GRAPHIC BY EMMA CHANG
By BELINDA KUO
“No” need for any more looking, CLC’s latest album will be your No. 1 after one listen.
On Jan. 30, Korean pop (K-pop) girl group sensation CrystaL Clear (CLC) released its eighth mini album, No. 1. As the album’s title track of CLC’s first release of 2019, “No” is a perfect song to represent their first release of the new year. The song is written by rookie member and rapper Soyeon of K-pop girl group (G)I-DLE, with lyrics preaching about rebelling from the beauty standards. This self-love concept is a perfect message for fans to stay true to themselves.
The captivating single features the members’ dance talent, and encompasses a catchy beat. Consequently, their music video showcases their unique style of using juxtaposition and antithesis with their lyrics and outfits.
Ultimately, the song’s strong self-love message holds a significant meaning that is perfect for opening up the new year. The powerful beats and enthralling vocals appeals to fans, while the sharp choreography and impressive dance skills capture new fans.
“No” encompasses lyrics that suit this self-positivity theme and preach about straying from the ideal beauty standards, which leads to feminism. For instance, the song opens up with the lyrics, “Red lip? No. Earrings? No. High heels? No. Handbag? No,” showcasing that these materialistic items are not needed to represent who women are. In fact, another lyric perfectly states this idea: “Forget basic things like that,” which shows that such basic materialistic items that are usually related to women should not be used to define females. Besides explaining that items do not define women, the lyrics also state that women should not change for others. The lyrics state: “I don’t change myself for you. I shine, I shine, I shine,” to reflect that others’ opinions do not matter as long as their audience loves themselves as who they are, as they are already the best they can be. Similarly, the fans should love themselves and be proud of it, as shown by the lyric, “I love me, I like it.” Together, these lyrics portray a strong message for their audience—that it is important to practice self-love and women empowerment.
In addition, the dynamics of the song reflect the entire group’s dancing skills. For instance, the eccentric and sharp choreography match the song’s dynamic bass lines and show the group’s ability to make even the simplest and most unique movements engage the audience. Moreover, the choreography includes many instances in which the CLC members must use group work and remain synchronized, which shows the group’s seamless collaboration. Even though there are parts of the choreography that require the girls to move as one body on the stage, there are also parts in which each member is accentuated. Therefore, “No” showcases the group’s competence to collaborate while also shining on the members’ individual skills, which shows the unique sides of each member as well as their talents as an overall group.
While the talents and aesthetics in the music video allure some fans, others may view CLC’s actions in the music video as hypocritical. While they sing “Red lip? No. Earrings? No. High heels? No. Handbag? No,” CLC members are seen wearing red lipstick, earrings, high heels, and handbags. However, when Seungyeon is singing these lyrics, she is seen with earring shaped like the female symbol, representing the overarching theme that materials should not define women.
This juxtaposition serves to prove that one word should not define women. Like the lyrics state, “Innocent, sexy and cute. Single words like that can’t possibly describe who I am,” shows that women are so much more than the three categories that they are usually placed into by society. Thus, while CLC members are wearing these very items they are condemning, they are trying to show that there is a bigger picture and that women are more than just these items or words.
Overall, CLC continues to attract fans with their unique music. CLC’s distinctive approach to music using valuable life lessons that are not usually talked about in society and use of juxtaposition in their music video to make a point makes the group stand out from other idol groups. CLC knowingly uses their idol platform to make a comment on society, which can inspire fans.
Ultimately, there is “No” doubt that 2019 is the year for CLC to win their first No. 1 on a music show.