QRIMOLE – January 2018

QRIMOLE, the Kpopalypse question and answer series, is back!  Read on as Kpopalypse answers more long and tricky questions from readers!

QRIMOLE is now a monthly series and will appear at (approximately) the end of each month!  Enjoy this January edition, which also encompasses December last year, which means this will be a super-long QRIMOLE!

Some of the trainees on the Chinese ripoff of Produce 101 performed this one song called “I’m Eating Fried Chicken in People’s Square” (note: the term for “people” here is one with a political connotation) in which the chorus is literally “I’m eating fried chicken/But as of right now, where are you?” and one of the trainees’ opening rap verse after a couple of intense gun clicks is “Winner winner chicken dinner”. I just wanted to let you know about this quality content.

This isn’t really a question.  Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds is huge in China (much to the displeasure of salty Americans) so it’s no surprise that the game’s winning catchphrase turned up in this song!  As Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds is a Korean game, you might also enjoy this Korean rap video, from 1:41.

Perhaps this is relevant to Kpopalypse.

This isn’t really a question either.  I disagree with the premise of the article, I don’t think the pace of k-pop comebacks (for the bigger groups) has changed much at all.  Obviously groups riding high right now have more comebacks on average because they’re self-sustaining, but that’s always been the case.

I am sadly too late to suggest this for the 2017 clearing house posts. Would you review this? Its primary virtue is that will make lots of people angry, and I think it meets your requirements for mention: it is Koren and a live performance.

I don’t touch North Korean content, not for any political reason, but just because all their music is so boring and sounds the same.  Yeah yeah, the “socialist” (whatever that means) lyrics are a good laugh, but once the novelty wears off there’s just nothing else there.  It’s easy to see why there’s a thriving black market in North Korea for USB sticks of pirated South Korean k-pop.

okay, once you said as australian you were asked a lot about sia. so what about kylie? tame impala? courtney barnett? hugh jackman?
qrimole always has a long and candid stories and you also so sweet at its answering but i can’t tell a long story not because i’m shy and shit but because my english sucks a diq (not me diqs are gross)
also once you said exo’s the war album has some decent songs. which of them were by your opinion?
p.s i wanted to watch this midnight oil video because i love a good dancing and someone who put a more effort into that than the most of idols BUT THIS SHIT ISN’T AVAILABLE IN MY COUNTRY FUCK AUSTRALIA FUCK MIDNIGHT OIL FUCK PETER GARRETT FUCK DANCING ❤ ❤

Kylie Minogue only has one genuinely good song which is “Confide In Me“.  Even though she was with SAW all that time she never did anything good with them, and was chiefly responsible for me think SAW were nothing but trash in my teenage years.  Tame Impala and Courtney Barnett are boring.  I don’t even remember who Hugh Jackman is, an actor?  Honestly cbf looking him up, don’t care enough about him.

Dicks aren’t gross if you wash daily.

Can’t remember which songs I’ve heard on “The War”, don’t really care.  Album was alright but let’s not lose our shit people, it was no “T-ara Absolute First Album”.

You’re not missing anything with the Midnight Oil video.  I feel the same way you do about all those topics and I’ve actually seen the video more times than I care to remember.

[a billion fucking questions about plagiarism and songs that sound similar]

QRIMOLE will NOT be covering plagiarism questions.  Any major accusations that get reasonable Korean media traction will get their own post, I’ll ignore the rest.  The reason why I even did my original trilogy of plagiarism posts in the first place was to get people to stop discussing this pointless shit, not to get them to obsess over the little similarities between songs even more!  I thought explaining it would give people the tools to figure these things out themselves and that way I wouldn’t have to cover it, but I finally relented and did more plagiarism posts when I eventually realised from the feedback I was getting that this was an optimistic aim.  Nevertheless it remains one of my least favourite things to write about, hence I always insert lots of humour and weird tangents at the end of these posts to spice up the writing and keep myself awake.  All pop songs are fairly similar anyway.

Oppar, I need an adult life opinion. I have been single for six months now and things have been generally great for me so far, and I don’t necessarily need a thing right now, although something to satisfy occasional physical cravings would be nice and all. My friends have a hard time comprehending that I’m fine, though, and keep suggesting dudes to hook me up with, with mixed success. Thing is, the last one they suggested is a pretty great dude, we have easy communication and are interested in a lot of the same things, and he seems to really have the hots for me, it’s just that I’m…not attracted to him. Like, at all. I’m comfortable with friendly banter but the mere prospect of going out with him and him having romantic expectations inspires a feeling of dread, like waiting for a doctor’s appointment where they’ll shove a tube up my colon. I know how actual attraction feels like, and trying to force it where there is none or wait for it to just happen seems like a huge waste of everyone’s time, but friends say things like ‘who knows if a normal dude who likes you this much will every come into your life again’, and all of it has me paranoid if I’m being too petty and superficial and potentially missing out on something great. My gut feeling is clear on this, but I can’t help feeling like an asshole for listening to it. What do???

Why do you care so much about what your friends think?  Your relationships are for you, not them.  If you’re not into the guy you’re not into him.  Embrace your inner asshole or you’ll be going down a path you’ll regret.  It seems to me like your friends’ meddling might actually be getting in the way of you just “doing you” until the right opportunity arises.  Tell these clowns to chill the fuck out and you’ll get some action on your own terms, in your own time, and not before.

You said once that K-pop was far ahead of most Western pop music. Is that still true today? And if not, why do you still listen to it?

Yes.  n/a

Have you seen the TV show The Man in the High Castle? It’s set 20ish years after the Axis powers have won World War 2. The Nazis and the Japanese have conquered the world. The primary setting is former USA where Japan occupies the the West Coast (i.e. where California is) and Nazis hold the East Coast (i.e. where New York is).

The primary plotline involves the fight between the two governmental powers and the American resistance over film reels from The Man in the High Castle. These film reels have footage from other dimensions like footage of VE Day from our universe.

Other than the aforementioned sci-fi element it’s very much grounded in real world setting. Eg another plotline involves how the Nazi-run health system where the diseased and disabled are seen as drains on the society so they get euthanised.

No I haven’t seen it.  Doesn’t sound that interesting, I’d rather watch a documentary about the shit that really went down, which is so much stranger than any fiction about it could be.  I appreciate you telling me what cities are on what coast though because I don’t care enough about Americaland to learn the geography properly and need occasional reminding.

Why would an agency run by songwriters out-source song-writing duties for their own artists? Eg Happy Face is run by E-Tribe yet AFAIK all of Dreamcatcher’s songs are out-sourced. Duble Sidekick run Momoland’s agency Duble Kick Company, yet Bboom Bboom was written by Shinsadong Tiger. Wouldn’t it be more economical to produce songs for your own artists?

There’s probably some kind of reciprocal arrangements going on i.e if you write this song for us for this comeback, we’ll come and do X or blah blah for you later.  Also some songwriters are better at writing certain types of songs.  Not much point floating a heavy metal concept group if you don’t know how to write heavy metal, better hire someone who can, you know?

Where do u harmonize melodies w/ chords besides the downbeats? I’ve went through about dozen of those composition pages lately and none of them said where. my music composition book didn’t even go into this either, I assume they don’t know.

Obviously it sounds like shit if u put a chord on every note and boring if only on every downbeat.

What about in between? I looked into several songs and many are doing 1st beat, beat 3 (upbeat) and 1st beat again. Other than that, I have no idea.

Some songs are just magic because the creative use of where the chords hit the on the melody, but i haven’t figured out WHY it was a good idea to do it that way. Thanks

Traditional textbook music theory talks a hell of a lot about functional harmony, how to voice parts correctly etc, but relatively little about the role of rhythm, which is seen as more arbitrary.  To be honest rhythm is more of a science in pop music than it is in classical theory, because pop music is so much more rhythmically driven, and classical musicians even tend to look down on the “simplicity” of repetitive pop rhythms.  I’ve never read a good theory text which covers pop rhythm usage in a way that I really like, or even in any way at all other than barely-disguised disdain.  I guess I might have to write my own one day.

Anyway answering your question is almost impossible because it’s such a huge area.  It’s like asking a painter “how do colours work?”.  A painter would have trouble answering that other than to say that colour provides more interest than lack of colour, and that you can use colour to highlight certain things and sneak other things below the radar of consciousness a bit.  Rhythm is similar in that every sound has rhythm because rhythm = time (just like every painting has colour because colour = light) and that when composing you’re aiming for a distribution of rhythms between parts that provides maximum clarity of the musical idea (like a painter uses colour to provide maximum focus of the visual idea).  How this works varies so much because every song is multi-layered and the possibilities of multiple parts all with distinct rhythm rhythm are near-infinite, just like the mathematical limit of the permutations of colour on a canvas.  This isn’t a very good answer, because a good answer to this isn’t really possible.  You may need to provide specific examples.

Hello hyung ! I wanted to talk about a show I’m currently watching on Netflix. It is called Part-Time Idol and tells the story of a bunch of co-ed looser trainees that become stars thank to the skill of their manager, one of the founder of K-Pop, who is coming back from a monastic trip in India. The show, which is intended to be funny, is “so bad it’s good” and does not hesitate to mock the industry, which is refreshing. It is also basically a promotion for YG, or maybe not, I am not sure in fact. Last but not least, and I know it will interest you a lot, AKMU’s Soo-hyun plays her on role as one of the trainees. She faints in one scene and has drool all over her mouth, which makes her look like any JAV actress after a cumshot, which I am sure you will appreciate.

You can see it here at 12:00 minutes:

You’re welcome.

A more serious thing now: how would you explain BTS success? How did a band not coming from the big 3 perform so well? Popsori, which is a YouTube channel I recommend to fellow caonimas, tried to explain it, but I thought he did not go that deep:

So, what do you think?

Also, I was “triggered” the other day by a K-Pop “influencer” saying that “plastic surgery is okay if it makes idols feel better”. I have no problem with plastic surgery, especially in the K-pop industry, where I know what I am looking for: off-the-chart beauty (and obviously good music). However, I am tired with this hypocrisy around plastic surgery that fans keep telling themselves. I agree that regular people do plastic surgery to feel better. But Idols do not. They do it because they are products and that products need to be carefully designed at some point in their production process to please their customer base once launched. In fact, I even think this kind of speech is “dangerous” and “unhealthy” when it is listened by teenage girls that feel generally bad with their changing body, as they are told lies about the reasons for plastic surgery in the K-pop industry. Basically, it reminds me of the Kyla case.

I know what I am saying here is a truism for many Kpopalypse readers, but if you want to add your own commentary about this, or disagree with what I am saying, it would be very much appreciated.

Thank you for reading and keep up the good work!

Cheers from France

Suhyun doesn’t look like she has been jizzed on, she looks like she’s eaten too much cheesecake.  Got my hopes up for nothing.  She does look good in the footage though, in general.

I wouldn’t really know about the true reasons for BTS’s success because I don’t follow them (or anyone) that closely, and I also don’t follow things like charts etc.  I do talk a bit about success and failure in the music industry, but not because I care which artists succeed, more from the point of view of trying to explain the often-arbitrary nature of it and the fact that luck really isn’t on the side of the performers, most of the time.  Also trying to explain that success is often not connected at all to who has “the best music” or whatever, which is the reason why it doesn’t matter to me.  Once you realise that popularity has no bearing on quality, there’s no longer a reason to care about popularity.  People should worry about their own success.

I agree with you about plastic surgery.  People in the entertainment world do it mainly for pragmatic business reasons.  All the people who complained about Bom touching up her face all the time, would you really have been okay with seeing her age naturally, probably not – the “looks like an ahjumma” comments would have come flooding in sooner rather than later had she not done anything, and that’s something that these people want to avoid at all costs because that kind of reputation can impact their careers.  There’s a good chance that Bom didn’t want to have all those surgeries herself, but once you start down that path it’s hard to stop because once your face has a reasonable amount of shit in it, you get constantly up-sold on “touch-ups” and “rework” to keep the extras in line with your growing and changing actual physical appearance.  That’s something that doesn’t really get discussed by anybody in k-pop.  These clinics don’t make money out of just one procedure per client, they make money out of repeat customers, and any artificial creation requires “servicing”!

this isn’t really a question but something I thought you would find interesting and didn’t know where else to put it. Anyway kpopalypse hwaiting!!!!!!!

Natalie Tran is always very watchable and this documentary is definitely the best thing she’s ever done that I’ve seen.  It’s interesting to see the HAPAs Reddit covered, as I first found out about the HAPAs Reddit when I detected traffic to my site from there and found out that they were discussing my own racial background and whether I was a “HAPA” (Chinese on my mother’s side but I don’t look Asian, so… not sure?  Maybe not?) or a “sexpat” (been dating a white woman for close to 8 years now and not planning on a switch, so that’d be a no).  I think extreme race-consciousness is a really bad thing, it’s the one thing that neo-Nazis and PC types in general have completely in common, and while awareness is good, the crazy obsession that a lot of people have with race gets in the way of everything sensible and rational.  Why can’t I find Natalie Tran and my Polish girlfriend hot, without other people forcing me to think about their own agendas?  I get Natalie’s frustration with the racist hate comments, people need to get a life.  Regardless of your ethnicity and beliefs, your own failure to succeed isn’t the rest of the world’s problem, and ice cream comes in more than one flavour for a reason.

This is something that generally confuses me, why is prostitution illegal but porn is legal? I think all sex work should be legal, but I’m just confused as to why prostitution/prostitutes get demonized so much. The people involved are all getting paid to have sex, it’s just with porn, the costumer is indirect whereas with prostitution, it’s usually direct contact with the costumer. I know people try to make the argument that porn is professional, but there are tons of professional prostitutes, as well as tons of crappy and unprofessional porn; people just like to associate prostitution with grimy parts of cities where pimps take 100% of the cuts.

Ron Jeremy actually said something similar in an interview I saw a while back – if two people have sex and money changes hands, that’s prostitution and there are severe legal penalties for it – but if you introduce a camera into the room then you’re making a film and the same activities are now completely legal.  It’s the same legal sleight-of-hand that makes Korean brothels legal if they rebadge themselves as “host clubs”, Simon and Martina explain from 4:21.

I’m a guitar player and I have a really hard time finding musicians I can play with.

I really don’t want to sound like a pompous asshat when I say this, but it’s really hard to find people who can play at the level I can. I’ve learned many different songs from many different styles so, when I hear new music, it’s pretty easy for me to pick up.

I even went to a music school and it was still pretty difficult. We got assigned randomly to groups and we were made to play songs we didn’t really like but I still made sure to study the music. Because I knew the songs so well, I felt like I was just helping people when I showed them how to play some parts but it turned out everyone was starting to hate me after a while. I didn’t realize this until one of the members got into an argument with me saying that he felt like I was condescending towards people which felt really weird to me because even though it was frustrating that things weren’t moving as quickly as I wanted them to I never felt like I was being mean about it.

But when I asked about it, everyone felt the same way about me.

For the next group, I bit my tongue a lot more and nobody hated me but it’s still so frustrating that our whole song learning process was going so slowly.

I quit music school after this because I really couldn’t handle constantly being in these kinds of situations.

I’ve had a couple of times where things worked out more smoothly when I left music school and one of my friends let me jam with his band before they had to breakup because he had other things going on in his life.

Now, I’m a foreign teacher in China and that might already make things even harder to find people to play with because I’m still learning Chinese and there aren’t a lot of foreigners to talk to let alone people who can play instruments. But one of the people from the company got a band together from people from the company and it has been okay…except, well, the same issues as before.

Things are really just moving way to slowly for me. The person who put together the band is now the singer and she doesn’t really have any experience performing but she’s open minded and she’ll try anything no matter how hard it is(real respect for that). The other people do have some experience with music but they are way less open minded and their ability can be pretty limited. We have 7 people in this band, but if it were up to me I would have fired everyone except for the singer and the drummer just for efficiency’s sake. But I even still have some problems because we took a really long time to learn one song and our drummer refuses to play it anymore because he’s “sick of it.”

I mean…okay…we spent a long time on it, we don’t know a lot of songs together as a group…we don’t exactly have a lot of options and these situations don’t exactly care how you feel about a song.

And because it seems most people only really learn one style of music, the instrument players are most comfortable with punk and folk. I really have nothing against that, but with the different kinds of songs everyone wants to play…they really need to branch out.

I really don’t know how to feel about it. I remember one person giving me advice as a musician “If you hear it on the radio, play it.” I’m really surprised about how many musicians don’t have that mentality.

Also, communication issues…I’ve never been in a band where communication wasn’t a problem. I’ll send messages and people will disappear until the last minute and it turns out they didn’t practice what I told them to practice…

I thought learning about music would bring me happiness, haha

I’m pretty well-qualified to help you here.  I’ve almost never been in a group where I wasn’t the most skilled musician in the group.  Not blowing my own horn here, just a fact.  I mean I’m a teacher by trade, so I’d better be at least semi-decent, right?  So there’s some things to know about being in a musical group.

Firstly, people as a general rule don’t tend to approach being in a musical group with the same type of diligence as an A-grade student, or a star employee at a job.  The reason why they don’t do this is generally because music appeals primarily to most people as escapism, as a way to get away from the drudgery of hard work, so when people start to realise “gosh, this is actually hard work too“, they start to question why they got involved in music at all, and suddenly their interest in the whole thing starts fading, because it stops being fun.  It’s only the very rare people who either really really love music completely or who are just incredibly mentally driven and are able to push through all the drudgery to get to the fun parts.  So the more you treat band practices like work for everyone involved, the less they’re going to find it appealing, and since nobody is forcing them to be there, guess what happens.  So there needs to be a reason for people to be there besides the music itself, people need to have fun while they’re playing, even if they’re not getting it right all the time.  Bands are a social domain as much as anything else involving groups of people.

This leads into the second point, which is that it’s important to be tactful and try to explain things well without ruffling egos.  If your groupmates aren’t getting it, have patience.  Maybe try explaining things in a different way, because everyone learns differently.  Most importantly, try and be encouraging.  Focus on what they’re doing well and then try to insert the advice, don’t just say “you’re doing that wrong”, try to describe in a practical way how to do it better, a way that makes sense to them (you might have to try explaining a few different ways until you find a way that works).  Remember that everyone else in the group knows that you’re the best musician there, and they may have all sorts of mixed emotions about not performing up to par, so if you start throwing your weight around it can look really ugly to everyone else in the room.  Sometimes people are trying really hard but just aren’t that good.  Also try to resist showing off!  I actually play pretty modestly in my band practices most of the time but I still get called “show off” sometimes jokingly, but it’ll get serious if you look like you’re using the group as a platform to jerk off.  The way you perceive yourself in the room may be not how others perceive you.  You don’t have to change yourself completely or not be yourself, just try to be a less cunty version of the person that you’re tempted to be when you find out that the bass player hasn’t practiced again.

The other thing to remember is that while forming a “supergroup” of 100% amazingly talented musicians is tempting, finding musos who are incredible talents and who also get along in the same room together really well is incredibly difficult, because people who are technically stunning are often this way at the expense of a bit of social finesse (including myself in this category here).  Most groups struggle under the weight of more than one “he’s an arch-cunt – but boy can he play” type of person.  You’re usually far better off getting in people who you can get along with well, and who are willing to take instruction (as long as you’re nice about it) and then gradually training them up, rather than having a bunch of shit-hot musicians who all have vastly conflicting ideas on where they want to take the group and who have no chemistry as a result.  Even in the best groups there’s usually that one person in the group who is kind of technically coasting a bit compared to the others, but he’s in the group because he’s a great person who makes the team gel.  These things are important.  I reckon in Covet it’s the bass player, look at his easy-ass job compared to the other two.

Oppar!! I have something that’s really ending all my desire to live and i don’t know how to pass over it. I’m 18 and i knew a boy through web nearly a year ago and i really liked him (he’s 17). I never date anyone in my life, both because I live in a really shit town in the backside of one of the most poor states of my country that have about 10 000 close-minded people living in (I’m bi), and because I’m a person that don’t hang out frequently. Okay, so we both write about asian pop and have A LOT of things in common, but i never thought that something will happen because we have nearly 7000 km between us. But in a late night, when our friendship have evolved to a level in which a could call him my best friend, we were talking about a couple of things, and a said that a have liked him for a lot of time, but never said nothing because of the distance. He said that he likes me too, but never said this because he don’t think it’s was reciprocal. We started a online relationship that was wonderful and full of unicorns for about 2 days, and after that i starts being a idiot to him for no reason. I always thought that online relationships were bullshit, and i never thought that this relationship will last long because of the distance. A lot of things happened, and our relationship have faced a lot of highs & lows, what have come to the point where he nearly stop talking to me for about a week. After this, i came to him and asked if something was wrong, and he said that he was full of my hardness and was taking a break. I never tried to demonstrate that i liked him so much. Even when i wanted to say to him that i love him, i never said, because i “know” that the relationship wont lasts, and i tried too hard to not get REALLY in love with him. But i was totally on it, and i just realized this when he said that i was hurting him. After this, we started our relationship again, and i can’t express how happy i was when i listened to his voice for the first time in about two weeks. I was ready to being a aegyo boyfriend to him, because i realized that i really like him, but this lasts about two days (again), when he starts to avoid me again. I came to him and asked him if he wants to break up, and he almost did not answer, but after some pressure, he said that he starts to lose romantic interest in me after i being a cunt to him (not with that words), and that he really loves me, but how friends (i nearly die here). Ok, after this, he starts to date with other boy. The boy in question was his best friend for a lot of time, they try to start a relationship before i even met them, but they were really insecure at the time, and can’t come forward with it. I really like them both and wishes them the best, but i was still in love with him, and at the same time i was maintaining a best-friend-relationship with him, and talks casually with his boyfriend. This was really killing me, because EVERYTIME of my day i was thinking about him, and about all his qualities, and how i should appreciate all the time we spend together, and A LOT of other things about him. I maintain this shit for about one month. He knows everything that i was felling because i told to him, and he said that he was suffering a lot because of this too, because he was feeling guilty. I even can’t sleep or eat well for some days. One day, he comes to me in the late night to ask for advices and tell me all the things that him and his future-boyfriend were passing through, i realize that he was still my best friend, and i don’t should act how some bitch that try to steal the other’s boyfriend (his boyfriend is probably more insecure than me, and have a lot of conflicts in his life). Ok, after this day, i starts to felling better and more “comprehensive” with all this situation (we starts to spend more time talking on chat or playing together). But none of my romantic fallings about him was gone, and every time he and his boyfriend starts to make jokes or being happy with each other, i was feeling like someone have threw a big rock in my face. So, i said to him that a was needing a break of him, to recover me of all this shit, and after this we can talk normally again. I delete our conversations and his contact on my games, and his friends’ too. He said that he really love me (like a friend………..), and that he don’t want to lost our friendship, but he understands me, and wishes me the best. Ok, so… this is lasting for about half-a-day and i nearly sended a message to him a lot of times, because his presence in my life (even if it was just as a friend) was which were making me happy and calm. But ok, i really don’t know if i can maintain this for much more time, because i fell very empty without him, but at the same time i can’t continue being friends with him and talking normally with his boyfriend and pretending that I’m was okay with all of this. It’s also hard for me to say that we will “never” have a relationship again (both because of the distance, since we’re young, and because he don’t like me the way i like him), because i see “never” how a really strong and sad word. T_T Ok, só… all my friends are saying that this is just because it’s my first break up, but i’m really miserable right now. I mean, I’ll move to a big city next month, so probably my life will change a lot, but I’m not really confident that I’ll forget this so early… Do you think it’s just drama of my own, or I’m really doing something wrong to pass over it?

ps: sorry for my engrish

You feel like shit now and you probably will for a while yet, but I think you’ll be surprised by how much moving to a big city impacts your life.  You’ll get into some deep relationships (of all types) with people who you’ll actually be meeting face to face and you’ll look back on this wall of text in a year or two and maybe feel a little silly about how you got so carried away over someone half a world away who you were never realistically going to have anything happen with.  It’s also harder to “be an idiot for no reason” in person, you might find that the lack of online aspect to be beneficial to the relationship stability, as online communication is fraught with ambiguity that can make relationships difficult to navigate.  Word of advice, when you meet the next person, try to do as little online communication with them as possible.  When we’re apart, my phone and text conversations with my girlfriend rarely go for more than 30 seconds, we save it for when we meet.  In the meantime the emptiness will subside, try to find some cool things to do that take your mind off it, once you move to the city that will be easier than ever.

I don’t have a question for you today. I just want to share this video on youtube for you to theoryfag over it.

Fucking jazz faggots!  The music and the explanations both get worse as the video goes on!  Fuck off with your GMaj7b13 nobody wants to hear that in “Amazing Grace” for fuck’s sake.  Jazz is such brain cancer.  Of course “every chord works with every bassnote” when it all sounds like shit anyway.  They even use a Rhodes sound throughout the whole thing, what cockbags.

So a blog that reviews movies that I religiously read decided to take applications for co-writers.
I applied because I recently lack any sort of creative outlet and got it, there are now about 5 or 6 authors contributing to this blog.
My question is how do I distinguish myself as a writer? I’ve noticed that I pick up some phrases here and there and other people (even commenters) have started to pick up some of my phrases.
How do I keep my voice as an author unique? It’s a bit difficult to gauge the reaction of the readership as the blog is a bit on the smaller side (we get about 3.000 regular readers) and thus not a lot of people comment.
While the stats show that my post generate quite a bit of traffic I’m worried that this may be because of the movies that I’m reviewing and not my reviews themselves.
Any tips for bloggers ? Your writing style is quite unique so I thought maybe you had some advice?
Sorry for my crappy english, I’m
still a bit unsure on if my English sounds natural at all.

The best advice I can give is don’t read what the other writers write until you’ve defined your own style, or at least have a clear picture in your own head about what it is that makes your own writing different to theirs.  Then continue forward.  Don’t listen to self-doubt, soon you’ll have plenty of haters so there’ll be no room left to also hate yourself and add to the pile!

Do you think the dominance/promotion of idols/Hallyu acts in the Korean music scene has prevented the development of other musical genres and subcultures within their industry? Between the government regime before (and after, unfortunately) the 90’s and the rise of idols, it feels like balladeers and idols have dominated, which aren’t very edgy. Groups like Dreamcatcher are starting to catch on (namely abroad) that are darker and verge on anti-idol, but I think it would be cool to see some edgier acts emerge from the dominance of idols. I’ve spared you from some examples of how darker acts and subgenres have emerged generation to generation in Japan since the rise of idols there. 😛 Thanks for taking my question!

It was even more formulaic before the idols came about.  As music evolves it only continues to fragment, there are always more options evolving rather than less.  Over time the machines of creation refine so there becomes a more set-in-stone “accepted way of doing things” in terms of techniques and modes of production, which is why things seem more standardised, it’s because they are, but this is counterbalanced by a gradually increasing number of alternatives that the mainstream also draws from and absorbs.  You’ve seen the process yourself in Japan.  Korea is a more conservative society so you’ll see less of it in an obvious way, but everything is still there, it’s just buried a little deeper under the surface and you might need to go digging a little harder.

Hello, kpopalypse oppa. I’m always eager to see your posts, so I will be really glad if you’re going to answer this question.

Today, I read that gaon will not show download and streaming numbers anymore since now on.

It’s either gaon read kpopalypse posts and reflects, or maybe some LOONA members forced gaon to reflect for a new world order or something.

However, no matter what happened behind, I’m actually glad that gaon did so. Not only it will make kpop fans become less shitty, but it will (hopefully) make the attention shifts into the music itself, not the numbers.

But when I saw the twitter replies, they’re mad as hell. I don’t understand why. They starts to think that it may be because of SM, that it will make some award become less transparent (when it’s not even transparent at the first place) etc etc.

Seemed that most kpopers haven’t understand that such thing doesn’t even matter. Digital/streaming numbers, awards.

I hope they would read this someday and stop being a cunt.

(Source tweet)

Thank you for reading my long-ass rant, oppa. See you!

I’d say “it’s a good thing” but that would imply that I gave a shit about how Gaon did their business before.  The truth is that I don’t care then and I don’t care now.  I don’t think this will change anything significant, and as you’ve noticed, it really hasn’t affected people’s attitudes anyway.  People will just complain and then go and be dicks about something else for a while.

As you can see, your rant isn’t that long, relatively speaking!

Last time I linked you a video of Marmello Yuna doing Dreamcatcher. This time, here’s Doeun doing Rookie! Stan Marmello imo u cunt.

The video is a good second opinion on my tabs post, she plays it well.  Marmello got into my most fappable post,whic is really the highest accolade any k-pop group could hope to achieve, what more do you want.

Is there a reason why C major sounds happier than any other key in existence, even other major keys or just my imagination?

Depends what instrument you’re playing C Major on, and how it is tuned.  These days most instruments are tuned to “equal temperament” which means that there is no sonic difference at all between keys apart from pitch, because each octave is divided up into twelve divisions which have exactly equal frequency (Hz) difference.  However it wasn’t always this way, and early instruments were tuned with Pythagorean tuning or just intonation, which constructed the notes by using the harmonic series of vibrations.  In these styles of instrument tuning, there is a small difference between the keys, and chords that are further away from the harmonic series on which the tuning is based tend to sound a bit more “corrupted” as the ratios between notes vary more and more, the further away from the root note you get.  Equal temperament was a system designed to fix this issue, and while it does do this, some people argue that it sacrifices some of the “character” of the keys to get this result.  However the amount of people who can actually hear that kind of tiny tonal difference in a blind listening test is quite small, and probably decreasing more and more as less and less people give a shit.  Instruments that are typically tuned to equal temperament are the accordion and any electronic instrument.  Instruments that use tuning more closely related to intervals are any instrument with strings, as stringed-instrument players are often quite sensitive to their instrument’s vibration.  Anybody who tunes to “harmonics” is tuning in just intonation, Pythagorean tuning, or similar.  Also the piano is a stringed instrument and while piano tuners do try to tune into equal temperament, they modify this tuning slightly for various practical reasons.  All of this means that you’re probably not completely imagining that C major sounds somewhat different to F# major other than it just being higher or lower, but these differences are very tiny and most people’s ears these days aren’t attuned to them.

What were some of your favorite western pop songs of the year?

I don’t even follow western pop.  I just don’t have time.  I wouldn’t even know what came out this year, but I’m sure it’s crap.

Has the quality/creativity of a video ever changed your opinion of a song?

Well in some cases it has made listening to the music more enjoyable… or less enjoyable.  But I still assess the song in isolation.

I just read the Kpopalypse Awards, which got me thinking about Kyla’s weight once more. I got digging into some Korean language profiles some k-netizen gossip breeding grounds, and while there was loads and loads of criticism… actual numbers were scarce. I gleaned that Kyla seems to have grown to 167cm, but her weight seemed to be unknown. Curious k-netizens wanted to know if she was 62-63kg, others asked if she could be (*gasp*) 70kg, yet the general consensus was overwhelmingly “she is at the very most 60kg.” This gave me a sense of what k-netizens consider an “unacceptable” weight, but didn’t provide much concrete evidence. [The fact that netizens have feverishly latched onto this idea (trust me I looked through LOTS of articles and forums) with absolutely no proof of anything except obviously distorted pictures from unflattering angles really demonstrates their low levels of critical thinking, by the way.]
However, with T-ara-esque levels of determination I persevered, finding a profile full of of creepy details about Kyla’s life like which kindergarten she went to. Since the person who wrote the profile probably knows Kyla’s favorite breakfast cereal, I decided to give it my trust. This site put Kyla’s profile measurements at 167cm and 52kg, a perfectly healthy (low, if anything) number! In fact, it is maybe a few kg above the weights officially listed for other members, making all “you should be more like the other members and other idols” criticism entirely hypocritical! What’s new?

My second point here refers directly to the concern trolls who “don’t hate Kyla” and “just want Kyla to lose weight for her health.” I’m almost exactly Kyla’s age and height. My weight is actually about 64kg (about 11-12kg above all of Kyla’s listed weights for those of you who hate math). I’m not even bordering the realm of “chubby”. Like… not even close. I do a lot of physical activity so I have muscle, but I think we can safely say that being in a kpop group, Kyla does a lot of physical activity as well. And, considering my weight makes me an obese lard-bag by netizen standards, I’m ridiculously healthy. Every time I go to the doctor or get blood work done, the people there are like “geez wow you’re in excellent health your cholesterol is the lowest I’ve seen in all of my career holy shit.” AND I recently lost about 6kg due to anxiety and other mental health circumstances, so I was arguably healthier when I weighed 70kg! I’m no expert in the physical health of Kyla Massie, but if my orca balloon size has no effect on my objectively very good physical health, then there is literally no reason why Kyla can’t be perfectly healthy too. Conclusion: no one is actually worried about the health of Kyla, they all just want to hate on her for no good reason because she’s a female idol who is probably cuter than them.

I know that this point has already been thoroughly debunked by you already, but the amount of idiocy contingent to it seriously pisses me off.

This isn’t really a question and probably should have been a comment on the actual article instead, but for anyone who hasn’t read it yet, you can read about my investigation into this issue here.

I know how much you love endless questions about albums so here’s some more. Occasionally you mention liking an album – do you regularly listen to the full tracklist of kpop releases, or usually just the lead singles off the albums/mini albums? Following on from that, if you pick and choose which albums to listen to, do you do this on the basis of the quality of the lead single, whether you like the artist generally, or something else entirely?

I don’t usually listen to the whole album unless something compels me to do so.  Radio listeners often request album tracks for me to play, so sometimes I hear them that way.  Also sometimes I’ll put a random k-pop album in my car stereo and listen to it, and then I listen to everything – and usually regret it!

Hey Oppar! How are you?

I know you said you don’t rank groups because it depends of a lot of factors if they are going to get a good song. But would you consider making your top composers list? We already know which ones you kinda like but I’m curious is it Jyp, Sweetune or is Shinsadong Tiger still Roly-Polying your heart?
greetings from cao ni ma.

I won’t do a list of composers, and the reason why is that composers get told what to write in much the same way that idols get told what to sing and dance to.  It’s often not Shinsadong Tiger’s fault when a new song of his sucks because he would have been given specific instructions to write the song a certain way.  I guess the exception is someone like JYP who is his own boss but that’s a rare enough situation in k-pop that putting him in a list with others who don’t have that degree of autonomy isn’t really a fair comparison.

Now that 2017 is over, why not make a game with all the scan-dols of the roundups in which one has to associate the scan-dol with the scandal (s)he was a part of ?
It would be interesting to see if any scandal was impactful enough to be remembered 1 month to 1 year later.

Otherwise, Keep up the good work !

All scandals are dumb and I hope readers forget about them all as soon as possible.

this isn’s so much a question as a nugget of info, but i noticed in a previous qrimole, a cao ni ma asked about the location of a circular abandoned building used as a set in ‘eclipse’, ‘hellevator’ and ‘the closer’. i was surfing around twitter and i found out its an abandoned school in gimcheon. there’s no exact address so linking the latitude-longitude coordinates is impossible, but if you look up abandoned school gimcheon-si (maybe add loona kimlip to the search for specificity), it’ll for sure pop up!

just helpin out a fellow cao ni ma
peace out bye also how is stiglitz, is he still writing articles?

Thanks for this info!  Unlike her namesake, Stiglitz is female.  She is considering her next article deeply.

Hi Kpopalypse!

First of all, thank you for everything you do for us caonimas. You’re wasting a lot of time and effort writing bullshit just to entertain us, you’re more exploited than k-idols but you still do it. Thank you for all the laughs!

My question is about “disjunct” songs, that seem to be a trend lately in k-pop. Not everyone likes them, but overall there seems to be three categories:
– disjunct songs that work, and people don’t mind it (9Muses – Remember, EXO – KoKoBop, KARD – You In Me, 4Minute – Hate)
– disjunct songs that take time to get used to (BlackPink – As If It’s Your Last, TWICE – Signal [this one is borderline 3rd category])
– disjunct songs that everyone fucking hate (Pristin – I Don’t Like Your Girlfriend, Rain – Gang)

What do you think makes a disjuncted song work well from a technical-musical point of view? Is it the usage of one or more of the same instrument in both “segments”, making the song seem disjuncted at first but actually musically cohesive? Is it the use of the same key/tonal/something technical (sorry, I’m not an expert on the jargon)? Or is it simply too much disconnection for the public and has nothing to do with musical technicalities?

This is a good question and rather than answer it here, I might throw up a full post at some stage that talks about this trend and why it sometimes works better than other times.  I did cover this a little in my “song structures” post but I could probably go deeper.  For the person who asked about “Bohemian Rhapsody”, I’ll probably cover that song as part of this discussion too.

Not related to anything, but for the first few articles that I read on here I thought you were a woman, more specifically, a raging lesbian. Having found out you were a dude was a big shocker but suprisingly didn’t really take away from the experience.
I really don’t see how people overlook the tone you write in when you write about the boobs and fapping but whatever~
This site is the most interesting thing about kpop right now so cheers

I don’t know where people get the idea that I’m “raging”, it comes up again and again and it’s so far removed from the actual tone my writing is written with, which is almost 180 degrees opposite to “rage”.  I’m the most calm motherfucker you can imagine about all of this shit.  Glad you’re enjoying the site though!

Do you think Shinee will only release shitty SM ballads from now on?

They have to get back to upbeat songs eventually because that’s their bread and butter, and it’s not like they haven’t performed sans a member before.

Hi, I often see people comparing some shitty music to Coldplay, including you sometimes. I don’t know anything about music so I wanted to ask why is that? Could you please explain what is so bad about Coldplay? Thank you 🙂

Coldplay just have that boring smooth rock sound, it’s like if you got Cocteau Twins and removed the interesting singer and replaced her with a boring cunt, and then removed the interesting guitar player and replaced him with some fuckheads who just go plonk-plonk on their one Eno-esque chord all the fucking time, it’s fucking shit.  They don’t fool me.

I’ve never cared about kpop producers and songwriters before. Not because of some philosophical stance of only caring about the music, like you seem to have, but because I literally never gave one solitary thought about who produces what for whom, so when a random internet search led me here I curiously read it, didn’t get why they’re the “top” nor did I care, but I realized you were right about two things: one, you always go on about how producers adjust to whatever their client asks, and hence the hit-miss ratio. You’re right, and to actually see a fucking list of their songs and have some of my (and yours, for that matter) favorite and least favorite songs of the year by the same guy/team is sort of weird. For example, I really enjoyed “Kiss my lips” and, to a lesser extent, Shannon’s “Hello” but the Girl’s Day song was such a jarring mess that it put me off of them, to think all three songs have the same damn producer! And second, LOONA’s company really must be doing some extortion behind the scenes because these guys are giving their best to them, while SM gets b-side filler and “almost little minx” worth songs. Also, this is unrelated but that guy at number six seems to be your answer to “why are Pledis so shit lately?”

I guess he is!

What even is a root chord and what do you mean that new makes you wait three chords to hear the root chord? I HAVE SO MANY QUESTIONS MEANWHILE I’VE BEEN LOOPING THIS SONG SINCE IT CAME OUT. [the asker is referring to my write up of Yves’ “New“, #1 on the favourites list for 2017]

The root chord is the chord that is in the key of the song.  It is what you can consider the “home base” of the song, that all other chords revolve around.  Any other chord builds tension and the root chord resolves that tension.  Music theory text widsom states that the first chord you hear in the song is usually the root, unless it is preceeded by an anacrusis (introductory fragment of a bar).  “New” is unusual in that a four-chord structure doesn’t usually have the root chord at the end of the sequence, but rather at the start.

Do more musictheoryfag content for Yves – new. Dedicate a whole blog entry explaining all that mumbo jumbo you just vomited out in the top 30 post. Do guitar tabs for it. Idk. I just want more Yves – new content from you. Pls. Thx cunt.

There’s no need, the favourites list already goes into enough depth so that anyone reading can play the song on any instrument.  But I might consider it anyway.

So, I found these two articles (1, 2) written by a fan of LoonaFrom the article. One of the group’s music producer is Jaden Jeong, which was one of the producers in Woollim (and also happened to be involved in Lovelyz back in their pre-debut days) and once worked in JYP Ent.

So, now that he’s working with LOONA as a music producer, he’s been able to realise his idea of releasing singles predebut in full force (something he couldn’t have done back in Lovelyz predebut days). This is strengthened by the similarities found in both of LOONA and Lovelyz music (especially similarities in Love & Live and Ah Choo).

So, my question is, does a music producer hold more power in how a group music would end up like than even the songwriters themselves? (since both of them have different songwriters, Love & Live is written by Monotree, while Ah Choo is by OnePiece.)

That depends more on you as a listener.  Producers don’t usually change things like melody and harmony but often make choices around song arrangement (what parts happen in what order) as well as textural decision (what instruments and sounds get used where).  Depending on how you listen to music and how you prioritise value in what you hear, this may make a lot of difference, or a little difference, or no difference.

hello kpopalypse! Obligatory “how i found you and what you did for me” paragraph you can skip: In late 2015, a few months after I was really getting into Kpop for the first time, I found your MR removed debunking post floating around the Twice tvtropes page. You’ve been a real eye opener for me, and even though I still engage in dumb fan idiocy for the groups I like, I at least do it conciously knowing that I am buying into the illusion these groups are selling me, and keeping away from stupid drama- both of which I might not have done without your writing. So thank you!

Actual Question Time: I’m a LOONA fan, and I’ve noticed they’ve been doing stuff for their international fans that most agencies don’t bother with- mainly putting subtitles on every single “look at the girls being cute behind the scenes” bonus videos, which there’s like 200+ of now. The version of Loonatic they made an MV for, in fact, was an English version made explicitly as a thanks for the international support the group had gotten.
They also tend to do more audience-engaging things, like releasing special MVs when a video reaches X number of views, which makes them one of the few groups in which streaming actually matters (at least as much as it can actually matter anyways).

My question is: Do you think this active attempt at engaging with an audience, both domestic and international, will pay off in the long run? I’m aware Blockberry Creative have money out the ass and that’s probably the only reason they can even do this shit in the first place, but if more companies had the means to do all thia stuff for fans, do you think it would even be worth it, or are BBC just wasting time with this stuff?

I think that it’s all done for a very specific reason because it works.  I think that when other groups have done similar things, it’s worked well.  This is part of how a label builds hype around their own artists.  Remember that Loona still hasn’t even debuted as a full group yet, yet they have this legacy of all this media content floating around and lots of really engaged fans now.  Labels wouldn’t waste their time on this shit if it didn’t get results.

hello

Can u please make an appreciation post for Miss A? They are amazing but criminally underated and they deserved a better treatment from JYP

I don’t just do random appreciation posts for artists.  Whenever I drop a post that seems like an “appreciation” post, there’s usually a different reason for it actually being there.  In fact most of my posts are like that.  For instance my “fap” posts are nothing like the “fap” content on any other website, and that’s very deliberate.

Have you ever wondered why there haven’t been more efforts to remaster old k-pop songs? Considering the extremely rapid improvement in general production and mastering standards that now surpass the west in a lot of ways, I find it impossible to believe that Koreans don’t think these old recordings sound like complete shit. Maybe since K-pop was such a fledgling industry at the time, I might see people not giving a fuck/the original masters not being that easy to find, but considering the surprising amount of dark age k-pop available in full albums on the likes of Apple Music and Spotify (in a lot of cases, it’s a lot of easier to find legally than early golden age for some reason despite the hallyu wave), you think someone along the way would give one or two of the songs a quick polish.

Well it has happened, with new groups doing remakes of old songs.  But this sort of pop music isn’t designed to leave a lasting legacy, it’s designed to function in the moment.  You can’t even buy the physical product for the vast majority of old k-pop albums anymore, even the really successful ones.

Oppar! first Merry Christmas! second, I have a real question.
Why do I hate BTS so much? besides their shitty music, I know they are just a band, but every time they talk like they aren’t kpop, or how their music is “deep”, or when they are in variety shows I got mad, like why do I care?
Something really similar happened when Big Bang did Fantastic Baby, but I didn’t hate them as a band, but I hate their song, I like them as persons. But now I really hate BTS, like idk why, I even search how they did sajaegi, or how they are ugly, and other shit, this never happened to me before, maybe I’m having lack of determination to stop being a cunt. Help

BTS just have very good marketing, and if something is marketed at you a lot it can get annoying from overexposure.  Because I don’t participate in most media receptacle stuff I don’t really see this so often, so it all sort of flies under my radar a bit unless I’m researching that stuff specifically.

This isn’t much of a question, rather me being interested in what you’ll write about Jonghyun’s death and wondering if you’ll look at the bigger picture of suicides in the Korean entertainment industry.
Quite some time ago I made a list of some of Korean entertainment figures who committed suicide where it’s linked to depression. The trend goes farther back than Jang Ja-yeon, who died in 2009, also at the age of 27 – she left behind the list of executives she was forced to have sex with.
[I don’t have links, but googling them gets reliable results]
2005 – Lee Eun-ju – actress
2007 – Lee Hye-ryeon / U;Nee – actress, singer
2007 – Jeong Da-bin – actress
2008 – Ahn Jae-hwan – actor (money problems)
2008 – Choi Jin-sil – actress
2008 – Jang Chae-won – transgender actress
2008 – Kim Ji-hoo – actor, severe bullying after his coming out
2009 – Kim Seok-kyun – actor
2009 – Jang Ja-yeon – actress
2009 – Woo Seung-yeon – rookie actress
2009 – Daul Kim – fashion model
2010 – Choi Jin-young – singer/actor and brother of deceased Choi Jin-sil
2010 – Park Yong-ha – actor
2011 – Chae Dong-ha – singer
2013 – Kim Jong-hak (not depression: was a drama producer and director, money problems bc drama)
2014 – Han Nah – former JYP actress, stress
2015 – Ahn So Jin – trained for 5 years to be in Kara but was rejected
(after that I stopped updating the list)

I don’t expect a reply to this in your qurimole, given that I haven’t got the sensitivity to phrase my thoughts appropriately for people in mourning over Jonghyun. Still I wanted to share this, because I don’t know about how many of them you know.

I’ll calmly wait for you to write the post.

I definitely will not be going in this direction when I finally do write a post related to it.  There’s quite a different bigger picture that I’ll look at, that I think will be more strictly relevant.

Not really a question but more of a rant. I’m sure this will be old news by the time the next Qrimole comes out but I can’t think of anywhere else to share this unpopular opinion. Am I the only one who thinks that most people’s reaction to Jonghyun’s suicide is absurdly tragic? One of the main problem in this situation is the horrifying and extremely stressful treatment idols receive both by their agency and I believe, fans. Jonghyun seemed to believe he was terrible (my interpretation) at what he did (again my interpretation that it was people in his work who made him feel that way) and never felt happy about any of it. All of this, being further exacerbated by his mental illness. And NOW, when he’s dead, his agency has the fucking balls to say he was the best musician etc. etc. That Instagram post on SHINee’s official account after his death, in context of the last few lines of his suicide note, made me laugh. And this whole obsessive fan culture that doesn’t allow idols (who, like every fucking normal human, screw up) to show one single crack. How unmerciful are we. Where the hell is any of these fan’s humanity when it comes to idols screwing up. Why the fuck do people tear them apart when they don’t even know them or what the situation is about. Why the fuck can’t everyone calm down about their idols and grow some maturity. UGHHHHHHHHHHH I’M SO ANNOYED AT THE FUCKING HYPOCRISY AND I’M NOT EVEN A SHINEE FAN UGHHHHHH

The idol system itself promotes immaturity in its fanbases by the way it markets its stars.  If someone is marketed as a perfect angel with no flaws, of course people who are naive and who buy into the fantasy are going to expect that, which then brings pressure on the perfomer and all those around them to maintain the lie.  That’s why as soon as people start showing cracks they get criticised because they’re no longer performing their role of the perfect angel who can fuel others’ escapist fantasies.  As so many people in Korea are miserable they rely on these stars emotionally, so of course they can’t show weakness!  Yes this is fucked up, and while I’m sure that this alone wasn’t responsible for Jonghyun’s death (after all several other idols have gotten through the system alive and well) it’s probably not a positive factor for anyone in that situation.  Why do you think people in the entertainment world almost never date anyone outside of that world.

Do you still doing anything with music performance/audio engineering? Like recording, playing gigs, etc.

Also is there a kpop song that you think has a really good mix? I’m interested in audio engineering, and I’m trying to develop an ear for that kind of stuff. So far, TT by Twice caught my ear. For some reason I just thought the delay and reverb on that song sounded kind of cool.

Sorry if my questions were stupid haha

Yes.  I don’t do much audio engineering at the moment but I play shows in a fairly regular basis.  I don’t discuss this directly however as I’m not keen to push my own personal unrelated-to-kpop barrows in front of a k-pop audience that has no reason to give a shit, it feels like bait-and-switch marketing and I’m against that.

Almost every recent k-pop song has a good mix.  In fact it’s much harder to find k-pop songs that don’t have good mixes, unless you’re looking pre-2008.

oppar I accidentally clicked on an akp article and my fingers and eyes feel dirty please forgive me I’ll go to the church of Raina every day and desecrate it with my non-existent singing talent until you forgive me

You must tithe 10% of your clicks every Sunday to my sidebar to be forgiven.

So D.O. said that he wanted to become a farmer before his trainee life started. I wanted to ask that what kind of jobs can idols do after retiring from kpop industry? Can D.O. become a farmer after retirement?

I don’t see why not!  Idols can do any type of job anyone else can, surely.  The nature of the pop music machine is that while stars rise fast, they can be forgotten just as quickly.

Would you ever get into producing or writing songs (not just for K-pop I guess but in general)? If not, what keeps you away from it? Also is there some dark, exploitative aspect to being a songwriter?

I have actually composed a bunch of songs but to do it in a way that makes money, it’s a lot of logistical fuck-around and I basically just couldn’t be bothered.  Songwriting to me is closer to religion than commerce.  If I’m going to do music stuff for money I’d prefer it to be something more basic and less personal.  Teaching and playing shows work for me right now.

1. conspiracy theory here, youve repeatedly used jean- michel jarre as an example of music that youve liked 80s sounding, youve repeatedly used the velvet r & b side of the red velvet as the shitty side and said your dislike for the main writer charli taft, its not uncommon for writers to look at reviews of their music, do you think look from red velvet’s new album produced by charli xcx and has that 80s similar sound to jean-michel jarre is a meet me half way song, 80s sounding intro and chorus with a smooth touch, do you agree that this statement is plausible yes or no
2. what are your thoughts on australian pop, i was reading an article and i thought to myself our pop music is very shit in my opinion compared to pop music around the world korean, american, latin, indian production wise do you think it is because we have this mentality as sarah aarons an australian pop producer says ““[…] In Australia there’s a huge divide between triple j and mainstream radio, and you’re frowned upon for being all one and not the other, but you’re not allowed to be in the middle,” she says. “As a writer, no one knows if you’re triple j or mainstream – I do both, and no one would ever know that. And I think it’s really exciting in Australia when people try to cross over and it’s really exciting when they do; because I think that’s a divide that doesn’t need to happen.” as a pop music fan – you write a kpop blog would you like to see more australian pop music and go into more mass production such as in the 80s with kyle mingoe and olivia newton john
3. going on australian pop, do you have any recommendations for any australian pop albums

  1. No
  2. No
  3. No

How do old records work!? The needle runs along a single track, I don’t understand how a single track can create the sounds of several instruments at once!?

Answer here.

On your radio show or Youtube channel, can you do a dramatic spoken word reading of Taeyeon’s new horny Christmas song, Shhhh? Shatner has nothing on Kpopalypse oppa!

I have a feeling you will get more Patreon subscribers from the thirsty caonimas!

I don’t think this would appeal to more than a tiny niche of radio listeners.  I feel obliged as a DJ not to waste people’s time with too much of things other than strictly music.

I just recently had a thought that The Beatles are overrated. They’re music isn’t all bad but I mean I feel like there’s also better out there. Were they that famous just because of fans or is their music a lot more culturally significant and a lot better than what my plebian tastes can fathom?

The Beatles were exceptionally culturally significant, but that doesn’t mean that their music wasn’t also hot garbage.  I dislike all of The Beatles’ output except their very early stuff, one of the few things that I agreed with my mother about concerning music.

That sound you refer to as “toot-toot” that you commonly hear is usually some heavily modified vocal sample. The example you give in your tropical house entry where you reference 1:16 in “Don’t Believe” is simply where that vocal sample comes in. The vocal sample alone does not make any particular song a tropical house song, imo. Rather, I believe it’s the prominent use of pan flute as the melody driver that categorizes a song as tropical house. This video explains it very accurately and in just 2 and a half minutes.

I wouldn’t say that necessarily.  I think what the video actually demonstrates, and what I agree with, is that tropical shithouse is actually a combination of elements, not all of which are mandatory, but of which both the pan flute (or similar) and the vocal slice (or similar) are two of the more characteristic.

Hi do you think metalheads and kpop fans are equally annoying like no one cares what you listen to

I have no idea what you’re actually asking me due to the esoteric grammar usage in this question.

So BTS has more exposure than anyone in kpop internationally, and in their last release they sold “one million copies” in SK, but their download sales, TV appearances are much lower than exo and wanna one, even their CF deals in SK are low too compared to their “success”, their biggest endorsement “puma” didn’t renew with them. In other words they don’t sell in SK as much as the media claim, but nobody questioned their album sales compared to their “success”, they got away with sajaegi. I found interesting how a “small/medium” company got away with sajaegi and big ones like SM, YG and JYP didn’t, their competitors as Wanna One, Exo, GOT7, etc.. are in bigger companies, why they allow them to do this? or what do they gain?
I thought maybe is because their CEO is good sucking dicks, or because bigger companies get idk more regulated (?), but they even got good publicity, like ????

I think I fell asleep halfway through reading this question.  Why do you even care what the answer is.  Why does popularity (or lack thereof) even matter to you.  All popularity tells you is how many other people like something.  It’s okay to just like what you like and not worry about what others think.

Hi Kpopalypse,

I’m currently composing a song and I’d like your advice. It’s a future bass song with a slow R&B/trap bridge (yeah I know…).

The rest of the song moves at a 4/4 pace at 115 BPM, and I just can’t think of a decent transition to the bridge.

How would you create a transition from a dance-EDM section to a slow jam section in a song? Any ideas?

Also, thanks for answering my question on volume automation a while back!

If you can’t think of how to transition into it correctly, that’s a really, really good sign that such an element doesn’t even belong in the song in the first place.  You knew of course that I would respond like this, but I would respond this way even if the section wasn’t trap/R&B.  Save the trap/R&B section for a different song where it actually fits (or even better, bin it altogether and never write such crap again, trap is well on the way out fashion-wise anyway, by the time anyone actually gets to hear this song it’ll be out of date like hula hoops).

Oppar, what is your opinion on age gaps in relationships? On certain Kpop sites, netizen reaction to large age gaps, whether in drama castings or between real couples, is often one of disgust. I don’t really see this sentiment reflected in real life. I think adults should be able to have relationships with other adults, but I am now in my mid-twenties and resent that suddenly men close to my parents’ age consider me a realistic dating option. I already have a partner who is close to my age, so I really shouldn’t care, but why does this make me feel bad?

I’ve dated with up to 14 year age gaps in both directions at various points.  Once you’re legal, you’re a realistic option to anybody at all, but if that option is off the table then it doesn’t matter anyway, so why even care about this.  Age difference is nobody’s business but yours and the person you’re dating.  Who cares about netizen reaction, or anyone else’s reaction for that matter.  Oh and please ignore all the dumb “take your age and divide by their age and add seven and then subtract the square root of the last time you finger fucked, and anything outside of that isn’t cool” equation shit, people who think like that are people with no worthwhile life experience in this field.

Do you listen to any art music on occasion?

All music is art, on some level.  Therefore, I don’t know what you mean by “art music”, that’s not a distinction that I recognise.

Am I the only one who really likes the beginning of Knock Knock by Twice? By that I mean this weird sound before the song actually starts (don’t know how it’s called maybe you know it) It is kinda stimulating my ears idk it’s just really weird maybe you can give an explanation if you feel the same way

I think you would need to describe the sound in more detail before I could answer this.

what is Lovelyz’s Ah-choo MV about?

Surrealist hide-and-seek is effective concealment to the male protagonist yet impractical and obvious to the “viewer”.  It serves as a metaphor for feelings toward another person that are less obvious to them but blindingly, controllingly obvious to the person possessing these feelings.  The feeling is that the other person “should” see the poorly-hidden message, yet they do not.

So every time I look in my school’s online library to research music related topics I find about 30 articles on kpop. Why are scholars obsessed with analyzing kpop?

Because if you have to write boring shit for school, if it’s about a topic you personally enjoy, it makes writing about it a lot easier.

Hello again I forgot to ask another question :
What do you think of BAP “hard concept” songs like “Distopia” or “Pray” ? Thank you

I prefer it to their coffee shop bullshit slow songs!  B.A.P debuted with “Warrior” which was a tough concept, “Power” and “No Mercy” were also like this and in my opinion they should have stuck only to this sound and nothing else for feature tracks.

Hello dear kpopalypse.
Do you think TS Entertainment board is putting their company in jeopardy and the CEO is not smart enough to make good decisions that will help them and their artists in the long run ? I mean I don’t understand why they halted secret activities as a group when they were still popular and they make zero effort to properly promote their breadwinner BAP ?

I’ve talked about this before with other companies – older groups with existing fanbases are self-sustaining.  Newer groups are not.  A k-pop label is always better off putting their promotional energy into whatever they’ve got that’s new rather than the six year old veteran group that already has tons of fans who will follow their every move anyway.  If B.A.P is their “breadwinner” then they don’t need constant comebacks and promotion, you only need to promote things that people aren’t interested in, so they get interested.  Once a group has a core following they don’t need constant hype anymore, they can effectively sell themselves.  A group with a “Suzy” (one person who makes tons of money just by collecting endorsement after endorsement) doesn’t even need songs at all anymore.  Every k-pop agency wants that “Suzy” person, that’s the real endgame of k-pop, not the actual music.

What do you think the Kpop music trend(s) will be in 2018?

No idea.  I think tropical shithouse will hang around for a while longer whiloe every group who hasn’t done one of these shit songs adds one to their setlist, and then the sound will slowly get phased out when (Korean) autumn 2018 hits.  Who knows after that.

are there ever any idols with “genuine” personalities/relationships with others, or do you think they’re mainly manufactured? I know you’ve talked about this in the past, wrt idols being seen as products etc but I just wanted your take on it given that a lot of people tend to point out moments idols “are genuine towards eachother” or say really ~deep~ or ~emotional~ stuff to eachother etc

I’m sure that not everything is faked.  When I talk about manufactured personalities, I don’t mean that the idols are just pretending, I mean that the editing process in Korean pop media is very selective in showing acceptable kinds of emotions to the viewer, and framing what you see in the way that they want you to see it.  I’ve used the below video before in QRIMOLE and I’ll keep using it as it keeps being relevant.

do you think popular kpop idols really get criticized by their peers (peers being both other idols and the behind the scenes people – other producers etc)? because I noticed that members of the group have consistent input in bts’ songs/albums and you tend to dislike their music. Could it be a case of bts having a crapton of yes-men like you discussed could be the case for G-dragon (iirc)? especially given their popularity and the extreme idolisation their fans have of them…

From what I’ve heard from people I’ve spoken to in the industry, if anything the criticism idols receive is very harsh.  I think I just have a different taste to whoever does the bulk of BTS’s songwriting.  I don’t think it’s any deeper than that.

Hey kpopalypse! I’ve got two questions for you:
1. BTS said this in a speech that people wonder about ‘army’ (their fanclub) more than about them. So does this mean that boys are actually getting popular because they fulfill wet dreams of teenage girls and actually are on same par with rest of kpop???

2. Wouldn’t this attention that they are getting will actually lead more trolling of kpop in the West and they will bear direct blow as the ‘kpop representative’??

I hope you are doing good ?

Thanks!

  1. I don’t care.  Popularity means nothing to me, it’s neither good nor bad from my perspective.
  2. I don’t care.  Popularity means nothing to me, it’s neither good nor bad from my perspective.

Any recommendations on any music that’s similar to Swans’ To Be Kind?

No.  If you’re going to listen to Swans, the “bunny” albums are the shit.

Im just wondering about Loona’s debut concept because we had really good songs from them (personally i like Vivi everyday i love you, Loona 1/3 love and live and Yves New) but Im worried since Loona 1/3 got lower views compared to Odd eye circle so, i feel if they did a Loona 1/3 esque debut i think it would not do as well as if they did Oec debut style (OEC would be more popular internationally while 1/3 would be popular mainly in Asia).
Im just waiting on the final sub group to see what style they would do because i feel their agency are testing the waters to see what does well and what to stay clear from.

What do you think? And what style of music would you want them to debut to?

I think that you should stop caring about popularity and whether they’ll be successful or not, and start caring about music and music only.  Art does not require validation from the hive-mind to be worthwhile.  I don’t care what style they debut with as long as the song is good, and songs can be good (or bad) in almost any style.


That’s all for this episode of QRIMOLE!  Do you have a question for this series?  If so, feel free to ask it below in the QRIMOLE question box, or if no box appears below, click Qri in the sidebar!  Kpopalypse will return!

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