SHINee’s Taemin is back with a new album wherein he dazzles fans with his dark and edgy side!
SHINee’s Taemin unveiled his latest album today. Titled, Never Gonna Dance Again: Act 1, the album sees the singer taking on a bold avatar as seen with his moody melodies and evolved lyricism. Moreover, Taemin’s 3rd album Never Gonna Dance Again” will see two parts namely “Act 1” and “Act 2”.
In this “Act 1”, Taemin breaks out of the familiarity of his world and taps into his dramatic ego which he delivers with grandeur through cinematic elements.
Taemin’s Never Gonna Dance Again: Act 1 is quite metaphorical in a sense and showcases the singer’s versatility in an artistic way. The album represents the beginning of a rebellion and of stepping into the unknown and outside of a familiar world. It features nine songs in total, including the leading track “Criminal”, “Black Rose”, “Strangers”, “Waiting For”, “Clockwork”, “Just Me And You”, “Nemo”. It also features the Korean version of Taemin’s Japanese song “Famous”, and the already released Prologue single “2 KIDS”.
“Criminal” is a thrilling track and the perfect opening number for the album. The song is a synthwave track that combines a tense rhythm and newtro sound that makes for quite the addictive melody. It is an expression of when one can’t escape the fatal charms of a lover. The song draws parallels with the idea of “Stockholm Syndrome” as seen in lines such as, “I know well that you’re bad for me/ Your eyes and the way you move/ I try to get away from you/ But being brainwashed, all I can do is nod,” before Taemin admittedly sings, “So elegant, a Criminal who hurts me/ It’s okay You soothe me just to torture me again/ Ooh I’m on a leash called you/ It’s painful as much as I can’t breathe but also magnificent.”
“Black Rose” is a dark pop song that also features artist Kid Milli. Though poignant, the song feels almost poetic with lines like, “The sun must be swallowed by the moon, day and night must coexist/ I can face you hiding in me.” The lyricism is metaphorical in its style and pre-dominantly makes use of the phenomenon of an eclipse as a symbol to express a harrowing heartbreak that leaves behind a sense of despair and bitterness.
Being as it is a mid-tempo dance song, the message that “Strangers” relays is quite heart rending. Showcasing his flawless falsettos and low tones, Taemin creates a moody ambiance as he expresses the loss of a relationship as he exclaims that, “You and I are strangers with memories”. Definitely one of the finest tracks on this album!
NO SKIPS ON THIS ONE! This sensual number features influences of tango that merge effortlessly with the bright guitar and heavy synth beat of the track. Taemin will surely get listeners grooving with his reverberating soft vocals that give this track its oomph factor. This dreamy track lives up to its name and it is truly what everyone was “Waiting For”!
“Clockwork” is a contemporary ballad track composed of a soft piano, synths and an R&B based harmony that sees the singer’s more soulful and sweet side. Taemin once again wows with his subtle falsettos and high notes especially towards the end of track as he compares the memory of a past lover to a clock as he reminisces, “It’s like clockwork. The irreversible time of you and me.”
Just Me And You
Taemin delves into R&B with this cinematic love song. The lyricism is sensual and the vocalist’s powerpacked voice only adds to the overall sultriness of the track as he sings, “You and I ooh little by little ooh/ It’s just a color mix/ born anew/ Empty out your mind so that it’s full of me.” The song’s passionate vibe comes to life with the different timbres of Taemin’s voice that add a beautiful texture to the harmony of the track.
“Nemo” is an expression of regret after a sudden goodbye. The song is reminiscent of retro R&B songs. Moreover, the track’s theme is skillfully expressed in homonyms. “Nemo” will surely take listeners on a walk down memory lane with its nostalgic musical style.
“Famous” is fabulous just as Taemin is on the track. The hard to miss bass based electro beat complements the airiness of the singer’s breathy vocals beautifully. The track flows just as smoothly as his ‘famous’ dance moves and fluid vocals and serves as the perfect representation of Taemin himself.
The prologue single from the album “2 KIDS”, is a guitar based electro pop track. Taemin’s delicate vocals add an undeniable sensuous vibe to the song’s overall simple style. Whats more? The multi talented musician also took on the role of the writer for the track as well.
The track is comforting and compelling as Taemin’s power packed vocals create an evocative ambiance that is bound to tug at listeners’ heart strings. “2 Kids” tells a heart rending tale of love and loss as the artist looks back at painful memories and sings, “We were just 2 kids, too young and dumb/ Young, dumb and clumsy hearts/ Hold them tight on that particularly sad day/ You and I, you and I/ Wishing you would hold me but I pushed you/ Saying the words “I’m sorry” was Uhm/ 2 kids, too young and dumb/ If I endured everything, would it be different?/ You and I.” The track is testament to Taemin’s musical prowess.
Music Video Musings
Taemin is a vision to behold in the music video for the album’s lead track “Criminal”. With the use of dark hues, the video has quite a mystifying vibe to it. What adds to the video’s overall intrigue is the cinematography, Taemin’s extravagant attires with the metal armor of sorts and the bejeweled eye patch to name a few and the use of props such a mannequins, chains and ropes.
While the music video is the perfect representation of the track itself, Taemin adds a certain electrifying vibrancy to it with his captivating choreography that is fluid, flawless and fabulous. Moreover, the singer gives the music video an added dramatic flair with his almost maniacal expressions as well as mannerisms in instances such as when he declares, “Destroy me more” before showcasing some dynamic dance moves.
Taemin truly kills it on not just this track but the whole album as well and with it, he manifests what can only be described as a masterpiece!
Source: SM Entertainment