The Fangirl Lane


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On My Playlist ~ Be Your Enemy [Taemin]

One afternoon about two years ago, I walked into my meditation room (yeah, I am new-agey like that) and was overcome with an intense floral aroma. It kind of freaked me out because there were no fresh flowers in the room, nor was I burning incense or any candles. I immediately jumped online and called upon the university of Google to ask what the cause of this phenomenon could be. Was I having some kind of existential or out of body experience? Why were the aromatics so intense and so beautiful? One of the reasons the new age professors at Google offered was the presence of an angel or angels in the room. I was completely on board with that and surmised that was the reason. It was brief, intense and to date, has not happened again. But, I kind of have a similar experience when I listen to Taemin’s gentle pop songs and ballads. They offer a fragrance of their very own. Case in point: the winsome and angelic Be Your Enemy.

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On My Playlist ~ Think of You (안아줄래) [Taemin]

While it is easy to focus on all that went awry and continues to be wrong with 2020, I choose instead to focus on the one thing that single-handedly has saved this difficult year for me: Lee Taemin. Even though the world was pretty much in complete ruin when I woke up to his art and music in August, I think I happened upon Taemin at just the right time. I showed up on the verge of him releasing not one, but three albums (if you count his involvement with SuperM, and I do) which ended up being remedies I never knew I needed. That is, loneliness and isolation in need of comfort, and troubling times in need of a hero. Yes, in many ways, Taemin landed in my realm at the right time; and by way of music, art and his indelible smile, rescued 2020.

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On My Playlist ~ IDEA:理想 [Taemin]

At precisely 3AM (6PM KST) on Monday, November 9th, I woke up from a deep sleep, my inner alarm clock sounding its bell alerting me to the fact that Taemin released the second part of his third album, Never Gonna Dance Again: Act Two and with it, the MV for the title track, IDEA. I had planned to rise early to watch a 6AM (9PM KST) V-Live broadcast with Taemin in connection with that new release. However, it seems my fangirl-mired subconscious felt it a duty to disregard my normal circadian rhythms; and although I was awake to experience the album/song release real time, I cannot say I was necessarily ready. In fact, I wasn’t.

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On My Screen ~ Black Rose Eye Contact Cam Version [Taemin]

In anticipation of the release of Taemin’s next album, Never Gonna Dance Again: Part Two, I find I am unable to curb my enthusiasm while I wait. The album will be released on November 9th, and although that is rapidly approaching, it is going to seem like 15 years. Ok, I am exaggerating of course, but I can’t help it, I am excited. To help move time a little quicker as I wait for teasers, the MV and ultimate album release, I am going to appreciate some of Taemin’s past performance videos. Because, why not? Lately, Black Rose from Never Gonna Dance Again: Part One has been demanding my attention, so I will start there.

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On My Playlist ~ Nemo [Taemin]

Truth be told, every song on Taemin’s Act One: Never Gonna Dance Again is in shuffle mode looping endlessly as I pass these quarantine days in this current work from home environment. It has been my constant companion since its September 7th release. At this point, I should simply succumb to the desire to gush over every track and am considering it because as far as I’m concerned, each deserves its moment in the spotlight. However for now, I choose to honor Nemo because in a recent commentary, Taemin intimated that it is his favorite track on the album.

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On My Playlist ~ Criminal [Taemin]

I do not throw the word ‘masterpiece’ around lightly, or even often. But I think SHINee fans, and specifically, Taemin stans, would agree that while Taemin repeatedly creates artistic masterpieces, he himself is one as well. Since 2 Kids, the pre-release from this third album, Never Gonna Dance Again, I have been entranced, enthralled and captivated by this brilliant young artist. The title track, Criminal, is a metaphoric masterpiece of being a willing victim of a criminal whose crime is an intense, painful yet magnificent love.

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