul.

What is your first memory of SHINee?

 

Married to the Music (Repost)

I’ve noticed quite a few people have been visiting this blog lately to read an older post. SHINee’s Married to the music to be specific. So I decided to repost it here so that it will be easier to view and read.

 

SHINee( formed in 2008) is one of k-pop’s most famous and well know boy bands. Shinee is well known for their vocals and dances and their broad and ever broadening range of musical genres they incorporate in their discography. Shinee’s last Korean album Why So Serious? – The Misconceptions of Me was released in 2013 leaving a two year gap of no Korean releases. When their next album Odd was released on May of this year it was met with much fanfare. This review will be for the repackaged version of this album entitled Married to the Music which features four unreleased songs. This review is for these four songs.

A little SHINee music video history

 

shinee married2

Married to the Music brings a genuine retro vibe to the summer music line up. The bass in the beginning is very reminiscent of Another one bites the dust which is misleading, as the song progresses it takes on a funky disco sound. Overall the song is most definitely Michael Jackson inspired (this song would fit in on his Off the Wall album) the influence is especially strong in the chorus which has a Baby be mine flavor. Retro (or retro influenced) songs have always been popular in the summer so giving its distinct sound and catchy chorus this single will be a good fit for a summer success.

Michael Jackson – Baby be mine

The Music Video
From the teaser images one can see that SHINee was going with a retro horror/camp theme with the Rocky Horror Picture Show type font used for the title. The overall feel of the photos reminded me of Little Shop of Horrors, Beetlejuice and for some reason The Addams Family lol. So did the video fit the feel of the photo teasers? YES. The video opens with a black and white scene and one may think wow this is really vintage but once the video starts it is in color and despite all the bizarre horror elements there is an actual storyline. To make it short the young men show up for a party that was far from what they expected as they lose parts of themselves (in humorous horror fashion) to the party’s hostess who uses them in the end to make a perfect man. While that may seem bizarre (or disturbing) to some this video is done very humorously and in light while watching this video I remembered two other horror themed pop music videos besides the most famous which is Michael Jackson’s Thriller. Rockwell’s Someone’s Watching Me and Robbie Williams Rock DJ.

 

Rockwell -Somebody’s Watching Me

 

Robbie Williams- Rock DJ


Shinee keeps it retro but moves it up a few decades to the 90’s (yes the 90’s is now officially retro) with Savior which is a funky dance/house track. The most standout aspect of this song for me is the chorus.
Shinee continues the 90s theme but cools it down with Hold you. The very beginning reminds me (a bit more chiptunish) of the 90s R&B single Can we talk by Tevin Campbell or more so the cover of the same song by JUNE. The music has a 90s R&B vibe like the aforementioned Tevin Campbell , Al.B Sure or Bobby Brown. The music sounds like it could have been a song that was recorded in the 90s one could totally hear the previously mentioned artists or even New Edition sing over this track. Shinee uses quite a lot of English on this track and it is done pretty well Key(?) seems to be channeling Drake in his rap in the beginning and adds a bit of edge to the laid back vibe of the song. Though the entire group sounds fantastic in this song Onew’s voice is the standout. Of all the new tracks Hold You is the track that showcases Shinee the best you can hear the voices much clearer without the music over taking them. I’m surprised that this song wasn’t released as the single from the repackaged album.

Tevin Campbell- Can we talk

 

 

June- Can we talk (unfortunately was not able to find this video anymore.. which was the best example for Hold you)
The last new track on Married to the music is written and composed by Shinee’s very own songwriter Jonghyun entitled Chocolate. Chocolate opens with a funky chiptunish melody and English phrases such as “how’d you like that” and” I just want to put the record straight once and for all” which was a bit odd at the beginning but it improves as the song continues. Surprisingly this is another track Shinee shines on (no pun intended). The chorus is almost fully in English and once again Shinee did a great job.
In all, the new tracks kept the theme of summer music evocative of the late 70’s to the 90’s which makes it an impressive concept album. As with ODD I can see Married to the Music the repackaged album (as well as the single) becoming another summer success.

 

B.I.G.-Taola MV and single Review

Boys in groove

 

For this review I’m going to have to rescue a review from my music abyss (lol). I discovered B.I.G.( which stands for Boys In Groove mind you) by way of their second single Between Night n Music. I was attracted to their neo disco sound and cute MV with a simple but actual storyline and their outfits (who could forget those polka dot outfits). Between night n music was released in March of 2015 and B.I.G. has been silent since. This November B.I.G. emerged from the silence with a new look and of course new single! This new single is entitled Taola.
With this new single B.I.G. is still going strong with the retro theme this time jumping from 70’s inspired neo disco beats to a dramatic 90s R&B/pop melody (the melody of the song and vocals sound very familiar). Taola contrasts greatly with their last single Between night n music the latter they sound much younger and upbeat. Taola showcases the members deeper voices (especially in the rap segments) well with the dramatic chorus which brings back memories of old school k-pop hits. In the beginning of the track a member is heard stating that this song is a “New chapter” it seems his statement is correct.

 B.I.G. Then

As one can see  the Between night n music mv was produced (well) on a meager budget and gave B.I.G. an image that truly matched their name (boys in groove) as (invisible) disco dancers that help cheer up a woman evening that was going wrong.
  B.I.G Now

     Taola takes a cue from old 90’s videos were each member has their own theme and room but updated with the trend that’s overtaken almost every music video..neon lights. With its use of bold and dark colors (both in the member’s clothing and background sets) and shots of the members looking intensely into the camera Taola gives off a much more mature and dramatic vibe. Despite the differences B.I.G. stays true to their name and delivers a great dance song.
With this new single I look forward to their next incarnation if they choose to stay with this look and vibe or go with a totally different theme its bound to be a dance hit.

SHINee Married to the music review

shinee married2

With their latest release of their repackaged album Married to the Music SHINee takes on a retro theme. I have always been a been fan of retro fashion, music and movies be it the 50s thru the 80s and even the 90s (now that its considered retro ) so I excitedly awaited this release. Check out my review of the new songs on the album and the unusual (for k-pop anyway) music video here

What do you think of the single or the music video? Better yet what you think of the new tracks?

Let me know in the comments!

Music reviews!

I’ve loved and have been doing music reviews for a long while and for a couple of years fell into a music reviewing hibernation. As of this year i have been woken up from this deep sleep and have been reviewing music (and music videos) for an up and coming website dj2thirteen.com

So… below are two reviews that I have done for them!

My very first review was of the K-pop boy band EXO’s second album EXODUS and you can check it out here

next is my review of French house music artist Allure! Its the first review I’ve ever done of an instrumental album! Check it out here!