South Korean boy band Shinee were one of the country's biggest pop acts of the late 2000s and early 2010s. With their high-energy, bass-heavy, electronic dance-pop and complex, tightly choreographed dance moves, they regularly topped the charts at home, did very well in Japan, and started a youth fashion craze dubbed the "Shinee Trend." Manufactured by the giant K-pop juggernaut SM Entertainment, the group launched in 2008, consisting of singer/dancers Lee "Onew" Jinki, Kim Jonghyun, Kim "Key" Kibum, Choi Minho, and Lee Taemin. Their first mini-album, Replay, went to number eight, and was swiftly followed up by the full-length The Shinee World, which charted at number three, and hit number one a few months later when it was re-released in a repackaged edition entitled Amigo. The first single off the album was "Sanso Gateun Neo (Love Like Oxygen)," strangely a cover of a song originally recorded by Danish X Factor winner Martin Hoberg Hedegaard and entitled "Show the World."
Every one of the group's next five releases went to number one in Korea. Amigo, its 2010 follow-up Lucifer (later repackaged as Hello), and the 2009 EPs Romeo and 2009, Year of Us were also released in Japan, where they performed modestly, and finally in 2011 they performed the expected rite of passage and recorded a Japanese-language album, The First, which gave them a number four hit in that country. They also released a slew of singles there, making Oricon chart history as the first foreign band to have their first three singles enter the chart in the Top Three. That year they first tasted global success when they were invited to perform at the sixth London Korean Film Festival. They also performed a gala concert in London, becoming the first Korean band ever to do so; tickets for the event sold out within a minute of going on sale. Their 2012 "comeback" EP, Sherlock, was their first to be digitally released around the world, on global digital charts. In 2013 they released their third Korean album, Dream Girl, Vol. 1: The Misconceptions of You, the first in a projected pair of albums, with the second scheduled to be released later that year. ~ John D. Buchanan