Kpopalypse Nugu Alert Episode 43 – Nara, MJRed ft. Trigger, Rana

Oh no!  Kpopalypse is getting popular again! This isn’t good!  Too much traffic on the site could take precious Internet revenue away from other great k-pop content on the Internet!  It’s time once again for Kpopalypse to be considerate of all other k-pop writers out there and come back with another episode of the most unpopular series ever to reach 43 episodes on a long-running k-pop blog, Kpopalypse Nugu Alert!  Let’s take a look at some more nugus!

For this episode of Kpopalypse Nugu Alert, we return to female solo performers.. or maybe we don’t – have I even done a Nugu Alert with all female solo performers in it before?  I didn’t check before writing this, because Nugu Alert is so unpopular that even I don’t read it, I’m just guessing that I probably have at some point, just because it’s so easy to find people who fall into this category who are nugu.  That’s because there’s absolutely shitloads of women out there in the music business worldwide who all want to be that hugely famous singer, and Korea is no exception to this.  Combine this with the fact that almost nobody gives a flying shit about female solo performers in k-pop in general, and a large bounty of overflowing nugudom is assured.  When you think about it, most female soloists only have their fame because they were once in groups, if you take away all the girls who rode on the back of some all-dancing idol combo to their current notoriety levels, you’re pretty much left with IU, Hong Jin Young, some rapper and 500 other girls nobody gives a fuck about that sound like various combinations of IU and Hong Jin Young and some rapper.  This means that most female soloists in k-pop are struggling in the depths of nugudom and definitely deserve all your support, and if you’re enough of a fan of nugus to read this far into a boring preamble to a Nugu Alert post, it would definitely be in your best interests to take a look at the following videos.

The usual Kpopalypse Nugu Alert rules apply:

  • Less than 20,000 views on official channels
  • Maybe some Koreans know about these people but I sure haven’t and probably neither have you
  • Relevant to Kpopalypse

Let’s get this over with so you can go back to reading what Jeff Benjamin has to say about BTS for the 53rd time this year episode started.


 

Nara – Jealousy

Okay so it’s “Jealousy” in the YouTube video title but “Jealous” within the video itself, but I’m going to go with “Jealousy” because fuck it.  So who is Nara?  Well if YouTube comments are to be believed, she was once in an only slightly less nugu group called Asha who had a song called “Mr Liar“.  However I’m not even sure if YouTube comments should be believed in this instance, as I sure don’t recognise her, but then that could possibly say more about the heavy makeup and/or plastic surgery and/or general interchangeability of most of these girls in the final products than anything else.  Anyway “Jealousy” seems fairly inspired by Prince but completely fails to capture any of the vaguely interesting stuff that he did (because k-pop always fails like that) but just swipes some of his signature sounds and makes a shit song with them, oh well.  At least the video doesn’t look too tragic, even if there is an odd abundance of white washed-out colour and the cameraperson seems just as keen about filming the space over Nara’s head as filming Nara herself.  Like the constantly tilted camera in Battlefield Earth, it’s not noticeable until you notice it, and then you can’t stop noticing it for the entire running length.  There’s fair bit of tilting going on here too, with an odd seasick-rocking motion in some scenes, and the shots of Nara lying on the floor even have that stuttery auto-anti-shake look that happens when you get Youtube to fix up your wobbly-ass self-taken drunken party footage.  Let’s hope that she was sober during the filming of this and we’re not actually watching some kind of music video revenge porn.

YouTube views at time of writing: 17507

Notable attribute: Nara’s feet almost never shown during the entire video – Quentin Tarantino is not happy

Nugu Alert rating: average


 

MJRed ft Trigger – Le Go (Le Go Le Go)

Let’s take a look at something a bit more fashionable – MJRed have a fairly modern-sounding R&B/trap song, and unfortunately modern doesn’t mean good in this case but at least they’re making a commendable effort to sound and look contemporary.  The biggest successes here are with MJRed’s fashions, which look genuinely good – I’m going to take a wild guess here and say that MJRed is the girl and that Trigger (who needs some sort of award for “most unimaginative rapper name ever”) is the guy who raps occasionally.  The outfits sit somewhere between race-queen, SNSD glam and Jvcki Wai punk/military hybrid fetish, and all of it looks great.  There’s also lots of sexy gun action in this video from both the men and women, so Americans and meme-spouting 8chan users are well-catered to, plus lots of bales of shredded paper and wood pallets, because you can never have enough bales of shredded paper and wood pallets, at least not in this video.  In some scenes some people are even shown doing karate-style maneuvers with a frying pan, proof that Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds has reached maximum nugu music video director penetration in Korea.  Frying pans don’t stop bullets you know, let’s hope they also don’t stop nugu careers and they get to do something better than this one day, or at least something with a proper cast-iron skillet and not some budget $10 frypan/wok hybrid from Target.

YouTube views at time of writing: 1669

Notable attribute: ass-shaking at 3:31 is accompanied by an odd computer-generated cloud effect – is this Korea’s first nugu CGI fart?

Nugu Alert rating: very high


 

Rana – Pain

Rana’s “Pain” has been around for five years at the time of writing and has only just scraped into four digits before this episode of Nugu Alert was published.  She’s definitely someone who could use your support a little more than Blackpink reaching their 235,234,452nd view or whatever, so make sure that you click the links to Melon or Apple and consider a purchase if you actually like this rather odd song, that is, assuming she still has any kind of career left or is even alive.  She certainly looks almost dead in most of the scenes here, which have been livened up with a near-endless variety of fades, dissolves and other bizarre cutting, framing and splicing techniques to hide the fact that there is literally nothing going on here except a girl staring into the camera looking exceptionally bored and occasionally mouthing a word or two.  However there is also some other girl in it who does her best to perk up the proceedings and introduce some vague sense of narrative by having baths in imaginary water, throwing teddy bears around and generally looking miserable.  I’m sure it’s all related to the song’s lyrics somehow, but I don’t know what the hell they are and couldn’t be bothered looking them up, so unless you know what’s going on you’ll have to settle for feeling as confused and disinterested as the people on the other side of the screen.

YouTube views at time of writing: 1171

Notable attribute: look in the reflection in her eye at 2:21 and you can see the annoying-ass floodlights that are washing out the whole scene

Nugu Alert rating: extreme


That’s all for this episode of Kpopalypse nugu alert!  Kpopalypse will return at a future date with more nugus for your entertainment!

7 thoughts on “Kpopalypse Nugu Alert Episode 43 – Nara, MJRed ft. Trigger, Rana

  1. Hong Jin Young was in a girl group (SWAN), but I am almost certain it did not help jump start her solo career at all. It turned her off being in a group at all when she was asked about it.

  2. I do wonder, what exactly are nugus? Artists who are not known or artists who have not been able to succeed? So far I’ve never known about nugus mentioned here, but Nara was known to me due to being featured in kpop tv shows. The first quick youtube search hit I found was “NARA, Jealousy [THE SHOW 180327]” and looking further I found show performances for the dates 180325, 180323, 180309, 180307, 180302, 180222, 180209, 180201, 180114 and 180114 (it sucks putting links drops comments to spam ban hell, so do the searches yourself).

    On the count of numbered tv shows, spanning The show, Music bank, Simply Kpop, etc, that looks more like unsuccessful artist. Many nugus would love to even have that amount of tv exposure if any at all.

  3. Why do I get the feeling that “MJRED” is pronounced “injured”?

    Anyways, I actually don’t mind Nara’s “Jealousy”. It’s certainly better than anything I’ve heard from Prince, aside from “1999”.

  4. Someone questioned if Yuju might want to go solo after Gfriend, but given the success rate of solo girl singers in kpop, I think she has a great gig right now, w plenty of chances to collab. I’d hate to see her end up like these poor girls.

  5. Nara’s Jealousy is ok.. the Rana track reminds me of some of the downtempo dance records i bought in the early nineties very nice… it should of had a longer instrumental intro building up to the vocal kicking in..

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