Music Video Review: Now (There Is No Tomorrow) by Trouble Maker – My Favorite Video Clip of 2013

trouble-maker-now-mv-12
Ever since MTV stopped playing music (making you question the M in MTV), my annual video clip watch has dropped significantly. I mostly check out the artists I like or the latest commercial hits on YouTube out of curiosity. Every year however there’s still one music video that really stands out and resonates with me. In 2013 I started getting into KPOP, as a function of my fascination with South Korean cinema and youth culture. As a marketing student I’ve always been fascinated by bands that are conceived like commercial products, though I think they’re never without artistic merits (in their own ways). 

troublemaker now

Trouble Maker is a duo made of Kim Hyuna (solo artist and member of 4Minute) and Jang Hyunseung (member of boy band Beast). In 2013 they released their second mini-album Chemistry, a follow-up EP to their equally awesome self-titled debut record. Now (There is no Tomorrow) (original title: 내일은 없어 (Now), literally: “No Tomorrow (Now)”) is their second single ever. It’s not my favorite song from Chemistry, but that’s where the music video comes in. After seeing the video clip for Now I really started falling in love with the band and their music.

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Music videos are a big part of promoting artists and their music and Now is easily one of the best I’ve clips I’ve seen in a long time. Normally, when it comes to film story is rather secondary to me, but for some reason I prefer music videos that have some sort of narrative. In Now Hyuna and Hyunseung are a troubled couple: They fight, they makeup and they’re at each other’s throats again. It’s a hot and steamy romance. They have a very intense sexual relationship, but it’s falling apart (for a number of reasons), but it feels as if they’re both addicted to each other.

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Now was directed by Lee Gi Beak. Considered too racy (in its sexual content) by Korean standards there’s two cuts of the video (one for everyone and one rated 19). Actually, if compared to some American videos it’s pretty “tame”, but I’m not going to take away anything from its hotness. Both Hyuna and Hyunseung are young and very sexy of course. Fan-girls wish they’d be dating in real life, but a video clip fantasy seems like the next best thing.
Now really has it all: Betrayal, sex, money, infidelity, partying,  guns, murder, drinking, drugs, cigarettes, ripped jeans, leopard coats, vintage cars, race cars, christmas decorations, Heath Ledger’s Joker style makeup, and my personal favorite: Sparklers! What’s not to love?

trouble maker tomorrow 13

Though the sex can’t be explicit of course, the director does a great job of depicting it in a way that makes you feel like there’s more going on than there really is. There’s also a lot of product placement going on, some of it bad too (glad it’s for a beer brand I particularly detest). Of course you can’t have a KPOP video (or any pop video really) without some dancing. The great thing about Now is that the dance is secondary and only intercut here and there. It’s a simple, but intimate dance and while the sets are a bit kitsch, I am a big fan of the way it’s lit. While the colors in the rest of the clip are heightened and saturated, the dance scenes are fairly dark in comparison.

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I love Hyunseung’s ash-bluish hair. I love that Hyuna is in a black nightgown and stockings for most of the clip. I love the colors in this video, especially blue. I love how excessive and stylish it all is. There’s too much of everything and that’s what makes it so perfect. As I said Now is not their best song, but the music video made me love it a bit more. My favorite song from Chemistry is A Girl Who Wants to Have Fun.
My favorite song of 2013 would probably have to be Leaving by Skrillex, just because it’s the 2013 track I’ve listened to most on iTunes, so that has to mean something. Other than that, I highly recommend the uncut version of Now as it gives a better understanding of the story and it features some pretty awesome scenes that were cut from the short version.

In case you were curious what the song is about here are the lyrics (in inglés).

now

Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh before today ends
Tell me now now now now now now

Just like before you made me hesitate again
The you who says nothing is just like yesterday
Try saying it straightforwardly, try looking in my eyes
Before this night is over
Before the starlight disappears

Let’s not leave it like this
(I) said while we hesitate, time is passing
I don’t wanna go
This is the end, right now
(I) said this is the end

Come to me now, talk to me
We don’t have a tomorrow
Don’t hesitate
Before it’s too late now
Don’t push me further and further away
Us two, right here, right now
Before it disappears

Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh before today ends
Tell me now now now now now now

There isn’t any more for us
Tomorrow, tomorrow
So call out, oh
Call my name, my name
Right now you’re blowing it all out of your mouth
On this road
I just want to lean on you
To lean on you

Let’s not grow apart like this
Time is passing while we hesitate
I don’t wanna go
Here is the end, today
(I) said it’s the end

Come to me now, talk to me
We don’t have a tomorrow
Don’t hesitate
Before it’s too late now
Don’t push me further and further away
Us two, right here, right now
Before it disappears

Us together inside this maze
The only thing i can count on is you
Close your eyes, hold me, because
We have no tomorrow

Come to me now, talk to me
We don’t have a tomorrow
Don’t hesitate
Before it’s too late now
Don’t push me further and further away
Us two, right here, right now
Before it disappears

Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh tell me now now now
Ooh ooh ooh ooh before today ends
Tell me now now now now now now

And in case you’re a fan: Here’s the Korean SNL spoof of the video, which I thought was pretty funny (even though I don’t speak Korean). I know the lyrics have been changed, but I don’t know if they’re actually funny, so if any Korean reader wants to weigh-in or post the translated lyrics of the spoof video I’d be very thankful. Kamsahamnida!

So, that was my favorite music video of last year and why I loved it so much.
What’s your favorite video clip of 2013?

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7 comments

  1. literaryvittles

    what a cool idea for a blog post! I wouldn’t have thought to do this. sadly I don’t watch many music videos, so I can’t really think of a good one to recommend… I like how the video looks like it was filmed in Lo-Fi, it’s very dark and gloomy!

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