Just like the word “colourful”, we’ve met with the girl group which is able to express their five different colours best, 4minute. The girls recently returned with their fifth EP “4minute World”, and it was clear from their expression how excited they were about it. Before opening up about the honest 4minute World, nervousness and excitement were showing through 4minute’s features.
Starting with their impression on making their comeback, it was different from usual. Above all, the members’ active participation was more important than it had ever been before.
Sohyun: “From the album’s jacket, the music video, to the music there is not one aspect we didn’t take part in so we were happy and felt a sense of pride. ” she said with a huge smile on her face.
Jiyoon: “It’s an album that expresses each member’s colour, individuality and charms. Compared to our previous work, we were involved in the making of the album a whole lot so it’s an album we cherish very much. I believe that, as you go through the album’s tracks, you will be able to see the various colours they each hold.”
The concept and styling for the album was personally put together by the girl with a sense for fashion, Gayoon. To Gayoon too, this album feels like no other.
Gayoon: "Maybe it’s because I took part in the album a lot, I have a lot of affection for this album. How should I put it? It’s a more mature album coming from us. For our previous albums, if it was the 4minute colour that our agency wanted for us, this time around it’s the 4minute colour that the members themselves wanted for 4minute. So it’s an album we especially cherish.”
What is the colour the 4minute members have always been wanting?
Gayoon: “Before, there would be things we could take part in for the work that was given to us and made for us, which was mostly about a strong sound. Songs that had an exciting and strong feel about them. If in our previous albums, the female warrior feel got stronger over time, this time we chose to do it differently for the tracks of the album. We’ve experimented with things we weren’t able to show off before, such as a different kind of ballads, genres, Hyuna’s and my vocals together, it’s the same about our remaining three members. Because these were aspects we’ve wanted to attempt, rather than saying it’s superior to what we’ve done before, it’s more about diversifying our own colour.”
Jihyun: “For the past five years, even though our ideas and suggestions have been applied to each comeback we’ve made, it was mostly about making our female warrior image stronger. Whereas I like to think that the image we went for this time is the closest we’ve ever been to our own every day image. Because our usual image is one that is lively and pleasant.”
Sohyun: “Because we don’t have activities apart from promoting our albums, you may not have known what 4minute’s image is like. However, you probably now know what we are like in everyday life. We filmed the music video in a fun way as well. We filmed it while having a lot of fun ourselves. So much that you may have thought about it while watching “this won’t do” since there must have been some parts that didn’t come out prettily.”
Seeing 4minute in the flesh for the short time of this interview, the members were actively engaged in conversations, just like chatterboxes. I could tell that 4minute is a girl group that possesses a rare [approachable] charm.
Nevertheless, they’ve shown a quite powerful and sexy image through “Hot Issue”, “Muzik”, “Mirror Mirror” and “Volume Up” among many more of their title songs. They were far from the usual innocent and pure image that girl groups endorse. Through “What’s Your Name?” they’ve revealed yet another side of 4minute, with an easy-going and fresh image of “the young girl next door”, earning them the right of joining the ranks of “the national girl groups”.
Somehow, it seems that their female warrior-like image became suffocating to them. Even though they replied that “It wasn’t the case.” they truthfully expressed their regrets.
Jihyun: “Of course, we also liked having that kind of strong image. As a performance group, we’ve heard a lot of things on that concept. The thing that was missing in that was that there was no sense of proximity with the general public. So, with this album, it seems that we will get closer to the public.”
Hyuna: “At the time it was the style that suited us best. Naturally, for each song we have a different interpretation of its concept. For the powerful “Muzik,” it’s true that we had to express a female warrior concept, it was also the case for “Volume Up.” In contrast, with “Whatcha Doing Today?” we’ve toned down the powerful for a more approachable image, one of the young girls next door. Just like the concept behind it, there’s a sense of closeness to the song, it deals with everyday life and is easy to follow.”
As new as it sounds, 4minute constantly changes. We can only nod in agreement seeing as 4minute, for the past five years, has been showing upgraded performances. While most idol groups are lead by the same goals and thoughts, as 4minute attempted new and various transformations, they retained their unique characteristics and are currently in the midst of solidifying their own colour.
From the very start, they’ve been called “Hyuna’s girl group”, a nickname with more meaning than it appears as Hyuna’s place in 4minute’s activities was big. However, to 4minute, rather than the actual weight it has, the symbolic meaning was greater, "Each image that each member is in charge is different. By the look of it, since Hyuna was in charge of sexiness in the group, couldn’t that have been her sexiness that was the most eye-catching?"
Jiyoon: “Our colour isn’t limited to one aspect. We’re confident that we can make any colour our own. We believe in that, so we’re going for it.”
Gayoon: “Although to each aspect, there could be shortcomings, since our debut, we’ve done a variety of concepts and colours. Through “Hot Issue,” “Mirror Mirror” and “Volume Up,” we also went for the sexy goddess image. It seemed that we’ve been getting closer to our own colour more and more. As each year passes, we’ve come to the conclusion that we wanted to perform fun songs on stage. We wanted songs that would make us run around on stage.”
They’ve spontaneously grown, and changed. Despite being in their early 20s, they are not to be taken lightly. In the name of music, they’ve put their own name on the line. In order to bring perfect stages, at the level of their determination, they’ve shown their professionalism among the best of them. They are shining through their solid endurance. This, is none other than 4minute.
After debuting, even though it seemed as if they haven’t known ups and downs, “Every time we release an album, we’re in a crisis.”
Sohyun: “For each album we’ve released, it was the case.”
Hyuna: “In our case, we release albums once a year and it has always been in April. We pour everything we have into that one album. But after we’ve released it, we ask ourselves “Why does it seem like we don’t have any schedule?” When we promote on music shows, we’re very busy. Once we’re two weeks into our activities to promote the album, we don’t have any new schedules. Why is it that, we prepare for a year and come out, but apart from the first two weeks, we don’t have anything scheduled anymore? After we released “What’s Your Name?” we became quite busy, so we escaped the crisis. (laughs)”
They’ve overcome the crisis with opportunities, 4minute’s unique teamwork is surely one. While interviewing them and seeing them up-close, their coordination and teamwork was in sync to a surprising degree that I couldn’t help but ask, “What is the secret to your teamwork?”
Sohyun: “We’re the honest type. If there is something that bothers us or we feel is unfair, we’re the kind that would talk about it.”
Jihyun: “Even if we’re tired, there are times when we’d stay up all night just talking.”
Sohyun: "It’s because my mouth babbles all the time so much that it’s starting to become a problem. (laughs) There is the fact that we don’t have many friends among celebrities, so there is only our members."
Gayoon: “And since we’re adults too, we’d have soju and have honest talks among ourselves. That could be another reason.”
If 4minute wins #1 with “Whatcha Doing Today?” 4minute promised that they will have a free hug and free shaking event with fans. 4minute wants it, and the fans want it as well. On March 20, 4minute successfully wrapped up their first comeback stage. And today, they are running to the stage as well. “The strong girl group with a reversed endurance,” the girls with twinkling eyes who ask “Whatcha Doing Today?” left a good impression that we would be seeing them often this coming spring and for a long long time after.
source: star today, 4mf-trans, user yoobin (from 4minute's forum), GIFS from 48minute tumblr