9Muses are perhaps one of the most consistent girl groups in Kpop, but with absolutely nothing to show for it beyond a cult following and the reputation of “most underrated girl group.” I’ve been following them ever since their glittery 80s throwback, “News” and energetic “Ticket” hit the scene, and save for a couple duds they’re my favorite girl group ever.
On top of being the most underrated girl group, 9Muses is known for having more member changes than you can shake a stick at. The first thing that may come to mind is “why are they called 9Muses when there are only four members,” and at this point the only thing I could tell you is it’s all about brand value. Most recently, the subgroup 9Muses A (which, ironically, was the first group I ever wrote a blog post about) just became 9Muses since Sungah for whatever reason is out of the picture, and there are only two original members remaining.
However, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that “Remember” is the best track 9Muses have had in years.
To start, the song is dark. It doesn’t seem to fit the summer vibe at all, but I see this as a good thing. It starts out like an acoustic guitar ballad, with some synths meant to foreshadow where the song goes in the chorus. The voices of the members fit this kind of song so well, I’m surprised that they haven’t tried this kind of thing sooner.
Perhaps the standout of the song is the chorus fulfilling the build that the verses and pre-choruses advertise. There have been too many a Kpop song where the build just dies once the chorus starts, but this one shows all groups how to use that build to create something amazing.
And then the music video.
The music video is a mix of a bunch of different things, but the only thing we know for sure is that the photographer has mixed reviews. Hyemi never even sees him, Sojin doesn’t mind him because he’s taking pictures of her (perhaps for a modelling project?), Keumjo runs away from him with teddy bear in tow, and Kyungri shoots him. He doesn’t turn out well in the end, but the saving grace is that the girls look amazing.
I can also honestly say that for once Keumjo’s presence in a music video didn’t annoy me. Perhaps it was her destiny to look best with darker concepts.
Also, can we talk about how expensive this all looks? Star Empire either must like 9Muses very much or at the very least want them to succeed because this was not cheap.
My only complaint with everything is that the music video holds out the instrumental after the first chorus for far too long. It sort of ruins the build the song is so good at, and for a first-time listener it sounds disappointing, which is never a good thing.
Overall, I am so happy that this comeback turned out as well as it did and met all of my expectations. The song is killer with a music video to match (see what I did there?) and the girls slay. To be honest, at this point I don’t even care if we never get back to the nine-member lineup because these girls can hold their own well enough.