We hardly doubt that we were the only ones setting all of our hopes into 2021 being better than 2020, but being gravely disappointed. Thankfully this doesn’t apply to the year we had for music. K-POP has been soaring this year – becoming almost larger than life. Not only fourth-generation K-POP has been thriving, but second-generation idols have been making their huge comebacks in 2021 after reuniting after years of hiatus or fulfilling their mandatory military service. One of those groups this year was the all-around talented SHINee!
Now, we won’t be trying to deny the fact that we are the biggest Shawols on the block, or maybe just in our tiny corner of the internet, but it is true. We love SHINee here at THP HQ and it has been amazing to see them dominate this year as a seasoned 13-year-old K-POP group. In order to celebrate the amazing 2021 SHINee had, we bring to you our very own Music Rewind for the one and only shining SHINee!
Grand Return With Don’t Call Me
With all of the members – except Taemin – having finished their military service in 2020 and SHINee’s return being teased through a special teaser at the New Year’s concert SM TOWN LIVE Culture Humanity, Shawols were expecting teasers for the new SHINee comeback every single day. Then one day in February, the first teasers finally dropped and February 21st would be the day the boys were back. That day their seventh studio album Don’t Call Me dropped and nature healed.
The album consists of nine tracks including the title single ‘Don’t Call Me’ and each was better than the other, really showcasing the group’s charm and what makes them such a long-lived group. ‘Don’t Call Me’ went on to give SHINee six music show wins and saw them breaking multiple personal records. The record also placed at number one on the Goan Album Chart upon its release and placed seventh on the Billboard World Albums chart. A success all around we think.
Online Concert Beyond Live SHINee : SHINee WORLD
After concluding their promotions for ‘Don’t Call Me’ SHINee went on to hold their first online concert SHINee : SHINee WORLD and their first concert in years on April 4th. The concert was an amazing experience for everyone – artists, and fans and it felt truly surreal to finally see SHINee back on stage performing new and old songs together. (Except ‘Body Rhythm,’ which we are still salty about). During the concert, SHINee offered, besides cute and fun interactions, a glimpse at their upcoming release, which would be the repackaged version of their seventh studio album Don’t Call Me headed by the lead single ‘Atlantis,’ to be released on April 12th.
Repackaged Album Atlantis
SHINee knew fans wouldn’t be satisfied with just one comeback this year. Not when the SHINee was back, so they promptly dropped the repackaged version of their February album in April this year. ‘Atlantis‘ encapsulates everything SHINee stands for. Full of pop energy, amazing choreo, a fantastic rap section, vocals for days, and the SHINee harmony print. Alongside the title track, the album also offered two more new songs; ‘Area’ and ‘Days and Years.’ Two beautiful SHINee ballads that perfectly rounded off the group’s seventh studio album. The repackaged also set a new record for the most first-week sales on Hantao Chart for any repackage album. The Princes of K-POP strike again!
SHINee wouldn’t be SHINee without some solo activities taking place right after their group activities ended. Taemin graced fans with a new, amazing solo album just before his enlistment into the military in May. This made the goodbye even more bittersweet as ‘Advice‘ is an absolute banger and Taemin looked breathtaking during the music video and stage performances with his long hair. The song had been teased to Shawols during Taemin’s May 2nd solo concert NEVER GONNA DANCE AGAIN, which was a fantastic concert on its own. We miss this amazing all-rounder performer and can’t wait for him to be discharged in the fall of 2022!
SHINee’s Japanese Album Superstar
Even with Taemin in the military, SHINee didn’t hesitate to also cater to their Japanese fans with a new album! The five-track EP Superstar dropped on July 28th and included three original Japanese songs, ‘Don’t Call Me (Japanese Version),’ and ‘Atlantis (Korean version).’ The extended play topped the Oricon Album Charts, which was their fourth album to do so and was certified Gold by RIAJ. Just SHINee things.
That’s not all, the comeback was teased through the release of the title single ‘Superstar’ which the boys previewed during their Japanese fan meet SHINee WORLD J Presents 〜Bistro de SHINee, which celebrated their tenth debut anniversary in Japan. The fan meeting was held on May 23rd and ended on the most heartbreaking note ever as this was one of the last events Taemin would be able to stand in front of fans before enlisting. All of the members seemed to be quite emotional but so were we,… until we meet again as a full group in 2023!
Key’s Bad Love
After SHINee concluded their full group promotions this year Key – as well – came to grace us all with his first comeback in over two years! ‘Bad Love‘ promised us quality music and all of what makes Key‘s music so amazing. The mini-album was teased with pre-release single ‘Hate that…’ featuring no one else but SNSD’s very own Taeyeon. A match made in Heaven was delivered to fans on August 30th.
After the pre-release single Key held a solo concert KEY : ‘GROKS IN THE KEYLAND’ a day before the release of the mini album and performed all of the songs including a still unreleased song called ‘Another Life,’ which we are hoping to get very soon! The mini-album Bad Love dropped on September 27th and blew us away! Not only does this retro sound perfectly fit Key and his overall persona but it was one of the best songs we got to hear this year so far. ‘Bad Love’ gave us the perfect dose of retro and achievements for Key as ‘Bad Love’ gave him his first solo music show win and is his best-selling album to date.
While we are still patiently waiting for ONEW to grace us with his second solo album (the teasing is getting a bit too much sir). ONEW got the opportunity to team up with no one else but the incredible PUNCH for an SM STATION. ‘Way’ is a beautiful ballad that only our amazing leader could have pulled off. We really hope Voice 2.0 is going to drop in early 2022. Until then ONEW has graced us with various amazing OST throughout the year so far, for dramas such as High Class, You Are My Spring, or A Week Before Goodbye. Lee Jinki has really been treating us with music this year. Thank you.
Finally to close off the SHINee music year and after years of just having one solo song ‘I’m Home,’ Minho finally released his new solo single ‘Heartbreak‘ before holding his fan meeting CHOI MINHO FAN PARTY ‘BEST CHOI’s MINHO 2021 on December 21st. The teasers for this comeback had Flamers and Shawols alike, buzzing with excitement and the actual song was drop-dead gorgeous! Minho’s vocals are so smooth during this R’n’B song and show us yet again that he is not just SHINee’s rapper.
Of course, we don’t have to mention how breathtaking Minho’s visuals were in the stunning music video. But also the fan meeting was a complete success giving Shawols some absolute quality time with the idol – making us laugh, the SHINee medley that Minho performed (especially ‘Body Rhthym’) making us lose our minds, and the ‘Heartbreak’ stage as well making us emotional. The perfect end to 2021.
Various Other Activites
One thing is for sure: SHINee did not rest this year. Besides various music releases, SHINee members were busy in other areas. Minho has been acting in Yumi’s Cells and other acting projects, Key and ONEW have been active members of various variety shows, and entertaining Shawols left and right on shows like I live Alone, Amazing Saturday or Sea of Hope. ONEW also starred in the musical Midnight Sun and shone so very brightly. And after having a busy first half of 2021 of group comebacks, concerts, solo releases, and OSTs our maknae Taemin enlisted in the military being the last one to do so. But this means SHINee is back in 2023 Shawols and will never leave us again!
In conclusion, SHINee knew exactly how to make their long-awaited comeback and made 2021 their year. Shawols got a lot of amazing content this year which just gets us even more excited for 2022. How much do you love SHINee? What was your favorite SHINee 2021 moment? What are you looking forward to in 2022? Let us know in the comments below, tweet us @TheHoneyPOP or talk to us on Facebook or Instagram!
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Featured Image Source: SM Entertainment.