Why SHINee shines in JapanThe hot responses they are receiving in Japan are nothing less than their popularity in Korea. We asked EMI Japan about their plan for SHINee.
Betraying expectations and going beyond imagination
When and through which record company will SHINee debut? There had been rumors within the industry, but their Japanese debut was announced in their first solo concert held on 26 Dec last year.
“It was a meaningful moment since we announced the happy news of our Japanese debut to fans in our first solo concert. I was moved into tears…,” Jonghyun said.
“It was a deeply moving moment like the girl I confessed my love finally said yes…,” said Suzuki-san who is in charge of SHINee in EMI Music Japan (EMI).
“It was love at first sight,” continued Suzuki-san about his meeting with SHINee.
“I fell for their overwhelming singing ability, absolute performance, distinct character, and stylish look itself. I thought their fresh and transparent feel different from other Kpop artists would appeal to Japanese people. The fact they have already captivated lots of Japanese people before their debut proves it true. When even a man like me thinks they are cute, how much more will they be to girls? People want a star in any age. SHINee is the very star.”
EMI has not released any Korean artist’s albums, but they even created an S-Project team for SHINee’s album release.
What does EMI think of the possibility of Kpop and its direction?
“The reason Kpop is loved by many fans is the high level of performance such as music, singing, and dance which makes star quality. When a star is born to form a boom, new trends and culture are made out of it according to the necessity of market economy. Right now Kpop is at the center of a boom. However, a boom always dies out. What remains after a boom is over, I think that is something real. SHINee is now a star in this boom, but I think they will continue to stay as artists regardless of the boom. A star that can make it possible for Japan hand in hand with Korea to conquer Asia and stand shoulder to shoulder with the world, I think that is SHINee.”
One of SHINee’s charms is counted as their “Western taste” music distinct from Kpop dance music. Why did they choose Replay, a “Western music style” song, not their best hit song Lucifer, for their Japanese debut?
“It’s because the theme of Replay fits well with the fresh start of their debut (in Japan), and I think you never get tired of the unique song.”
They will perform live as a debut reception in Abbey Road Studios, London, the symbol of EMI and Beatles.
“There is a SHINee’s song whose music video on Youtube has more than 20 million view counts. This means their fans are all over the world. The SM Town Live they participate in will have a concert in Europe this June after making a success in the U.S. as well as in Asia. These records moved EMI headquarters and the Abbey Road staff to realize the live reception. Since it is held in London, we are planning to broadcast it as real time video service. With a flood of inquiries from SHINee fans in London, we are rushing to prepare for it.”
Lastly, we asked how SHINee’s music will change after their Japanese debut.
“It is said there is no borderline in music, but I think it is great for Kpop artists to sing songs composed by Westerners in Japanese. For that reason, I would like to try different songs that can make the most of their strong points. Of course, we are considering Japanese original songs. Entertainment should present what betrays the expectations of listeners and goes beyond imagination in a good sense. I look forward to more advanced chemical reactions between Japan and Korea in the future.”
[Korean trans by ㄷㅂ29@DC Shinee Gallery | English trans by jujugal]