Although it may feel like 2015 only hit us a few days ago, we are already into the third month of the new year! For many, the new year can be a time to reflect on the bad habits or decisions of the previous year or to strengthen relationships with those around us. However, the new year also means new music, especially that of Kpop groups. Even though many groups have made a comeback within these two months, I will focus on three male groups and three female groups.
1. January 12th, 2015
On this day, Jonghyun of SHINee, followed Taemin in making a solo album. His seven tracks were compiled in a mini album titled Base, with featured artists Zion. T, IRON, and Younha. With his unique, “airy” voice, it is no wonder that he has grabbed his audience’s attnetion. Solely based on facts, people on melon.com, a Korean website of all Korean songs, gave this album a 4.4 rating. On youtube, the “Crazy (Guilty Pleasure)” music video has over 3 million views while the “Déjà-Boo” music video has over 1 million views. It is evident that Jonghyun’s solo career has started off with a good note.
As for personal taste, I preferred this mini album in comparison with Taemin’s album, Danger; since they are in the same group of the same company, it is inevitable that I found myself reviewing the albums with each other. If you have not yet taken a chance to try out the album, I recommend that you listen to “Crazy” or “MONO-Drama”.
2. January 21st, 2015
Even if you do not know Davichi, you must have heard a song by them for Lee Haeri’s and Kang Minkyung’s powerful vocals are the owners of a few popular drama osts such as “Because It’s You”, “It’s Okay, It’s Love”, and “Heaven”. Davichi, a pop-balled duo debuted in 2008, released their mini album, Davichi Hug. With a solid 4.0 rating on this recent album melon. com, they have kept up their high reputation of being South Korea’s current hottest representation of female duos. Due to their recent popularity, they were able to shoot a music video overseas for the first time. The music videos of both title tracks, “Cry Again” and “Sorry, I’m Happy” have over 1 million views and over 600,000 views respectively.
With the overflowing amount of pop songs, their ballad songs are ideal for a change of mood. I highly recommend the whole album but my two favorites have to be “Two Women’s Room” and “Cry Again.” This album has not disappointed me, so take the time to explore what they have to offer you!
3. February 2nd, 2015
Now that I have covered the pop and ballad genre, I will switch over to my favorite genre, K-Hiphop. This genre has been blowing up rapidly in the few years with many boy groups releasing songs with hip hop vibes. However, to many, the underground rappers are what truly attracts people. Zion T. and Crush are two of the many that many are keeping an eye on; some may even say they are climbing up the popularity pyramid, soon to reach the top. It blew the K-Hiphop community, including me, when they heard that these two were collaborating for a song. The amount of positive feedbacks with just the idea of them working together further foreshadowed the success to come. Although I wish I could say the mini-album, Young, has many songs, it currently only consists of the title track, “Just.” The black and white music video for the track is soon to reach 2 million views and the song has won a few first places on music shows. Needless to say, I hope you are all searching the song up!
4. February 9th, 2015
When one thinks of 4minute, it is likely that Hyuna is the first person to pop up for she was the star of Psy’s “Gangnam Style” and has realeased many hit singles. However, even as a group, 4minute does not fail to keep their title tracks first on music charts such as “What’s Your Name?” and “What Are You Doing Today?” Following the hype that is 4minute, their recent album, Crazy, once again stirred up the K-Pop world, resulting with a 4/5 star rating on melon.com. Although the music video caused some controversy*, the MV for “Crazy” has reached 8 million views within 3 weeks while “Cold Rain” is on the verge of hitting 3 million views.
(*People claimed the music video copied G Dragon’s “One of a Kind” while having the same song style as 2ne1.)
Personally, this is my favorite 4minute comeback. Their previous two comebacks were very similiar in style, but this album featured a whole new side of them. In addition, the album has shone light on all of the members; with their completely new style, look and choreography, 4minute has outdone themselves. Currently, “Cut It Out” has been on repeat on my phone, so I will place this song on the plate of recommendations.
5. February 12th, 2015
Now, let’s focus on a more “unknown” group; to be honest, this review is coming from my experience with the new album at this exact moment. Although I have heard a few songs by them, this is my first time trying out this new mini album, which I heard of good things only. While researching, I was surprised to see that they debuted in 2011 but have recently found themselves standing as a worldwide famous K-pop group. Since it was an album released after a year and 4 months of resting, their fans welcomed the “hip hop rascals” with wide arms, which reflected on the 4.3 rating on melon.com. The MV of the title track, “too very so MUCH” has around 400,000 views on Youtube, but the top comment sums it all: “How did I not know about these amazing guys??”
As I have just watched the music video, I must say, I am digging the beat; being a big fanatic of rappers, I loved Seyong’s and JunQ’s rapping for it flowed very well with the general vibe of the song. However, after the first listen of the MYNAME’s 2nd Mini, my favorite is “Broken Watch,” and I will continue to look out for MYNAME and their songs to come!
6. February 16th, 2015
Last but not least, here is another new solo artist from SM. Amber has been making headlines with her new mini album, “Beautiful”, as well on variety shows, where she shut down many people who critized her for her tomboyish style. She stated that this was the way she felt comfortable and continuously proved herself as having an onion-like personality; with every peel, many were surprised with her bubbly personality! The mini album consists of 5 tracks and has a 4.2 rating on melon.com. In addition, her music video for the song, “Shake that Brass” has reached 5 million views with the help of the game, SMTOWN. (A few watched the video in hopes to receive a R Card as a deal for 5 million views on the game.)
To be frank, this album has to be the only album I like from any of f(x) related albums. Although not a big fan of the group, Amber has stood out to me by surprising me with a WONDERFUL singing voice. Despite the fact that she is a rapper, her vocals had me checking if I was listening to Amber. The other 4 songs on the mini album do not contain much of her rapping, and I love it. I am on my way to get “Love Run”!
That ends my review of the 6 album by popular kpop groups, whew! Since this is my first article, I do hope you guys understand if the article doesn’t appear as professional. As another request, I would be beyond happy if I can interact with you guys through comments, so please leave any comebacks or debuts YOU are anticipating and why. I would be more than willing to write them down and check them out accordingly when the time comes. I do hope you guys enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it!