That’s right, Kpopalypse roundup is back for 2018! Are you ready for another year of Kpopalypse sifting through k-pop’s constant flood of mostly crap new releases trying to find something decent to listen to, so you don’t have to? If so, read on!
Mamamoo – Paint Me
And the first song of the year to get utterly shat on for 2018 is this true piece of crap from Mamamoo, wading into YG piano ballad territory with a song that is presumably a reference to G-Dragon’s USB stick or perhaps their next variety show appearance. I’m not sure what’s worse, this or the crap they usually do.
Stray Kids – Grrr
It’s just the usual boy band jump around stuff but I appreciate that descending siren noise which reminds me of the kings of inserting sirens over beats Public Enemy and that’s always a good thing.
Amber & Luna – Lower
We all kind of secretly know that f(x) are as dead as… dead, given that Amber and Luna would release a song every week if they could and the other two just don’t seem to give any fucks about anything anymore. I was worried when I heard those marimba shits but this song actually turned out alright.
N.Flying – Hot Potato
They’ll probably never top “Awesome” but this song is better than any song called “Hot Potato” has any right to be.
Chuu (Loona) – Heart Attack
Oh look, T-ara 2.0 just debuted their Boram. This is better than Yves’ “New” in every aspect except the song itself. I didn’t like the song much at first, probably because “New” is so incredibly good that almost anything in relation to it seems like a letdown, but it’s grown on me a lot now, especially the great bridge section. I’m counting it as a 2018 song because it was too late for all the roundups and clearing house posts and just because I wanted to talk about it more, happy to ignore all the other bullshit songs that came out in the dying days of 2017.
Younha – Parade
Although I will briefly mention this one, which also came out last year. It’s not too bad but it’s let down by a serious case of the toot-toots.
Live High – Yes
Not mindblowing but it’s not tropical shithouse so I’ll take it. In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.
TRCNG – Wolf Baby
Well it’s better than that other Wolf song, and at least they got their own wolf sample, but the only really notable thing about this is the diet – sandwiches and gummy balls? At least make a little effort and chow down on some raw meat or something. Your agency would probably even let you eat raw meat without asking you to spit it out later as long as it was lean enough, because at least it complies with the Atkins diet.
Momoland – Bboom Bboom
A great beat but unfortunately not much else, sort of like if your high school music theory teacher tried to rewrite Orange Caramel’s “My Copycat” with melodies created by the annoying teacher’s pet who thinks he knows everything but is just a dumbass that the teacher tolerates because she thinks it’s cute when he brings an apple to class.
5tion – Come Back
When I first started listening to this song I still had YouTube on 2x speed from Voisper, and I thought this was tropical shithouse for a second. Then I realised what was wrong and put it back to normal speed and was relieved to find out that this is just another boring ballad that I’ll never listen to again.
Oohyo – Honey Tea
Honey tea only tastes good when you have a sore throat. Oohyo only sound good after listening to 57 boring Korean ballads in a row. Both are good for recovery purposes but I wouldn’t experience either just randomly by choice. That’s why “Pizza” didn’t get in the 2017 lists by the way, sure it’s a good song but there’s a finite limit to how good this type of ultra smooth “don’t wake up the lazy Koreans sleeping at their desks during overtime” schtick can get.
Voisper – Missing U
I’m surprised it’s not a lot worse, there’s a reasonable song hiding in here. For those who miss Sistar, play this video at 2X speed and you basically have their summer 2018 comeback.
Hint – Walkie Talkie
After the great “Tang Tang Tang” I was hoping for another stab at Orange Caramel territory from Hint but this is more like a Japanese Apink comeback. Total waste of time.
Han Heejung ft. Sojung – Deep Inside
This song starts off terrible but actually gets good for about fiftteen seconds when Sojung does the second verse. Unfortunately they’re the only fifteen good seconds of the song. (1:15 if you want to skip straight there.)
Seo Ji An ft. Klang – Think About You
When the people in the video look as bored as you are, that’s a warning sign.
Kriesha Chu – Like Paradise
Isn’t it funny how a producer top-billed in the title of a k-pop song is always an indicator of the most boring shit possible, without fail. It’s like these are just “test songs” for their resume instead of anything designed to actually be good.
BONUS RANDOM VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Lovelyz & No Brain – Destiny/Twinkle (live)
For 2018 I’m going to put one random video at the bottom of roundup each week. It could be anything. No rules, other than that I make the rules.
Never mind the vocals, if you want to know whether a “band” are playing live or miming their instruments, forget about looking at their hands on the instruments, instead look at the drums and speaker boxes. The guitar amplifier will always have a mic in front of it (here it’s sitting on a little baby mic stand to the left of the amplifier), and the drums will have microphones set up too. Bass amplifiers are usually DIed (plugged straight into the sound system). Electric cables will be there, but neatly tucked away as per live stage OH&S requirements, not spread out in a self-conscious display. Also expect slightly shit sound quality with the instruments a little bit buried in the mix at times. No Brain are definitely playing live here, and probably would have insisted on doing so as part of the condition of appearing at all, because punk bands tend to be a bit “my way or the highway” like that. You don’t see truly live stages for k-pop very often because it’s such a hassle to set up all the sound for it. it’s a couple hours work for someone when they could just put on a recording instead, and people running TV shows usually won’t go to that amount of trouble just for appearance’s sake.
That’s all for Kpopalypse roundup for this week – expect more roundups at the same time each week over the course of 2018!