House of the Dragonfly
Nell, “Four Times Around the Sun”
After news of the complex merger between the SM subsidiary SM C&C and Woollim Entertainment, I was slightly worried for Nell. The news made it sound like the merger would simply allow for an expanded distribution of Woollim artists’ music, but I have a deep-rooted mistrust of SM and their tendency to strip musicians of their artistic license in favor of sales. Regardless, Nell’s most recent release of the single “Four Times Around the Sun” off their Newton’s Apple album does not disappoint in the least, making it seem as if the new Woollim Label still has a fair amount of autonomy under SM C&C.
The song is a beautiful composition dominated by the piano line, rather reminiscent of Coldplay. But despite the uplifting sound of the music, the lyrics talk about how four years have passed and he still can’t forget his love; the memories are like unshakable gravity, constantly pulling him back (paraphrasing). The song even ends with him believing that he will still long for his love even if ten years pass. Kind of a downer.
The video is as artistically Nell as ever, with the character attempting to hold in his longing, but it eventually explodes from his chest as a shower of gold glitter. Based on my own interpretations, this seems like a more positive message than the lyrics because his longing is finally released. But nothing on a gurney is ever promising, so the end of the video (where he also remains merely looking at the sky from Earth) seems equally as depressing as the end of the song.