Since T-ARA’s last comeback in 2018 with What’s My Name, I have not review another T-ARA album. Given T-ARA’s dynamic and robust discography, I am surprised that it has taken me three and half years to revisit this group. The whole point of this ‘Past Album Review’ segment is to go back in time and revisit albums from current and previously active groups. With that, I will promise I will definitely keep T-ARA in my mind and hopefully comeback to review another album before the end of the year (I already have the next album in mind!). But until then, here is my review for the group’s 6th mini-album, And & End, which was released back in 2014, which was lead by Sugar Free.
2. ORGR – It was smart that ORGR was placed right after the intense nature of Sugar Free and before the softer songs on this album. It is like a bridge that connects the polar opposite songs on the album. There is a bit of edge to the song thanks to the hip-hop influence during the chorus, which connects well with the title track. The song is quite melodic and flowy in other parts, such as the pre-chorus, which goes hand-in-hand with the softer tracks. What I enjoyed about song even more is that sense of nostalgia that the song brings, reminding me of other previous female groups such as 4MINUTE, who easily would have thrived with a sidetrack like this. But this is a T-ARA sidetrack and I felt that the group executed it well. Their vocals were smooth and the rapping really helped give the song some additional sass. The song’s hooks including the ‘Na Na Na’ were quite addictive, helping make this song even more appealing. (9/10)
3. I Don’t Want You (남주긴 아까워) – I Don’t Want You stands out for its Parisian and artisan feel, based on the opening sequence. It is a very interesting and different sound to what I am used to. And it isn’t a sound that I would really be excited about. But I liked how they kept it going in the song. Nowadays, such influences would only last a short while. But in I Don’t Want You, it lasted for the entire 3 minutes. It adds a layer of elegance and gives the otherwise soft song unique colour. Vocally, T-ARA sounds very standard here. I did like how Qri’s rap sequence in the bridge was mixed into the song. It isn’t expected, but somehow the producers made it fit in without questions. Overall, a very nice song. (8/10)
4. Last Calendar (지난 달력) – While I was deciding which T-ARA’s albums I would review today, I noticed that their sidetrack discography was very ballad dominant. I hadn’t notice this before, which was rather odd. I do like my fair share of ballads. Last Calendar is nice ballad and one that I would put onto my ballad playlists for when I want to listen to slow music (or get lost in some feels). The instrumental is pretty standard overall. It has really soothing piano that starts off the song. And there is some guitar as well to add a little more zing to the ballad. The members bringing that swaying and flowy vocal melody that you know I like. It isn’t their most groundbreaking song, but it was still quite good. (8/10)
5. If I See Her (그녀를 보면) – If I See Her brings together interesting vocal melodies and a plain repetitive instrumental. You can probably tell which element that I enjoy more of. The vocal melodies really help boost this song and made something that I would have easily passed a little more attention grabbing. So good on the members for this song’s execution. Out of all the members, I find Jiyeon fits this style the most, as the song brings me 1 Minute 1 Second vibes (which, for those who don’t know) was Jiyeon’s solo debut track. Hyomin’s rapping was a little disappointing. I wished it was brought in differently and made to fit the song, rather than have it layered on top. That would have made the song more interesting. (7/10)
A reminder that the 2019 KPOPREVIEWED Awards voting period is still on. It will officially close 11:59 PM (AEST) on the 31st of December. So make sure you vote before then! Do so by clicking here if you haven’t voted yet!
Even though we are in the final days of 2019, comebacks are still happening and KPOP is business as usual (which wasn’t the case a few years back, with releases being scarce). Today, we see the comeback of Jiyeon, who returns with the single Take A Hike. We last saw the T-ARA member in a music context through her One Day Winter single last year.
Take A Hike, as the title may suggest, is no Winter single. It is a soft club dance track, featuring a trendy, attitude-heavy flute drop during the chorus that I am sure would be perfectly paired to a sensual and mature choreography routine. The chorus also had a nice hook to it, that I thought was both decent and simple. I thought the verses were very captivating themselves as they engaged Jiyeon’s lower vocals and raspy tone, which made the verses standout. To me, the song feels fulfilling. It is fairly bare but I think this made Take A Hike stand out. I can see how some people would call it boring though, as the bareness might lead to the thought that it is lacking in a way. But at the moment, I choose the former thought to be what I think of Take A Hike.
The music video is very intriguing. I really like the mysterious vibes she gives off during the scenes where her face is no way shown to the camera (i.e. the bedroom scene, the large hat scenes). The large hat scenes are probably my favourite out of the entire video as they do really help enhance the attitude I felt coming from the song. The way she acts when her face does appear is equally as captivating. I am not sure how to properly describe my thoughts (and I am probably overthinking it), but I feel like there is something else to those scenes rather than a simple closeup.
Song – 8.5/10 Music Video – 8/10 Overall Rating – 8.3/10
Hyomin has returned once again with the lead title track to her latest mini-album, both of which share the title Allure. We previously saw her earlier this year through her single release U Um U Um, which I quite enjoyed. The same single and Mango (her comeback single for last year’s promotions) are also featured on the Allure mini-album.
Hyomin has been a very versatile solo artist. She hasn’t stuck to one style since her solo debut years ago. This time around, Hyomin went with a retro sound, throwing us back to the 60s. And like the artist, the song seems to take a few turns of its own. The verses start the song off as well-paced before the song launches into a faster tempo chorus, which ultimately became faster in its second half. And it is this second half of the chorus that I think was my favourite bit of the song. And the buildup was quite worth it. The song itself is about using one’s charm to make another happy. I like Hyomin’s vocals in the song. They do sound cutesy and feminine but I think that was just her using a higher tone than usual for this song. But it does suit the retro sound quite well. I enjoyed the song quite a bit, making the song’s message quite successful.
The music video shows Hyomin in a bold black dress. A waiter delivers a certain make-up product (which I am not too sure what it is, though my guess would be a lipstick as the alternate title for the song is Lip Colour). After she uses this product, she gathers the attention of the people surrounding her, to which they all follow her. I really like that ending, where they are all copying her whilst following her in a single file. It really showed a cool look and I wonder if that is part of the choreography. I also like how she managed to blend into the retro-themed video given the bold nature of the red dress.
We do not see much of the choreography in the music video. We did see some and those parts look fine to me. I am particularly drawn to the second half of the chorus, which I think was nice. I also hope to see that single file we saw at the end of the music video in the choreography, for reasons I stated above.
Song – 8/10 Music Video – 8/10 Performance – 8/10 [To Be Updated] Overall Rating – 8/10
Hyomin has returned with another solo single, U Um U Um earlier this week and today we will be having a closer look at this comeback. We last saw the female soloist through herMango comeback last year. Once again I have included T-ARA in the title as they are still together. Hyomin recently expressed in an interview that the group wants to regroup for fans during their 10-year anniversary this year, which further highlights that they are still together as a 4-member group. But until then, let’s dive into the review.
U Um U Um is a dance song that actually has a very easy going and pleasant vibe. The instrumental is in no way heavy-handed, which is a departure from other dense and heavy sounding dance songs out there. But, this lighter style choice is quite deliberate. Hyomin’s vocals are much higher than what we have heard and the lighter instrumentation really compliments her vocal choice. The vocals, despite it being different than usual, manages to fill up the song quite nice, so it doesn’t seem like the song is lacking any elements when it comes to the vocals or instrumentation. I also really like the melodies in the song, which were made possible by the two identified elements that I have spoken about thus far. It gives the song that appealing flavour. I also like the deep ‘Um’ in the background during the choruses. They give off a nice texture that contrasts nicely with the rest of the song. Overall, this is something that I wouldn’t mind returning to often.
While the music video’s style has been attempted before, it has been a while since we last saw the one-shot take, so it is quite refreshing. And I think this makes everything run a lot smoother. It may have also given the song that smooth touch as well. I also liked how during the second verses, only the male dancers appeared to really highlight the fact that this is a one-shot music video as this would give Hyomin time to quickly change into another outfit, delivering a different atmosphere to the second half of the one-shot video. I thought this was rather smart and different from the rest.
While it was a one-shot type of video, the entirety of the video was choreography based. And I like this choreography because it brings back the sexy side of her, which we weren’t really treated to during her last comeback. It feels more fitted for Summer but I am not too troubled by that.
Song – 8/10 Music Video – 8/10 Performance – 8/10 Overall Rating – 8/10
Over the weekend, Jiyeon returned with a winter single release, One Day. This is Jiyeon’s first solo release since her solo debut 1 Minute 1 Second. It is also her first release since her and the members of T-ARA parted ways from their former company, T-ARA. As I stated in Hyomin’s solo comeback earlier this year, we haven’t heard much of the members or any news of a group comeback. There are some hopes with the court stating that MBK Entertainment does not have trademark rights to the group’s name and hence the girls are able to make a comeback under the name T-ARA if they choose to. But until then, let’s have a closer look at Jiyeon’s returning song.
Fitting for the Winter season, One Day takes on the ballad genre. It just isn’t the type of ballad where the vocalist is belting out high notes repetitively or emotionally presenting their story. Instead, Jiyeon’s vocals are much softer and delicate than any of the songs I have personally heard her sing. But it isn’t a fragile or emotional type of song. There is a hint of happiness and joy in her voice and in the instrumentation. I did think the instrumentation was a little overpowering at times, with it overshadowing her voices every now and then. I did like the opening to the choruses (‘Someday, One Day, Everyday‘). It was a very interesting hook in my opinion and probably the best sounding line in the entire song. It is not really my favourite type of ballad but definitely a nice song for the current climate in South Korea.
I think the music video was put together under short notice. It isn’t really one with high investment. It felt more like a photoshoot, compared to a music video. They did a good job of filtering the video to give it a golden appeal, which would add to a warming effect to the song and its lyrics. But other than that, there really isn’t much else to say about the video.
Song – 6.5/10 Music Video – 5/10 Overall Review – 5.9/10
T-ARA has many great non-title track songs, so it makes sense for me to do an album review for their 13th mini-album and final release before disbandment. There are multiple versions for their final release. First, you have a physical edition, which consists of songs recorded by all four members as a group. And then you have multiple versions that consist of the title track and each member’s solo song. For this review, I will be reviewing the digital edition (or essentially every song released so far, with exceptions of the Chinese version and Instrumental version of What’s My Name). Let’s go!
2. Reload – Compared to the title track, Reload is a much better song. However, I still don’t think there is enough to the song to make it ‘title track’ worthy. The song seems to be the girl’s response to their scandal after all these years. That’s what I got from the lyrics. From the first listen, everything sounds good. From the whispering vocals to the spy-like instrumental. But after a number of listens, you do get bored of it and it feels quite repetitive. Though, there are parts that do have an impact to some extent. (7/10)
3. 20090729 – The date in which the song is titled after is the date when T-ARA debuted. Judging from this, you would expect them to take on a ballad with this track. Their vocal abilities seem a little shaky here and the various rap-singing moments seemed unnecessary. But after many listens, you can constantly hear the emotions behind the girl’s voices and I literally get goosebumps after listening to this song every single time. It may not be a mind-blowing piece of music, but it is one damn good ballad to listen to. (8.5/10)
4. Diamond (Qri Solo) – While I understand that Qri doesn’t have the best voice out of the four, her song just doesn’t appeal to me. There is a nice exotic or foreign vibe within the song, but overall, the song felt sluggish and slow. There wasn’t much of a hook, which left the song lacking in many ways. There is a stage performance for this track and you can find by clicking the link HERE. (5/10)
5. Ooh La La (Hyomin Solo) – In comparison to the previous song, this is much more upbeat and a more fun song to listen to. There are aspects to the song that could have been better. Her vocals here are pretty good. But during the “Ooh La La” chants, I felt she was too dominating. Instead, the chants that followed shortly felt more like backing vocals more than anything. There could have been a more powerful instrumental to back the song and provided with a tough support. (7/10)
6. Real Love (Eunjung Solo) – This song provides great vocals for the album, something that seemed missing so far. I am not saying this because of those high notes (even though they were spectacular). There a nice jazz sound at the start, that influence seemed to disappear once the song progressed, turning it into a standard pop song, which was unfortunate. (7/10)
7. Lullaby (Jiyeon Solo) – Jieyon’s solo track seems to be a mix between some of the comments that I have already made. The track is more upbeat compared to Qri’s track, but somewhat slower than both Eunjung and Hyomin’s song. But like Qri’s track, there isn’t much of a hook and became forgettable, despite listening to it a couple of times already. The same can be said about the instrumental. The vocals are okay, but they aren’t the best on the album. (6/10)
Unfortunately, we have another group to add to the growing list of goodbyes. While their official disbandment won’t be until December, T-ARA has confirmed that the inevitable will be occurring. They last promoted with TIAMO at the end of last year with 6 members. Their contracts had expired last month and Soyeon and Boram chose not to renew it, hence ending their run with the group. The remaining four members (Qri, Eunjung, Hyomin and Jiyeon) chose to stay together until December this year. While it is not goodbye yet, this release will be the group’s 13th and final mini-album.
T-ARA is the one group who is saying goodbye without deviating from their usual upbeat releases. Don’t want to remind everyone about the ongoing disbandment news, but those groups have all chosen to return one last time with a ballad-like song. But it is still a normal day in the T-Ara camp with their upbeat sound. While I personally do like the song and think it is quite catchy, it does lack impact. There is definitely potential for the song to be dynamic and powerful. But it seems to hold back in that area, which does make it sound lacking in a way. The instrumental is probably the biggest example of that. It sounded cool and could have potentially become amazing. But instead, it didn’t seem to stand out. They could have done more to that funky xylophone sound, but instead, it seemed to just be there. The vocal work here is not groundbreaking, nor does it sound like their best. But it also not their worst. If there was one word to describe the song, the right one would probably “generic”.
Now, like every other fan of the group, I patiently waited last night for the music video. From what I understood, the video was meant to be up at 6 pm KST (7 pm where I live). But not a single message to communicate a delay or some sort of explanation for why it was uploaded late. I don’t want to sound like a fussy person, but it seems like their company has just given up on them. Okay, moving back to the video. It looked good, but I couldn’t stand how empty and lacking the video was. There were scenes of the girls looking back at their relationship with the dude and for a moment, some seriousness. And then at the end, they join hands together and smile. Given the circumstances regarding the comeback, I understand it. But I think it could have been explained or presented in a completely different way, which would make the video feel more engaging and interesting. To me, the video just confirms what I mentioned before regarding the company. Moving to a more brighter side of this review, I personally loved how they included references to Boram and Soyeon, through the six bottles, six pencils and six desks.
The performance was good but like the rest of the comeback, it didn’t feel like the right level of energy was channelling through it.
Song – 7/10 Music Video – 6/10 Performance – 6/10 Overall Rating – 6.5/10
Hyomin from T-Ara is finally back with another solo comeback. This time she has gone for a more sensual comeback. It has been two years since we last saw her promote as a solo artists. T-Ara did return last year for a very short while with a nice comeback, but sadly that was short lived. T-Ara has been busy with a China tour in the past few months.
I am quite torn with the song. Some parts suited her voice really well, but other parts were not that suitable for her. The vocals were first of all at a much higher key that what some singers even sing. Not the easiest song for people to sing and Hyomin doesn’t have a great of a voice to sound great. Out of all the parts, those where there were back up vocals were where she sounded most stable. Parts without the back vocals just sounded like she was straining her voice. And obviously it gets worse when she is trying to “sing live”. I did however like the instrumental of the song. Pretty calming and also very flow (something I don’t think I found in her voice). I know she is trying to sound sensual, but I can name tonnes of other songs where the pitch is not as high and still such a sensual comeback. It was also quite a slow song that kind of deterred me from wanting to go back to it. Don’t get me started on the English though. A lot more work can be done with the pronunciation. I know English is not her first language, but if you plan to include in your song (and have it has a huge chunk of your song), you better sound comprehensible. Parts of me want to say this is a nice song to listen to, but other parts just don’t want to hear it. I feel like it had a lot of potential, but maybe the choice of singer wasn’t ideal. Don’t kill me.
19+ rating… Oh I hate you. You put yourself on the corner of the videos when I barely see anything that provocative or controversial. Yes, I understand her standing there with no shirt on and covering her breast isn’t the best thing little kids should be exposed to. And for that I do agree with the 19+ rating for that. But beside that small section of the video, the rest of it didn’t seem to be what we were promised. Nam Goong Min plays the male in the video and while he does have a nice body, I sensed a lot of awkward chemistry between them. The song was slow, but it seems like everything was a little too slow in the video. Understand? Them falling for each other was interesting to watch, but those up close and personal scenes were such a bore. Not that I was expecting full on sexual scenes, but we were promised a steamy video. Yet, it seemed like I just got a cold shower. Hmmm… Lastly, I am quite surprised that his shirt stayed on throughout the video. Shouldn’t he too take off his shirt? That might increase views a bit, probably add a little bit more steam to the video. Now I am not saying Hyomin isn’t hot or anything (cause she is and those covering breast scenes caught me off guard), just I think a shirtless guy (especially Nam Goong Min) would make it a lot more sexual, don’t you think?
Dance wise, wow. I can feel the KPOP world getting ready the banning stickers on majority of the dance moves. I think the dance suits the song quite a bit. Quite sensual, quite slow. A little over the top in my opinion. Way too much focus on certain areas of her body instead of her face. But still, a really nice dance.
Overall, the comeback was okay. Some parts were a miss for me, other were great. So I guess I take the average of both. 5.5/10
T-Ara has returned after a year as a full group. They did make a comeback with Little Apple in December last year, but it was only with 4 members, which was disappointing. But now they are back as a six member group with a summer song that should be a total hit. No bias. T-Ara has literally had a massive rise of popularity in China and have focused most of their attention to the Chinese market, with this mini album containing both a Korean version of the song and also a Korean/Chinese version of the song. Only reason why I am not saying Chinese version directly, is that their Chinese version is basically Chinese for chorus and the rest is Korean. Not very “Chinese version” but it does the job.
Not going to lie, this is a pretty cool song. It is pretty catchy and addictive. The teaser did a very bad job at selling the song, but the song itself is pretty good. Though I am honest here, I am disappointed with the song. While I do dig the song and enjoy it, for T-Ara, it seems underwhelming. There really is not much of an impact that I expected from the band. Sugar Free and Number 9 were powerful, What Should I Do? was fun. But this, it just seemed far too mainstream for me. It was not what I had expected from T-Ara. I was disappointed that there was no rap section, but at the same time, the song would not suit a rap section. I really liked the chorus (it was quite cutesy sounding, but it worked) and the bit right after the chorus. Once again Qri and Boram got shoved to the side. Boram and Qri got a decent amount of time for Sugar Free, so I don’t know why they were shoved to the back once again. But the song was just right for my liking, just minus the complaints and the disappointment of style of song.
As for the music video, it was rather boring. But at the same time, I felt like the music video was talking about females in KPOP or actually about themselves. So my first theory, the girls represents all the girl groups in South Korea. Just normal looking and have “standard jobs” which I think would represent an alright song, popularity rank or fanbase. Now without improving on any of the three, the girls are no going to succeed. But once they change it up and go for the “sexy” concept, some many people go from the other popular groups and divert their attention to the “sexy” girls. And from there they enjoy their new popularity. OR T-Ara was reduced to a lower status after what happened a few years back. Then they change it up a bit and win their first award in a while. And then they bask in their new reclaimed popularity. That or I am looking far too much into it and should just enjoy what I see literally. But beside that, music video was rather boring. The sailor concept was rather weird, but yeah, the video was boring. And who buys bread only?
Dance fits in with the song pretty well. The chorus is just hella cute. And I liked it how they actually did take those cute dance moves and combined it with the sexy dance moves. Though I know people have done it before, it just feels like they blended it in very well for this comeback.
T-Ara did pretty well for this comeback. A few disappointing points here and there, but I think this comeback was decent enough. 7/10
They are back!!! It has been so long since I’ve done of these and I promised that they were gone. But they are back. Sorry… But this way, I can get more reviews done. Sometimes I have to cancel reviews because I have no time to do it, or newer artists are coming out and therefore, the certain artist’s review would usually be trashed. Yeah… Like for example, Park Boram’s review. I was meant to do that at the start of May, but I have so much work to do :(. Anyhow, I tried to theme them. This theme is female soloists. Yes, if you haven’t guessed, all the artists here are female soloists. Let’s go.
Also under the name of Elise as well, but for my purposes, let’s keep with Eunjung for now. This song features K.Will in the actual song, while K-iO from Speed has helped with the live performances for the first two weeks. I like the song. It is a nice dance ballad that fits in with the current weather in the Southern Hemisphere. The vocals of both Eunjung and the male artists featuring was really good as well. The music video was of a typical “break up” and “sorrow” type of video, where they used to be lovers, but then they drifted apart for whatever reason. It was okay to watch. The dance was cool as well. It matched the song quite well and the instrumental. However, there just happens to be something missing from this comeback which I can’t really identify. I just feel this entire comeback lacks attention and appeal to the public. 7/10
Any one who has read my reviews probably know how much of a big fan I am for Secret. I consistently love every song they put out. But this one, yeah, I thought was very boring. I was pumped for a Hyosung comeback, but this was not what I was expecting. There is too much focus on the sexy and not enough on the talent. There was nothing that was amazing from the song. The music video was a total bore to watch and the performances, I just gloss over. I’ve listened to the song once, and have not gone back to it since then. Even writing this review, I am putting the part where I listen to the song and watch the music video off. Sorry, but not this time Hyosung 😦 2/10
Now, while the last song was terrible and Eunjung was good, this took the cake for a “great” song. I love this song. It is catchy and it is fun to listen to. I am not turned off from it in anyway. Though, that phone vibration seems like what my phone sounds like, so every time I hear it, I think my phone is trying to get my attention. The music video is also quite colourful and matches the summery feel from the song. As for the dance, I don’t expect Park Boram to do much, so this dance took me by surprise. Her debut one had very little movement and it seems like she is becoming more comfortable on stage. Her debut was also another review that landed in the “maybe next time” pile. 8/10
I’m not going to do another Catch Up Review for the next one. Mainly because BOA’s comeback has been sitting on my waiting list for quite some time. And guess what, it is a DOUBLE REVIEW!! So expect Who Are You? and Kiss My Lips for the next review. Bye Bye!!
Welcome to the end of the 2014 charts. This chart has every single song that was released from the 1st of January 2014 to the 1st of December. I left the nitty gritty stuff out (aka. the numbers I used for the ranking) and made sure that everything was fair. So that means for songs that were released towards the end of the year would have received some extra increment to make sure that they were levelled out with the songs released in January. Other numbers used included whether songs were on the YouTube Playlist of The Month and each song was re-reviewed in categories of “song, music video and dance”. Below are just some interesting facts that you may enjoy in regards to this chart.
The very first song released to be included on the charts are Rain’s 30 Sexy and La Song. The last song released before the cut off date was Infinite F’s Heartbeat.
T-Ara’s Sugar Free (2) was the only song throughout the whole chart to score the maximum of 40 for the song re-review.
VIXX is the first boy group to appear in the charts at 14th place with Eternity.
As touched on above, this year the charts are dominated by the girl groups, with 13 boy groups versus 37 girl groups (repeated groups not excluded).
Heavily promoted songs tend to rank higher than songs that were released as a single and not promoted.
The following artists achieved the next few positions after 50th place: SPEED, Crayon Pop, Z:EA, Zhou Mi (Super Junior), BTOB, Infinite, UKISS, AOA and Gain (Brown Eyed Girls)
Up & Down
I’m In Love
NS Yoon G
Good Night Kiss
HA:TFELT (Yenny – Wonder Girls)
You Don’t Love Me
This Is Love
Like A Cat
B.B.B (Big Baby Baby)
Sunmi ft. Lena
My Copy Cat
Don’t Look At Me Like That
Song Ji Eun (Secret)
What About You?
Dont Touch Me
Singing Got Better
I Need You
Whatcha Doing Today?
Pretty Age 25
Song Ji Eun (Secret)
1 Minute 1 Second
Mamamoo ft. K.Will & Wheesung
Gain (Brown Eyed Girls)
Touch My Body
Not Spring, Love, or Cherry Blossoms
HIGH4 ft. IU
THAT’S IT!!! 2014 IS OVER AND 2015 IS APPROACHING. WISHING YOU ALL (IN YOUR RESPECTIVE TIME ZONES) A HAPPY NEW YEAR. I only have 6 hours to go and I am excited. Party hard (but not too hard) and I will see you next year!! aka. in the next few days ^^
Code: RED FONT – WINNERS BLUE FONT – HONOURABLE MENTION
BEST ROOKIE GROUP
2014, like the past few years, have seen so many new KPOP bands debut. So many new bands, so much that I have a really difficult job to select certain artists and also keep up with the old styles. 2014 saw the big 3 companies debut their own groups, but I have to be honest, the stand outs came mostly from the smaller companies. One group in particular stood out from the rest: Mamamoo. Harmony and totally different style from what we are used to. Honourable mentions go to GOT7.
The one song that is overlooked by everyone on the album is the instrumental. I freaking love instrumentals, and this year, KPOP decided to tease me with so many new instrumentals. That being said, this year the winner of Best Instrumental is Ain’t Nobody by Ye-Eun (Ha:tFelt). Honourable mentions go to Sugar Free by T-Ara.
KPOP = Singing. There for it is only right for this year to have an award for Best Vocals, right? Well, the winner goes to Ha:tfelt – Ye Eun (Wonder Girls). I was so amazed by here singing this year that it blew my mind, particularly her title track Ain’t Nobody. Honourable mentions go to IU (yes, I think most of us agree).
Many KPOP songs have many rapping parts. At the same time, rappers need some recognition. Though, I feel my choice this year could be a little odd, only one person (in my opinion) did a really amazing job. Junhyung from Beast did a wonderful job in Good Luck, 12:30 and the many songs he featured in. Zico from Block B takes Honourable Mentions.
Since 2013, many subunits have been on trend. Even though subunits have been losing trend, many bands this year debuted their own subunits. However, I think we should move away from the new subunits. Cause this year an old subunit wins. Orange Caramel steals Best Subunit with release of three different songs. Honourable mentions goes to Rainbow Blaxx.
The new trend for 2014. Collaborations between artists have been on the rise. This year though, if you were a KPOP fan for a while, you would know already who the winner is. Soyu & JungGiGo’s Some steals the show, topping the end of year charts conducted in South Korea and winning Best Song as well on the SBS Music Festival. Well of course they would win, considering that they SLAYED the charts. Honourable Mentions go to Sane and Raina’s collaboration, Midsummer Night’s Sweetness.
RISING STAR OF THE YEAR
This year there has been so many stars that have started to become more popular. The nominees tend to be bands that have debuted in the previous year, and with help of comebacks, started to become well known in the industry. I think for the first time ever, I am going to be honest and put forward two winners to this category. First of all, BTS say a boost in popularity and have become a band that I look forward to listening to. Second of all AOA saw new popularity with release of Miniskirt, Short Air and Like A Cat. Both bands, obviously, rose a lot this year and I found it hard to differentiate them.
BEST JAPANESE SONG
If you don’t know (I won’t be surprised) I also review some Japanese song. 2015 will be the year where I start to review more Japanese songs for you all. However, 2014 also had a lot of catchy and cool Japanese songs. The winner for this year is Korean boy band MYNAME’s F.F.Y. Such a catchy song. As for honourable mentions, it goes to AAA’s Showtime.
KPOP is also known for its dancing. 2014 saw some interesting dances, catchy dances, and some dances that have no words to describe it. And that can be a good thing or a bad thing. This year, T-ara took the position as best dance. It was probably the most addictive dance and it was pretty easy as well. It matched the song and most importantly, I loved it. Honourable mentions to Infinite’s Back.
A brand new category for 2014. Every award show or some kind of award giving platform has the “best album” award. And yes, this year, there are so many freaking great albums (like any other year). In my opinion, the best album of the year goes to F(x)’s Red Light. All, if not most, of the songs were amazing to listen to and were so great. Every freaking song was different, and though that maybe risky, F(x) pulled it off as a flowing album. Honourable Mentions goes to AKMU’s Play.
BEST MALE SOLOIST
Solos don’t tend to be the trend this year. Some bands saw new members branch into a solo career, however it seems like more and more KPOP idols (whether male or female) are branching out to acting or variety shows. However, the winner to this category is a person who started offically his own solo career with a lot of experience in the music industry. Crush is the winner. Damn, this dude’s songs are so good. You should check them out. Honourable mentions: JungGiGo.
BEST FEMALE SOLOIST
It seems like more and more females are branching out onto the stage. We saw many KPOP divas making their solo debuts on the stage with new and fresh songs from bands like T-Ara or Secret. We already have divas who have accomplished a start to their solo career and saw comebacks of very big names. This year, one solo stood out and that is Secret’s Song Ji Eun. Releasing her first solo mini album, she did quite well considering the competition she was going through. Honourable Mentions goes to Sunmi.
BEST FEMALE GROUP
Sexy concept by girl groups have been on the rise. If you know me well, then you probably already know my pick. However, so many girls groups made their comeback this year. Some picked up a lot of popularity and saw massive wins for the first time. Girl’s Day hitted big with their amazing single Something. They later went on to release Darling and I Miss You. Being one of the biggest girl groups of the year, they were sure to pick some prize up. APINK steals honourable mentions this year with their massive single Mr Chu and their latest hit Luv, which blew up and swept all the December trophies for 2014.
BEST MALE GROUP
There have always been a large influx of boy groups and this year it is no different. I was so impressed I was just going to choose all 10 nominees as winners. However, there can only be one winner (well, technically), so I guess I have to choose one. I am going to put down VIXX. They released Eternity and Error this year and both songs were hits for the band. Not only that, they displayed great dance moves and skills. Beast takes out honourable mentions with Good Luck and 12:30, both being very great songs that also delivered like what VIXX had to show. (Just VIXX nudged a head a little bit).
BEST MUSIC VIDEO
This year, most of my Best Music Video Nominees saw the depressing side of KPOP. 8 music videos had this sad or dark storyline to tell. 2 music videos were made in a soft hearted and were really cheerful. G.o.D’s music video for The Story Of Our Lives, told the amazing bond between family and that the outside will never be able to define the inside. Megan Lee features in the song and both band and soloist did an amazing job singing and pouring out their emotions. By the way, SM made a video outside of the box. F(x)’s Red Light, takes honourable mention.
25 songs were nominated for Best Song for 2014. All were to an excellent standard. There were clear stands out. Something by Girl’s Day, EXID’s Up and Down and Beast’s Good Luck are this year’s honourable mentions. However, which song took Best Song category for 2014? Check the song and music video down below.
Welcome back to part 3 of these catch up reviews… Today’s theme is girl groups!!!! So many girl groups came back while I was away and there are so many songs that must be reviewed. It is going to be a long few weeks.
The first ever Korean group attempting the EDM genre and I think it was a smashing hit. Yes, I said smashing. You have a problem? I liked everything about this song. The vocals were nice and the song was really catchy. Any time I need a song to get my blood rushing, especially exercising, I basically turn to this song because it makes really want to work out to the beat of the song. The instrumental also became my ringtone. The music video fitted the electronic feel that the song has and I think it was a great video. Just, maybe they went a little overboard regarding the flashing lights. I also like the choreography. It is pretty simple and pretty addictive. All that sugar sprinkling everywhere. 10/10
This song is not the best song on this list, but it sounded a lot better than Touch My Body. That said, the song was your average KPOP song. There is nothing flashy about this and there really isn’t much once again. Though, now there is another member getting blocked out. Bora, along with Dasom gets only one part. Disappointing sometimes. The music video came a little under fire due their similarities with Red Light by Tiesto.Be the judge for yourself and check both music video’s out. The dance is pretty average as well. A lot of turning, but it suited the song and the actual feel of the song, as it gave off that “end of summer” feel to it. 6/10
Opposite end of the spectrum now. SNSD TaeTiSeo made their anticipated return. Many people liked their comeback. I sadly did not. I was very disappointed with the song. it was bland and not that appealing. I tried my best to get into it, just really did not sit well with me. The song to me was a lot like an average KPOP song. Not that grand or anything that I expect from a billion dollar company (I might be wrong with my figures). As for the music video, I watched it once. The start of it was interesting and the rest, long forgotten memory. If anything that basically proved how boring it was. The dance was not that memorable. I pretty much prefered Adrenaline over this song. Adrenaline was a much better song. 0/10
Wow, I am so bummed out from writing that. Just came home from dinner and I am so tired. Hahaha.. Next review theme is: BIG name boy groups!!!! See you next time…
Back a few months ago (like last month), Jiyeon from T-Ara was the first member to go solo in the band. Now it has moved onto another member. Hyomin was finally made her solo debut with Nice Body which features Loco as the main rapper for the song, but recently Sungmin from Speed has been featuring in the song to cover Loco during the live performances. Anyway, I think what their management is doing is pretty smart, just let’s ignore the fact that the management caused the big scandal which may have ruined the band’s reputation forever. What? Don’t leave me? Just quoting the news okay? Yeah, sorry. What I said then could be the truth or could be a total lie. This review is branded with a RANT ALERT (something I am going to start adding, if there is a rant)
The song to be honest i quite bland. Though it is catchy, it is not as memorable as other songs. It is quite boring and really does not have much of a hook compared to the other songs out there at the moment. I find the rapper’s addition in the actual song to be very distracting to listen to. I prefer Sungmin’s rapping, but still the parts do conflict with the entire song. The chorus was catchy, but the rest of the song is not that much of a stand out for me to continue listening to. It does have a summer feel to the song, but it is not as strong as newer and past Summer songs. The song talks about the “stereotypes” for the perfect girl and why not be a better time to release the song as it is Summer where everyone wears literally things to define their curves. I like the lyrics of the song, just if the song was not made into much of a dance show off type of feel but more of a mocking type of the song than it could have been a bigger hit. But overall, the song was quite boring.
I haven’t watched the music video is full detail yet. Once again, to me, it is quite boring. I would play the video, say I watch it, but end up going to another tab on my browser. So basically it is about a chubby person who wishes to have a nice body and dreams of a magical doughnut that allows her to become the perfect girl, but then wakes up to be chubby again. That would be a kill joy right there. It is an okay video, but it just focuses too much on the perfect figure. And I love it how every time such videos come out and talk about the becoming skinnier, it neglects the naturally skinny people. I am one of the latter and absolutely hate being skinny. I get overshadowed and looked down upon by others and we getting treated that we are sick. If you are concerned about your weight, don’t. Be proud of yourself. You are just the way you are and skinny girls and guys with abs won’t help you with that. Actually, they make your life worse. I am so sick and tired of people asking whether I get feed or how I stay skinny. I am a guy and I don’t want to be skinny. I have friends that are girls who find it hard to cope with being skinny. Just be yourself, because there is always someone for you out there to love and bond with you. But beside that mini rant, overall a boring video.
The dance is okay. Not as great as I expected. I have to like the start and the use of the tape measure. I also like the dance where they dodge the punches and stuff. But overall, it just seems like a normal dance that there really is nothing to comment on.
To give an honest score, 3/10. It is okay, just not as memorable and that grand as I had hoped for. But how did you like it? Actually, which T-Ara solo song did you like? Jiyeon’s 1 Minute 1 Second or Hyomin’s Nice Body? Answer in the poll below.
T-Ara is back with only one member. I only kid. Jiyeon from T-Ara has officially made her solo debut with 1 Minute 1 Second. Now is it a great thing that she came back alone, I don’t know, but she has been proven to still show the support that T-Ara still gets. And also, this is the first of the many reviews that will be coming out after today. Today, I just finished my final piece of assessment for the term and tomorrow night I start my term break! Woo! However, I am still a little busy during these holidays but will try to manage to put reviews up for you guys. Hahahaha… Anyway, not only Jiyeon is going solo but also Hyomin, who has not yet released her song yet, but will be doing so very soon early next month, I believe. Saw the teaser a few moments ago, and I am not entirely sure yet.
This song is pretty awesome. A little complaints here and there, but it has to be a pretty cool song to listen to. The song itself is pretty catchy to listen to. The “Never Ever” part is pretty good. He voice is quite husky for the song which fits the “sexy” concept that this song has. But was it a chart topper in my mind? I don’t think so. It did lack that passion or that “impact” which I tend to talk about. The song started off well but it was very repetitive and kind of felt boring towards the end after listening to it a few times. There just was nothing “loud” about this song. It did not change around that much or even slightly. It just basically sounded monotone all the way through. But still a pretty good song. The chorus was pretty cool, but I think I only think it is cool because, well, when I listen to the song, I tend to pair with the dance and the dance for this was awesome. But honestly, still think it was a cool song, just it could have been enhanced a little bit to make it sound better.
The music video is quite confusing. I assume Jiyeon is a patient in a metal hospital. However because of her love, she believes she lives in a house with no rooms. Everyday she would wake up and do the same thing. She cuts up a few vegetables, she waters her plant and then she sits down and knits. That is all. Nothing amazing about your life girl. So the girl each time wakes up notices something ifs off and I think everything that does become off, it reminds her of her past. That is basically what I think the video is about. Not sure about the rain indoors though, nor do I think the dance scenes are relevant in any way. The music video plot line was pretty bright but then the dance scenes were so freaking dark and it really ruined the feel of the story and actually made the music video quite distracting.
The dance was mighty cool. I have to be honest, when they said that they were creating a song and concept that mirrored Park Ji Yoon’s Adult Ceremony, they were not kidding. This reminds me of that a lot. Maybe I just read it too many times, but the dance did have the same feel. I love the dance with the wall and the chorus as well. The jacket dance was awesome.
7.5/10. I like the song and the dance, but not entirely sure about the music video. The comeback is pretty cool as well. However, as you may have noticed recently that other female soloists have made their comeback in the pop genre. So who was your favourite? G.Na? Jung Hyosung? Or Jiyeon? Or you did not like any? Answer below!!!!
Woah, 2013 is over (Soz, a tad late) and each year KPOP fans always end up looking forward to the end of year music festivals. These “festivals” are held on the final days of the year by the 3 major boradcasting companies of South Korea (ie. KBS, SBS, MBC). It is a stage where the artists who are active during the year can come together and celebrate by putting on some music and performing different stages from the ones that they had promoted during the year. So this means there are many different collaborations between artists or remix stages which would have fans screaming for. Because there happens to be little songs to review at this time of the year (end of Jan, don’t ask why), I thought I do this and release it in time for the Vietnamese (Or Chinese) New Year!!!!!
KBS Gayo Daechukje
Honestly, I was not satisfied with any of the collabs. They seem to be a last minute thing which made the show rather messy. They had good songs, but Iw as not satisfied with the way they were presented.
Crayon Pop’s Bar Bar Bar was a good stage. The start got everyone hyped up and when the song actually started, boy was the screams loud! It was rather fresh and different stage that everyone must’ve had enjoyed.
EXO’sIntro + Growl sounded amazing. Now if only they were not replayed 563495630295634092560 times this year and everyone talking about them, I would not think poorly of them. However the intro and the performance was really good.
APINK was one of the few bands to throw in a new instrumental for their “sexy version” of No No No. I enjoyed the dance and I liked the new mix.
Beast had a pretty cool stage as well. They kept their normal instrumental but made something interested out of it.
Sistar’s “femme fatale” Give It To Me looked really good. Minus the not so good looks of the dancers, I really liked their dance break and Dasom has my heart beating even faster.
Miss A’s remixes were amazing this year. I like them much better than the actual song. Amazing right?Well, honestly it is just a new instrumental over some parts and then the actual song itself. And Min, walking away like a boss and carrying on singing after getting hit in the face.
SBS Gayo Daejeon
First stage which I enjoyed was VIXX’sOn & On and VooDoo Doll. I honestly thought that Hyde and On & On would have been a better match, but they still seemed to pull it off pretty well. I think I am turning into a fan. Damn.
Z:EA and Nine Muses collaboration stage with Ghost Of The Wind, Glue and finally hit song Bounce was another stage that literally got me into it. It is such a good stage with the two bands together, where it was Nine Muses first time and Z:EA’s second time since debut.
Another collaboration stage goes to Girl’s Day and APINK’sExpectation and No No No. Honestly, it seemed APINK had less airtime than Girl’s Day. Not sure about the detail, but it kind seems unfair. But both suited the stage every well singing each other’s song.
Crayon Pop’sBar Bar Bar was pretty good. But the camera work destroyed the good stage.
T-Ara had a lot of hate, but I seemed to enjoy this stage. Number 9 but vampire version. Not much change to the song, except for really creepy dance breaks. And BOOOOBSSS!!!!!
2NE1 had an alight stage. Though they just sang Missing You and Do You Love Me?, this still had remarkable stage preference.
Taeyang and G-Dragon seemed to had some fun on stage. I liked the lineup of songs they had coming. They sung 1AM, Crooked, Ringa Linga and Bad Boy. Considering that the whole group as not there, they did a good job filling up 3 other parts as well.
MBC Gayo Daejejeon
Miss A’s classy club mix for Hush sounded the best and probably has to be my most favourite stage out of all the stages listed here. It sounded to sexy and cool all at the same time.
T-Ara’sNumber 9 and What Should I Do was a great stage. They combined the two songs into a club beat kind of song which flowed pretty well, considering the two extreme opposites for each song.
Ailee’s rapping before her performance , U&I, was da bomb.
F(x)’sRum Pum Pum Pum was pretty good as well. Was not as impressed with the original version though.But the instrumental and ending of this stage was awesome!!! And finally F(x) gets a stage remix for an end of year festival.
B1A4’s rock remix for What’s Happening? was also a pretty cool performance. Literally got me going with the beat.
Infinite brought a new thing to the stage with Destiny remixed with the instrumental of Deception. Something that was quite unexpected but sounded pretty good despite the two songs sounding completely different.
Give It To Me by Sistar was pretty cool as well if the little bit of dubstep (I think) mixed in the song as well. Hyorin’s intro with Sweet Dream was pretty cool.
Kara’s medley of songs was pretty good. And considering the departure of two members, it fitted the occasion. They performed Lupin, Step, Damaged Lady, Mister and Honey (not sure about the last one though.
If you watched the performances, which one did you like? Honestly, when I was watching the performances on YouTube, all I thought was that it seemed too much like a normal music show rather than something to be called a “End Of Year Festival”. I think these stages are losing their purpose. But anyway, still a fantastic line-up and amazing stages!!! What were your favourite stages of the three nights?