SM Entertainment has released videos for the agency’s new boy group concept, Neo-Culture-Technology or NCT. The announcement for the concept was made by Founder and Chairman Lee Soo-Man on January 27 at the ‘SMTOWN: New Culture Technology, 2016’ conference.
As reported, NCT is described by Chairman Lee as follows: “Under the brand of ‘NCT,’ different teams will debut based in different countries around the world.” There will be various collaborations and units formed between the different groups, allowing for movement of members and new recruits into the groups. There also won’t be a set member number for these groups. The first unit is expected to debut in the spring and be active in Seoul and Japan in the first half of the year. In the second half, another team will debut, active in China. Other groups are expected to debut to target the South East Asia region and Latin America. These various group will take one song and sing it in different languages.
The first video released for NCT is titled The Origin , and it has no music to it. But, it shows a young boy, accompanied by a young woman, wandering in the desert in search of water. However, the second video titled “Synchronization of Your Dreams,” is actually a hip-hop styled music video, leaning heavily on trap.
It all sounds like Exo on Steriods. Originally split into the mandarin speaking Exo-M and the Korean speaking Exo-K, Exo debuted on April 8 of 2012 with the simultaneous release and promotion of their single “Mama” in China and in Korea.
Exo may be wildly successful, but it’s come at great cost. Exo-M is practically non-existent with the loss of Kris, Luhan and Tao. Also, can SM Entertainment create such a super-group without fragmenting the interest and attention of the fans?
Lee Soo Man has been talking about culture technology for the better part of the last 10 years. He even gave a speech at Stanford University on the concept. However, where in the past, Culture Technology has been more of a guiding principle, now it seems it will take a more visible and tangible form.
It will be interesting to see how it will all play out.
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