[Review] B-DAY – iKON

I previously reviewed iKON’s Bling Bling, which you can view by clicking the link. But this is the review for iKON’s second title track for this promotional run, titled as B-Day.

To me, B-Day is a more dynamic track that sounds a lot better than Bling Bling. Maybe it is because I enjoy the more upbeat feel. But I personally think iKON sounds a lot better with the more upbeat and hyped up songs, which I touched upon in my last review. The instrumental isn’t that amazing but it provides a more fresher and vibrant sound to the group’s portfolio. There is also something familiar about the instrumental, which I can’t really figure out. The vocal work and rapping in this song is a lot better in this song. The raspy voices fit the song quite nicely, giving it a rougher side. But to me, the vocals were at the forefront and not at the back of the song (which I also touched on). Doing that, it gives the song a more active sound and definitely a better push to a more powerful sound. The track itself is pretty catchy. The “Waeng Waeng Waeng” chant catches on pretty quick and it definitely drew my attention to the song straight away. Now, I just cannot get it out of my head. And that goes for the song as well.

I thought the concept of the music video was a little odd this time around. Little being an understatement, as I discover the scenes of bees. Not saying the video is terrible, because it was actually quite nice to watch. Actually (not considering the lyrics in anyway) but the video maybe looking at discovering an ancient civilization (and then they moved into it as well). Just a theory.  It was just the concept that had me second guessing things. Minus the thoughts regarding the concept, the scenes in the video were quite good. Once again, YG has done it again with their music videos. While this one may not be better than Bling Bling‘s, it definitely suits the song and intensity.

Talking about intensity, I felt the choreography was a little lacking. It might have been the editing of the music video, but when the “Waeng Waeng Waeng” started, the dance was great. But towards the end of the line, the energy just plummeted and that disappointed me. But it still looked cool. I may update this part once a full performance is uploaded somewhere.

Song – 8/10
Music Video – 7/10
Performance – 6.5/10
Overall Rating – 7.5/10

[Review] Bling Bling – iKON

iKON has officially made their first comeback since their debut in 2015. The group, since 2015, have had toured across Asia and made their official debut in Japan. They also previously released #WYD last year. Some of the members have also changed their stage names since debut, which surprised some fans. Jinhwan changed to Jay, Chanwoo changed to Chan, Donghyuk changed to DK and Yunhyeong changed to Song. Bling Bling is also promoted alongside B-Day (and a review for that will be published sometime today or tomorrow morning).

If there is one word that I can think of when it comes to Bling Bling, it has to be ‘swag’. While I am not an everyday user of the word, the song embodies the word quite accurately. From the very first listen, it is an extremely intense track. The instrumental of the track is very interesting, despite it being slow at some parts, which overall made it feel quite dull. The use of brass provides the song something more, which accompanied the drawn out ‘Bling Bling’ repetition. The song remains the same from start to about the bridge. Starting at the bridge of the song, the song turns into a much more upbeat track/anthem style track, which I think sounds a lot cooler. However the contrast between the two segments and tempo is pretty cool. As for the raps and vocals, I am not really into that aspect of the song. They seemed to be on the back burner rather than the forefront of the song. It just didn’t seem to capture my attention. Only the ‘Bling Bling’ does. While I did say it was intense and tough, I think the dullness is probably the main aspect that turns me away from this song. I don’t mind it, but if there was a more hyped up sound, I think I would have enjoyed it more.

The music video is another video that is okay, at best. YG Entertainment have always put out great videos. And they are great for a specific reason. Here, I thought the great aspect are the sets and the backgrounds. It looked pretty cool and provided support to that toughness and intensity in a more subtle way. But I am not too sure why I think this, but they felt awkward in front of the camera. The interactions with the camera didn’t seem to feel natural and more like they were thrown in front of the camera with no guidance. Maybe it was the song style that didn’t allow them to be as natural or the editing just didn’t make it seem right, I don’t know. And that is essentially the video. The choreography shots with the amazing backgrounds but awkwardness for the solo shots.

I think there is enough in the video to write about the dance and possible performance. I don’t really talk about stage sets, but YG always seem to have an amazing idea which makes the stages for their artists look stunning. I particular enjoyed the more faster parts of the song, hence I am more drawn to the dance at those parts. However, the slowness in their choreography matches the song really well!

Song – 7/10
Music Video – 4/10
Performance – 7/10
Overall Rating – 6/10

[Review] Holup! – Bobby (iKON)

The first member of iKON to go solo is Bobby. He debuts as a solo artist alongside Mino from Winner, who released his own solo single the next day. The two go on to form the subunit, MOBB, and released their subunit debut album the day after Mino’s solo debut. It has been a long time coming, with rumours of the two forming a subunit and talks of Bobby’s solo debut for quite some time now.

For those who don’t know me, I find it hard to get into hip hop or rap based songs. Not exactly my style. But nonetheless, here is what I thought of the song. It is honestly not that bad, but it really isn’t the best. Bobby does have a great husky vocal which this song did justice to. Some parts almost sounded like he was growling and that gave a tougher feel to the song. I did like the rhythm and instrumental. It does give a party-like vibe to the song as expected. You would expect this to be played at a party or club. It is perfect for that setting and bound to get everyone bouncing to it (I assume people bounce to songs at parties or clubs. And when I say bounce, I mean dance). Not a big fan of the autotune in the song. Very little times have I felt the autotune was meant for the song. Particularly that part towards the end with him singing and straight up autotune, not feeling it.  The autotune was probably the biggest turn off for me. But then again, the autotune was needed to keep up with that tough and masculine feel. For a rap song (in my books at least), it is okay. I do prefer the other releases though.

This music video just backs up the fact that I hate dreadlocks. Sure, they will look good on certain people, but when Asians do it, I just stare blankly at them and just fade away from the situation. Okay, with the video. I guess that house looks exactly like other houses after a house party. Like a really wild and “lit” party. I don’t know, I am only assuming, because the parties I have been to, we all clean up and make it look presentable before leaving. Anyway, another thing (if you haven’t watched the video yet) that may draw your attention to watching it later on is the abs available in this video. The background does distract you quite a bit but I am sure if you focus strongly enough, you will see only the abs. Hahahaha… Though yes, Bobby does have good abs. Yeah, there really isn’t much else to talk about beside pointing out every single detail now. So I am just going to end it here, before I start boring you (if I haven’t yet).

Final Rating – 6/10

[Review] #WYD – iKON

iKON has returned with a brand new song. And then they disappeared. Like, where are they at the moment? Isn’t a pre-release? Where is the actual release then? Why am I asking these questions, when I know they are from YG Entertainment? But honestly, this was released in May and it is the start of July. And all these teasers were released in between for Bobby’s solo debut, so what is really happening?

It sounds a lot like a sadder version of My Type, which they debuted with last year. Didn’t like My Type, but I dig this song. It has a better beat and flows a lot better. The vocals here are a lot smoother and the rapping is pretty nice. The only problem I see with the track is the bridge of the song. It isn’t bad, but it sounds completely different from the song. It does contribute to the flow, but every time I hear it, it takes me by surprise, as if it comes from another song. The ending of the song was nice. The title is what you would commonly use in a text message and the ending of the song makes it sound like the whole song was part of a text message. Bobby signs off with “Good Night” and I think that is a pretty smart thing to do. I also noticed, but finally an iKON song, where the rappers aren’t singing and they just stick to rapping. It is one of the things I pointed out with My Type and I am glad that there is a change in their song.

For the music video, it just compromises of shots of the guys playing around with their love. Damn, it makes me want to be in a relationship. Can’t really complain about anything in the video. The only thing I will complain about is Bobby’s 70s style shirt and his hair. I have to be honest, though, I personally think B.I look hot in this video. Fanboy in the making? But then again, Korea has a lot of hot men (and ladies… you can never talk KPOP without the ladies) and if you are a dude into KPOP, there is probably a guy out there in the KPOP industry that you have felt some sort of attraction towards. I’ll end it there.

Wow, I wrote started this review yesterday and I was meant to spend a good amount of time on the music video part today. But, guess who wrote the music video part in less than 10 minutes? 7/10

Recap of Golden Disk Awards 2016 + Thoughts

Probably one of the biggest award ceremonies for music and also probably one of the most prestigious, the 30th Golden Disk Awards (GDA) was held on the 20th to the 21st of January 2016. The GDA was supposed to be held in China but was moved back to South Korea due to the recent earthquakes that occurred there just 1 or two weeks before the scheduled event. Even though many people were shocked and feared the award ceremony would be either postponed or cancelled, the ceremony went off without a single hiccup and was broadcast live in both Korea and China.

What I like about this particular awards is that is focuses on both the physical albums and downloaded songs of the year. In other words, more awards for everyone. It is also nice to see who excelled in what (hahahaha…). The digital awards were handed out on the 20th of January, while the physical album awards were handed out on the 21st of January. The award show on the first night was hosted by Jun Hyun Moo, Kim Jong Kook and Seohyun (SNSD). The second night was hosted by Jun Hyun Moo, Leeteuk (Super Junior) and Krystal (F(x)) I have recapped the award winners on the two nights below.

Disk Daesang (Album Of The Year) – EXODUS (EXO)
Digital Daesang (Song Of The Year) – Loser (Big Bang)
Disk Bonsang (Best Artist) – APINK, VIXX, F(x), BTS, CNBLUE, Jonghyun (SHINee), EXO, Beast, Super Junior
Digital Bonsang (Best Artist) – Red Velvet, EXID, AOA, Zion.T, Park Jin Young, Sistar, Taeyeon (SNSD), Kyuhyun (Super Junior), Big Bang, Girl’s Generation
Best New Artist – GFriend, iKON, Seventeen, Twice
Popularity Award – SHINee
Best Rap / Hip Hop – SanE
Best Rock – Hyukoh
Global Popularity Award – EXO
Best Group Vocal Award – BTOB
Best Solo Vocal Award – Jung Yonghwa (CN Blue)
Best Male Artist Award – Big Bang
Best Female Artist Award – Taeyeon (SNSD)
Next Generation Star Award – Monsta X

Once again, this wide spread of award winners seem to be more representative of main stream KPOP. Not that I am complaining. Most of the award recipients were similar to the Seoul Music Award 2016, however a lot more artists won in this ceremony, since their was more rewards. Not that I am being a hater or anything, but Kyuhyun’s bonsang award seems a little far fetched. From memory (correct me if I am wrong though), his song never charted high on the charts and likewise Super Junior barely makes an impact on the digital side of the music industry. So I am a little suspicious of how he managed to get an award for a digital bonsang. Saying that, he did sell a lot. Like a lot on the physical side. But beside that, I think it was a nice range of artists who won and I think it is accurate (as in which artists managed to shine the brightest in 2015).

I really need to think of ways to start off the different sections, but once again… I think out of the all the ceremonies that have already been broadcast (NOTE: I am typing this prior to the Gaon Chart Awards), GDA has the best performances. Why? Because many of the artists performed multiple songs and I really enjoy how some artists (or their producers) integrate different songs together. GFriend, Red Velvet, EXID, Seventeen and BTS had the best stages on the nights. Some artists performed some songs that were released in the past (in previous years, such as EXID’s Up & Down, VIXX’s Error, Sistar’s Touch My Body etc.), which I kind of liked, but, the songs were released last year… so maybe a little outdated. But overall, the performances, I think, were to a very high standard and pleased me (*points at myself* and *acting as the biggest critic of all time*).

Below are just the few performances that I found and slapped together in a playlist format in no particular order.

For a last minute change to the ceremony, it managed to do pretty well in my books. Awards, performances. Everything was just great. There is one more to go of this season’s award ceremonies, which will be coming out in the coming days. Until then, bye!!

 

Recap of Seoul Music Awards 2015 + Thoughts

The Seoul Music Awards is one of the award ceremonies held the year after for the year before. For example, the award ceremony for the 25th Seoul Music Award was held in 2016, but celebrates the flourishing artists of 2015. Understand yet? Well now that hard to understand concept has been dealt with, the 25th Seoul Music Award ceremony was held on the 14th of January 2016, in Seoul. It is said that this award ceremony is one of the most prestigious awards ceremonies for the year as it recognises the popular and talented artists of the year. Selection process for winners on the night are as follow: 20% mobile votes, 10% Popularity Polls, 40% music sales (both digital and physical album sales) and 30% judging panel’s scores. Only artists who released singles or albums in 2015 are eligible to win.

Like all ceremonies, a number of actors, actresses and other celebrities attended the event to give out awards. The night was hosted by Jun Hyun Moo, EXID’s Hani and Honey Lee. All artists that received the award on the night performed on stage (minus those whose awards were accepted on their behalf by label mates – Big Bang is who I am trying to refer to).

Just to recap the awards winners of the night:
Bonsang Awards – EXID, Red Velvet, Taeyeon (SNSD), VIXX, Yoon Mi Rae, Zion.T, BTS, EXO, APINK, Sistar, Big Bang & SHINee.
Best New Artist – iKON, GFriend, Seventeen
Performance Award – Hyukoh
Best Trot Award – Hong Jin Young
Best RnB Award – Sane
Best Ballad Award – BTOB
Best OST Award – Jang Jae In (performed with Wonwoo (Seventeen) on the night)
Male Dance Performance Award – Monsta X
Female Dance Performance Award – Ailee
Mobile Popularity Award – Kim Junsu (JYJ)
Hallyu Special Award – EXO
Record Of The Year (Digital Release) – Bang Bang Bang (Big Bang)
Record Of The Year (Physical Release) – Kiss My Lip (BOA)
Daesang Award (Best Artist Of The Year) – EXO

The Bonsang awards seem to be more representative of the mainstream KPOP this year. Finally, Seventeen get their Best New Artist award that I think they truly deserve. Most likely they got it for their record breaking album sales. And finally some people decided to pay attention to BTOB. I am not technically fond of their ballads in the past year, but hey, it looks like South Korea is finally paying attention to them. Ailee’s award is one I am not exactly sure of. I don’t think it was the best dance performance of the year. I think that belongs to a particular rookie who was present on the night as well. Regarding Kim Junsu, who was apparently not invited to the ceremony despite winning a key award on the night, there is some shady business going on. But hopefully, when this matter is resolved, justice for Junsu and JYJ will occur. 2015 was a step forward for them, with the introduction of the JYJ Law.

Ailee should not have been pestered for the cameras catching her “on her mobile”. The netizens make it sound like she was too busy texting another person or was too busy looking at pictures of food. Put simply, she was just downloading an app to support SHINee and was later seen supporting Boa. People should really see the bigger picture (or in this case, wait for it) before making a big deal out it. Also, Boa’s award. Even though it was nice to see her win something, I agree with a lot of people who say she got the award just because of her senior status. It was her 15 year anniversary and she probably wouldn’t have received any award for her album if she debuted later on. Also, Starship should not deprive Sistar of any chances to get on the stage. They looked like they really enjoyed being there and were probably excited for their first stage together in what seemed to be 6 months.

Performance wise, I actually did not pay that much attention to the performances in this ceremony. Some of them were disappointing to watch, while others just did not appeal to me or make me want to watch. All I am going to say is the few that I did manage to watch (mainly the first half) were okay. Just minus the introduction for EXID’s performance. That was shocking. Stand out was probably GFriend’s intro. While their fan chant came to a close second. I don’t why I feel that way regarding the performances, I just was not feeling it. For the past few years which I have been watching the SMA ceremonies, their performances are by far the weakest of all ceremonies. Below I have put a handful of performances that I could quickly find into a playlist from the night.

Well, that is it for my wrap up of the Seoul Music Awards 2016. Hopefully, next year is better. Less controversy and better stages required to make this an award ceremony that I can look forward to.

 

Recap of MelOn Music Awards 2015 and Thoughts

The MMA or MelOn Music Awards were held on the 7th of November 2015. MelOn does not refer to the fruit but rather the music chart and on-line music store in South Korea. It is held by LOEN Entertainment, which owns the music distribution company. The music award has its own unique criteria where it only calculates digital sales of artists in the past year and incorporate these sales with on-line votes of fans.

The following artists, groups and actors attended the ceremony: Big Bang, Yoona (SNSD), Hyukoh, Hyorin & Dasom (Sistar) (did not perform), Toy (did not perform), APINK, Zion.T, Sane, iKON, GFriend, Mad Clown (did not perform), Hong Jin Young, BTS, Red Velvet, EXID, Monsta X, Winner (did not perform). Actors, actresses and other celebrities attended the night as presenters.

The show on the night was hosted by Yoo Byung Jae and Seo Kang Joon. They were shortly joined by Lee Boo Yi, Kim Shin Young, Kim So Hyun & Irene (Red Velvet). The red carpet was hosted by Youngji (Former Member of Kara) and Seo Yuri.

Below are the winners on the night. Afterwards, I have left some comments regarding some awards:
Top 10 Artist – SHINee, Girl’s Generation, Hyukoh, Toy, Big Bang, Sistar, EXO, APINK, Zion.T, Sane.
Best New Artist – iKON & GFriend
Best Rap/Hip Hop – Mad Clown ft. Jinsil (Fire)
Best Ballad – Baek Ah Yeon ft. Young K (Shouldn’t Have)
Best RnB – Naul (Living In The Same Time)
Best Rock – Kim Sung Gyu (The Answer)
Best OST – Loco & Yuju (Spring Is Gone By Chance)
Best Trot – Hong Jin Young (Love WiFi)
Best Pop – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars (Uptown Funk)
Best Male Dance – BTS (I Need U)
Best Female Dance – Red Velvet (Ice Cream Cake)
Best Folk – 10cm (Sseudam Sseudam)
Best Indie – Standing Egg ft. Wheein & Obroject Yundak (The Sunlight Hurts)
Netizen Popularity Award – Big Bang (Bang Bang Bang)
Hot Trend Award – Infinite Challenge (Yeongdong Expressway Music Festival)
Best Music Video – Park Jin Young ft. Jessi (Who’s Your Mama?)
Song Writer Award – Teddy
MBC Music Star Award – EXID
1theK Performance Award – Monsta X
Album Of The Year (Daesang) – EXODUS
Song Of The Year (Daesang) – Bang Bang Bang
Artist Of The Year (Daesang) – Big Bang

I personally think above is a fair spread for award winners. While I am not knowledgeable to comment on categories such as Best Indie and Best Folk, the rest show 2015 in its glory. Once again, I think Seventeen deserves the Best New Artist award and GFriend finally got what they deserved (it’s a good thing. Kind of sounded like I was hinting at something bad). Sistar and APINK’s Top 10 awards caught me off guard since they were quickly taken over by other artists on the digital charts and failed to be up to par with the other artists. I am glad to see Kim Sung Gyu win something for his album. It was really good.

And as per usual, there were performances that night from the groups who won awards. Performers included: Hyukoh, Big Bang, APINK, Zion.T, Sane, BTS, EXID, Red Velvet, Monsta X, iKON and GFriend. It would have been nicer to see some more artists who won from the night perform. I think best performance of the night was BTS with their cool jackets that had light coming off them. A very large portion of the show was dedicated to Big Bang, which had people talking. Sure, they won a lot of award, but I agree with majority of the audience. Big Bang’s performances just made it feel like one Big Bang concert. Sure, they won prestigious awards, but it just robbed the other artists of their night, who also put hard effort into making 2015 their year. Would have I gotten angry over the fact they turned the award show into a mini concert? No, but maybe they should have dropped one or two songs.

Overall, I think MMA15 was pretty fair. They had a large variety of winners (mainly because they have a lot of categories) and minus that small complaint regarding the performances, the show was great. Oh, but damn was the presentation of the awards cringe worthy. Probably this ceremony takes the award for  “Worst Presentation of Awards” award. Could have done it in a way where the presenters did not feel that ashamed of themselves.

 

 

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!

Rewind: January 2016

2016 has started and we are already one month into the year. Damn time flies. And by the time you are reading this, we already be 1 and a half month in. Is that Christmas bells I hear in the far distant? Hahahaha… This is my revamped Rewind post for the month of January of the year 2016. Let’s go!

Major News

Probably the biggest news of the month is in regards to Tyuzu’s controversy in China. Now, while most of this is political, here is just a brief run down of what I know is going on. Tyuzu was seen on a broadcast holding a Taiwan flag and saying proudly that she is Taiwanese. China (and I say its people) did not like the idea and decided to censor her. She issued an apology, but some people think JYP forced her to do so, as now all his artists (GOT7 and 2PM were reported in the news) have been “shut out the country”. It has gone far as Twice’s stage being left out of the Golden Disk Awards when it was broadcast live in China, which for who do not know, is a Korean award show that was supposed to be held in China, but due to certain circumstances was moved back to South Korea.  All I have to say is that she is probably now scarred for life. Everyone always talk about equality and to be proud of who you are. And sadly this is a reflection of how hypocritical the world is.

Major Comebacks

GFriend made their slaying comeback in January with Rough and have since been stealing all the music show’s trophies this week (which happens to be February, but since they officially made their comeback stages in January…). They have proven to be a powerful force and given that they only made their debut last year, makes this an amazing feat. Congrats 여자친구.

Other artists that made their comeback in January are: Teen Top, Dal Shabet, Zico (Block B), Stellar, Cross Gene , The Legend, Shin Hye Sung (Shinhwa) and many other artists.

Major Debuts

Ryeowook from Super Junior made his official solo debut this past month (28th of January) with The Little Prince, a ballad. While quite popular, he is currently competing with GFriend on the music shows and unfortunately been placing second.

IMFACT is also another rookie group that made their debut on the 27th of January. Their song, Lollipop, is currently one of my most played songs and I am actually listening to this song while I am writing this. Hahaha..

Other debuts in the past month include: Yezi (Fiestar), SUS4, & CocoSori

Polls

I did ask you all which iKON song you guys liked the most since their debut. The results are in and the most liked iKON song is: Airplane and Dumb & Dumber. Both scored 25% of the votes. My Type, Rhythm Ta, Anthem and Apology all scored 13%. What’s Wrong did not receive any votes.

Top 5 Songs for the Month!

  1. Rough – GFriend
  2. Lollipop – IMFACT
  3. Someone Like U – Dal Shabet
  4. Don’t Forget – Crush ft. Taeyeon (SNSD)
  5. Warning Sign – Teen Top

And that is it for the January of 2016. February’s rewind is going to be a long one with all these confirmed comebacks.

 

 

 

What’s Wrong? – iKON

This is iKON’s second song for their full debut album. Check out their other release: Dumb & Dumber, which was has been reviewed. But on with the review.

I really don’t know how to start off this review and I tried my best to avoid starting it this way. But, I just can’t think of any other way to start off the review. So, compared to Dumb & Dumber, this song was a let down. “If you ever loved somebody, say yeah” sounds like an awkward start to an awkward song. I don’t know, but there are more creative ways to get the audience into the song and have them participate. The song has the rock and hip hop vibe to it, which sounds nice, but sounds so generic. There really is nothing that sets this song a part from the other songs that you get throughout KPOP. It seems boring and quite unappealing to me. Beside Junhoe’s vocals, I feel like everyone else had to strain their voices to get it into the way the vocals are presented in the song. Once again, that complete halt in the song is back to haunt us. Only once, but damn, it ruined the flow of the song for me. But other good points of the song: it is great head banging music.

The people in the video, looked so scary with their colourful socks on top of their head. I know YG has a habit of covering their dancer’s faces and all, but this just looks so low budget and slapped together at the last minute. The video fits in well with the song. The boys are singing what happened to us and the video showed the boys and girls (or their partners) battling out. In what seemed to nearly escalate into a food fight, a massive fist fight and also a little bit of dodge-ball. Ahhh dodge-ball. It has been years since I last played that game. All them painful memories of always having the ball slammed into my nose/face. The video was nice and reflected the song pretty well.

I am glad they got rid of those socks for the live performance. Much cringe worthy. Beside that, I could not see much of the dance. The camera work manage to avoid most of the dance and filmed all the parts where they are avoiding the girls and running around. I don’t have much to say about the dance until I see more.

Quite disappointed with this particular song. To me Dumb & Dumber was much better. 5.5/10

Which iKON song did you like more? I have decided to include all of their promoted songs to in the below poll, so vote away.

Dumb & Dumber – iKON

Opening the 2016 year with fresh new reviews of acts that either made their comeback in the later half of December 2015. For those who don’t know, I stopped reviews for newly released songs after the 15th of December and went on to focus on End of Year charts, the BOBs and also finish the year off with some reviews that I managed to miss out. iKON is one of those groups that released their official full debut album after the 15th.

I think I can now safely say that iKON is a group that I think has improved greatly with each release. Their debut wasn’t that great in my standards, but every single song they have released so far has shown a new talented side of them to me. This song feels like a party anthem made specifically for the boys. Their rapping and vocals match the song really well. Not exactly fond of the complete halts that the song has throughout it. While they ahve their charm, I also think that something can be used to fill that void. Don’t take me the wrong way, there are some songs out there that need the halts or utilise the silence really well, but this isn’t one of them (at least that is what I think). The song is catchy and addictive. I have a feeling that this song can become trendy as it has that feel to it. The same feel I get when I listen to viral songs like Psy’s Gangnam Style. Like the title suggest, the song sounds wacky and for some reason, completely out of context for a YG group. But they manage to keep to their roots and style.

Every single time I watch the video, I get a feel of the weird and wacky side that Big Bang gave us in Bae Bae last year. Their previous releases have all been serious or light-hearted, but this. Only wacky and crazy can describe this video. The video was well shot and had a great concept to it. I just feel like for some reason, that the Dumb and Dumber duo style would have been a more well suited concept given the title of the song. But I did say that the song was like a party anthem and this video manages to channel in that feel as well. I personally like the ending of the video where the song drops its final beat. Everything becomes down to earth but at the same time still manage to have that wacky feel to it. The video as a whole, is great and suits the song exactly.

The dance for this song makes me think they had a bit to drink just before going onto the stage. Their stage presence is quite large when they performed the song for the first time. (I am watching the performance that performed at the 2015 SBS Gayo Festival). I like how tough they managed to showed themselves to the audience, but with use of fun and a very odd concept. There really isn’t a thing about the dance that sets it apart, but it something that goes well with the song.

Great comeback to start off the year. 7.5/10

 

Anthem – B.I & Bobby (iKON)

Anthem is an okay song. It does not have me raving about it such as in Apology, the song has its good and bad points. What is good in the song: it is catchy (like an other anthem song), has a nice foreign sound/vibe to it and the rapping is on point. Bobby and B.I, as well all know, are talented rappers and they have proved themselves and probably pushed out their limits with this song. The song reminds me of the singles that T.O.P, G-Dragon and other famous rappers have put out in the past, but to me, this one has a much stronger hip hop vibe to it than those. The bad points: the catchiest part of the song has to be the most annoying part of the song. “iKON is coming to town” just bugs me everytime I listen to it. It is drawn out excessively and just sounds like a part that was smashed into the song for the other members to be included. Furthermore, I personally don’t like songs that is just full of raps. I personally like it when there is a bit of vocal work in the song, so I was already a little “biased” (in a way) regarding the style of song. So in conclusion (my personal thoughts only), not a fan of the song, but the song has its own good points.

The music video reminds me of the black and white videos that YG usually do for the rappers. And reminds me of videos of GD. T.O.P and GD&TOP released back in the day. Maybe it is because I am not a fan of the boys, but I don’t find anything interesting in the video. It has this grand feel to it and fits the style of the song, but beside that, I don’t really see what is great about it. Many fans and comments are like “omg, their facial expressions are amazing and funny” and here I am thinking “what is amusing?”, “what is funny?”. Though talking about comments, I love it how majority of the comments are about how the number of views are down. Ummm… Even I tried to watch the video (while not paying attention to the view count) and manage to appreciate what the channel put out (even though I am not linking it). Yeah, so… Not a fan of the video.

Overall, not a big fan of the song or video. 3/10. If you want to see the review of Apology, click here.

Apology – iKON

iKON is back with two digital singles. Apology (this review) and Anthem (the other review released later today) form part of their debut album, which to date, only half of it has been revealed. The other half is said to come out next month, forming a full album. This particular song features the entire group, while the other song only features Bobby and B.I as the artist. But let’s review Apology right now.

It is a hip hop infused ballad where the song is quite upbeat. The lyrics are not that upbeat though. This upbeat sound that they have gives the song that more rhythmic side of the song, which in turn makes the song more catchy to listen to. The “mian, mian” that we hear in the chorus is repetitively stuck in my mind. The vocals and rapping in this song is top notch. The vocals are very dominated and I just really love that about the song. Sometimes the vocals are covered up with the instrumentals, but there is a really nice balance in this song.  I just love their songs when it comes to these ballad types. To me, it suits them a lot. BUT I personally find the song a little dull. Not too much to deter me away from the song, but I feel like if a little more something was added to the song, I believe it would take the song to a whole new level. But what we have here is satisfying in my point of view already and to the many perspective of other fans.

As for the music video, a lot of tears and a lot of hearts were probably broken in the making and watching of this video. It is a pretty simple video when you think about. Just seeing couples fight and everyone getting angry. Their acting is pretty good (compared to other videos that I have made acting centred comments about). The black and white filter on the video gives it that really rustic feel and makes me zone into the emotions in which the group and the actresses are pouring out onto the screen for us to watch. But beside that, there really is not much else to say.

To hear that there is a dance to this song is really disappointing. This is the type of song where I expected no dance.  So I am just watching the dance practice to this with an unimpressed face on and nothing changed it.

Overall, an amazing song (compared to their first round of promotions), the music video was great, but the dance… yeah… 7/10

[DOUBLE REVIEW] Rhythm Ta & Airplane – iKON

iKON has offically made their debut with their “half album”. If you managed to miss out on their pre-release and my review of it, click here!!! Finally getting around to these reviews. Now that I have finished university for the year (yes, it is nearly December), I should have more time for reviews. Exams soon. But it shouldn’t effect the reviews. Hopefully.

Rhythm Ta is like a hip-hop dance infused track that sounds a whole heap catchier than their pre-release. But it faces the same problem as their pre-release. Not a great start to their careers though. While I think it is a good song, it really doesn’t do much as a debut song. It doesn’t represent the guys or show something new. It is something that is quite standard and ordinary. The bridge was a complete mismatch to the rest of the song. I don’t think the vocals in this song matched with the song and Bobby’s rap sounds over the top in terms of power and toughness. B.I suited a lot more in this song than any of the other members. But the chorus is catchy and I digged it more than My Type. As for Airplane,  I think it s a hip-hop infused ballad. It sounds nicer and I much prefer this than My Type. At first I thought it would a song that Winner would release, but there is much more of that hip hop and upbeat feel to it. The vocals here matched the song much more and everything matched itself. Unlike Rhythm Ta, this song is by far a much better song in terms of, well, everything.

The music video for both I don’t much to say. Both seem okay. Both of the videos matched the style and the sounding of the song. Rhythm Ta was a more badass type of video, a lot of focus was on the dance, while Airplane was more a ballad and fitting plot was in it. For Airplane, the dude is clearly in love with the girl, but his friend continues to cock block them and also I don’t think the girl realised his emotions for her. It was an ordinary plot, and their acting is pretty good. Something that got to me was the parts where the members sing in Airplane. It just looks cliche and boring to watch them. Sounds like a particular video from last year. In terms of video, I think Rhythm Ta had a more visually appealing video. The colours were bolder and much more stronger compared too Airplane.

As for the dance, there was really only a dance for Rhythm Ta. And it was pretty good. The live performance for Airplane was boring to watch. But then again, there was not much to it.

Mixed feelings about the whole package. Airplane had a much better song, but Rhythm Ta had a much better video and dance. I feel like the boys still have not brought their A game out yet. I am 100% sure they can take everything they released and make it more amazing.

Rhythm Ta – 7/10

Airplane – 8/10

My Type – iKON

iKON, by far, is probably the most hyped group to debut in 2015. Fans have been waiting for a very long time for the group to make their debut. They have gone through 2 different survival shows to get to the current lineup. Win was the first show, but Team B (which is iKON now) failed to beat Team A (otherwise known as WINNER). They went to to compete in Mix & Match last year to get to the hype that they have today. The current members are: Bobby, B.I, Jinhwan, Yunhyeong, Donghyuk, Ju-ne and Chanwoo. This is also their pre-release song. They made their official debut just today (1st of October) with a “Debut Half Album” and a “Debut Full Album” in November. Reviews for those songs and videos will be out later in the month (no promises).

This is a pretty ordinary song. There really was nothing that stood out to me, to get me back. I am disappointed since I know this band can put out good songs. It was pretty dull and not that catchy. It does get me swaying a long to the song though everytime I hear it, which is kind of weird. The style of the song seems a little too innocent for the group though. It is nice for them to explore different styles and genres, but the rapping was a little too forceful and powerful in this song. I feel like they can really do powerful song and stronger songs knowing their rapping and vocals. Another thing I want to talk about, why are the rappers the main point of song. Only Bobby and B.I got a good chunk of the song with the chorus and their individual raps. What the song showed me was that the other members can sing, so why are the rappers singing the chorus? Not saying they were awful but they could have been replaced with much smoothier vocals by the other members.

As for the music video, it was pretty dull as well. It looks pretty boring and the filter or whatever they put over the video made it so boring to watching. This song called for colour and everything in this video was anything but colour. It did seem to have scenes of the members down to earth, but it seems a little too over the top in some bits. Actually their acting should use some improvements. As for the quality of the music video… Maybe more of the music video budget was allocated to their debut songs.  I have absolutely nothing more to say beside it was boring.

To save myself from fans, I am going to say this: their debut songs are much better than this song. That hopefully can save my life. Hahaha.. Only joking. Not the best song to start off with, but it is just their pre-release. They have probably so many other songs up their sleeves. 4/10

Rewind: February 2015

Through this new segment (Finally got to use that one word), we will be looking back at the second month 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.

YG says comeback for Big Bang will happen in April

This month, YG “promised” us that the first artist to make their comeback would be Big Bang, who has been scheduled for April. Yes, I put “promised” in quotation marks because half the time, we really cannot take his words as the final story. Hopefully, this time Big Bang will make their very long awaited comeback in April and for once Yang Hyun Suk say something we can actually could have relied on. iKON will always be make their debut this year, just we don’t have a clear time frame yet.

Comeback announcement for April?

About 343425946 bands in the KPOP industry have announced their comeback in April. Yes, there have been so many already that I can’t remember. As mentioned above, Big Bang is. Joining them is Girl’s Day, Miss A and Dal Shabet. B1A4‘s sister group will be making their debut in April as well. FT Island is also due to make a comeback in April as well. iKon is also another band rumoured to make their debut in April. As we look further into the future, SNSD and Infinite are both aiming for May comebacks. April is going to be one hell of a month with all the bands coming back for me. And April is going to be one busy month for me already…

Kim Hyun Joong’s Domestic Violence Scandal + Pregnancy rumours

Another turn for the worse for Kim Hyun Joong. Late last year, it was reported that his former girlfriend was a victim to domestic violence attacks from the KPOP star. She sued him for what she had alleged that he has done to her. Now, it was revealed that the former girlfriend had withdrawn the lawsuit and the two proceeded to meet up with each other. Now the ex girlfriend is claiming to be pregnant with Kim’s child as he prepares for military enlistment.  His side has been asking for the girlfriend to come out and do pregnancy tests, which from what I read, she refused (but she ended up,  through her lawyer,  giving out “her” test results). I am going to be honest, this sounds very suspicious on her part. Since she had sued and withdrew the lawsuit basically means she has a free ticket to get away from Kim Hyun Joong. Unless she is that crazy in love for him, this progression in their relationship is putting both parties in a bad light.

Top 10 Songs Of The Month

1. Black Swan – Rainbow

2. Crazy – 4Minute

3. Shake That Brass – Amber (f(x)) ft. SNSD Taeyeon

4. Love Equation – VIXX

5. 너무 Very 막 – MYNAME

6. Just – ZionT ft. Crush

7. Always – A.Kor

8. Because Of You – Berry Good

9. Beautiful – KXIS (DMTN)

10. Sniper – Shinhwa