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MAMAMOO denies dating abuse controversy over new song

All Headlines 21:53 November 07, 2016

By Chung Joo-won

SEOUL, Nov. 7 (Yonhap) -- Girl group MAMAMOO said on Monday that the controversial elevator kiss scene in the music video of its new song "Decalcomanie" was intended to show another variation of the video concept and not dating abuse.

The music video of "Decalcomanie," the lead song of the band's fourth and latest EP "Memory," played more into the seductress theme, at the expense of the group's trademark lampoon of male-dominant social biases, best shown in "Um Oh Ah Yeh" and "1cm Taller than You."

From L: Moonbyul, Solar, Wheein and Hwasa of South Korean girl group MAMAMOO perform in the media showcase event for the band's fourth and latest EP "Memory" in eastern Seoul on Nov. 7, 2016. (Yonhap)

The bone of contention, however, blasted from a part that MAMAMOO and its company did not expect. Fiery controversy blasted on YouTube about the picturesque kiss scene in the music video of "Decalcomanie," in which a handsome man pushes Solar against the elevator wall and kisses her into submission. Many viewers related the scene to dating abuse and other gender-related violence.

"We thank our fans for reviewing our music videos, and at the same time, we'd like to explain a little (about the elevator scene,)" said Solar during a media showcase for "Memory."

"Among the four of us, three played the girls who lead on and push men. The remaining member, which happened to be me, played a contrasting role, to offer more diversity," she continued.

The singer said she felt proud of the completed version of the music video -- and the first-ever kiss scene of the MAMAMOO members -- but "failed to take into account that different angles may lead to different interpretations."

The original video of "Decalcomanie" on YouTube was deleted shortly after the media showcase kicked off in eastern Seoul in the afternoon. A modified version, with Solar's kissing part deleted, was re-uploaded and shown to media at the end of the showcase.

South Korean girl group MAMAMOO performs in the media showcase event for its fourth and latest EP "Memory" in eastern Seoul on Nov. 7, 2016. (Yonhap)

In addition to addressing the music video controversy, MAMAMOO opened up about going with a "sexy" image for the new EP.

The K-pop group have been known to be "funky and witty" or boyish at times, but with "Memory," it decided to go with the seductive "femme fatale" concept.

About the extreme change, Wheein said, "We felt awkward at first, but soon we came to recognize the new potential of (our sexy vibe)."

Wheein said the company did not want to restrict the group's image in a single, fixed concept.

All members were nervous about the new look, but crossed their fingers for it to be well-received.

"It'd be a lie to say that I didn't have butterflies in my stomach, but I guess it is something my company and I have to overcome," said Hwasa.

"We spent a lot of time on the album and that's how we came to believe that many people will like this one," she added.

Indeed, MAMAMOO's new EP, loaded with eight songs, was closer to an LP both in length and quality.

The EP was produced by MAMAMOO's signature producer Kim Do-hoon. Tony Maserati, who produced songs for world-class artists Beyonce, Alicia Keys and Robin Thicke, was in charge of mixing in the new album.

The songs went through some changes as well. "Decalcomanie," for example, incorporated a rock-like, medium-tempo drum cadence, though not faring too far from its familiar funky retro sound.

MAMAMOO members hoped to win the No. 1 spot on television music shows this week. In the long run, the group wants to win honors in the year-end entertainment awards.

"We will keep ourselves humble and keep up the good work with better performances," said rapper Moonbyul.

Moonbyul (L) and Solar of South Korean girl group MAMAMOO perform in the media showcase event for the band's fourth and latest EP "Memory" in eastern Seoul on Nov. 7, 2016. (Yonhap)


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