The number of members finally fits their name again!…
C-listes Nine Muses set the bar ridiculously high for themselves last year with their first mini album, Sweet Rendezvous.
After surviving the storm of shade thrown at them by angry SONEs claiming that the number 9 could only be used by SNSD (come on guys, I’m a GG stan, but that’s just acting cray cray) the model-idols won over new fans with their Sweetune produced tracks “Ticket,” “Figaro,” and my personal favorite “News.”
Unfortunately since they are under one of the world’s most basic labels, Star Empire Entertainment, we had to wait eight long months to end up with a paltry single album that consists of two songs and an intro (vomit).
I guess something is better than nothing?
Title track “Dolls” continues their string of productions with Sweetune, and it’s beginning to look like Nine Muses are the Sistar to his Brave Brothers.
This collaboration team clearly can do no wrong, and with an increase in budget the girls are looking flyer than ever in cut out suits and fringe jackets. Melody-wise the song is another gorgeous retro jam that grooves as smoothly as the girls shake their booties.
Speaking of posteriors, the butt-dance is the clear standout move and it is fittingly fabulous. Shamefully, the rest of the routine isn’t as memorable as that single gesture. As the song chugs along each girl gets her chance in the spotlight, but in a surprise twist ex-rapper Sam now sings and ex-singer Eunji now raps, and while I miss Sam laying down lines on the mic, Eunji sort of slaughtered it in the best way possible.
Divided into two groups, the “bad girls” who wear ties and grind on a set of purple doors and the “good girls” who pose in bridesmaids’ dresses and lightly wave their hands, the multiple set changes help to keep things interesting and fresh while still giving the fans an appropriate amount of group dance and solo face shots. There’s even an AKB48 “Heavy Rotation” scene where the girls lay on colorful mats and bounce balloons at the camera. “Heavy Rotation” is by my favorite AKB48 jam so I approve of the plagiarism.
“Dolls” won’t blow you over as quickly as Nine Muses’ last few singles, but what it does instead is more important. It further cements an identity for this group, something that many in the K-pop scene are currently struggling with. Their looks and voices are a perfect fit for this brand of retro-synth pop and they are continuing to stick with what works. Besides, after a couple spins you’ll be hitting the replay button over and over again. To compare the song to male genitalia, “Dolls” is a grower not a shower. Huge grower, huge.