It’s here It’s here It’s HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

23 03 2012

I’ve been holding out reviewing SHINee’s new album, Sherlock, until the day the music video came out.  Today is that day.  They also made their live comeback on M! Countdown today as well.  Oh, what a glorious day.

You probably don’t know because I haven’t talked about them much on my blog, but SHINee is my favorite Kpop group.  Boys and girls included.  I just haven’t talked about them because, well, they haven’t done anything significant in over a year.  Their Japanese releases, you say?  Please, those are all a joke.  We all know that.

So the patient, dedicated Shawol I am, I waited and waited and FINALLY almost a year and a half later, THEY’RE FINALLY BACK.  And I am loving it.  Check out the music video for “Sherlock” below!

Let’s talk about that first.  I love this music video.  The teaser really intrigued me (as it should, SM, unlike EXO) and excited me for this.  It looked like it had a compelling story line and, being SHINee and all, an amazing, energetic dance.

It didn’t disappoint one bit.  The story is really interesting with no definitive conclusion–you have to figure that out for yourself.  You know, be Sherlock Holmes, figure out the mystery (har har har har).  Here’s the run-down: SHINee are called in to investigate a museum for a missing necklace.  It’s all good until a mysterious girl appears (ohei thar Jessica!) and starts leaving them clues, but she disappears before anyone can really see her.  Anyone, that is, but Minho, who’s quick reflexes allow him to capture several pictures of her before she vanishes before his eyes.  Eventually, with her help, they find the jewelry lying in a creepy disembodied hand hidden in the museum itself.  Hurrah!  All is well until Key discovers a picture online of the necklace on it’s rightful statue, only the same mysterious Jessica is next to it in the same pose with the same necklace.  Stumped.  Over!

There’s a couple things that could explain Jessica (if you aren’t a fan, she’s a lead singer in SNSD, SHINee’s labelmate) here.  At first I thought she was a ghost haunting the museum or necklace and didn’t want it to be found because it was hers.  That seems like a good theory because until SHINee finds the necklace, the clues seem misleading.  But alas, ghosts traditionally don’t photograph.  So the next theory is that she’s an immortal and a major troll.  She never ages, which explains the photo Key finds at the end, and she really likes to troll and fuck with people, which is why she leaves SHINee clues and then puts it on the interwebz.  The only problem with that is it doesn’t explain her disappearing.

It could also be that the museum is a rift in the spacetime continuum and Jessica is able to travel between the past and present at will.  Or that her memories are attached to the museum.

I haven’t really decided which theory I like best.  What do you think the explanation for Jessica is?

The other aspect of the music video is the dance shot and solo shots.  The dance isn’t my favorite SHINee dance, honestly.  It’s slightly awkward and the Russian-inspired main move on the chorus is really odd.  But it wouldn’t be SHINee if it wasn’t the most energetic dance I’ve seen in Kpop since Lucifer and it was extremely well pulled off.  Even if it looks weird, SHINee lives up to their name and makes it work.  I’m not addicted to the dance, but it makes for an interesting performance.

As for the solo shots, I’m not going to lie, only Mingo and Junghyun got blessed by the coordinator noonas here.  Key, Taemin, and Onew must have really pissed them off or something.  For Key, metallic leggings under boxers with a plastic wind catcher jacket?  What is this, a 70’s trailer park in Kentucky?  Shit, man.  Onew’s wouldn’t be awful if his hair didn’t look like someone took an award-winning poodle, split its fur in two, and glued the two separate parts on Onew’s head.  Ew.  And Taemin.  Oh, my love, Taemin.  I’m sure you all realized that his outfit looks like an Elvis reject.  And his weave is too long (Lucifer was perfect, though), so he just looks like trailer trash.  Er, he would, if his weave wasn’t so poorly done.  Any good stylist knows that you should never be able to see where the natural hair stops and the extensions start. That’s just lazy.

You know, even though they pull it off, Minho and Jonghyun also look like trailer trash.  Was that the theme for the dance shot?  Trailer trash?  Huh.  Good choice, SM.

The story line solo shots, however, are phenomenal.  All of the boys look sharp and stunning.  Especially Taemin, who… oh wait, let me clean up the drool on my keyboard here.  Even though they’re keeping his androgynous image (you have some real competition with NU’EST, SM, watch out), Taemin is getting more and more manly and sexy and… shit, more drool.  On that note, he’s also constantly improving his vocals.  I could hardly tell his voice from Jonghyun’s; his progress is stunning.  One of the best improvements I’ve ever seen in Kpop.

On to the album itself!

The title track off of the album is a combination of two other songs on the album, “Clue” and “Note”.  I thought that would be weird and repetitive, but it’s not.  I definitely like “Sherlock” the best of the three, but I really love “Clue.”  The heavy baseline is addictive and Minho’s raunchy whispering of “SHINee’s back” in your ear is eargasmic.  The vocals on these songs are really impressive compared to SHINee’s past albums–they really stepped up their game.  In the growing competitive market, SHINee’s proving they have what it takes to adapt and stay on top.  I can’t imagine how hard these boys have been working now that Taemin can be a proper slave since he’s graduated from high school.

There are three ballads, which SHINee is a big fan of, “Honestly,” “The Reason,” and “Alarm Clock.”  I don’t dislike any of them; the vocals are smooth and soothing, and in some of them, just down-right sexy.  Of the three, I like Alarm Clock the best entirely because of the instrumental.  It’s really catchy and screams classic SHINee to me.  By classic, I mean almost their entire first album was in this style and they’ve had a song in this style on every single album since.

That just leaves “Stranger,” which is other the up-beat track besides the title song(s).  I really love it because every single member’s vocals are fully showcased, including Minho’s vocals, not rapping.  I mean, he has an impressive rap that [thank God] as no Key for once.  The trills on the verses are hooking and have I mentioned Taemin yet?  He performs this so well.  Seriously, check out their comeback performance below, which includes a touching recap of SHINee since their debut, “Stranger,” and “Sherlock.”

What a comeback stage!  SHINee are the kings of SM.  I don’t care what you think, they’re better than Super Junior and SNSD combined.  I love SHINee.

If you’re a new fan, what’s your first impression of SHINee?  If you’re an old-time Shawol like me, do you think they managed to top “Lucifer” and “Ring Ding Dong”, or is this just a good second?

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