Music Review

REVIEW: Taemin – Move

You got got the rhythmmmm 💃🏾💃🏾

I was hopeful my thoughts on MOVE would be different now that time has passed. But I still feel the same way about it. It’s an ight album. The songs I love, I really love. The others are okay at best and background music at its “worst”.

I don’t think there are objectively any bad songs out of the 4 songs I don’t care for. I’m not including “Flame of Love” Korean version in that list, one because it was a bonus track. And two, I do like that song. Not one I actively look for in my music library, but again, if it was on the in the background, I’m not gonna complain about it for the next 3 minutes.

My initial plan was to listen to this album in the car or in my room while playing Pokémon Violet (my current hyper-fixation and why I haven’t been able to get much writing done lately 😅). But I decided to listen to it while working a shift at my merchandising gig.

I find I’m less forgiving when listening to music this way. So when I really enjoy something while doing something else like exercising or working, then I really like it.

We don’t have my usual faves that we’ve had producing/lyric writing on this one. Which is probably the real reason for me not enjoying this one as much as Ace and Press It. It doesn’t look like Taemin participated in writing, either.

I know his main focus this time around was more of the choreography and visuals, in this era. This was actually the last album of Taemin’s where I had more than 3 songs I saved. Which is why the last Taemin post is literally just the remaining fave songs of his he released between 2018-2021.

I’m hopeful his next release post enlistment will be more of my speed. Also, SuperM comeback? Allegedly? I’m intrigued. How are they gonna do that without Lucas?

So this time around, I’m just gonna talk about the top four songs off MOVE I love and skip the others. Let’s get into it!


Move

I knew there was a huge push for “Move” but I didn’t know it wasn’t going to be the title track. Apparently “Love” was the title SM wanted, but Taemin (thank God) felt “Love” wouldn’t convey the image he had in mind this comeback and pushed for “Move”.

He wanted to break gender norms and mix feminine and masculine characteristics and show his true identity. I’m paraphrasing but. You can read more about it in this Billboard article. I think this was an excellent choice, one because I love the song and two, because you can tell the care and hard work put into the execution of it all.

There are two other music video versions, there’s a duo one, and a solo one. But my favorite version of “Move”this era was Taemin and the female dancers performing at Seoul Fashion Week.

Still one of my favorite SFW performances and Taemin things ever. I haven’t watched the official music video in such a long time. I forgot how simple it is compared to “Danger” and “Press It”. And the arm above your head dance.

I always remember that part in the choreo and the walking and snapping fingers part. There’s always some move that instantly lets you know what song it is without hearing it. You could recognize it on mute.

The styling doesn’t stand out much to me other than the gold silk/satin shirt and the gray sparkly mask he wears. I’ve always been fascinated with that scene. Mostly because Taemin having female hitters cracks me up. But we also love the glamour of it all.

Oh, and the gray sleeveless turtleneck shirt. I love that too. I’m a big fan of arms out. And that’s all Taemin’s looks except for that gold shirt. The shirt that says “take a small bite” is 10/10. Okay, maybe I have more to say about his outfits more than I thought, lol.

Idk what you’d call this hair color. It’s like a steel blue gray color. I love it. Up to this point, I always associated blonde!Taemin with solo Taemin. Because most of the time up until this point, when he had blonde hair you knew a solo was on the way.

So just that small detail of choosing a different color this time around also shows visually we’re doing something different this time around. Or at least that’s how I interpreted it.

One last thing about “Move” music video is the VCR filter at the beginning. I love that. I didn’t talk about the filter on “Drip Drop”. But “Move” also has a weird filter that makes everything look a bit smudged. Or like there was heavy humidity during filming. But I like it.


Crazy 4 U

I don’t listen to “Crazy 4 U” much. I forgot about it until I started working on this post. This song literally never pops up on shuffle. I think the parts I enjoy the most is the instrumentals on this song. It’s a solid b-side. I need to listen to it more.


Heart Stop (feat Seulgi)

So when it comes to songs I remember from MOVE, “Heart Stop” and “Thirsty” come to mind. I was so excited for a Red Velvet collab, and I couldn’t think of a better match than Seulgi.

I always thought she had the closest aesthetic to Taemin’s (when we’re talking about SM collabs that make sense outside of them being labelmates).

It would have been cool to have gotten a performance video with them dancing in the main room where Taemin sits in the scenes when he has that mask on.

I think Seulgi does a great job on the song. It’s another b-side I enjoy, but I wouldn’t rank it S or A tier. It’s a strong B. My Spotify does seem to remember it, and it pops up semi-frequently if I put my music on shuffle.


Thirsty

Aw yeah my favorite song from this era. The obesssion I had with “Thirsty” was on par with my hype for Press It. “Thirsty” is one of my favorite Taemin songs period. I couldn’t stop watching the OFF-SICK/SM Station music video at the time of release.

I had a scene from this video as my phone wallpaper for the longest time. I just LOOOOOOOVEEEED this, I guess I’ll call it an era. I love the simplicity of it all. I’m a sucker for choreography focused videos.

You got the fish eye lens. You’ve got suits, we know I’m a sucker for monochrome suits in particular, and we’ve got Taemin in a turtleneck. All the boxes are crossed off.

I always felt like this song and music video was slept on. I guess that’s just part of the Shawol experience, lol. But I will sing the praises of “Thirsty” any time I get the opportunity to do so.


Annddd that’s it. I don’t really have much to say about “Love”, “Rise”, “Stone Heart” or “Back To You”. Wait…I guess we can talk about the Korean version of “Flame of Love” real quick.


Flame of Love – Korean Version, Bonus Track

I’m including the Japanese music video, but we will talk about the Korean version as well. Let me explain. Well, let me go a bit of a tangent first. If you’ve read my SHINee “Your Number” post, you know I love me a good Japanese SHINee track.

I wasn’t there for it, but I know a lot of SHINee’s early years they spent a TON of time promoting in Japan, and it paid off. The Japanese Shawols go hard for SHINee, and I’m very much jealous of all the SHINee region specific content they’ve gotten over the years.

I bring all this up because I don’t typically check for Kpop groups/soloist releasing Japanese language music. Despite me actually learning Japanese before learning Korean (I got a C in my online class, I didn’t study much, lol. Should have taken it in person). But there are exceptions to the rules, and SHINee is one of them.

So when I heard about “Sayonara Hitori” (released in 2016 after Press It) I had to check it out. I loved it. So when “Flame of Love” Japanese song and album with the same title, I was curious. There were some new songs for the Japanese audiences, a Japanese version of “Press It” and of course the new song, and video above. I was entranced by the music video for “Flame of Love” I think if you love good choreo, you gotta watch this version just for that alone.

The Korean version is literally the same melody and flow of the Japanese song, just in a different language. So if you love this version, you’ll love the Korean version.

I’m glad they included the Korean version on MOVE. I don’t have the physical copy, so I don’t know how they have it labeled. But I wrote the title the way Spotify has it listed as of writing this article.


Okay, now that’s it for MOVE. Next article we will talk about “Want” and some of my other fave Taemin songs from 2018 onwards. I hope y’all are excited about the finale.

What are y’alls fave songs from MOVE? Were you a Kpoppie when this album dropped? Or are you completely new to it? Let me know in the comments.

Take care!

Ash💎

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