Unfortunately, budget constraints meant that SHINee wasn’t able to go all out with a full set of new Christmas-themed material for the release of their Japanese EP (guess which group makes more money for the label), but the two new tracks we do get are well worth the time to listen.

The first track, Winter Wonderland, is very much a Christmas ballad with the hints of sleigh bells in the background, but doesn’t depend on the seasonal tropes to progress the feeling.  If they changed the name and few of the lyrics here and there, this could easily pass just another track in their regular discography.  The best element of the track is the vocals which are full and lush without being overdone.  There isn’t a lot of soloing in this one, though what there is does give good line distribution between the members.  It draws you in with the rich sound and keeps you engaged from beginning to end.

The second track, Melody, is our favorite of the set but doesn’t have a lot to do with the holidays.  The pop/rock track does give you all the great SHINee vocals that you come to expect from the group, though, and the sound is very different from much of what they have released over the course of the last year.

Overall, this won’t be all that memorable beyond the next week, but, if they market Melody properly, we could get the intro to a new SHINee era.

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