Neha Patil (Editor)

1 of 1 (album)

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October 5, 2016



K-pop, New jack swing



Release date
5 October 2016

S.M. Entertainment KT Music

Mnet Asian Music Award for Album of the Year

Golden Disc Award Album Division

The Shinee World, Odd, Lucifer, DxDxD, Dream Girl – The Misconce

Unboxing shinee 5th korean studio album 1 of 1

1 of 1 is the fifth Korean studio album and the eighth overall by South Korean boy band Shinee. It was released digitally and physically on October 5, 2016, under S.M. Entertainment and distributed by KT Music. The album contains nine songs, including the title track of the same name, "1 of 1". Musically, the album is a modernized twist on the retro genre, and stretches back to the 1980–1990 period. Additionally, based on their '90s theme, the group released a limited edition of cassette tapes besides the usual CD version. In order to promote the album, Shinee appeared on several South Korean music programs, such as Music Bank, Show! Music Core, and Inkigayo, where they performed material from the album. On November 15, 2016, Shinee released a repackaged version of their fifth studio album titled 1 and 1 with 5 new songs, including the title track "Tell Me What To Do".


The album received favorable reviews from music critics, who praised Shinee's successful attempt at the retro style, bringing back the classic, old-school boy band sound, while maintaining the groups previous dreamy-like sound of their last album Odd. It was commercially successful in South Korea and peaked atop the Gaon Album Chart and sold over 170,000 album copies in one month. The album also charted at number two on the Billboards US World Albums chart. Its title track, "1 of 1", peaked at number four on the Gaon Digital Chart, further reaching number three on the Billboards World Digital Songs chart.

The accompanying music video also received positive reviews, Stephanie Choi of Hello Asia and Gina Mei of Cosmopolitan praised the nostalgic feel about video as several parts of it — the costumes, the simple, white backdrop, and old film transition techniques reflect the retro style of the late 1980 and 90s. Jeff Benjamin of Fuse praised the atypical portrayals of beauty, as the video includes many different looking female models.

Shinee 1 of 1 music video

Background and release

On September 4, 2016, Shinee held their fifth solo concert titled Shinee World V in Seoul. Four of the 34 songs that were performed were songs from the groups new album: "Prism", "Feel Good", "Don't Let Me Go" and "So Amazing". The album was originally intended to be released in the middle of September but member Onew got injured while performing on stage during the group's concert and the album release was delayed. On September 27, 2016, the group’s management agency S.M. Entertainment announced that the new album titled "1 of 1" would be released on October 5, 2016, and introduced a new Instagram account created for the group activities. It is the group's first domestic studio album in over a year, after the release of Odd in May 18, 2015.

The track listing of the album was released on September 28, 2016, and includes nine tracks. Additionally, to align with their '90s theme, the group is also releasing a limited edition of cassette tapes besides the usual CD version. Originally only one thousand copies were produced for sale but due to high demand more copies were put into production. From September 28 till October 2, 2016, the group released several teasers through the group's Instagram account. Each member of the group introduced one song of their choice in a segment called "Shinee's Pick - What do you think of this song?" in a promotional radio notice inspired by the 90s along with each photo, which are previews of songs from the new album. On October 1, the group performed two new songs of the album, "Prism" and "Feel Good" for the first time in public at the Spectrum Dance Music Festival. On October 4, Shinee performed the title track "1 of 1" publicly on stage during their showcase for the album at the SM TOWN COEX Artium. The music video was revealed during the same event—Onew is not seen during the dance sequences because he was unable to participate due to his injury, but confirmed he is receiving treatment and is almost completely recovered. On October 6, the group began their promotions for the title song "1 of 1" on music shows, starting with Mnet's M! Countdown and followed by SBS's Inkigayo, KBS2's Music Bank and MBC's Show! Music Core. As part of the promotion, the group members also guested on several variety shows including Happy Together 3, Weekly Idol, Knowing Bros and KBS World's Guerilla Date.

On November 15, 2016 Shinee released a repackaged version of their fifth studio album under the title 1 and 1 with 5 new songs in addition to the songs from their fifth studio album 1 of 1, including the title track "Tell Me What To Do". The album includes two CDs, one consisting of only the new songs and it's instrumentals and a second one with the songs from 1 of 1.

Concept and composition

Both the fashion style and the music are inspired by the '90s. The album's concept hails back to "any period from the late 1970s to 1990s," according to member Jonghyun. The co-composer of the title track, Mike Daley, explained the producers tried to balance the retro with a modern feel. The album contains nine tracks including the title song "1 of 1", which is described as a song in the '90s new jack swing genre—a type of hip-hop infused with urban dance-pop and is composed by Mike Daley, Mitchell Owens, Michael Jiminez, Tay Jasper and MZMC. The lyrics of the song tell a story about a man who is confessing to his girlfriend telling her she is the only love of his life. Daley, Owens and Jiminez, the songwriter trio of "1 of 1", focused on writing a retro song with a modern feel. Daley emphasized that he did not want the new song to be caught in the frame of an old fake song and tried to keep the balance between the retro style and modern sound by giving it a strong drum beat to lead the track.

Many known producers contributed to the album like Kenzie, British electronic songwriting duo LDN Noise, and Swedish songwriter Andreas Öberg. Most of the songs were created in April 2016 at a songwriting camp hosted by S.M. Entertainment. Jonghyun took part in composing the song "Prism", a two-step pop number featuring piano and synthesizer chords. For the song "Don't Let Me Go" Key and Minho participated in the rap making. "So Amazing", another mix of new jack swing and mid-tempo retro pop is written by member Onew, which compares Shinee's happy moments of meeting its fans in concerts to a happy drive along the coast with a lover. British duo LDN Noise, who wrote Shinee's previous songs like "View" and "Married to the Music", participated in producing the seventh track "Shift". It is said to have the unique sound of '80s pop music, adopting both House and UK garage genres by mixing synthesizer and deep bass sounds.

The title track "Tell Me What To Do" of the repackaged album 1 and 1, is described as a medium-tempo "emotional R&B" track with "trendy electronic music" elements. The lyrics tell a story about a couple that attempts to spark their fading relationship. Yoo Young-jin, Kenzie, The Underdogs and Kim Eana participated in making Shinee's repackaged album. Onew, once again, took part in the songwriting process of the album penning the lyrics to the song "Beautiful Life". For the repackaged album, the group emphasizes the vocals of its five members and take a ballad approach.

Music video

The music video to 1 of 1 was released on October 5, 2016, through S.M. Entertainment's official YouTube channel and takes inspiration from the 1990s—from the group's wardrobe to their dance moves. It also keeps up the retro theme with a technicolor scheme that recalls the aesthetic of the '30s and '40s. In the video the members serenade their listeners while showing off their choreography. One of the group members, Onew, had to sit out for some of the dancing due to his injury, but is included in the video. Meanwhile, the members are surrounded by dozens of women wearing retro outfits and dance and pose around them. Jeff Benjamin of Fuse praised the atypical portrayals of beauty—from the female co-stars' messy rock hairstyles, dark lipsticks and eyeliners, and super-casual clothes, to the guys' offbeat hair colors and outfits, he mentioned that nothing is standard "K-pop" in the video.


Jeff Benjamin of Fuse praised the groups attempt at the classic, old-school boy band sound and both Tamar Herman of Billboard and Benjamin compared the title song, "1 of 1" to the music of groups like New Kids on the Block, New Edition or H.O.T. According to Benjamin, Shinee successfully brought their sound straight in to 2016's technology. He also compared the focus on singing directly to the listener and using the "you" pronoun to The Beatles' early material like From Me to You or I Wanna Hold Your Hand. Stephanie Choi of Hello Asia and Gina Mei of Cosmopolitan compared the fashion style, the filming techniques such as a wipe as the members cut across the screen and the overall aesthetics to the late 1980 and 90s giving you a feeling of nostalgia. Choi also praised the groups successful attempt at retro styles that still maintain the previous dreamy-like Shinee sounds like the track "Shift", which is a continuation of the groups previous songs "View" and "Married To The Music".

The album was a commercial success in South Korea. It peaked atop of the Gaon Album Chart after the release and its title song charted on number four of the Gaon Digital Chart. In the United States, "1 of 1" charted at number two on the Billboard World Albums chart, while its title song was number three on the World Digital Songs chart. The album sold over 170,000 album copies and charted second for the month October.

Lee Mi-hyun of JoongAng Daily stated the most noteworthy feature of this Shinee's repackage album, 1 and 1, was to pick "Tell Me What To Do" as their title song, stating it is an unfamiliar sound for a ballad but becomes an interesting song choice because it's enough to show the growth of Shinee's musicality, emphasized the groups "singing power is something, which needs to be carefully talked about". Sung Mi-kyung of OSEN likewise stated that Shinee have proved a broader musical spectrum through ballads with "outstanding its sensitivity".

Jeff Benjamin of Fuse compliments the groups vocals in "Tell Me What to Do", one of five new tracks on the 1 of 1 repackaged album, particularly the chorus with Jonghyun delivering "chill-inducing belts", but he adds it's done in a way that one can easily sing along with and states that despite being released late into the year, the blend of melancholy and hope is helping the song to make a "last-minute run to be named one of the best K-pop singles of 2016". Tamar Herman of Billboard also praises the strong vocal performances from the members, particularly Onew and Taemin’s sonorous belts, that makes "Tell Me What To Do" the groups "most emotive single of the past few years".

Track listing

Credits adapted from the official homepage.


1 of 13:24
Feel Good3:40


1 of 1 (album) Wikipedia