It’s time for Kpopalypse roundup! Let’s check out some new releases!
TXT – Loser=Lover
The complete randomness of k-pop in 2021 continues as TXT come back with a really good rock song that probably nobody expected or specifically asked for, but that I’ll calmly accept anyway. Sure, that trap breakdown is a negative as they always are, but it’s not against the song’s grain enough to be deal-breaking.
Cravity – Gas Pedal
Cravity’s song is just the typical boy stuff, all wub-wub syncopation supporting the thinnest of tunes.
Stray Kids – Thunderous
It almost works thanks to very good use of production, effects and riffs – but it’s missing something coherent to bring all the various ideas together. A little less trendy dicking around and a little more melody would have really helped.
Brave Girls – After We Ride
Oh shit, it’s actually good. Brave Girls finally have a song that lives up to their post-army-performance-fame hype.
Red Velvet – Pose
Pretty much an f(x) album track. Given that f(x) were one of only a handful of groups to ever have even a single decent album track, this is a good thing.
CIX – Wave
Someone wave this song towards the exit.
Pentagon Yuto, Kino, Wooseok – Cerberus
Some really cool bass and weird rhythms gives the three Pentagon members who aren’t having surgery right now something to do. I like how the chorus sounds like “care bear, us” MMORPG fans might find something to appreciate here.
Pentatonix feat. Yunho, San, Jongho of Ateez – A Little Space
Don’t be fooled by this acapella group crashing the k-pop party – there’s nothing here which suggests that any actual vocal ability beyond singing a tune and having someone else Autotune it was even required.
Verivery – Trigger
Hey stop joyriding your cars inside Loona’s missile silo. Kim Lip is already upset about having to do the Yum Yum Dance, today is not the day to be pissing her off.
T1419 – Flex
Why is every boy song like this now.
Kinda Blue x Hwasa – I can’t make you love me
Hwasa looks just as bored as I am. Give the girl a break already.
Davichi – Looking At The Photo
Some boring old song that got a remake by k-pop’s reigning queens of singing while sitting down.
Jenyer feat. Heo Gayoon – Soop
This is just 2Yoon, but without their stupid label. Remember 2Yoon and their dismal attempt to make k-pop line-dancing country-pop a thing? This isn’t much better than that musically but at least it’s not a conceptual fucking embarrassment.
Beomhan feat. Roda – Ashes
Why is this kid from M.O.N.T rapping behind bars? Surely it must be a Chinese jail and he’s been put there for Korean patriotism, no wonder they’ve been toning it down lately.
WayV-Ten & YangYang – Low Low
Lucy – Irrelevant Answer
Just a bit too sing-songy and laid back to really rock, despite the fast tempo and the bass player doing his best to break his fingers at nearly every point in the song.
Boy Story – Monster
If you really want a totally obvious example of “dropping in major scale stuff where it’s not wanted” try 2:24 in this song.
Luminous – Dreaming Luminous
Trap beats and jazz guitar actually don’t work together all that well. Wow, who would’ve thought.
Dios – Touch Me
I’m not touching whatever this is without a mask and hand sanitiser.
Henry, Roy Wang – Home
Korea’s Rick Astley drops his version of the Rick Astley ballad that nobody bought even at the time, and just like back then, the world moved on without a second thought.
NOA feat. Jeon Woong – Let Go
I’m happy to let go of this one.
Eungi – Play
Everybody here just looks like they hate life. Even the teddy bears don’t look like they’re really feeling the vibe. I hate fraudulent looking emotional labour as much as the next airline steward, but would it have killed someone to crack a smile in this video.
Vaultboy feat. Eric Nam – Everything Sucks
I was all ready to write something like “not everything sucks, but this sure does” and it turned out to be reasonable. A little bit more laid-back charisma than the usual slow R&B jam gives the song a hard pass.
015B feat. Dawon – Good Morning Kansas
Really pretty bland, lots of bubbling synths and some decent production can’t hide the general flatness of it all.
Adoy – Simply
The top comment on this video is this: “This song literally feels like you’re sitting on the rooftop of your house drinking a can of sprite on a cool summer evening, watching the sky go from orange to pink to dark blue. The stars slowly appear, the bugs start to sing and all the while the sea calmly whispers in the background… ” and whoever wrote this, they’re dead right. The song is literally that fucking boring.
Slica Gel – Desert Eagle
A nice try at being exciting but it doesn’t matter how many times the drummer does those fast fills when everything else is so washed-out and dull.
Hondam – Baekchimi
Strikes me as a better version of the vibe that Lim Kim has been going for lately, if she could find a way take the lame sloganeering, tunelessness and hip-hop stupidity out of what she does.
Baada – Psychedelic Rock’n’roll
Just too low-effort on all levels to even care about.
Chung Wan – Sunflower
If this is what sunflowers make people do let’s hurry and destroy the environment quickly.
Numnum – Birds Fly Talk First
You know, if the singer actually decided to sing instead of doing that stupid affected helium voice, there could have been a song here worth having.
Van Siian – Kahlua
Oh come on. Nobody actually uses record players. People just buy vinyl to look at the artwork and have a wank while they play the same songs through their computer.
Dopein – Rare
Not much of a song but those ultra-subs are addictive, it’s not often that you get a nugu fucking with this much bass frequency.
Yang Joon Il – Shut Up, I Love You
Wow Korea’s Dave Mustaine sure sounds a lot funkier than the American version.
Ash-B – Part Time
Someone on Hi-Lite who isn’t Swervy? Yeah don’t expect too much and you won’t feel too let down.
Ash-B – Dick Up Freestyle
Sure, she’s got the presentation, but she doesn’t have the tunes.
Gray feat. Zion.T – Make Love
It’s time for your weekly reminder that neither Gray nor Zion.T are capable of anything good and they should just stop unless they’re going to get someone else to write their music for them.
Jmin – I Swear
Damn I thought it was the J.Min from SM but then I remembered she had a full-stop in her name, this is just some Autotuned loser who should put a full stop on his singing career instead.
Mnyl – The fin.
Those who were confused about the last music theory post, here’s a song which is unambiguously in 6/8, you’re welcome.
Dakshood x Tommy Gang – Hi*draulic5
Just a fascinating parade of absolute cringe, nothing about this is anything except shameful. How would you explain this to your future children.
Elefan.D feat. MC SOO – Kiss
He’s doing his best to give you a reason to watch.
Hanhae feat. Nucksal, Layone – Lay Back
Sometimes adding too many rhythmic elements just sounds like a fucking mess.
V-Hawk – Is It Raining?
Go outside and find out, shithead.
Yoo Bong ki feat. Ryu Hwa Pyung – God On My Side
Hideous Christian crap. How many times has god got to do seriously evil shit to humans before they wake up and realise that he’s a complete fuckwit not deserving of any praise or worship whatsoever. We all like to pick on ARMYs but the Christians were the original zombie fandom.
Bisonum Village feat. WFK 40th Cambodia Team A – Share Vision and Hope
Some benefit about giving textbooks to Cambodian students, now that’s a cool initiative. Let’s hope they throw a few music theory textbooks in there, and these kids can teach them how to write a better song next time.
Rockit Girl – Surpin’ Yang Yang
What the fuck does Leeseul even do in the winter when there’s no beach to hang out at? Pose against a green screen of Hawaii I guess. In six months I’ll tell you that I called it.
BULLSHIT REMAKES OF CRAP SONGS THAT WEREN’T ANY GOOD THE FIRST TIME AROUND SECTION
Hwang Woo Lim, Kang Hyeyeon, Marie Leise – Why Do You Call Me
Kang Hyewon is cute but I don’t want to watch her in this crap.
Lee Boram – Because I Love You (2021)
GIRL GROUPS THAT WOULD BE PERFECT FOR NUGU ALERT IF THEY DIDN’T ALREADY HAVE TONS OF VIEWS SECTION
Posh Girls – Got You
How many times are girl groups going to do that “gently dragging my hand along the opium poppies as I wander through the field” thing. Some new visual ideas please.
Solia – Dream
I tried to keep a straight face but I lost it when I got to the CGI angel wings straight out of a Windows 98 screen saver. Oh and drivers, don’t forget to pick up your paperwork from the blonde girl.
RANDOM BONUS VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Red flags of girl groups bullying you may not notice
All this video proves is that anybody can be a detective in hindsight, and how worthless the input of “netizens” always is. It’s 2021 and people still think that Internet randos still know some secret knowledge as a collective, you’d think the past ten years hasn’t taught anybody anything. Maybe it hasn’t. There’s far easier ways to tell if bullying is happening in your favourite k-pop group, maybe I’ll do you all a favour and list them out sometime after Hyunjoo returns from the bread store.
That’s all for this week – more roundup next week!