SHINee Lucifer Review

11/11/2010 12:46:00 AM


SHINee cemented my love for Kpop and boy bands (and that's saying something since I grew up with Backstreet Boys, NSync, and 98 Degrees and couldn't care less about them when they were around).

Debuting in 2008 -the same year DBSK's Mirotic (and their group) began to deteriorate- *hands out tissues for fellow Cassies* they are one of SM Entertainment's boy groups along with Super Junior.
They are known for their flamboyant style of dress, and are the second youngest members of SM's label.


Real Name: Lee, Jinki
Stage Name: Onew; Dubu; Appa Onew
Group Position: Leader, Subvocals
Age: 22 (US: 21)
The oldest, as well as the dorkiest, Lee Jinki is the group leader and is defined by his smooth voice, similar to that of Big Bang's Daesung. He is the resident "balladeer" and "trotter" of the group, though if given an uptempo, he can more than deliver.

Real Name: Kim, Jonghyun
Stage Name: Bling Bling Jonghyun; Jjong; Puppy Jjong
Group Position: Main vocals
Age: 21 (USA: 20)
The 'voice' of the group. He has a wide range, powerful vocals, and can be pin pointed by his nasal quality which can be a blessing and a curse. He is the go-to for R&B and even some Rock. He can deliver on ballads as well as uptempos, however, his vocals aren't as smooth as Onew's as far as technique. This is evident in SHINee's 2nd single Love Like Oxygen when Jonghyun starts the very first verse with a harsh edge to his voice, nearly spitting out his part. The boy can belt his head off, but doesn't know his limitations at the moment, and is usually the first one to lose his voice due to using too much force.

Real Name: Kim Kibum
Stage Name: Key; Almighty Key; Umma Key
Group Position: Sub-vocals; Rap
Age: 19 (USA: 18)
Like Onew, Key has a smooth voice, but has a deeper tone. Like Onew and Jonghyun, he can sing the HECK out of ballads and uptempos. As far as rap goes... He's okay, but he's no GD or TOP or Epik High.

Real Name: Lee Taemin
Stage Name: Taemin
Group Position: Sub-vocals; Main Dancer
Age: 17 (USA: 16)
For the past two years he was vocally nonexistent until Lucifer thanks to Jonghyun's training. He sounds like a softer version of Jonghyun (when with the group), but less nasal. When solo, he sounds like a young Jaejoong. His voice is straightforward and clean, which is good for melodies. He doesn't try to push past his limit like Jonghyun.

Real Name: Choi Minho
Stage Name: Minho; Flaming Charisma Minho
Group Position: Sub-vocals; Rap
Age: 18 (USA: 17)
He's the resident rapper of the group since every kpop group feels the need to have one or two. He's easy to pin point because of his manly, deep baritone. His rapping isn't the best, but he does write his own raps (unlike a lot of 'rappers' in SM), and...
*takes deep breath*

Artist: SHINee
Album: Lucifer The 2nd Album
Language: Korean
Track List:
1. Up & Down            9. Your Name
2. Lucifer                    10. Life
3. Electric Heart          11. Ready Or Not
4. A-Yo                      12. Love Pain
5. Obsession               13. Love Still Goes On
6. Quasimodo             
7. Shout Out               
8. Wowowow            

Up & Down is in a word: addictive. It gets stuck in your head like a piece of gum to the bottom of your shoe. From the first lines to the end, it's catchy. Jonghyun and Taemin start the song off rather nicely, integrating Key, Minho, and Onew in. This song has tons of layering. There's never just one thing going on. There's Jonghyun's vocals in the chorus and background going on forever and ever, there's Onew's 'eh eh eh', Key's 'hey baby', Minho's 'go go go'... Whew... I haven't even gotten to the instrumentals, but that, like the vocals is busy. It does give us a break during Minho's rap (I love you, but... G Dragon, San-E, MC Mong, and TOP are more FTW. You're not bad, but you're a better vocalist.), but it comes back with a force for Key's rap and Minho's second rap.

Lucifer: the title track is strong, epic...
I. Love. This. Song.
Onew comes in with his smooth vocals, followed by Taemin, then Jonghyun. This song has military precision in these vocals. I find it a bit annoying that they integrated autotune into this, but it doesn't make the song, it just adds some effects the boys couldn't otherwise do themselves. Taemin has certainly grown in his vocals. He's actually more than just the 'dancer' of the group. Minho actually gets to sing too. I like his singing more than his rapping, actually. The boys are most definitely growing up on us. From attracting the noonas (like me), to trying to get away from a conniving noona who's words are the 'Lucifaa,'

Electric Heart:
The first midtempo. The vocals are more or less held back, nearly whispered. When the boys really kick their vocals in, it is once again layers up the wazoo. There's not much to say about this track other than it's nice and laid back.

A-Yo is more or less reggaeton/indian driven compared to the previous tracks. Like American songs these days, there are tons of 'Aye!' by what sounds like a chorus of black guys in the background during the chorus. It's not as crazy with the vocal layering. It's a song you listen to for that feeling of driving to the beach during summer with all of your friends. For that, I'm reminded of Rhianna's early work before she started trying to be 'hard' and a 'rock star'. It's relaxed and doesn't feel frantic.

Obsession is Jonghyun's moment to show off because it's his song. He penned this angry/emo little number. Unlike the other songs, that are driven by drums and synths, this is more rock driven. The  bass still pounds at your eardrums, but this is so emotionally driven (oddly enough, by guys who haven't even had their first kisses yet.) that you want to find the best speakers you can afford and blast it. Though a song about a guy with split personality disorder/killing a lover when she wants to leave, it's beautiful none the less.

Quasimodo brings the first ballad. Jonghyun sounds gorgeous. Onew sounds gorgeous. Key's gorgeous. Minho's gorgeous. Taemin's gorgeous. Everything's gorgeous. It's such a sad song of unrequited love. I just want to hug the boys.

We go from emo-land to getting gangsta with Shout Out. It's mostly rapping with Key and Minho. Their accent is really thick so I honestly didn't even know they were chanting in English during the chorus. It's like a more crunk version of "A Boy" by GD.

Wowowow is kinda eh~~~~ not my cup of tea with all the cutesy-ness and autotune (though not over done like 2ne1's). It's not bad, but it just comes down to personal taste.

Your Name, written by Onew is sweet, if not a bit over the top with the 'la la la's and birds chirping.

Life is just... *speechless. waves lighter in the air* Life is just gorgeous.

Ready or Not is a fun track. No issues except that tiny bit of autotune, but it's minor. Key and Minho once again take over this song.

We go back to emo-land again with Love Pain. Love Pain is really lovely. It's like Romantic 2.0.

Love Still Goes On is actually a remake/remix of their original from the Replay mini album. It's a nice way to end the album. In a way it says: "Look how far we've come in this short amount of time." They've gone from being DBSK Jr. to having their own identities.


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The autotuning brings it down ever so slightly, but I'm nitpicky like that. :P
Plus one or two songs weren't too remarkable. Not that they were bad, but they just weren't my favorites.



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