NCT has the identity of “Neo,” full of innovation and experimentation. NCT does not follow the trajectory that K-pop has drawn. What’s interesting is that NCT is breaking the foundation and milestone that SM Entertainment has presented to the Korean music industry. Every time the media and industry listen to NCT’s new concept song or see them on stage, the member who makes the most powerful impact is Mark.
SM Entertainment’s artists have always been strong in terms of vocals and performance. Still, their rapping skills have not received as much attention as their vocals. Mark’s appearance filled the areas that SM lacked and gave the impression that SM Entertainment had finally become a complete entity. Many people call him “the best output among SM rappers.”
NCT’s Mark is one of the busiest among current idol group members. After his debut, he has been active in NCT’s unit groups NCT U, NCT 127, and NCT Dream, and was also selected to SuperM, a group of SM’s experienced rookies.
With this, no one suspects that he is favoritism or discrimination. Everyone nods their heads at Mark’s skills and potential. He possesses diction, rap skills, sense of rhythm, tone, and vocal volume, and there is nothing lacking in any of the rap he spits. Due to the nature of a multi-member group, it is not easy to show each individual’s musical ability in less than 3 minutes, but Mark pulls off that difficult task every time and creates a killer part.
Mark’s skills began to become known to the public other than just his fans when he appeared on Mnet‘s High School Rapper in 2017. When he appeared with bleached hair and a youthful face wearing his school uniform, other rappers looked down on his background as an “idol” and were more interested in his appearance.
But the moment Mark started rapping, everyone started to get nervous. Each time, he received favorable reviews from the judges for his diction, flow, and composure that other participants did not have. He also achieved valuable results such as sixth place in the Gangseo region of Seoul in the preliminaries, tied for second place in the regional cypher competition, and seventh place in the final round.
Mark released two solo songs, “Child” and “Golden Hour”, on SM STATION: NCT LAB, showing confidence and a crossroads in Mark’s musical world.
Mark, who originally joined SM as a vocalist, showed not only his singing skills, but also a different sense of determination that he showed in NCT. Above all, he proved his qualities as a singer-songwriter with lyrics that honestly expressed his deep concerns about himself through his self-composed songs.
The reason the industry gives high praise to Mark, who has been in his eighth year since his debut, is his endless potential because he gives us confidence not only in his appearance on stage but also in his appearance off camera. His appearance, revealed through his own content, is not that of fierce perfection on stage, but that he faithfully takes on each team’s position without neglecting practice. The strong planning and capital power of SM Entertainment, as well as his ability to not take it for granted and work hard behind the scenes to maximize his skills every time, make him confident in his potential.