[Review] My Swagger – GOT7

While I did promise to do a set of reviews for JPOP releases by girl groups, I am having a hard time finding songs to fill that set. But yet, there is an abundance of boy groups releasing JPOP songs. So, for today, I have picked one song by one of my favourite groups, GOT7. My Swagger, released in May, ended up topping charts in Japan, showing the group’s popularity.

Right off the bat, just by listening to the first few seconds of their song, you could tell it was going to be a messy song. They do not mess around with their intense and more hardcore EDM sound. I tend to get worried when it comes to such songs because some aspects are hidden under the midst of all those loud sounds, such as the vocals. But I would gladly headbang to this. I know.  The song itself was quite catchy and left a positive impression (i.e. no headaches) on me when I first listened to it. Those vocals weren’t hidden at all and not once did the song feel repetitive. I think the vocal work contributed to that. As for the raps though, I don’t think it is their personal best. It felt dragged out and their tone didn’t feel as hard-hitting as in their Korean releases. The build-up was quite good, hyping the song up until the beat is dropped for the chorus. Not exactly fond of the ending, though. Overall, not a total fan of the song style, but they make it sound pretty good.

I thought the use of the pictures was interesting. They didn’t amount to much but it made the video look appealing. One thing I did notice was that the video started off much more focused on the tough sound and seriousness. But that was kind of dissolved into nothing as we proceeded with the video and the guys started to interact with the camera and each other. I know it is an odd observation that probably would be more disapproved (such as the guys were always like that from the very start). While it fit the music video, in the end, I thought it was rather odd. Poor Youngjae (at the end) and the moment he realised something was up. Overall, the video wasn’t too bad.

The dance was pretty good. Given the song style and their capabilities as dancers, they did pretty much was expected. Though I think we saw more of the choreography during the chorus, rather than the verses (so I am essentially going from that).

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 7.5/10

[Album Review] Flight Log: Arrival (6th Mini Album) – GOT7

GOT7 has returned with the final album in their Flight Log series. The group first released Flight Log: Flight and the title track Fly back in early 2016. They later made their comeback with Hard Carry, as part of Flight Log: Turbulence in September 2016. Now, they are back with Flight Log: Arrival and their latest title track, Never Ever, which is linked below.

Flight Log: Arrival – Album Cover

1..Never Ever (title track)Click here to see my review for Never Ever (7.25/10)

2. Shopping Mall – Song titles tend to confuse me. This one may be the most random one, but yet it somehow manages to get tied to a standard song theme. Shopping Mall is a bland track that didn’t capture my attention. The opening of the song is pretty good (it was the only memorable part of the song or the only thing that I remembered about the song) but the rest of the song seemed lackluster. The track itself is a typical pop track. The vocals and raps seem okay. But as I said, there isn’t much in the song. (4/10)

3. Paradise – Paradise’s instrumental caught my attention, something the previous song didn’t do. It is another instrumental that is right up my alley. At first, when I heard the song, I thought it sounded pretty generic, especially the vocals. However, after multiple listens, I think I can say that the song is growing on me. The vocals do sound quite good, and the raps seem quite smooth. The chorus was quite catchy, with the repetition of “Paradise” and the instrumental in the background. It isn’t flashy and is more on the simple side, but that won’t mean it would be a weaker song. (6/10)

4. Sign – It is one of the slower songs on the mini album. From the outside, you may think that I would find this song on more of the dull side. And I probably would have thought the same thing.  But I actually like this song. It is an interesting mix that works pretty well. It reminds me of RnB almost. The instrumental uses synths and electronic sounds, but it a much slower manner. The vocals worked wonderfully and do show off their vocal abilities. Youngjae’s extra loud vocals during the bridge gave the song an extra push forward, which was much appreciated because if it weren’t there,  then the song would have fallen into the generic category as well. (7/10)

5. Go Higher – Go Higher is the party anthem of the mini album. The song reminded me of DJ Got Us Falling In Love (I know, quite random). But then it clicked because I associate DJ Got Us Falling In Love with parties. (Yep, I have a social life. Also, it is a song that is played at a majority of the parties that I go to). And it is one of the few songs that I know the lyrics off by heart). To get the full effect of the song, you need to have the volume up high and throw in a little more bass! It sounds amazing. The vocals/raps are not hidden by the instrumental. But I would have liked the instrumental track to have more of an intense and powerful punch to get everything going. Talking about the instrumental, it is an odd mash between different EDM sounds, but they all manage to work altogether. (7.5/10)

6. Q – This is probably the fluffiest track of all from GOT7. It has a cute sound to it, which isn’t something that GOT7 would often do. And surprisingly, I like it. Maybe it is because it compliments the vocals of some members. That harmony for the “I just want a cue” with all the vocalists (JB, Jinyoung, Youngjae and Yugeom) was probably the highlight of the song. Mark’s rap was also quite good here. I also have a confession to make, but as I was listening to the song on the bus today, I was trying to decipher what Q meant. For a while, I thought it was a cute sounding song, but the guys were singing “I just was to kill.” Thank God, I did some research once I got home. Or else things would have been a little embarrassing. (8/10)

7. Don’t Care (양심없이) – Annoying instrumental, if I have to be honest. But the vocals and the raps sound pretty good. The way they sing just seem to roll along and make everything feel so smooth. Surprisingly, that effect fitted well with the song and work well with the instrumental. The RnB sound was quite prominent, and on top of that, it does sound quite sensual as well. I like what they were doing, just not enjoying the instrumental that much (yet). Who knows if this track will grow on me? (I have a feeling it might) (6/10)

8. Out – This is the one track that I looked forward to. It has that B-side track feel, which was a little disappointing, but it is was the one track that had the right level of impact. I love the different tempos in the song. Some parts were slow, while others were much more upbeat. Likewise, the vocals and raps gave the song a lot of variety. Great instrumental, as well. The catchiness (and Jackson’s voice) of “Wait a minute, I’m out” made it sound and feel much cooler. I also wonder what the inspiration for the song was. Was it inspired by their ongoing antics and the fact they end things by saying “I’m 1 Out, I’m 2 Out”? (9/10)

Overall Album Rating – 7/10

Flight Log: Arrival – Teaser Image

 

[Review] Never Ever – GOT7

GOT7 has finally returned with the third part of their Flight Log era. Their comeback is highly anticipated and everyone has high expectations for the comeback, due to the success of Hard Carry and Fly. Their mini album, Flight Log: Arrival, features the title track, Never Ever. Sadly, Jackson ran into a little health scare during the week, causing him to now miss out on the first week of promotions. Hopefully, he will recover soon and rejoin the promotions. (I was going to pull off “they landed safely” pun here in the introduction, but that seems to conflict with what the 3 music videos are telling us.)

Never Ever, to me, falls in between Fly and Hard Carry. Both contains EDM elements, as does this song. But what separates them is the intensity. Fly seems to be more of a chill track, while Hard Carry is quite intense. Never Ever isn’t as chill as Fly or isn’t as intense as Hard Carry. Hence why I think it lies quite nicely in between both songs. The song is interesting. I love everything about the song, minus one vital part. The vocals, the raps, the instrumental, the beat. Everything sounds really amazing. Yugyeom’s intro was jaw-dropping and the way some of the members dragged out the words in the song sounded nice. Just the chorus lets me down so much. The songs instrumental builds up quite nicely to the first chorus and you expect the beat to drop. And it did drop. Just in an anticlimactic way. It was choppy and it felt very empty. As if there was more to the chorus and they just left it out. I liked the vocals but not the instrumental for the chorus (nor the background “ooooaaaahhhhh”s). The song was produced by JYP. And I am not putting the blame on him because he has produced some amazing songs out there. But there might have been a reason why he stopped producing songs for JYP artists and why they went elsewhere to get songs (or write songs themselves). But honestly, everything in the track, besides the chorus, was fantastic and I will be replaying the song constantly (too late, already started) with or without the chorus, just to hear the rest of the song.

From what I observed in all the music videos released by GOT7, the HD quality just keeps on getting better and better. Maybe the lighting was better in this video. But never have I seen the colours so bold or striking. Check out the leaves in the glass cube or the white hospital hallway. Also observed were the connections between the Fly and Hard Carry videos. Fly was connected to Hard Carry via the scene where Jinyoung body would fly up, while he was lying down. Never Ever brought a lot of elements that made Hard Carry, such as the glass cube, Youngjae smashing the glass cube and the underwater scenes. Fly told us that Jinyoung’s friends had died. Hard Carry seemed to have told us how they died. And Never Ever seemed to tell us how Jinyoung was brought to life. The scenes in Never Ever was a little confusing but I think I got the connections between the other videos down pat (do comment if I am wrong. I tend to be wrong 99% of the time when it comes to deciphering what music videos are showing us). It is still a great video to watch, though. The visuals of the video and the group looked really nice. To me, GOT7 just continues to get more handsome with each video.

From what I see, the choreography fits the song. Some of the moves looked pretty cool. But as a whole, it seemed to lack something. Both Hard Carry and Fly had the right level of impact for the respective song. Here, it doesn’t seem to be as impressive and impactful as their past dances.

Song – 7.5/10
Music Video – 9/10
Performance – 4/10
Overall Rating – 7.25/10

KPOPREVIEWED 2016 Awards – Part 2

Click here to see the list of nominees for this year’s awards and scroll down to find out who wins!!!

If you have yet to see Part 1 (which also explains this corner) please click here.


BEST MALE ROOKIE GROUP

2016 saw a lot of new boy groups make their debut on the stage. Compiling the list of nominees for this section was extra hard because there were so many great debuts that just missed out on a spot on the list. The winner of the Best Male Rookie Group 2016 is Astro, who made continuous comebacks after their debut, pushing them into the spotlight. Honourable mentions are given to VRomance for their debut song, She.


BEST FEMALE ROOKIE GROUP

Like the male rookie group section above, a lot of girl groups made their debut in 2016. And a lot of them provided us with the hottest tracks of the year. WJSN, otherwise known as Cosmic Girls, made their debut with Mo Mo Mo and came back with one of the best tracks of the year: Secret. They are my pick for Best Female Rookie Group. Honourable Mentions goes to BlackPink and I.O.I (It was very hard to choose for this category).


BEST MALE SOLOIST

As every other year, solo artists are debuting and making comebacks. 2016 saw the long-awaited debuts of some main vocalists of different idol groups and the return of solo artists that we have known for a while. The winner has to be Zico (Block B) with his ballad track: I Am You, You are Me. This one track alone has been a chart topper and gave the rapper a new side. Honourable mention goes to Eric Nam and his surge in popularity this year with his releases.


BEST FEMALE SOLOIST

2016 was a very big year for female solo artists. Like the male solo artist awards, big names came back, while long-awaited debuts were made. My pick for the winner of Best Female Soloist goes to Taeyeon (SNSD). Her singles have been remarkable thus far. Honourable mentions goes to Hyosung (Secret), whose song is still being replayed, half a year after release.


BEST MALE GROUP

So many to consider. Can’t count with my fingers for this category and the next. But it has been a big year for male groups (and likewise female groups). Out of all the artists, I have to pick Seventeen as the group that stood out the most and hence are the winners here. As for honourable mentions, GOT7 takes it this year.


BEST FEMALE GROUP 

As mentioned above, girl groups have also had a very big year in KPOP. And there were too many to count as well. But my overall pick for Best Female Group has to be Mamamoo. 2016 has been their best year yet and I hope there are even better years to come. Oh My Girl receives honourable mentions for their releases of high quality and catchy songs.


BEST ALBUM

Now, I promised album reviews this year and my apologies, I failed to deliver. I asked you guys again (thanks to everyone who contributed to the survey) and album reviews are still something you guys want. I can’t review every one of them, but I will try my best to cover the main and biggest releases. As for 2016, Wings released by BTS as their 2nd Studio album is my pick for best album. I also thoroughly enjoyed the songs released by B.A.P as their third studio album, Carnival, which also takes Honourable Mention.


BEST MUSIC VIDEO

Many great videos were released this year. From amazing plots to great cinematography, or just the standard video that looks amazing, 2016 had it all. My picks for both the winner and honourable mention were videos that were long in length, but one focused on an action-packed story and the other for its complexity. The winner is B.A.P‘s Skydive and honourable mention goes to BTS‘s Blood Sweat & Tears.


BEST DANCE/PERFORMANCE

And as with every year, KPOP groups and solo artists have amazing dances that should be commended. There were so many top contenders, that it was quite hard to compile the list of ten. But nonetheless, my pick for best dance would have to be GOT7‘s Hard Carry and honourable mention goes to The Eye by Infinite.

 


BEST SONG OF THE YEAR

The hardest award to decide for. Hahaha… I put down 22 songs for this award. 22 amazing songs. And now I have to narrow the list to just 1. The difficulties. That being said, I won’t announce it words. Just watch the video below. But before that, let’s look at the honourable mentions that I manage to narrow down from that list of 22. Hover over the pictures to find out who and which song were picked. Note that these honourable mentions or the winners are not chosen via the end of year charts, but my thoughts alone.

And my pick of Best Song of 2016 goes to……

veryniceseventeen.gif

VERY NICE – SEVENTEEN

Congratulations to all winners, honourable mentions and nominees. Everyone in general!!

[Review] Home Run – GOT7

[This review was written and scheduled a few months back in preparation for my absence in December. The standard posts for the end of the year (comebacks I have missed in November & December, the end of year charts + KPOPreviewed awards will be written and posted after my return. No weekly charts will be uploaded for the last week of November and all of December.]

GOT7 previously made their comeback with Fly, back in March (earlier this year). They returned shortly after to promote Home Run, which was the second title track off their mini album, Flight Log: Departure. Home Run was released later on and there is no music video to accompany it (hence the short review).

Home Run is a solid song. I personally like it. Fly was very heavy in terms of the sound and the song was a lot serious. Home Run has this more cheerful tone and is more casual. From the raps to the vocals in this song, the song managed to give us a chance to listen to each member. The line distribution in the song is much more fair and even across, which is not that common in the industry, as you may think. I would like the raps to be a little better. They aren’t awful or anything, but they could have been enhanced somehow to give it more of a hook or ring. Maybe the song didn’t need to be rap dense (though I know GOT7 wants to focus more on that). What we have already is quite balanced. Just a suggestion floating by. The instrumental kind of mimics the sound of a baseball bat hitting the ball. I find it amazing how lyricists manage to make analogies between the concept of the song and the topic in question (the majority of the time, it is love). Moving back to the instrumental, the instrumental for the song changes up here and there in the song, which works really well. When I say “change up”, it isn’t anything major. The instrumental is consistent and flows nicely. Just there is some slow parts and some faster parts. Overall, I think the song is quite nice and all aspects of the song were great.

There is no music video for Home Run. However, like everyone else is saying, it deserves one.

The dance was pretty cool as well. Toned down and more casual compared to the dance that accompanied Fly. It fits nicely into the baseball concept of the song. The timing with the sounds of the ball hitting in the bats and the dance was quite enjoyable to watch. I did like the “Home Run, Home Run” part after every chorus. Great hook for the song and dance.

Final Rating – 8/10

[Review] Hard Carry – GOT7

Yes, I am falling behind with my reviews. I am currently in the final weeks of the semester and should technically be preparing for exams, but no student in university starts studying from exams before the end of the semester is up. So, I shall take this time and write a review for GOT7’s latest song, Hard Carry.

Not my favourite term of all time, but it is a great way to explain the song: Hard Carry is lit. I am totally loving it. It is really addictive and super catchy. I am not a major fan of dubstep and hard sounding EDM elements, but I don’t seem to mind it in this song. Maybe because that balance is thrown off in other songs. There is definitely a nice ratio of instrumental and vocals. There is also a nice ratio between the vocal parts and the rap parts. Everyone had an equal spread in the song, unlike Fly, which was quite unequal. The song is quite strong and powerful. Thinking back, I personally think the song is quite good and there really isn’t a need to change anything. Jackson’s voice does get deeper each comeback, but I think everyone noticed that as soon as they heard him start rapping. Jaebum’s vocals were by far the best part. It sounded quite smooth and classy, yet still keeping to the more modern sound of EDM. I am also going to mention this here (and don’t kill me for this) but I agree with a lot of people when they say this is GOT7’s version of Fire. Both are different tracks, but they are going along the same line.

Now, I just watched a video and it seems like GOT7, themselves, have multiple theories on the video. There are also other theories suggested by fans. Here is a few of them: the members dies in a plane crash and only Jinyoung survives, Youngjae dies and everyone else saves Jinyoung, Youngjae saves Jinyoung (that’s from the interview I watched today). My understanding is Jinyoung has imaginary friends. This is just my theory. The plane enters turbulence and Jinyoung is forced into his seat by the flight attendant, who clearly does not care about the other members. Why? Because she can’t seem them and only see Jinyoung. Everything else in the video a dream. All the members saving Jinyoung (by swimming or Youngjae smashing) is all in his mind. My theory (I believe) ties in nicely with Fly’s video. Why couldn’t Jinyoung fly? Because everyone else who could was part of his imagination! (Jinyoung flying is also in his dream). I really like how the two videos related to each other (whatever the connection is). The video looks pretty cool and fitted the song quite well.

Another amazing dance. Not sure about Jackson’s clothing, though. One sleeveless arm and one sleeved arm. The dance is definitely one to try if you want a good cardio workout. It looks so intense and their precision is on point.  No one looks out of place, even those who are known to be weak dancers in GOT7 handled it all pretty well.

Rating – 9.5/10

Rewind: March 2016

OMG. I am so delayed. This was meant to be out earlier in the month, and now look at the calendar, April is almost gone. I’m still tweaking this segment, but I don’t know if I should any thing or get rid of anything existing, so if you can provide feedback, it will be greatly appreciated. Lots to talk about, to let’s go.

Major News

EXO’s Kai and F(x)’s Krystal were caught dating and SM Entertainment confirmed that the two were in fact an actual couple. After this confirmation, people started to post pictures online as “proof of Kai and Krystal’s relationship”, which I think are either fake or just a blatant invasion of privacy (but what isn’t? They are watched 24/7). But some of these picture claims to have Kai and Krystal kissing in public in a pool and catch the two “checking in” into hotels. Anyway, while this probably heartbreaking to fans of both, we all should be happy for them. Oh and did I mention Dispatch was the one to tell the world about this couple (once again). Who are your reporters and why are they so good about finding these things?

And the industry has been rocked by news of certain singers suspected of being a part of prostitution, which involves dodgy sponsors. I am not in tune with the whole thing and I am quite sure that the news has died down now. It is very hard to retell everything here, so I will just cut to the chase. These singers either go or are introduced to these sponsors that will make an investment into the singers career, in exchange for you know what. That is my understanding of it, and these singers were caught. They were brought into questioning and the news (of course) leaked a description of a particular artist who recently left her company and faced financial hardship in the past. It is sad that people have to result to this (that is if they chose this path) or just horrible if they were tricked into it, which I believe of some of claim to have been.

Comebacks & Debuts

March saw big name bands make their comebacks. GOT7, Jun Hyosung (Secret), Lee Hi, Fiestar, Red Velvet, Hyomin (T-Ara),DAY6, BTOB, Oh My Girl and Eric Nam are just to name a few.

We cannot forget about the rookies can we? KNK made their debut with Knock, which it garnering a lot of interest in the band, and I am too.

Polls

A few polls (including the ones in Febuary as well). I asked you guys:

  • Which Winner song did you guys prefer? And the results is as follow: I’m Young (30%); Sentimental, Baby Baby & Pricked (20%); and finally Immature (10%).
  • Which Taemin song did you guys like? Both songs (Drip Drop and Press Your Number) received the same amount of votes.
  • Which Lee Hi song did you guys like? Hold My Hand had an overwhelming amount of votes (87%) and Breathe got 17% of the votes.

Top 5 Songs Of March 2016

Here are my top 5 songs that were released in March 2016, taken straight from the amount of plays in iTunes:

  1. Find Me – Jun Hyosung (Secret) ft. D.Action
  2. Fly – GOT7
  3. Mirror – Fiestar
  4. Spring Love – Eric Nam & Wendy (Red Velvet)
  5. Knock – KNK

As you can tell, review releases have decreased so much in the past month. I apologise. Just a heads up, I will be releasing reviews on Sundays Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays (provided I am free and have time on those days). The other days are far too too busy for me. I also mentioned on Twitter that once this semester ends, I will be doing a revamp of the site (much needed), so if there is anything you want to see, comment below. All feedback will be appreciated.

 

Fly – GOT7

GOT7 has finally returned with a brand new song and mini album. This time they will be “flying” straight into the hearts of all their fans and to new heights with their new releases. I am totally digging everything in this album. Everything is to a high standard, but let’s stop here before I review the whole song in this one paragraph.

But let’s continue here. This song is amazing. I cannot believe my ears every time I listen to it. It just captivates me and my ears. It wasn’t the same feeling I got when I first heard the song. It wasn’t as blown away with the song (after all I placed If You Do) as one of the top songs of 2015. It didn’t impact or wow from the start. But many listens later, I am dragging my jaw that happened to drop due to this amazing song. It is definitely a song centred around their rappers. The whole vocal line (minus JB) got snubbed in this song, and that was very disappointing. Jackson and Mark stood out the most in the song, and they definitely got their time to shine (particular Mark, who seems to get a small part of each song before).   But regardless of the uneven line distribution, the song managed to show off all rapping and vocals equally. I don’t know which genre to classify the song as. There is definitely dance sounds in there, but more of a mash up of pop and electronic. It is a track that I would recommend to everyone out there. It is catchy and addictive (all terms are understatements. Trust me, I am obsessed with this song at the moment). A hit waiting to be discovered.

If you have no watch the trailer for the mini album, then you are going to get very lost. Nothing in the music video makes sense without the trailer. And while the bulk of the plot is within the trailer, I can’t really make a comment. The trailer is 6 minutes long and to talk about it would be about the length of a review. So what we have in the music video, is that Jinyoung wants to “fly” but is unable to do so. Everyone around him seems to be able to “fly” but he can’t. But he tries and realizes when it is too late (i.e. when he is falling down) that it was a bad idea. And then he wakes up. Now I am 100% sure that the flying is meant to be a metaphor but instead the music video leaves it as a superpower that everyone has. The graphics is very cool and the editing for the video only is good. Plotwise, the editing ruined it. But them filming their dance scenes in the wide open space at what I assume is an airport made the video look quite cool. Yeah, it was lacking, but it had that cool effect going on. And it makes sense. Overall, quite hard to put a number on this video, but what we are presented with was good. Just if more was added and the plot not ruined by the editing, the video would have been amazing.

GOT7 does it again with the dance. Not as memorable compared to Just Right or If You Do, but this still makes them look cool. Totally in sync. The song gives them a lot of freedom with the dance, and I feel like they chose was was best of them and one that suited the song 100%.

Not exactly perfect, but it getting there. I liked majority of it. What we need from the guys (and very cliche) is a hard hitting song. Fly was getting there and I can feel it with their next set of release. 8/10

Recap of MAMA 2015 and Thoughts

Did you forget about the MAMA awards held by MNET in 2015? Or are we all trying to forget it for its bias and unfair system? Well, don’t fret, I am here to remind you of the disappointment or joy that you felt.

The MNET Asian Music Awards (or MAMA) was held on the 2nd of December in… Hong Kong. Again. Voting for the awards began in October of the same year and I thought there was a fair range of nominees and the committee selected a variety if talents for each award.

The following artists attended and performed at the awards ceremony: Taeyeon (SNSD), GOT7, BTS, Hyuna (4 minute), Park Ji Young, Seventeen, Monsta X, F(x), SHINEE, EXO, Big Bang, iKON, Zion.T, Crush, Sane. 2NE1 & Psy. Pet Shop Boys were invited as special guest performers on the night. Red Velvet, Twice, Tiffany and Seohyun from SNSD also attended by did not perform.

I have recapped the winners below. I shall give some comments afterwards regarding the winners.
Best New Male Artist – iKON.
Best New Female Artist – Twice.
Best Male Vocal Performance – Zion.T (Eat)
Best Female Vocal Performance – Ailee (Mind Your Business)
Best Male Dance Performance – SHINee (View).
Best Female Dance Performance – Red Velvet (Ice Cream Cake)
Best Solo Dance Performance – Hyuna (Roll Deep).
Best Collaboration / Subunit – Zion.T & Crush (Just)
Best Rap Performance – Sane (Me You)
Best Band Performance – CN BLUE (Cinderella)
Best Male Group – EXO
Best Female Group – SNSD
Best Male Artist – Park Jin Young
Best Female Artist – Taeyeon
Best Music Video – Bang Bang Bang
Best Album (Album of the Year) – EXODUS
Best Song (Song Of The Year) – Bang Bang Bang
Best Artist (Artist Of The Year) – Big Bang

Best New Male Artist is probably the category that has me shaking my head the most. iKON is slowly showing their capability, but I feel like Seventeen is already two steps ahead of them and deserve the award more. Best Female Vocal Performance should have gone to Taeyeon and Taeyeon should have received 2 awards that night. Not dissing Ailee, but it wasn’t her best song or vocal performance. Best Music Video should have also gone to F(x). Best Male Dance Performance is an iffy category for me. SHINee did have a great dance, but sadly, I felt that BTS was missing out due to the lack of nomination in that category. Big Bang took out most of the awards, but I don’t think it matters. Big Bang dominated summer in South Korea last year with their continuous releases and had one of the most popular songs of the year (according to download and streaming charts). JYP’s award caught me a little off guard but I guess out of all the nominees, he had a good song. Besides the categories I mentioned, I think the awards were “fair”. Okay maybe not, but who MAMA awarded that night, I mostly agree with (given the nominees).

But wait, there were a few more awards that were given out that night:
Worldwide Favourite Artist – Big Bang
Global Fan’s Choice Male Artist – EXO
Global Fan’s Choice Female Artist – F(x)
Best World Performers – BTS
Next Generation Asian Artist – Monsta X
Best Asian Style – EXO
Worldwide Inspiration Award – Pet Shop Boys
There were also other awards which were awarded to artists from other countries as Best Asian Artist. Best Engineer, Best Live Entertainment and Best Producer awards were also given to 3 people for each award from different countries.

Out of these awards, I am a little confused with the Best Asian Style award. Out of all that walked the red carpet, I was shocked when EXO came along. Also, Pet Shop Boys. I am with majority of people who have never heard of the band before.

Per usual, there were many different performances on the night. The show opened up with Taeyeon’s I, which I thought was a really beautiful stage. She sounded flawlessly on the stage. BTS made their comeback on the night and collaborated with GOT7, who also performed If You Do. JYP had a special stage which probably scarred both GOT7 and Twice and he went a little wild towards the end of his performance. iKON performed a medley of their songs. Monsta X and Seventeen collaborated, while F(x) and Pet Shop Boys joined hands together. We also saw Sane perform with Hyuna and Jessi. Also a stage with both Show Me The Money contestants and Unpretty Rapstar. EXO, SHINee, Big Bang each had their stages with multiple songs and got the audience really hyped up. Psy also made his comeback and performed alongside with his new songs, Gangnam Style. Probably the most talk that night was 2NE1’s performance which caught everyone off guard. It was nice to see them, but whether it was appropriate is just another topic all together.

Out of all the stages, I thought Taeyeon had the most beautiful stage. For the dance aspect, Seventeen and Monsta X’s performance was really well polished and amazing.

Overall, I thought the night was worth it. It may seem like YG has a lot of influence over the MAMA awards and that is probably true. But whether it is right or not, is another discussion in its self. Just regarding the invitations to the awards, it did seem like someone did forget to invite people. Some stages seem like they could have used a little more attention to give it that grand feel that the MAMA awards is meant to uphold, like in previous years. But overall, I thought the night was pretty good. Wait… Did I just repeat the first sentence of this paragraph? Guess I am going to call it a day now. Hope you enjoyed my recap!

End Of Year Chart 2015 + Happy New Year!

Welcome to the end of the year! Each year, I do this “End Of The Year Chart” where I properly rank songs via a personalised ranking system, which shows which songs I liked the most (and which songs I did not like at all – but I won’t name and shame). How do I rank the songs? Simply taking the score that I gave them in the review published earlier in the year, adding it to new review scores for the music, video and performance. Then I add those to other scores from “Songs of the Month” in my Rewind posts and to ensure that I can properly order them, I turn to my iTunes play count. And when I say “add”, there is a mixture of mathematical operations (and I am going to stop here, before I can bore you). In no way is this chart influenced by my choice of best song in the BOBs. But I do highlight them here :).

1 Ah Yeah EXID
2 Paradise Lost Gain (Brown Eyed Girls)
3 If You Do  GOT7
4 Closer Oh My Girl
5 You G.Soul
6 Love Me Right EXO
7 I Need U BTS
8 Sing For You EXO
9 Shake It Sistar
10 4 Walls F(x)
11 Dumb Dumb Red Velvet
12 I Taeyeon (SNSD) ft. Verbal Jint
13 Like OOH AHH Twice
14 Oh Um Ah Yeah Mamamoo
15 Mansae Seventeen
16 Just Right GOT7
17 Crazy 4Minute
18 Insensible Lee Hong Ki (FT Island)
19 Run BTS
20 Yey Beast
21 Between Night n Music B.I.G
22 Shake That Brass Amber (f(x)) ft. Taeyeon (SNSD)
23 Hot Pink EXID
24 Beautiful Liar VIXX LR (VIXX)
25 Brand New World Brown Eyed Girls
26 Ring My Bell Girls Day
27 Hurt Locker Nine Muses
28 Growing Pains Donghae & Eunhyuk
29 Run Away Royal Pirates
30 Black Swan Rainbow
31 Congratulations DAY6
32 Catch Me If You Can SNSD
33 Me Gustas Tu Gfriend
34 The Answer Kim Sung Gyu (Infinite)
35 Dope BTS
36 Pray FT Island
37 Cinderella CN Blue
38 You’re Pitiful Fiestar
39 Hopeless Love Jimin (15&)
40 Bad Infinite
41 Might Just Die History
42 We Like 2 Party Big Bang
43 Chained Up VIXX
44 Fire Mad Clown ft. Jamsil (Mad Child Soul)
45 Bell Bottoms PSY
46 Ice Cream Cake Red Velvet
47 Break Ya LU:KUS
48 Kontrol Kim Sung Gyu (Infinite)
49 I Feel You Wonder Girls
50 Wow Wow Wow Junjin (Shinhwa) ft. Eric (Shinhwa)

And here are some interesting facts about this year and the chart itself!

  • A total of 180 songs were ranked on this chart, but a total of 195 songs were reviewed this year (which I believe is a personal best).
  • The first song reviewed and included in the chart is BTOB’s The Winter Tale (released at the end of last year). The last song reviewed and included in the chart was EXO’s Sing For You
  • A total of 16 girl groups, 17 boy groups and 9 soloists are featured on the chart.
  • There is a better mix of boys and girl groups this year, compared to last year, where the first boy group did not feature on the charts until after 16th place.
  • BTS had the most songs on the chart (I Need U, Dope & Run). followed by: EXID (Ah Yeah & Hot Pink), GOT7 (If You Do, Just Right), EXO (Love Me Right, Sing For You), Kim Sung Gyu (The Answer, Kontrol) & Red Velvet (Dumb Dumb & Ice Cream Cake).
  • Rookies were actually a strong force this year with Oh My Girl, Seventeen and Twice ranking quite high up in the charts.
  • The following ranked after 50th place: IU, B.I.G, Crayon Pop, VIXX, Seventeen, Changmin, Big Bang, Brown Eyed Girls and CLC.
  • And finally, this year chart was actually reflected on the BOBs this year. I crowned EXID’s Ah Yeah as best song for both segments.

AND THAT IS IT!! 2015 will be ending shortly. 6 Hours To Go (for me at least)!!! Hope 2015 has been a great year for you all. I thank you all once again for another year of KPOPreviewed. Your support has been amazing. Every comment and like (heck even every view) makes me happy!! Nearly 5 years and still going strong!! Thank you 2015 and I wish you all a Happy New Year wherever and whenever it is time. Let’s make 2016 our year!!! (First review: 2nd of Jan).

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

BEST MALE ROOKIE

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:

bestmalerookie

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.

BEST FEMALE ROOKIE

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:

bestfemalerookie

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.

BEST DANCE/PERFORMANCE

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:

bestdanceperformance

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.

BEST ALBUM

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:

bestalbum

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.

BEST MUSIC VIDEO

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:

bestmusicvideo

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.

 

BEST FEMALE GROUP

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:

bestfemalegroup

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.

BEST MALE GROUP

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:

bestmalegroup

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.

BEST SONG

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:

bestsong

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.

Confession Song – GOT7

You know is going to be Christmas very soon when stores blare Christmas songs (Did someone just say Mariah Carey?) or Christmas carols as soon as you enter them, turkey and whole chicken takes up a single aisle in your supermarket, the only thing that seems to be on sale are Christmas decorations and soft bells sounds, such as the sound we assume Santa makes when he is riding his sleigh across the world, start to take over the instrumental in songs. Yeah, GOT7’s song came out a month early. It is a nice song, that is really cute and has a nice message. Though, the title is very ummm.. creative. I really can’t say much about the song. It is refreshing and fits in with the certain time of the year (and here I am sweating down here in Australia). Vocals were okay and so was the rapping. Overall, nice song for the holiday season.

The video was cute. It reminds me of Lee Seung Chul’s My Love video. It fits in with the cute sound of the song. I just be a little concerned if two reindeers came in and decided to kidnap a few students. I also want to point out two different scenes in the video, which involves the members. The collision between JB and Jackson at 3:08 in the video looks hella painful. And Jackson’s not so cute facial expression at 4:30 in the video. Yeah, beside that, really cannot mention much about the video. Hopefully those couples stay as couples.

I am literally questioning why I decided to review this song. Song is a great start to the Holiday Season (preparing for the army of Christmas songs that will be released by KPOP and non KPOP singers in the next few weeks) and the video is cute as well. 7/10

If You Do – GOT7

Just after 2 months, GOT7 is showing a brand new side to them. Move along happy, bright and cute concept that they had a few months ago. Here comes the masculine and charismatic concept. Just Right was released in July and the boys have been busy since completing the promotions for that song. They released a brand new Japanese single Laugh Laugh Laugh. Jackson also started MCing for SBS Inkigayo as well. Not really that much going on, come to the think of it.

This has to be their best song by far. I don’t care what I said in the past. Out of their songs that they have released so far, this is the song that will hopefully do wonders for them.  It is a much darker song and has more of an angry feel to it. You can feel the suppressed anger in the song lyrics and the overall tone of their song. I personally love the song so much. I feel like the rappers finally have a song where they do truly shine. While they are not the best rappers in the industry, they do a hell of a good job in this song. I absolutely love the first line of the whole song. Essentially when it is translated into English, the line basically says: “If you do it, it is good. If I do it, it is over”. The word “Over” is in Korean, yet it sounded like “good”. Also the slowing down of the song for the “Everyday, Every night, I feel like a fool, you gotta know” part does wonders to the song. It actually makes this song flow quite well and leads into the chorus quite well. The guitar synths and the drum beats in the instrumental are spot on. Amazing job.

BamBam went bam bam on that car. I tried to resist. Any GOT7 fans out there who despise of that joke, I am sorry. The anger in this video is just through the roof. Jackson with the punching bag, Junior with the ball and the destruction of the paintings, Youngjae with the spray paint, Bam Bam with the nice couch in the middle of some place and the destruction of the car, JB with the violent rampage at night, Yugeom with his angry need for attention for a girl. And there is Mark. Who mysteriously does not rage, but stares into the camera. While his charisma was through the roof, I don’t think he was that angry. But hey, we also need that one person to stay calm in our groups. I think the sets is amazing and that one shot inside the camera, when Bam Bam takes his first hit was pretty good. Bam Bam needs to take that collar thing off and stay away from leopard prints. They don’t really match the song or video. But this video just oozes masculinity regardless of how much you watch it.

The dance is amazing. They are pretty in sync and I am really satisfied with the whole routine. The teaser made it look really exaggerated and dramatic, but the whole music video turned out quite  well. The really like Junior’s ‘Every Day, Every Night” part of the routine, where two members join for each two words was pretty good. Also the jumps at the start of the chorus are pretty nice. And yes, I am just going to leave a gif of Sassy Mark down here.

markgot7

Overall, probably on the best comebacks of the year. Perfect song, video and dance. 10/10

 

Just Right – GOT7

Wow, the songs this Summer are pretty good. GOT7 is finally back after over a half year disappearance from the industry. Yes, they are not forgotten and return with their first comeback of 2015. Why has it been so long since we last saw them? Well, they have been having a lot of activities overseas, with a Japan comeback. On top of that, JB and Junior (formerly known as Jr. – he changed his stage name recently) have been acting again. Beside that, I don’t follow the members so I don’t really know. On with the review.

When I first heard the teaser for this song, I thought it was going to be a really boring comeback with nothing to exceed the standards which their other songs have created. In other words, I thought this track was going to suck. HOWEVER, I will kindly take my words back and confirm that I now officially think this is a fan-freaking-tatstic song to listen to. Actually, their whole mini album this time around was amazing. I am not into these types of songs such as Just Right which, to me, has that really annoying sound in it that detaches itself from the song. But the song was made for that sound and I thought the song flowed quite well. the song was very upbeat and bright. The instrumental was really good as well. While A was more of a pop-ish song, this song reminded me of A. But maybe more of the concept. The vocals and the rapping (even though to me they sound like they are talking in a more posh voice) were really good. I felt the song was too short and wanted more from it. Amazing song.

The music video reflects what the lyrics of the song are. The guys sing about how the girl of their dreams is ‘Just Right” and that she does not need to try hard to be beautiful. Ahhh… Meaningful lyrics. Now, this was a very bright video and I thought it was pretty good. But it looked dull in some areas. Great ummm… use of green screen. Honestly, it doesn’t look bad and obvious as other videos. I just find it creepy that as soon as she noticed her draws moving, she opened them. Ain’t she scared of something popping out, like a rat or cockroach? I would. Ummm… Running out of things to say about this video. It was pretty cool and I liked it a lot.

The dance can only be described in one way. Awkward. But good awkward. Their facial expressions make me laugh, but it is the whole point of the dance. I really like the laid back feel of the dance and how it fits quite well with the song.

Obviously, this song is not “just right”. It is awesome to my ears and this comeback is awesome to my eyes. 9.5/10

 

Rewind: January 2015

Through this new segment (Finally got to use that one word), we will be looking back at the month that opened the year of 2015. I get to rank my top 10 songs. But we also get to look back at other events that happened in the Korean music industry. This way, I can talk about big events in the KPOP industry and rely my thoughts to you all.

Disbandment

Jewelry Members Get Together One Last Time for Final Photo Shoot

Sadly, January saw many bands (more than usual, that is) announce their disbandment from the industry. This technically means that they are no longer a group (for whatever reason) and would no longer promote together. The list is extreme and includes: Jewelry, Wonder Boyz, GLAM and Airplane. Wonder Boyz and Airplane are probably considered as “rookies” still. Though they have popular songs, both bands announced their disbandment in January. GLAM, a 4 member girl group under Big Hit Entertainment, who clearly had so much potential, was revealed through their agency to have disbanded. Member Dahee has been sentenced to jail recently for her involvement in the Lee Byung Hun blackmail case. Some speculate that this was the reason why the band broke up. Finally, the longest running KPOP girl group has called it quits after 14 years on stage. The girls, including past members had a photo shoot as their last schedule as a band.  Jewelry was well known for their hit, One More Time.

 

 

EXO-L’s in the wrong spotlight

EXO-L (EXO‘s fanclub) was accused of swearing at Girl’s Day Sojin at the Gaon Chart Awards for dating rumours with EXO member D.O. On top of that, EXO L was further accused for using other concerts and events as ways to check their ticket buying accounts were still working. Naturally, Korean neitzens “had a go” at the fanclub for their mean and rude gestures in both instances. EXO-L’s hit back by claiming not all of them were involved. Though I agree with the EXO L’s who are saying that not all of them did it, those fans who were involved are doing a pretty good job at ruining the fanclub’s and the band’s image.

Suing war continues…

For once, I have to agree with SM. Kris and Luhan who both asked for their contracts to be nullified last year, have been used by SM for illegally working in China with lawsuits in Korea. I personally don’t have a problem with them working. But I do have a problem with how quick they launched the lawsuit and how quick they started working in China. If your claiming to be overworked, I understand why you would ask for your contract to be nullified. Just why would you go to another country almost straight away and work there?

 

 

EXID’s jump in fame

exid1stwin

 

EXID has been enjoying their newly found fame after a fancam of Hani dancing to the song went viral. This launched the girls to the top of the charts and becoming on the most successful bands for the year so far. Up and Down have still seen no end, as it still remains steady on the charts. Though, it is funny how they reached their new fame, I just want to congratulate the girls on their wins. Up and Down was amazing, and I hope EXID’s next song is equally as popular.

 

 

 

Award Ceremonies Everywhere…

January is the month for award ceremonies. The first was the Golden Disk Awards, in Beijing, which was planned so horribly that members of GOT7, BTS and the whole of Beast could not perform on stage due to the “wrong visa being given out”. Seoul Music Awards and Gaon Music Awards followed after in Korea. When we combine the three awards ceremonies, they gave out theawards to the right people. Mamamoo got their rookie of the award year at the Gaon Music Awards, while other bands such as Girl’s Day, APINK, Beast, AOA, VIXX and etc. got the awards they deserved at the other award ceremonies.

 

Top 10 songs of the month

1. Up and Down – EXID (released in August 2014)

2. You – G.Soul

3. Break Ya – LU:KUS

4. Fire – Mad Clown ft. Jamsil (Mad Soul Child)

5. Drama – Nine Muses

6. Apologize – Eddy Kim

7. Why – 4Ten

8. Coming Soon – N.Ca

9. Pretty – Infinite H

10. Child In Time – Sunny Hill

Best Of The Best 2014 – Winners

Announcing the winners of the 2014 Best Of The Best. Click here for the full list of nominees!!!

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.

BEST INSTRUMENTAL

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.

BEST VOCALS

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).

BEST RAPPER

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.

BEST SUBUNIT

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.

BEST COLLABORATION

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.

BEST DANCE

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.

BEST ALBUM

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.

BEST SONG

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.