Review: Nine Muses – “Gun” Efficiently Hits a Bullseye Through the Heart

nine-muses-gun-still

It has been a very busy year for Nine Muses, as the group has released it’s third single of the year in “Gun” after the ridiculously good one-two punch of “Dolls” and “Wild“. “Gun” may not be as great as the first two songs in Nine Muses’ 2013, but the song helps establish that Nine Muses’ increasingly solid track record is no fluke either.

In many ways, Nine Muses has been one of the more consistent acts in K-Pop since they debuted (aside from member shakeup and, well, not always having nine members). The production is going to be mid-to-fast tempo dance pop fare, the styling will be spot on, the arrangement is going to be standard and the hook will be very good. Also, there will be hnnnnnnngggggg to counter the relative lack of good singers among the nine (it’s why Nine Muses fashion spreads are probably more anticipated than Nine Muses singles). “Gun” is the latest Nine Muses single to follow this safe, but admittedly successful, formula; a song which is just enjoyable enough for a lead single with a video that would be enjoyable with just about any backing track.

“Gun” has a couple of things that greatly work in its favor. After teasing that “Gun” would be about a western take on femininity, it appears that the producers wanted to take that as to mean 1950’s Americana mixed with 1960’s James Bond. The introductory beat, a highlight that the song never reaches again, is freaking amazing. That guitar solo and the blaring trumpets are about as sexy as it gets and for the start of a song it throttles the listener back to an era of burlesque and fedoras. The song proper settles into a nice groove and the guitar licks and sharply hit notes recall all of Sean Connery’s body fur stuffed into a tuxedo. Hyemi and Sera handle the more challenging vocal pitches and everyone else fills in where one would expect them to (outside of poor Eunji, who gets her one chance at rapping jacked by Euearin). The hook is passable, not something which one would eagerly want to hit replay for, but also not disagreeable in anyway. Indeed, the hook best encapsulates what is good and bad about “Gun”. It’s easily digestible but also could be forgotten the moment it’s over.

Not forgettable: the best expressions in any music video, ever.

Not forgettable: the best expressions in any music video, ever.

What’s not easy to forget and makes one want to hit the replay button forever? The video. Like the song, there’s not a lot of creativity going on in “Gun” but that’s easy to forgive when handed Nine Muses. Yes, there’s going to be a dance-in-a-box concept which was probably cut and edited by a computer algorithm somewhere in the K-Pop Creative Department Dungeon. Choreo-choreo-solo shot-solo shot-choreo-repeat by itself isn’t a crime as long as other things are done well (or at least competently). The sets help in that regard. A gas station set by way of Fallout: New Vegas really helps matters. The warm, old-timey Western yellows and setting keep things coherent and sexy (the outdoor settings also means no seizures due to 1,000 LEDs burning into retinas!) and helps marry “Gun”‘s single to the concept of the video. The styling is a bit of a missed opportunity. There are hints of the 50’s and 60’s in Nine Muses’ wardrobe, but it never strays too far from contemporary and everything looks more like stuff cribbed from those “retro-style” tumblrs that are more or less ripped from Urban Outfitters catalogs. However, pretty covers up a lot of sins and if there is one thing that Nine Muses has an embarrassing abundance of, it’s pretty (hell, this one even has one unfairly hot dude in it too). The entire video could just be Kyungri bending over an engine and it’d still get high marks.

Bless this still.

Bless this still.

I could wax poetic for days about the various members of Nine Muses, but for the purposes of this review let’s just say that they all look unsurprisingly great and that whatever stylist they used for this one should be allowed passage into heaven for not having a single member dye their hair into a color inspired by something out of a Crayola box.

Yup, all the accolades.

Yup, all the accolades.

“Gun” is alright, but after how Nine Muses slayed their first two singles of the year in “Wild” and “Dolls”, that’s acceptable.  The group is establishing themselves as a solid act in a sea of interchangeable girl groups. Inventiveness is not Nine Muses’ forte but the nine knows what works for them and they pull it off with a confidence that is only matched by the confidence with which Kyungri struts about on stage. “Gun” won’t win many new acolytes to the alter of Sera and company but for those already indoctrinated, “Gun” is a welcomed fix.

Rating: Four head-shots out of five bullets fired. Not as good as Nine Muses’ previous two efforts but a damn fine effort.

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18 comments

  1. rohaniyerdxb · · Reply

    I pretty much agree with this completely. It isn’t as much of a joygasm as ‘Wild’ (I doubt anything can be) but it’s a good memory with which to round out the year. And indeed, pretty does cover up a lot of sins.

    What stuck out here for me the most is how great Sungah looks. Simply stunning.

    The rest of the album’s not too bad either. Couple of good tracks there – even a second music video maybe (a man can dream).

    Now I can finally get back to my life…

    1. For real, this past week has had more notable comebacks than the previous month and a half. Glad that Sungah gets a shout out every now and then because she gets buried beneath the Sera and Kyungri love (and Hyuna and Minha etc.)

  2. MissMyTaco · · Reply

    I’m loving Nine Muses more and more, and Sera is killing me **fangirls**.
    And the Fallout: New Vegas reference!!

    1. Yay, someone got it haha.

      Sera would be charged with crimes against humanity for how much she slays if she were human, and not an angel.

  3. Fleur De Seoul · · Reply

    It was unfortunate, but I left the CC on as I watched the video for the first time. What they were saying pulled me out of the video completely, and honestly, I don’t think I’ll be going back. You may argue that video, but I still have Wild. I found them to be much more confident and sexy in that one.

    An afterthought. Nine Muses is doing everything I’ve wanted GG to do since I’ve started listening to Kpop. This song is no exception.

    1. Completely agree on GG. I almost threw an aside in the review about it, but felt that if I did, I’d go off on a tangent. Needless to say, this is the type of standard arrangement K-Pop stuff that the risk averse SM Entertainment could do well with SNSD if they ever realize that they have girls who could kill the types of concepts that Nine Muses pumps out on the regular.

  4. I think this might be my favorite Nine Muses release so far.

    It’s a shame that it will probably get buried beneath all the other stuff being released this month.

    1. IU and T-ara are going to ensure that Kahi and Nine Muses don’t get a good shake with their releases.

      I think for Nine Muses releases this year, I’d go “Wild”>”Dolls”>”Gun” with the distance between “Wild” and “Dolls” being negligible.

      1. vanjokoozie · ·

        Unfortunately, T-ara is also on the side of Nine Muses and Kahi alongside with SHINee. I’m actually expecting for T-ara, SHINee and Nine Muses to rank high on MelOn charts but even if you look at it right now, they are doing really poor. I expected SHINee to reach #1 and atleast stay on top 5 for several days, as well as T-ara to stay within top 10 and Nine Muses to stay within top 20. Well it doesn’t mean their songs are really low it’s just IU and Busker Busker songs are too high, even their non title track songs ranked so high. I’m actually considering this week really messy if we’re talking about digital charts. Even AOA delayed their release for aleast one day to rank higher on charts. Fortunately, music shows doesn’t include non title tracks on the charts so I’m expecting higher rankings for these groups.

      2. vanjokoozie · ·

        at least*

      3. Looking at the charts just now, ‘Gun’ isn’t doing great.

        Kahi’s song seems to have flopped. Not even in the top 50.

        T-ara’s song doesn’t seem to be doing that well, either (especially by their standards). I’d say it’s less of a hit than ‘Sexy Love’ and that was quite a bit less successful than their pre-scandal releases.

        IU, on the other hand, seems to have picked up where she left off pre-scandal. Her album is a huge hit.

      4. The IU thing isn’t too surprising as she and her company handled it relatively well compared to T-ara who just couldn’t get out of its own way. Shame too, because I think that “Number 9” is really good. Nine Muses probably won’t crack the top echelon of K-Pop, so I’m just glad that they continue to release stuff at least.

  5. I love the song and video,I also left the CC on while watching the video and I was appalled by what they were saying haha “here’s the gap,this only comes once in a lifetime” THE GAP? GAP GAP GAP GAP ? WHAT DO THEY MEAN BY “THE GAP?” i find that line more fitted to WILD

    1. The gap is obviously a chain clothing apparel store going out of business.

      “Wild” had its share of barely disguised innuendo as well and this would fit right in line with that.

  6. Serafanboy123 · · Reply

    Spot on review. Not as amazing as Wild or News or Figaro, but still a greatly addictive song. And the intro is just pure amazingness. It’s a shame that such a gem flopped on digital charts (T-ara song was also a gem and underperformed). Nine Muses truly has the most consistent releases in Kpop. Them and Sweetune works wonders for my ears.

    And lmfao Fallout:NV was an awesome game and I thought the same xD I love the dry desert theme the MV has going on LOL

    1. Figures me and a(nother) Sera fan boy would be on the same wavelength haha. I could listen to that intro all day, and it’s amazing live just because it’s all Sera all the time standing above everyone in all her majesty.

  7. dynasarous · · Reply

    as a fan im wondering whos the male, acting in the video of nine muses gun?.

  8. Could have mistaken this for a Rainbow song, seriously…
    9Muses lacks “signature” stuff , if you hear a 2Ne1 song you know its 2NE1..same cant be said about 9Muses. But their songs are good… 2013 has been a good year for them, all 4 tracks so far are above average to really good (depending on ears).
    On the other side we have SNSD with pisspoor songs like I Got A Boy which has been criticized even by dedcated Sones. But look, they bagged a Youtube Award.. Sheesh, unfair world of k-pop >_<

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