It’s time for Kpopalypse roundup! Let’s take a look at some new releases!
Hyo ft. Loopy, Soyeon – Dessert
Just like its namesake, I recommend that you skip it for your health.
Somi – What You Waiting For
Get the last five years of western pop music, stick it into a bowl, mix it until it’s a characterless grey mush and then tip it out. This is the result and it sounds like literally every song ever.
Lee Hi – Holo
It would have been nice if YG actually gave Lee Hi some songs, now that she’s on AOMG we have to hear her doing this weak crap that only sounds good at 1.75x speed.
Yukika – Soul Lady
Theoretically Yukika should be good, but although the textures are generally there she just can’t get the songs right.
Huh Chanmi – Lights
More super generic-isms.
Seulgi – Uncover
Starts off with some nice ambience until those generic squirty vocal noises come barging in and just fuck everything up.
Chic & Idle – 3!4!
SSAK3 – Beach Again
Slightly better old-school vibes in this song, which still isn’t great but it’s something.
The Man BLK – Time Turner
Warning sign: standing in green fields looking wistfully into the distance like a boring fuck.
Ravi, Yeri, Jeon Woong – Woman On The Beach
Actually better than about 90% of Red Velvet’s songs.
N.Flying – Starlight
In one scene the cartoon characters struggle with their phone, trying to work out how to turn the song off. It’s hard not to empathise.
Boyhood – Retro Love
So here’s how to do a retro song right. You see, melody is important.
Koyote – The Sea
And here’s how to do it wrong, just in case you needed yet another example of how to do it wrong after Yukika. Nobody’s impressed by your VCR tracking lines if the song isn’t there.
Roda (M.O.N.T) – Lethargy
Wow this is dull. Roda, think about how the rest of the world perceives this. You’re making Korea look bad. You don’t want to make Korea look bad, do you?
Seyoung – Ego
Less singing with a guitar in the background up against a wall to look cool and more actually picking up the guitar and fucking playing it would have been great.
D.Coy – Go Away
This is more like it. The song’s not great but at least there’s some rock here somewhere. Also mad respect for playing an acrylic B.C. Rich guitar in a music video while standing, because those things are heavy as fuck and that guy’s shoulder would be killing him after the video shoot was over.
Kyuhyun – Dreaming
Not amazing, but also not the sleepytime ballad that I was expecting and dreading. Possibly the best solo song he’s ever done.
Weeekly – Hello
The “B-side on live stages, you’ll like it, honest” submissions come in yet again and as usual they’re bland and awful.
Kebee ft. Gist – Yozm
Why is he rapping in a completely empty room, is he trying to sell the house? Sorry but I think he just devalued the property.
Markenlee – Designer
Whenever you see that washed-out pixelated green you know you’re in for some complete rubbish.
Bloo – When I Smoke
Smoking is bad for you, aside from the health pitfalls it leads to lots of money wasted, smelling like a homeless person and thinking that you look cool in music videos when you really don’t.
Will Not Fear ft. JP, Sokodomo, Viceversa, Untell – Lil Sheep’s Yung Blood
Okay, I didn’t expect THAT twist and neither will you. Can’t say either part is really all that interesting though, just that they’re boring for different reasons.
Zene The Zilla ft. Changmo – ITX
“Who wants to see Zene The Zilla’s new video in 4k?” said literally nobody ever.
York ft. SongHeeRan – Via
Pleasant enough to listen to, but just like the woman in the video, it doesn’t really go anywhere that interesting.
Achtung – Riders On The Hill
Anyone who grew up with Hogan’s Heroes like I did will forever associate the word “achtung” with Nazis, as that was about the only German phrase they ever used on the show besides “schnell, schnell!” Unfortunately this is just some soft rock nonsense which is nowhere near as entertaining as a bunch of German soldiers running into doors or whatever the fuck they did on that show.
Jade ft. Che – No more
A dull song but at least it’s great visually, some genuinely different and cool moments in the video, and I’m not just talking about the girl being larger than a regular k-pop.
Sýn Hjang – Hope
And another boring song with a great video. I could watch this guy dance all day, he’s fantastic and looks like he’s dancing to a much better song than this one.
Choi Ye Geun – Unbalance
This actually sounds quite good in all the bits where she’s isn’t singing, pity those parts make up only about 3% of it.
Yoon Daum – Hot-Ta-Ta
It’s cool that he’s faking being at the beach, pity he didn’t also fake better music.
Yang Jin Seok – Yang Yang
It shouldn’t be legal to be in a band and have such bright colours. Actually maybe there is a law against it, which would explain the lack of visible faces.
Eian – Help Me
People criticise me on my livestream for using Windows 7, but Eian here lives in the most technologically connected country in the world and is still on XP why don’t you go and troll him instead.
Car, The Garden – 31
These guys are a bit technologically challenged too – that ghost thing only has about 12 polygons in his face and they still only manage to get about 10 FPS out of him.
Kim Jin Ho – Arrival
I have arrived at a shit song.
Lee Minhyuk – To My Friend
I guess he must be a really great friend to put up with this crap.
Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Park Inyoung – End Of A Day
Truly the worst of the worst. SM know for sure that people deify Jonghyun and they’re here to milk tears out of you for cash with another completely by-the-numbers orchestral arrangement. They know you can’t criticise this because “you’re disrespecting Jonghyun’s memory, man” AND it’s “classical” therefore it’s “art” or something, but remember that this is the same agency that quietly insisted he
stay in the closet curb his outspoken nature. I wonder how much his inability to express himself contributed to his suicide. If SM really want to tug at my heartstrings, they should try letting their ex-trainees speak freely about their contract terms and working conditions, not that I would know anything about that ahem cough… or if that’s too ambitious, at least pick stuff from their back catalogue that would make better symphonic versions than this.
BONUS RANDOM VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Red Velvet – Zimzalabim mass performance
Speaking of which, don’t die of shock but I think “Zimzalabim” would make a better symphonic version that almost everything else in SM’s back catalogue, just because the original song is such an unmitigated piece of fucking shit that there’s actually quite a lot of scope for improvement there. For now though, you’ll have to settle for Red Velvet rounding up all the naughty trainees who didn’t stick to their daily schedule and subjecting them to this aural punishment. Listen at 2:00 when everyone decides that they’ve had enough and tries to collectively drown out the backing track, nice try but the music is too penetrating and awful to be successfully shouted down. Seriously though, think about the politics of that little girl being up the front, what actually happened to make that happen and have her be the specific one. I bet there’s like 20 other girls there who are all crying because they didn’t get to be “that girl” because their mum wasn’t connected to Lee Soo Man’s aunt or whatever. Even if they just picked the winner out of the crowd or a semi-fair audition process you know that there’d still be tears and “why wasn’t I picked” from like ten other girls who all sweated it out just as much to be in that spot. Then the girl who did get the part feels bad too because she made all the others cry, but then the mother says “no time for tears now honey, you’ve got to perform and smile your best smile!” This is how people get hardened up and lose their empathy thanks to the k-pop machine, which is competitive as hell and sucks for everyone involved.
That’s all for this week – roundup returns next week!