With a titular enchantress starting off the song, “Siren” transforms into an ‘80s-evoking ambient pop track through which the soloist addresses a lover whose image of her doesn’t fit with reality, resulting in her ending the relationship. “Get away out of my face/Don’t come closer boy,” she declares in the chorus. “Even if you’re sad I don’t cry.”
Like the song’s lyrics, the music video features different facets of Sunmi, all of which make one version face the reality of her relationship. Several of the outfits evoke mythological creatures and mermaids, while hair accessories like crowns and a “priority” shipping label hair-tie emphasize the domineering nature of the track, which is additionally honed in on by Sunmi’s powerful choreography.
The song is the third part of her 2017-18 singles trilogy, with all three of the songs — 2017’s “Gashina,” January’s “Heroine” and now “Siren”– acting as various Warning messages sung to a lover. The title of “Siren” refers to both an emergency or warning siren, and also the mythological creature that perilously enchanted sailors with their voices.
All three Warning songs are featured on the EP, along with four other songs. The album starts off with the English intro “Addict,” through which the singer proclaims that she’s running the show. Her artistic dominance resonates throughout the album, and each of the seven tracks credit Sunmi as a co-writer.
At a showcase in Seoul, Sunmi revealed that “Siren” was once up for inclusion on a Wonder Girls album. The band was one of the most prominent girl groups of the last decade, and was the first female Korean team to land on the Billboard Hot 100 with an English version of their single “Nobody” in 2009. The group disbanded last year.
The former Wonder Girls member saw major success last year and this year with singles “Gashina” and “Heroine,” though the latter was weighed down by plagiarism accusations. Sunmi released her first solo “24 Hours” in 2013, which debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard Korea K-Pop Hot 100. Most recently, “Gashina” and Heroine” peaked at No. 3 and 10 respectively on the World Digital Song Sales chart. Warning is Sunmi’s second EP, following 2014’s Full Moon, which went to No. 12 on the World Albums chart that March.
Watch the music video for “Siren” here: