[Album Review] BE (5th Studio Album) – BTS

If I were to put BTS’ latest album on the usual agenda for review, I probably won’t get around to it until the start of the new year. And I feel that timeframe for a BTS related review would be too late for posting. Hence, I have decided to fasttrack the album review for BTS’ fifth studio album, BE. The album features both Life Goes On as the title track and the international hit Dynamite at the very end of the album, alongside five other new tracks. In total, there are seven tracks on this studio album (including the non-musical skit), which makes it one of the shortest studio albums I have ever seen. But that does not meant the quality is reduced! Continue to read to see what my thoughts for each of the songs were.

BE Album Review

1. Life Goes On (Title Track) Click here to read the full review for Life Goes On. (9/10)

2. Fly To My Room (내 방을 여행하는 법) (performed by Suga, V, Jimin & J-Hope)Fly To My Room follows the group’s softer approach from the title track. At first glance, I actually enjoyed the song by the four member unit. But that was when I was occupied with other tasks. When I sat down to write this album review today, Fly To My Room didn’t really stand out for me (compared to the other songs on the album). It is still a nice and pleasant track to listen to, especially with the pop-centric instrumental. I really like the use of the keyboard in the song and there was an enjoyable display of falsetto and low tones. The best part of the song has to be when all the members are singing together for the chorus, as the happier tone that the song brings forth calls for this. The rapping seems a little too punchy for my liking. They just shoot out of nowhere and I didn’t like how they didn’t take the opportunity to match the vocals and the tone of the song. (7/10)

3. Blue & Grey – BTS’ ballads have always been the most captivating side tracks for me. And I am glad that there is a ballad on this toned-down album. It is a perfect excuse for a ballad if you ask me. Blue & Grey draws me in with stunning vocals from all the members. V is probably the standout member if I had to pick, with his husky and raspy tone starting off the song and infusing an amazing sense of texture. The rest of the members did an equally stunning job as V, especially with that bridge where each vocal-line member had a line. The rapping in Blue & Grey is much better and cleverer than in the preceding track, with Suga (in a separate section) and J-Hope easing us in with a really soft rap sequence before moving to RM’s slightly more powerful tone/delivery. This all over a really atmospheric slow-paced instrumental, starting off with acoustic guitars and later slow-pop influences. (10/10)

5. Telepathy (잠시) – While the first half of the album consisted of mainly a toned-down atmosphere and slower paced songs, the latter half of the album is more upbeat territory. Kicking off entrance into the upbeat territory is Telepathy. There is a feel-good vibe to this song that I really enjoyed. It is the type of song that I would hope for a performance for as it sounds like it can be a very fun stage. I love the retro nature of the instrumentation, particularly the cow bells (which instantly makes this sound so better). The vocals and rapping are really good, fitting in with that feel-good vibe that I mentioned a moment ago. It may not be at the level of Dynamite, but its great enough. (8/10)

6. Dis-ease (병) Dis-ease has this super catchy old-school hip-hop to it. The energy that comes off Dis-ease is pretty infectious, so much that I really want to boogie along to it. Given that the song falls into the hip-hop genre (and that they also participated in the production), the rappers shine the most in this song. I really like the “Byeong” sequence that finishes off the choruses. That paired with the disc scratching was pretty memorable and is my favourite part of the whole song. The vocal-line do a splendid job themselves. I really liked how they used the same technique in Blue & Grey (i.e. giving each member of the vocal line a section in the bridge) and having the song build towards a slightly more amplified final chorus. It is what I personally hoping for when I heard the song and I am glad they delivered! (10/10)

7. Stay (performed by RM, Jungkook and Jin)Stay tackles the future house sub-genre of EDM. It is a very clean track and it doesn’t have any crazy surprises to throw us off. In other words, I find Stay to be straightforward. While that could be a flaw in other songs, straightforwardness in EDM is a blessing as it doesn’t get complicated (and hence obnoxious). It doesn’t drown out the vocals and rapping sequences, which allows us to hear RM, Jungkook and Jin clearly throughout the song. I particularly like how satisfying the drop was and the mixture of acoustic guitars in the second verse and piano at the end of the song. I also like how smooth the vocals and rapping were. To me, the ending of the song isn’t as satisfying, as it gave me the impression that something should have followed it. That, or I just didn’t want Stay to end. (10/10)

8. DynamiteClick here to read the full review for Dynamite. (10/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9.1/10

[Review] Life Goes On – BTS

BTS continues to reach new heights with their latest comeback. Earlier today, the iconic male group made their comeback with Life Goes On (the title track) and Be (the title of their fifth studio album). It comes after BTS released their fourth studio album, Map of the Soul: 7 (headlined by On and Black Swan), their Japanese comeback single Stay Gold and their super catchy all-English track Dynamite. The group has also featured on Lauv’s Who and a remixed version of Jawsh 365 and Jason Derulo’s Savage Love. They have definitely had a busy year.

I was low key expecting a dance track for this comeback. Or even better, a darker and maturer song that takes further steps towards that style direction than On and Black Swan did! But after listing all their comebacks and releases throughout 2020 thus far (and this list does not even consider their solo works), I feel like a mellowed out and softer approach is more appropriate and less overwhelming for them at this current point in time. Life Goes On is still a fantastic song. It features an alternative hip-hop sound that relies heavily on really comforting and soothing guitars. While the song is softer than their previous title tracks, the music actually still fills hefty thanks to the heaviness that And this softer approach allows for the members to really focus on their vocal and rapping work. RM is the only member to actually rap in Life Goes On and his part was well tweaked for this alternative sound. Suga and J-Hope rap-sing their parts and they bring a nice energy in their respective parts. The rest of the members sing wonderfully throughout the song, helping drive forward that comforting and sentimental vibe and message. Jimin stands out with his higher pitched vocals and based on the way he starts the chorus, while V’s ad-libs shine thanks to the huskiness in his voice. I thought the autotune for the final chorus was a nice textural change, which helps keeps interesting from how I see it. Overall, Life Goes On was not what I had expected from BTS as a title track. But nonetheless, I still enjoyed it.

Based on what I am seeing for this music video, BTS and Big Hit had stepped away from their complicated and gripping storylines that require a lot of time to interpret. Life Goes On is shot in a more relaxed manner, feeling almost like a home-video style. It practically shows the members going about a day in their life where they get to hang out and travel, which suits their message that ‘Life Goes On‘ even in the most difficult of circumstances. I did like the ending, where the video applies a black and white filter and we see the member sing with microphones with their backs to the empty audience. That scene looks really pretty and aesthetic despite being so simple.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 9/10

[Review] Black Swan – BTS

In addition to Interlude tracks, I don’t often review pre-release tracks. The main reason for this is that there usually isn’t any music video (which would reduce my review to a 2 paragraphs. Last week, BTS unveiled Black Swan, the pre-release track off their upcoming album release, Map Of The Soul: 7. Accompanying this pre-release track is an art film, which I have decided to be the music video for this release. Hence, this fulfills the criteria for a review. Map Of The Soul: 7 has been confirmed for release on the 21st of February 2020.

The more I listen to Black Swan, the more I find it to be extremely calming. There is something about the song that just relaxes me. It might be the instrumental, which doesn’t go into any ‘hard’ territory and remains relatively light throughout. The Eastern influences that you can hear in the instrumental give off complexity, definition and personality. All elements that you definitely want to find in a song. The more modern trap beats keeps it grounded and adds robustness to the song. The combination comes together nicely and allows for a flow like water trickling over a riverbed. Their vocals could also help make the song feel calming. Their harsher vocals (for both rappers and vocalists) were not present in this song. Everything was a lot softer and more melodic, which helped smooth out the song even further. The use of autotune usually would have countered this. But somehow, BTS managed to utilize this element without disrupting the atmosphere. If I was to be honest, I didn’t feel this way about the song the first few times I heard it. It felt awkward and I just didn’t get it. But more listens definitely helped out and I am looking forward to the rest of the album when it comes out in February.

The art film contains a slightly different version of the song, where the song features more traditional instruments and a more acoustic profile. And I think this version really helps make the choreography stand out. I find the following explanation to the performance to make a lot of sense and is more detailed that whatever interpretation that I would have made.

To me, the level of aesthetics in which the art film reaches is a very fine point on any scale. That takes a lot to do and the producers nailed the film perfectly, capturing everything that needed to be captured. It is definitely one of check out. I highly recommend it.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 9.4/10

[Review] Interlude: Shadow – Suga (BTS)

This review contains my personal opinions regarding the song and music video. This is my interpretation and mine only.

This is the first time I am doing a full review for the Interlude track for BTS (or any artist). Why am I finally doing a review for the Interlude track? Well, I have noticed that these are actually tracks worth talking about themselves. The music video that accompanies these tracks also tend to be full of symbolism and hence there is more to talk about. The Interlude track is titled Shadow, courtesy of Suga. It was the first track unveiled after the announcement of their upcoming comeback in February with Map Of The Soul: 7.

There is something haunting with the start of the song in the ‘I Wanna Be…‘ montage. Suga’s signature husky and low tone brings this section to life, making it a memorable part of the song. Suga then start to throw lines at us through the rapping. And it is in this part do we get more of an idea of what the song is all about. Essentially, the ‘I Wanna Be…‘ montage at the start is more like the dream that we keep on repeating to ourselves to help make it a reality. But the verses and chorus paint a darker picture. That sometimes this dream isn’t somewhere we would want to be. In this sense, Suga says as part as of the world’s leading musical act, he is lonely and is often followed by a dark shadow that stays with me no matter whats. He doesn’t want to fly nor does he want to fall from the top. The rock sound in this part was really good and well accented. He then repeats the montage and then the song manages to flip a switch. It becomes a lot more intense and powerful. Suga’s rapping becomes more erratic and chaotic, as opposed to the control at the start. In the lyrics, I think he is referencing that darker side, which I thought was interesting. There is a lot to take in, but I thought Suga nailed this track with a very likable backdrop/instrumental.

I think my interpretation of the song lyrics and the musical intentions of the song reflect well with the music video. Remember that this might not be the actual interpretation. We see shadows at the start, with Suga standing in front of door. I think this foreshadows the shadows that will follow him once he rises to the top. We then see the same corridor with Suga, but no shadows, which shows his desires prior to realizing the darker side of show business. He runs, which shows his climb to the top. This lands him on the stage, with everyone watching. In this era, social media is like a double-ended sword. It help create his career. But at the same time, it allows for the focus to be too much on him. There is a scene in which the camera angles continually changes but the focus remains on him the entire time, further emphasising this part. The more erratic part of the song shows cameras directed at him, similar to how paparazzi tends to get. We see the shadows run after him. But we see human hands instead, showing that some fans can be the shadow. Overall, I thought this was a really cool video. The different ways symbolism was shown in the video was really profound. The post-production also helped out.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 10/10
Overall Rating – 9.4/10

[Review] Lights – BTS

It is completely surprising to see how far BTS has led the industry. They started as a group from a small agency and are now global stars throughout the world. And while they are at the forefront of the KPOP industry, this hasn’t stopped them from focusing on their JPOP market venture. A few weeks back, BTS made their Japanese comeback with a brand new single, Lights. The single is featured alongside the Japanese version of Boy With Luv (which they returned to Korea with earlier in the year) and Idol (their breakout single last year).

It has been a while since I reviewed a Japanese single from the group. To be fair on my part, it is scarce with the majority of their Japanese releases being Japanese versions of their Korean title track. But there have been a few, with For You being the most memorable. Similar to For You, Lights opt for a more ballad approach with their track, departing from the usual upbeat tracks that dominate their promotional cycles in Korea. And I appreciate that, as sometimes dance tracks can get overwhelming over time. What I like about Lights (and these types of tracks) is that it showcases the best of the group without wasting too much energy. Lights ends up being soothing and the only energy you are using is by swaying along to the music. Their vocals were very dreamy and the rapping was quite calm and relaxing to go well with the song. The song talks about supporting each other during a hard time, with the group depending on the audience as the light that leads them out of the darkness.

I thought the music video was quite nice. Instead of showcasing choreography throughout the video, the video focuses on a small storyline. But I think the bigger picture shows that the members will not be happy alone. Instead, they are happiest around each other. Set in a movie theatre, the group is shown to join one another and watch what I think is a home-video (as opposed to an actual movie), reflecting upon their time together and how it brought them joy. There might be some other meaning that I haven’t pinpoint yet, so share if there are other theories. I know the Armys are always creative in this field.

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 9/10
Overall Rating – 9/10

[Album Review] The Most Beautiful Moment in Life: Young Forever (1st Compilation Album) – BTS

Due to the many songs on this album, this post is quite lengthy. You have been warned. 

BTS is undeniably on the very top of the world due to their explosive global popularity. And this popularity grows with every new release. However, I do prefer more of their older releases. One of them has to be the album series that started off cementing their popularity domestically by earning them their first wins in South Korea through the weekly music shows. This album series, The Most Beautiful Moment in Life, is made up of three different releases. The first is Part 1 (their 3rd mini-album, released on April 2015), Part 2 (their 4th mini-album, released on December 2015) and Young Forever (their first compilation album consisting of the songs from the two previous mini-albums, along with 3 others and this was released on April 2016). Let’s have a quick look back on these releases.

The Most Beautiful Moment In Life: Young Forever Album Cover

Disc 1

1..The Most Beautiful Moment in Life (Intro Track) (Intro: 화양연화) – Opening up the compilation album and 3rd mini-album is this introductory track. Suga takes the reins of the track, being the only member to actually be in the track. His rapping is phenomenal. The breathing that fades in tells you to expect something that will blow you away and the breathing that fades out is literally me after listening to the song. A lot of deepness in his lyrics as well. (9/10)

2. I Need U (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for I Need U. (10/10)

3. Hold Me Tight (잡아줘) – Included on their 3rd mini-album, I am sure this type of track would have excited fans and listeners back when it was released in 2015. Listening to now, it seems like a very typical R&B track for BTS. There was a great display of vocals, especially towards the end. Their rapping was toned down to fit the more soothing nature of the instrumentation. I did think that this was a great track to follow up the I Need You title track, as it keeps some of the previous vibes but channelled it through to a slightly slower and paced track. (7.5/10)

4. Autumn Leaves (고엽) – Included on their 4th mini-album, Autumn Leaves was produced by Suga. This comes by no surprise as listening to all the members on the track, Suga fits in perfectly. Apart from Suga, the vocal line sound exceptional in this song. I also like the analogy that is made in this song. The members are like Autumn Leaves when they are trying to hold onto their lover. They do not want to fall but they will eventually. The instrumental was probably the most boring part of the track, as it feels very BTS now. (7/10)

6. Run (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Run. (8/10)

7. Ma City – Featured on the 4th mini-album, Ma City was an upbeat addition to really bring up the energy. The tracks that are on the 4th mini-album/this album has been very depressing or serious. So, some light is much appreciated. The song references several Korean cities including Ilsan, Busan, Gwangju, Daegu (which I am sure are the member’s hometowns). The pride they have is showcased effortlessly in this catchy track. As it stood out on its original/this album, I thought the track was quite infectious as well. (8/10)

8. Crow-Tit (뱁새) – One of the standout tracks from the 4th mini-album was Crow-Tit. The track is heavily doused in the hip-hop genre, which I think it totally up BTS alley. I remember not being much a fan of the track for the same reason. Now that I have reviewed several tracks of a similar nature, I see the appealing side of Crow-Tit, just not to the same extent as long-time fans. The energy and its message about double standards for the way the younger generation is perceived are also quite memorable. (7.5/10)

9. Dope (쩔어) – While writing these PARs, I revisit my past reviews to see how my thoughts about the song have changed. While I don’t increase the score of a song that is already ranking quite high, I have decided to make an exception for Dope, which has become one of my favourite BTS songs ever. Therefore, I have changed the 9/10 to 10/10. Click here to read the original review for Dope. (10/10)

The Most Beautiful Moment in Life Part 1 Album Cover

10. Fire (불타오르네) (Title Track) – For similar reasons above, I have decided to increase the original score of 7.5 to a 10. It is Fire. One of BTS’ most iconic tracks to date. Click here to read the original review for Fire. (10/10)

11. Save Me (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Save Me. (9/10)

12. Epilogue: Young Forever – This is one of the new releases featured on the compilation album. It also got a lot of fanfare as it was released as a pre-release track with its own music video. The track is standard for the group, but I think the vocals and raps (one of their best efforts yet) lifts the entire song to a whole new level. Even before pressing play, I can hear the echo of the line ‘Forever, we are young’ in the back of mind, showcasing to me the song’s longevity in my own books. While I never wrote a review for this track, it has continued to blow me away after 3 years. (9.5/10)

(Note Track 5 is a Prologue Version of Butterfly. Due to the length of this post, I have only elected to review the original form of Butterfly.)

Disc 2

1. Converse High – The praises for the shoes in this song is quite high. While the focus should be on the girl wearing the shoes, Converse High does a pretty good job at promoting the footwear instead. The track is a nice song. But to me, it is a step away from their usual stuff as it is quite bright and very neutral. And because of its neutral gearing, I find the track to be quite a bore. Nonetheless, it is still good in some respects but not their best. More of a filler track for me. (7/10)

2. Moving On (이사) – Also featuring on their 3rd mini-album, I find Moving On to be more BTS appropriate and interesting compared to Converse High. I think the track brings out the best of the vocal line. Each vocalist sound so smooth in the track. In conjunction with the melody, I find the song to be very memorable. I also like how nice the instrumental sound. It is soft at times when it is needed to be and gives off a pleasant atmosphere overall. (8/10)

3. Whalien 52 – The song is about a whale who could sing but no other whale could hear its voice. The poor whale becomes lonely, as no other whale wants to be around the one who supposedly can’t sing. Yet, the lonely whale continues to sing until it is heard. Perseverance and persistence, that is the message of this song. And BTS portrays in a nice track. It felt more pop-ish thanks to the upbeat vibes from the instrumental. But other than that, I found the track to be skippable. (7/10)

The Most Beautiful Moment In Life Part 2 Album Cover

4. Butterfly – To me, Butterfly is one of the best ballads that I have ever heard during the many years I have listened to KPOP (I think it might be 10 years or so of KPOP for me, to put it into perspective). There is something so beautiful about this emotional track that makes me come back to the track time and time again, despite it being released 3 years ago. The vocals literally glide along and the rapping fits in perfectly. Maybe it is because BTS is known for their intense songs, that something so fragile managed to stand out from the pack. (10/10)

5. House of Cards – Formerly outro for the 4th mini-album, BTS included the entire track on the compilation album. A dream come true for those who wished that intro and outros should be a full song. Performed by the vocal line, the song opens with a very dramatic feeling. Then comes the singing (which is amazing, once again), which helps builds the suspense that we have already experienced. The song talks about love in a dramatic sense, which matches the song’s initial atmosphere perfectly. (9/10)

6. Love Is Not Over – The final song on the album (apart from the many mixes/remixes featured after this one) is Love Is Not Over, the outro for the 3rd mini-album. Like above, the full version of the R&B track is included instead. Going back to what I have said for some other tracks, this one is rather standard. Both the singing and rapping was pretty good. The melody was quite nice. It just wasn’t a standout track so I didn’t pay much attention to it. (7/10)

Track 7 to 11 are alternate versions of I Need You, Run and Butterfly.

Overall Album Rating – 9.6/10

The Most Beautiful Moment in Life: Part 1 Teaser Image

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[Album Review] Map Of The Soul: Persona (6th Mini Album) – BTS

Left right and centre, BTS has been all over social media (for me at least) for their comeback on Friday with Boy With Luv. This title track featured on their 6th mini-album, Map of The Soul: Persona, which was also released on the same day. So, it would be a major pity for me to delay the album review to next weekend, especially since BTS is getting so much attention. They have been confirmed to now be the fastest video to be viewed 10 million times on YouTube, whilst also be the first KPOP act to perform on Saturday Night Live. They have also broken even more records on other platforms since I published my review for Boy With Luv (link below). Phew, a lot of stuff to keep up on! But here is my review as a treat!

Map Of The Soul: Persona Album Cover

1..Intro: Persona – Performed by just RM, the introductory track to the album centres on rapping, as this is RM’s forte. The song has an urban rock type of vibe to it, which I quite like. And while it does fall into that description and still manages to fall into the hip-hop roots, the song is very light, and this makes it an excellent taster to the album. Unlike most introductory tracks, Persona lasts around 3 minutes but somehow still goes by quite quickly. (8/10)

2. Boy With Luv (작은 것들을 위한 시) (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of Boy With Luv. (8/10)

3. Mikrokosmos (소우주) – The third track of the album, Mikrokosmos, seems to continue this lightness that we have heard thus far on the album. But while lightness would be a good term to really describe the song, I found it to be quite a vibrant pop track with wholesome lyrics. I think the track does a good job of showcasing the vocals of the members despite nothing technical or over-the-top being shown to the listener. I also thought the rapping was well-tweaked for the track as they still manage to show themselves as rappers but in a more appropriate manner for the track. Overall, I thought the melody was nice and hence it stood out for me. (9/10)

4. Make It Right – Before we jump ahead, Ed Sheeran does not feature in the track. Instead, he is one of the writers of the track. And a collaboration between the biggest boy group and soloist is probably a killer move. Truthfully, I am not a major fan of Ed Sheeran, but I think the song turned out well. That lightness continues from the previous track. I really do like the pop vibes and the unique the instrumental felt with the brass throughout it. To me, the vocals win in comparison to the rapping (not that the latter was disappointing because it wasn’t). I thoroughly enjoyed the low and husky voices of some of the members, along with the amazing harmonies that you can hear between all the members. That final line to the song was superb (and probably the most impactful part of the song). (8/10)

5. HomeHome kicks the energy up a tiny bit, which I greatly appreciated after all those light tracks. The song doesn’t explicitly repeat ‘Home’ in the lyrics. Rather ‘Mi Casa’ which is Italian for ‘My Home’ was used instead. Once again, great vocals and rapping fill up the track. There is this sense of warmth to the song, which I find very appropriate for a song titled as Home. Besides that, however, doesn’t really feel impactful or memorable. It is nice to listen to but isn’t one that I would go out of my way to find. (7/10)

6. Jamais VuJamais Vu features only Jin, J-Hope and Jungkook. The title, Jamais Vu, is a French phrase that means ‘familiar however it hasn’t happened yet’. It is a heartfelt and emotional track with chilling vocals that really leave a lasting impression on you. J-Hope’s raps are also very well done, with the husky rap-speaking concept being well used here. I also enjoyed the minimal instrumental they used in this song, which leaves the vocals to do much of the speaking. My only vendetta against the song is that it feels choppy, which I am not too sure if it was intentional. I don’t really enjoy the flow of it all too much but I would listen to it again for the other elements. (7.5/10)

7. Dionsyus – Ending this album is Dionsyus, the Greek God of grape-harvesting, wine, winemaking, ritual madness and theatre, along with a few other things. But the ones I listed seemed to be referenced in the lyrics of the song. To match the lyrics, the song seems to delve into the rock and hip-hop genres, cultivating into something quite suitable for hyping up a crowd. It is a little heavier than the intro track, which I think is suitable here. But it isn’t too heavy to really make you expect more after this track (and hence is an excellent finisher to the album). I also really like RM’s suspense-building tactic used in the bridge. While the song does kick it up even more for the final chorus, giving the song that peak it needed, I wanted it to go more hardcore, as I think this would literally end the album with a bang. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 8.1/10

Map Of The Soul: Persona Teaser Image

[Review] Boy With Luv – BTS ft. Halsey

Making their grand return today is BTS with Boy With Luv. And with their current worldwide popularity, Boy With Luv continues to break even more records than ever before. Topping charts as soon as the song is released, while also doubling the number of pre-orders for their latest mini-album (also dropped today) compared to their previous release, are just some already making news. So, it is super exciting to even be writing review for such a worldwide artist! We last saw BTS through their IDOL comeback in August last year.

If you are a longtime fan of the group, you may be familiar with another BTS title track, Boy In Luv. While the titles are similar, the songs are very different. Actually, it is very different compared to any other their past tracks, which were all dance heavy. To me, Boy With Luv still goes towards that dance route but in a lighter and more mellow pop direction. It also seems to focus on more of the vocals, as I thought the rapping wasn’t as prevalent. While we are on the topic of vocals, I thought each member managed to match the lighter sound and I think we got a chance to hear them in a wholesome manner, which contrasts from their autotuned and louder volumes in dance tracks. Suga and J-Hope didn’t shine as much, as their parts didn’t stand out as much. RM, however, benefited from a kick in the beat of the instrumental, which I thought was a major difference between the rapper’s section. The main confusing point has to be Halsey’s featuring parts, which was only certain parts of the chorus. I think she could have been omitted and everything would remain the same, honestly. Overall, the question remains: do I like it? Boy With Luv is different and foreign to me. But it is still pleasant, which I think I can enjoy even more down the road.

The music video seems very typical to me. It didn’t have that wow factor like most of their other videos. Though, there is most likely a hidden storyline in the midst of the video. Maybe it will have that wow factor then! I did like the more down-to-earth and more playful vibes the member got to portray. It did make the video feel a lot more casual and laidback. I think, to me, the most memorable parts had to Suga and RM’s rap parts. The change to darkness to let them be the main focus worked really well, and I wished some of the members got something similar. Well, they did but it didn’t seem as bold as RM or Suga’s.

Also going with the light trend is the choreography. Nothing too complicated or extremely energetic in this performance, which I think is rather nice and probably beneficial for the members, who have been overworked with complicated and intense choreographies. This is all based on what I saw in the video, by the way!

Song – 8/10
Music Video  – 7/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 7.7/10

[Album Review] Love Yourself: Answer (3rd Compilation Album) – BTS

With BTS making their ‘IDOL’ comeback this past Friday, I think this is the fastest I have ever put out an album review for anyone. And while I had planned to do this as soon as I read the news of their said comeback, I never had expected so many high quality songs. Every new song on the album was a gem and I cannot wait to get straight into the review.

A compilation album is, put simply, a collection of past songs from other albums. BTS did insert 7 new songs into this album, which is the focus of the album review today. Joining these new songs are the song the group previously released as part of Love Yourself: Her and Love Yourself: Tears. Due to the amount of songs on the album (25 songs), it would be really crazy for me to put all the songs on this particular page. So, if you are looking for a particular review for another song from the other two mini-albums, click on the links below. Beside that, let’s get this show on the road!

Love Yourself: Her Album Review
Love Yourself: Tears Album Review

Love Yourself: Answer Album Cover

2. Trivia 起 Just Dance (J-Hope Solo) – If you have been visiting my site for some time, you would know that I tend to prefer vocals over rap. But one of the things I love more than vocals are when rappers sing, as they tend to have a underrated voice. This is exactly what we have here. J-Hope’s verses just pull you in. And while that gets me hook, the chorus is another selling point that gives this song an amazing club vibe. The vibrating synth is also extremely addictive. Overall, the first new track of the album starts off these new releases with a banger. (10/10)

3. Trivia 承: Love (RM Solo) – The song kicks off with a very light hip hop sound that makes it appeal. While the sound might be a little too cheerful for RM (I for some reason associate him with a more dark/serious tone), this does not hinder his delivery and presentation of his lines, which felt very effortless (which is usual for the rapper). Once again, the singing was also top notch. Towards the end, there was an anthem like sound infused into the song, which made it the most exciting part of the song. (8/10)

5. Trivia 轉: See Saw (Suga Solo) – Starting off Seesaw is Suga’s husky vocals which sound like a blessing to my ears. His song takes us on the R&B route, which I think is an excellent move given the previous two songs (above). I like the use of background vocals in the song, which give it a little more backing. The instrumental is nice and smooth. But it is not as interesting as the other songs that I have already reviewed. It is a good track to kick back to, however, which is why I do enjoy it. (8/10)

13. Epiphany (Jin Solo) – Like the other two Love Yourself albums, we have a solo pre-release from Jin. This is one amazing song (and I felt that in just the first few seconds of the track). It gives Jin the opportunity to show something off which he doesn’t have the opportunity (I think I have said this in the past for his other solo releases). I love the instrumental of this, appealing to my taste in rock-ballad music. Overall, this is a show stopper on so many levels. (10/10)

14. I’m FineI’m Fine starts off same as Save Me back in 2016. However, it soon became distorted and we have a completely different sound, which falls along the line of Western pop currently. I liked the fast pace chorus which really gives off a very impactful push. It is also quite addictive. Once again, the rappers shine in this track. Particularly Suga, who had a awesome sequence. But that doesn’t mean the vocalists did not get any spotlight as their vocal work was amazing Going back to how the song is similar to Save Me, the lyrics is like a response to Save Me, which I thought was nice. (10/10)

15. IDOL (Title Track)Click here to read the full review of IDOL. (9/10)

16. Answer: Love Myself – Ending my review today is Love Myself, which is another perfect song from the group. Everything about this song is totally terrific. The vocals and harmonies were superb, while the rapping was toned down to fit this peaceful and more brighter sound from the group. The instrumental is well balanced, which is something I liked quite a bit. The lyrics of the song were quite touching as well. Looking back, my description/review doesn’t do the song justice, so my advice is to go and listen to this amazing song. (10/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9.3/10

Love Yourself: Answer Teaser Image

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[Review] IDOL – BTS

After another highly successful comeback this past May 2018, BTS is back to conquer the stage again. BTS made their highly anticipated comeback today with IDOL and the third part of their Love Yourself trilogy. And with their latest comeback, it is expected that the group will extend their reach into the international market. They have already come so far with collaborations with Steve Aoki and Nicki Minaj, who featured on another version of their title track.

IDOL isn’t what I had expected, given what DNA and Fake Love sounded like. This seems to be more hip-hop dominate and party anthem-like, which sounds pretty good. The song opens up with the rappers taking on the verse. And while they do sound great, it did feel like they were shouting a little too much. The vocals come right after for the pre-chorus buildup and I had similar thoughts in term of shouting, though it provided a great launch into the chorus. I really liked the burst of energy and upbeat nature of the chorus, which takes the track to a whole new level. It was quite catchy to my ears.  I also like the instrumental of the song, which really built up as it went along. If you listen carefully during the verses, they seemed to be a dramatic underlayer, with the upbeat sounds on top. I found that very interesting. The saxophones definitely brightened up the track and provided a nice sense of appeal. I have to admit though, the song isn’t my favourite from the group, but it quite up there.

Right off the bat, the video seemed to be quite noisy as there were more things going in the foreground of the video and the background of the video, than usual. And this video seems to be a little out there, compared to their previous music videos. And I have no idea what is going on in the video, as the scenes seem to be very odd. I have yet to watch any theories on the music video, but I assume they will be plentiful in a few hours. There were some aspects that felt very familiar. Some of the scenes reminded me of Fire and Not Today. For example, the choreography scene where there was a tonne of backup dancers reminded me of Fire. The colour palette and sets in this video reminded me of DNA‘s music video.

Choreography wise, it looks good. We don’t see too much in the music video but there seems to be enough to conclude that this is going quite a performance. There seems to be amazing footwork during the chorus and the overall feel does a good job of hyping up the song. I may return next once I get a better look at the performance!

Song – 9/10
Music Video – 8.5/10
Performance – 8/10
Overall Rating – 8.7/10

[Album Review] Wings / You Never Walk Alone (2nd Studio Album) – BTS

My vote for best album of 2016 went to Wings, BTS’s second studio album.  Hence, today I decided to take some time to look back on their award-worthy album. However, as the album was re-released with new songs in 2017, I have decided to combine the two albums and make one long album review for it. The Wings album was dropped on October 10th of 2016. It was then re-released as You Never Walk Alone on 13th of February 2017. Please note that this is a very long review and that I apologise for that.

Image result for BTS Wings
Wings Album Cover

1..Intro: Boy Meets Evil – J-Hope opens the entire album with Boy Meets Evil. And while it is just an intro track, it deserves to be an entire song on its own. J-Hope does not hold back, throwing his lines out at us in a manner that makes it sound so dark and intense. That intensity matches the string/dubstep instrumental of the track. The lyrics themselves are quite deep. (9/10) 

2. Blood, Sweat & Tears (Title Track) – Click here to read the full review for Blood, Sweat & Tears (9.5/10)

3. Begin (Jungkook Solo) – While Jungkook does seem to go down the ballad route, he manages to add synths and elements that could potentially make it into a dance song. The lyrics are definitely something to look at here, as he references the members whom he basically grew up with. The track is amazing but there is just one minor detail. It seemed a little repetitive. It kept to itself, which was good, but I was expecting some change up to make it more interesting to my ears. (9/10)

4. Lie (Jimin Solo) – That classical orchestra instrumental. It gives the track a very grand and epic feel. I love the twist and turns that this track provide. Everything felt so mysterious and dark through the verses, but the chorus caught me off guard because it went higher than what we have heard. Jimin’s vocals have always shined throughout BTS releases, but it managed to shine brighter here. Good enough that I give it a (10/10).

5. Stigma (V Solo) – Out of all the BTS members, I always thought that V’s vocals were the most interesting out of all the members. And this song proves just that. His raspy vocals and higher tones just blow you away. The slow jazz based instrumental is quite good. But if you ever get the chance, try looking into the English translation for this song. Following the other tracks, this one is equally as deep, dark and mysterious. (10/10)

6. First Love (Suga Solo) – I am not really into songs that are mainly based around raps. But there is always something about Suga’s songs that catch me off guard. The instrumental is relatively quiet at the start but his voice adds the dynamic side to the song. As the song progresses, the instrumental build up into a grand orchestral piece, which I thought was spectacular. Listening to it by itself, you can hear the emotions. But once you look up the lyrics, you can tell the level of emotion that was put into the song. (10/10)

7. Reflection (Rap Monster Solo) – The instrumental of this song is 100% eerie and I love that. It slowly becomes a nice instrumental that is calming and soothing. However, it was still powerful enough to fit Rap Monster’s delivery of his lyrics, while maintaining that calmness. Once again, the lyrics leave a huge impression on you. Just try searching up the translations for these songs and you will be blown away. The just felt very neutral throughout and after listening to Suga’s solo, it needed some sort of buildup to keep me there. (9/10)

8. Mama (J-Hope Solo) – Unlike the previous songs, which went down the emotional route, J-Hope takes a different direction with a more upbeat and happier sound. That being said, the same level of emotions are present, just delivered in a different manner. It was super easy to get into the groove of this song and it was really catchy. He writes about his mum in the song, which made it extremely touching. His voice sounds so good and it shows a softer side, compared to his powerful and strong raps that we hear often in BTS title tracks. (10/10)

9. Awake (Jin Solo) – The most underrated member (vocally, that is) finally get justice by having his own solo track. That is a celebration in itself. This song just proves that the group needs to use his vocals more. Here it is so dreamy and so damn amazing. The melody of the song is the type that I really enjoy. That is, the type that gets you swaying along to it. He also appeals to my taste of violins and classical type instrumentals, which I love. Combine them together and you got a winning combination. (10/10)

10. Lost – This is a song that features the vocal line of BTS (Jungkook, Jin, Jimin & V). Given their vocals in the solo songs that featured before this track on the album, it was a given that they would sound amazing. And they did. The song delivers a burst of energy, that was needed after listening to the slow, ballad-like tracks. It was a song that was easy to get into and the second half of the chorus (the ‘lost my way, way, way~’) was super duper catchy. (9/10)

11. BTS Cypher Pt. 4 – I am quite sure this is meant to follow on from the rest of the Cypher tracks in which BTS releases on their albums. I don’t really listen to them, so I am not going to include this track in the final album rating score. But if you want to hear a hip-hop centred track from the 3 rappers of BTS, do check this one out. It is pretty good from first glance.

12. Am I Wrong – My most favourite track off the entire album. And no, it is not wrong to fall for this song. I first heard it watching it on stage at one of the weekly music shows. While the rest of the album was serious and on the emotional side of things, it was nice to hear a few lighthearted and fun sounding songs to lighten up the mood. The raps and vocals in this song are pretty good as well. And most importantly, it is really catchy, which makes me go back for more. (10/10)

13. 21st Century Girls – All you ladies put your hands up! I personally thought the song was quite good. It wasn’t exactly my cup of tea, though. The song itself provided empowerment for the female listeners, hence may be the reason why I am not into the song as much. But the rapping here was good and the vocal work was amazing. I feel a little rude to describe the song this way, but it had a carefree feel to it, while also maintaining a level of seriousness. (8/10)

14. Two! Three! (Still Wishing There Will Be Better Days) – From what I am reading, this particular track is a song for their fans. And it one pretty good song. Just the lyrics alone already pack a punch with their meaning. The rapping fitted the more mellow song, while the vocals contributed to the sweeter melodies during the chorus. What makes the song even better is that it ends with all the members singing to the chorus, making it a worthwhile song for anyone who identifies as an Army. (10/10)

Image result for bts you never walk alone album
You Never Walk Alone Album Cover

16. Spring Day (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Spring Day (9.5/10)

17. Not Today (Title Track)Click here to read the full review for Not Today (9.5/10)

15 & 18. Outro: Wings – This track is the Interlude on the Wings album but an extended version is present on the You Never Walk Alone album. And it too is a damn good track. It ends both albums on such an upbeat and fun-sounding note. The instrumental is striking and BTS sounds amazing. (10/10)

19. Supplementary Story: You Never Walk Alone – We have reached the final song on this review. And they managed to finish off the album with one fantastic song. Suga and J-Hope sang in the song, which caught me off guard. What I loved about the track was the “Walk, Walk…Walk, Like it, like that” part which the vocalists each sing. It was super catchy and gave the song a nice pop vibe, which I totally dig from time to time. (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 9/10

You Never Walk Alone Teaser Image (Source: ALLKPOP)

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[Review] Not Today – BTS

Unlike the title of the song, it is a review that needs to be released today!!! For this repackaged album, BTS returned with two title tracks. The first, Spring Day was reviewed last week as its accompanying music video was released. With today’s release of the music video for Not Today, I can now review their second title track for their repackaged Wings album.

Not Today is a very intense track. Literally, it doesn’t hold back with its intensity. To me, it feels a lot like Fire’s sequel. It is as if they felt they didn’t do justice with Fire (which they obviously did) and decided to go with a track with that same intensity, but with a much cleaner and consistent sound. The instrumental is all EDM based and it standing alone packs a punch. Throw in their (per usual) rapping and vocal work and you can guess what type of track this would be. That being said, due to the intensity and instrumental, the vocals (including the rapping here) did feel a little inferior, as opposed to Spring Day, where the vocals/raps were at te forefront of the song. But regardless, I am totally digging it. I have been replaying it constantly this past weekend and getting hyped for the music video release. I love the transition between the rapping and vocals in this song. While EDM does have a reputation for not being smooth at times, the transitions give it a very smooth feel. And even though it feels smooth, the buildup of the track is something that catches your ears. But what makes this song so good is the ending. Even though it returns to the exact same chorus that we have been hearing in the song, it ended perfectly and left me at the edge of my seat.

My assumption is that Not Today and Spring Day will go hand-in-hand with each other since Spring Day provided us with a 1 or 2-second teaser of the Not Today video. Knowing BTS and Big Hit Entertainment, there will be some sort of connection that I am going to need help interpreting. I rely on fan theories for BTS music videos because there is so much to research and make sense of. The video starts off with them running (along with a group of ninjas or what I am going to assume – their bodyguards). And they are running away from someone or something that is out to get them. And that is all I have. Maybe they are trying to say “you will not catch me, not today”. But even though the plot doesn’t make sense, the video is still good on its own level. Why? Well, have you seen the cinematography and camera shots in this video? They look spectacular and stunning. You wonder how an underground car park or concrete slab can look good? Well check out this video and you will find out!

Like the song, the choreography is equally as intense or even more! The choreography that I saw in the music video has left me speechless and I can’t even get my thoughts for this section into words. But regardless, I smell a potential ‘Best Male Dance Performance” award for this. They have set the standard for 2017 pretty high.

Song – 9.5/10
Music Video -9/10
Performance – 10/10
Overall Rating – 9.5/10

[Review] Spring Day – BTS

BTS has returned with their repackaged version of Wings (title track was Blood Sweat & Tears), which was probably one of the best albums of 2016. Spring Day is their title track off the repackaged album. The group will also be releasing a music video for Not Today (another track off their repackaged album), which I will review next week (once the video is released on the 20th). I was also planning on doing an album review for their repackaged. But since I am already reviewing 2 of the 4 new songs and I think it probably too late to do an album review for the entire Wings album, I’ve decided to cancel it instead. My apologies if you had expected it.

Spring Day is a lot different to the group’s past hits. This time, they went with a song that is more vocally centred. And they do a smashing job of it. The song is something right up my alley. It has a really emotional melody, which you can hear through both the softer instrumental and vocal work. The instrumental is toned down (as already mentioned) quite a bit, almost resembling a soft electronic track infused with a ballad (also really like the drums). Even the rappers, who are known for their extreme toughness and power raps, have toned it down. The star of the show has to be the vocals of Jungkook, Taehyung and Jimin. Their vocals work, in the song, is amazing. You can hear the emotions in the vocals, being consistent throughout the song. J-Hope seemed to get the short end of the stick. When I first listened to the song, I noticed that I could not detect J-Hope’s voice anywhere. It turns out that J-Hope was the backing vocals for the chorus. While that does seem a little unfair, once you notice it, you can’t really unhear it. Now when I listen to the song, I move my focus between the different vocals, especially during the chorus. His backing vocals do a really good job of echoing the member who was singing at the time (usually Jungkook). It added a level of complexity and depth to the song. And honestly, if you strip J-Hope’s backing vocals from the song, the song would have felt empty and too simplified.

Let’s all put forward our best theories, shall we? Hahaha.. As per usual, this BTS music video is confusing as heck. So I decided to do some reading and watching, trying to see what others make of it.  I found a video that really explains the story quite well. Watching the music video by itself made no sense. But with someone breaking it down (and basically doing the hard work for me) made more sense and more understandable. Now, I am unfamiliar with the story of Omelas (the name of the motel in the video) and will probably do a shocking job at explaining it. So for an explanation of the video, CLICK HERE!!! I think what BTS (and when I refer to the band, in this case, I am also referring to the producer, director etc) has been doing with their reference to these mythological stories is really cool and unheard of (as a series) in KPOP. Now moving away from the plot, this video is beautifully shot. Everything from the camera angles, wide shots to the quality of the video made it look amazing. It makes the video look stunning and worthwhile to watch.

[UPDATED] The dance for this song is amazing. I am not too sure, but I am assuming they did a form of interpretive dancing and every time I watch the performance, I am in awe at their stage presence and fluid motions. I loved how the song is more on the softer side, but their dancing is leaves a very strong impression on you. It might be a tad early, but this is worthy of a Best Dance award already.

Song – 10/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 10/10 
Overall Rating – 9.7/10


[Review] Blood, Sweat & Tears – BTS

BTS returned for a very limited amount of time back in April with the release of the third part (and final part) of their trilogy. Now, they have returned with their second album, Wings, and the title track Blood, Sweat and Tears. This latest comeback has managed to break multiple records and it is the first comeback that I have seen where 5 million views (or possibly more – I forgot the actual number) for their music video occurred in 1 day. The power of Army is real and very strong.

This song is very good. Following the roots of their previous songs in the year, Blood Sweat and Tears features a very nice EDM (I think it is a more powerful version of chill-step. It definitely has that chill vibe, but there are other EDM components in it) instrumental. There was that chill vibe and it didn’t go over the top or feel overpowering. There was a nice balance between the instrumental and the vocal/rap. Vocally, the members sound amazing. The husky voice that Jimin had to start off the song became a launch pad into the song. The rapping felt quite limited this time. A little disappointed by that. To me, it was probably the most underwhelming part of the song. Moving along, the lyrics is an element that needs to be talked about. Loved the “wonhae manhi manhi manhi manhi”, probably the catchiest part of the song. The rest of the lyrics was quite sexy. There is probably no other word to describe the rest of the lyrics… “Baby, I don’t care if I get drunk, I’ll drink you in now
Your whiskey, deep into my throat”. Yeah. I just felt the pairing was a little off with the instrumental and lyrics. The sound of the song is a little too upbeat for those sexy (and dark) lyrics. I like the song as it is, but imagine those lyrics with a more seductive instrumental.

Music video is very interesting. I can sit down and try to give my own interpretation of the video. I have tried (I get some bits, like V becoming the Fallen Angel, who fell from the balcony and had his wings cut off), but there are some parts which make no sense whatsoever (Jin kissing the statue is one of them). So instead, I am going to try something different. I have been reading many different theories regarding the video and  I am going to link a few here for you to read/watch, because I am totally lost and confused. These theories are all well written and make a lot more sense than what I would have written (or explain my theory in a much more ‘easier to understand’ way ).

Theory 1 Theory 2 Theory 3 (watch this video with captions on, the video is in Korean) Theory 4 (read the comments to this video, there are a few more interesting theories)

From each of these theories, it seems like this video is connected to the rest of the videos released by BTS (V killing is his father in a previous video, which then turns him into a Fallen Angel). All this confusion. But nonetheless, BTS videos have always been amazing. The confusion grabs my attention and forces me to watch the video multiple times so I can understand what is going on. The acting is amazing here.  The cinematography is also amazing. While I don’t truly understand the plot and reasoning behind the video, what I see and the impression it leaves on me is worthy of a 10/10.

Choreography wise, I think the dance is amazing. I don’t think I have ever been disappointed with a BTS dance.  The knife-like precision and sharp movements always blow me away. They do bring a sexier side to the dance this time, while their past dances have focuses more of fierceness, strength and masculinity.

Rating – 9.5/10


[Double Review] Fire + Save Me – BTS

I am so sorry. These should be separate reviews, but due to the amount of time I have left between their releases and now, I am very behind. So, to catch up and to prevent you guys from waiting any longer, here are my thoughts on BTS’s latest comeback. I know, they released a total of 3 music videos (someone should have given me the heads up) but I had to cut their prerelease one because of time constraints. Maybe when I have time, I will get back to it? Anyway, BTS has finally wrapped up their trilogy after promoting I Need U and Run last year. Now, Fire and Save Me is the ending and I am as confused as ever.

Fire is a dance anthem song that everyone probably wants to dance to when it is played at a party. It is a fun, loud and much brighter song than any of their past releases. The electronic sounds (especially the dubstep) is a little too heavy for my liking, but hey, it is still a good track. Not impressed with Rap Monster’s rapping in this song sadly. Save Me is more of the electronic track that fits my style (if I ever had one). This song fits more nicely into the trilogy than Fire did (and it was probably the actual song to end the trilogy). But this song is much calmer (okay, somewhat) and to me, is much catchier. I really like the chill sound that the song was going for. The rapping (from all three members) was pretty solid in this song and I thought overall, Save Me was a much better song in terms of, well, everything. It gets a tick for vocals, rap, rhythm, instrumental, the lot. Don’t want to start anything, but the instrumental does remind me of Justin Bieber’s What Do You Mean?

On to the music video. Fire and Save Me both had very appropriate videos. Fire was more of that party anthem style. Very wacky and different to the rest of their videos. And of course, there is a lot of fire in this video. I guess you can say that the boys were “lit” the whole time. I have to say, whoever applied makeup to these guys, over did it. Love how they went wild with the flames in the video and that ending where the shots were overcrowded with dancers in the background. Looked amazing, to be honest. Save Me was a calmer and colder video, in terms of colour. Fire was bright and loud, but Save Me was darker and well shot in a much colder place. The chillness from the song carried over into the video quite nicely. Save Me focused on the dancing aspect of the group more and  I liked that contrast between the two. (And their epilogue focused more on the vocal and rapping side than anything else).

Dance wise, BTS has literally done it again. I wouldn’t be surprised if BTS started some flames with their footwork in Fire. Because those stages were insanely amazing to watch. Save Me had (once again) a much chiller and more artistic dance to it. Both showed BTS capability of performance and these two combined probably put BTS in a very high position in terms of best dancers in KPOP.

Okay, I have 5 minutes until midnight. And this was a very short double review. But both were pretty good. But which do you prefer? Vote below!!!

Fire – 7.5/10

Save Me – 9.5/10

2015 BOBs (Best Of the Best) – Part 2

015 is at its end, and with days away from the new year, we must reflect on 2015. And per usual: excellent songs, videos and dances have gracefully entered our lives and probably have not yet left us. From comebacks from big name acts to debuts of new rookie bands, 2015 has been a splendid year in my opinion. This year I decided to do the BOBs differently. Usually, I post a list of nominees and categories, but I don’t get you guys to vote for them (nor do I have the capabilities and time to allow you guys to vote for them, but maybe in the future), so I thought I should change it up this year, but posting both nominees and winners in the same post. This is part 2 of the BOBs and part1 was released yesterday (Click Here). Also, the traditional End of Year Charts will be released on the 31st of December, at 11:55 pm, so please wait around for that. Let’s get the post on the road!!!

These awards do not reflect any review score that I gave out this year. My personal preferences will always change (i.e. an 8 review score can currently be a 10 OR a 10 review score can currently by an 8).

RED FONT – Winners, BLUE FONT – Honourable Mention


Once again, 2015 saw many debuting groups enter the KPOP scene. And this category obviously allows me to pick who i saw as the best new male artist of 2015. And boy were the standards high this year. The nominees are:


I have to give it to Seventeen. They were the only new boy group on the block that left a massive long impression on me since their debut at the start of the year til now. At first 13 members may have sounded a little too much, but the songs they were releasing proved otherwise. Honourable mentions goes to Monsta X who only popped on my radar in the past few weeks. Yeah, their debut did not do much, but what they released after did a lot.


Same as the above category, many new girl group emerged from the shadows and wowed a lot of people. Most not if all female rookies managed to amaze me and picking the nominees for this category had been one of the hardest things to do this year. The nominees are:


Hands down, it automatically goes to GFriend. As soon as they started, they had the press all over them and their comeback proved to be highly successful, ranking high on the charts. As for honourable mention… I am literally torn between Oh My Girl and Twice. Yeah, Oh My Girl did not do as well for this debut, but their comeback exceed my expectations so much (why? Find out later) but I am going to give it to Twice, as they have only released one song and also ranked incredibly high on the charts.


One of the things that make KPOP so unique is obviously the choreography and performances. And this year saw an amazing variety of performances and dances that made fans all for certain groups harder than ever. Each of the nominees that made it onto the list truly deserve to be the winner as they were all equally unique and amazing. I nominated:


Screw the MAMA awards. The male category was a mess for Best Male Dance Performance. However, I am here to fix it. I am putting BTS – Dope as the best dance of the year. Yes. BTS was not nominated at all and that is so disappointing. Dope was such as “dope” dance that was in sync and perfectly executed. As for honourable mention, GOT7 – If You Do takes it away. Though it was nominated, but it did not win. And I was incredibly disappointed. Anyway, I can say this: all of the nominated dances deserve an award.


Albums. Not my favourite thing to talk about. Mainly because there are songs on some albums that disappoint me, and hence I sometimes stay away from albums because of that. Each album is looked at as a whole and also each individual song is looked at in detail. I don’t listen to entire albums a lot, but here is a list of just some albums I did manage to listen to as a whole. The nominees are:


At of all of those albums above, there were two stands out. The winner was F(x) – 4Walls, their 4th album. I have to say each and every song on this album I adore to the point where all the songs on there have become more memorable than certain comebacks of big name artists. Honourable mentions goes to Brown Eyed Girls – Basic, their 6th full length album. The album came extremely closely to being the winner, but I do not personally feel the same level of excitement when I listen to the album.


Music videos per usual is an artists main form of promotion. And this year, the music videos released were to of an extremely high standard. Each of these music videos have some unique about them and that is what stood out to me. I chose these based on plot, cinematography, sets or scenery, acting (if applicable) and editing. The nominees I saw fit these categories were:


I think the simplicity was the key for me this year. G.Soul – You won Best Music Video in my point of view. There is essentially nothing in this video beside the singer himself and some lights. But yet it managed to become such an amazing video. Honourable mentions goes to FT Island – Pray. Their concept was so amazing that it was incredibly hard to pass up this video.



Now let’s get down to business. I like to call this and the next category “the best artist of the year”. But since KPOP is highly populated with groups, I split them up into genders and call the categories “group”. The female groups this year have successfully wowed me (and probably everyone else this year), with many people being able to pick a favourite. The nominees for Best Female Group are:


I think I am going to agree with the ongoing trend and give it to EXID. From Up and Down, released last year, EXID shot into the limelight with a fancam of Hani and have since re-promoted Up and Down, came back with Ah Yeah and more recently Hot Pink. Each time they make a comeback, they go on to prove their popularity. As for Honourable Mention: Red Velvet. Their successful year yet, and I am 100% sure that better years will come. Ice Cream Cake and Dumb Dumb will remain as favourites for me.


Now let’s move onto the guys. The competition was so tough this year. At first, I managed to list around 20 different male groups that I think deserve this award, but I only ended up choosing 10 nominees. It was so hard. But here are my choices:


I am going to choose GOT7 as the best boy group of the year. GOT7 released three songs: Just Right, If You Do and Winter’s Confession. Put together, GOT7 had one busy year and I saw a very large amount of growth in terms of the boys’ talents and sound. As for honourable mention, it would got to BTS. For this year, BTS has definitely matured and showed an ever fiercer and more powerful side of the group.


This category, each year proves to be my worst enemy. It is so hard to choose my most favourite song. This particular category is not influenced (in any way) by the charts that I am releasing tomorrow. The “best song of the year” chosen here are like my subconscious mind speaking, whom I really want to see be given the title. The charts tomorrow are more calculated and take into account my reviews during the year and what my current thoughts about them are. But as I said choosing this category is the hardest. So many songs deserve this title and if I could choose to give out multiple “Best Song” awards I can. The nominees are:


Let’s start with the honourable mentions: GOT7 – If You Do, Oh My Girl – Closer, EXID – Hot Pink & Seventeen – Mansae.

And finally, I give to you, 2015’s Best Song of the Year, which you can probably tell already by the video linked below.

EXID – Ah Yeah

Congratulations, EXID. 2015 has been proven to be your year. You can watch the music video for this year’s Best Song below!


And that is it for Part 2 of the BOBs. Check back tomorrow, for the End Of Year Charts. And then, lets all wait for the New Year to come rolling through? Got your New Year’s Resolution yet?

*All images and gifs belong to their owners/creators. Only those tables are mine.