SHINee, a very popular Korean boy group, is finally back with their new song, “Lucifer”.
I have to say that Lucifer is just another example of the stereotype of the Korean “addictive” style of music: extremely simple and memorable melody (or just one or two notes repeating) plus steady fast pumping beats. Believe it or not, in Korea, this style of music has been popular since last couple years because this kind of songs stick to audience’s head so easily that it’s almost implausible to forget the melody. After many other songs like Sorry Sorry, Bonamama, Oh and Gee, SM Entertainment obviously isn’t tired of this effective way of impressing the audience – and there’s Lucifer. However, the overuse of this style turns it into a cliché, making Lucifer somewhat dulling.
Nevertheless, the music video of Lucifer and the styling of the five stars are relatively creative and bold, making up the lack of freshness in music:
Key got an uneven mohawk cut with half-bangs that almost covers his left eye completely – Wow, how bold is this decision that the stylist made! Korean idol industry has been always focusing on how perfect looking the idols can be, trying to promote them as a creature higher than human-beings. However, Key’s styling in this MV totally broke the tradition. Even though it’s not easy to get used to his hairstyle at first if you’ve known SHINee for long, this is definitely a great try and it perfectly fits the song title Lucifer, showing the sharpness of Key (regardless of the meaning of the song lyrics – it’s again about love, of course).
And Taemin saved his hair till shoulder level. I have to admit that Taemin has been labelled as “the cute and girly 막내” and femininity – many fans are even jealous of his big eyes and skinny legs. So why save his hair even longer? Is it to concentrate his femininity even more? No, not at all. With this completely straight, layered long hair, Taemin, though still looks like a girl from the first sight, transfers into a rebellious rocker: the flat layered hair appears like the blade of a knife, and the bangs covers much of pretty big his eyes and therefore conceals his cuteness. Then when the bangs are up, the clean forehead that didn’t show up much before makes Taemin less like a boy, but more like a man.
If you are new to K-pop, you may ask: what’s with the heavy eye makeup? It’s not really explainable – the border between femininity and muscularity is a lot less strict in Asia than that in the US. To Asians, eye makeup is just a way to sharpen the entertainers’ face traits no matter if they are male or female. And to me, eye makeup on guys on stage or in music videos is an art, since it varies so largely and it’s not intend to increase femininity.
The dance of Lucifer is powerful. The choreography is not too complicated or simple, and SHINee aptly controlled the strength of each stretch and the distance of each step – this makes the dance very durable for watching.
Overall, even though the song is a cliché, Lucifer still makes a creative music video. And believe it or not, it is truly addicting – I didn’t like it for the first time, but after listening to it for a few times, I started dancing and humming along with the song involuntarily, and now I am just watching it over and over because the addiction is in effect. 😀