Mixing k-pop and straight up K-hiphop music can be tricky sometimes. K-pop, with it’s sheltered members and syrupy songs can sometimes stand in stark contrast to K-hiphop artists, especially those of the underground who in typical hip-hop fashion come from the school of the hard knocks and have unfiltered lyrics. Until we come up with a more sustainable solution, the hardcore k-hiphop music are at the bottom of the post. Note they do come with some colorful language.
Without further ado, this week in K-music Thursday, we have the debut of the new girl group “Oh My Girl,” Sunny from Girls Generation collabs with the Rooftop House Studio crew, Lim Kim from Superstar K3, Gummy formerly of YG, Hwanhee, Apink, Gavy NJ, San E and Yerin of 15&, Defconn
“Oh My Girl” (오마이걸) Debuts with Cupid
The long awaited debut of the new girl group from WM Entertainment is finally here. The 8 member group, who are the sister group to our favorite boy band, B1A4 debuted with a very typical “Cupid”, including the adorable school uniforms and pleated skirts. What’s interesting about these girls is that they come off as SNSD-like. Not just in concept, but musically, especially in their harmonies. And, as 1theK points out below the harsh-tag for the girls #OMG means “Oh My Girl.”
Another aspect that is interesting in the music is their use of drum rolls as if from a drum-line. But then, the rapping part starts a bit too unexpectedly. It should have been no surprise, but it was that they had a rapper – since this is kpop. Once, you absorb that fact, you begin to notice the girl-rapper has been coached well, especially in how to carry herself.
What’s also nice is that the music video throughout, really gives each girl face-time. And, that’s also similar to the early girl’s generation videos. Many debut videos wait till the end to feature each girl, but here it was through out the video.
#OMG DAY? Finally, the meaning of this unknown hashtag is revealed! The 8 girls from the picture will debut as “OH MY GIRL”. The next generation girl group OH MY GIRL has released an exotic teaser clip prior to revealing its team name. The video received much attention from music fans all over the world. The members include the “genius” girl SeungHee, HyoJung, JinE, Mimi, YooA, Jiho, Binnie, and Arin.
The title song “CUPID” is by the famous producer Shin Hyuk who also worked with the global pop star Justin Bieber. Shin’s team of composers “Joombas Music Factory” joined forces with Korea’s #1 lyricist Kim Ina for the production of “CUPID”. The main theme from the beginning of the song, combined with the members’ charming voices, is sure to give off the energy “OH MY GIRL” has.
The group debuted on April 19, 2015
Sunny(써니) of Girls Generation(소녀시대) Collaborates with Rooftop House Studio (옥탑방 작업실) in “Heart Throbbing”(심쿵주의보)
Sunny has always had that adorable mouse-like squeaky voice, which lends to her aegyo, but then relegated her to only cameo roles in Girls Generation songs. So it’s nice to see her independently pursuing a more robust role as a singer.
The Rooftop House crew, however, did a rather excellent job. To promote the single the guys did an excitable video, with Sunny coming to visit them. The collaboration was released on April 20th, 2015.
Sunny and her collaborators do not appear in the music video. Instead it follows around a young couple as they spend time together in the park, after a dinner date and around the house. The song is in both the boy and girl’s perspective. The girl,Sunny, has the chorus, and the guy most of the verses. Ultimately it seems the song is more from the girls side – as it has the stronger impression.
“My L.O.V.E.” may well be the title of the song as it appears prominently in the chorus. The musical concept and video are certainly very cutesy (aegyo), augmented by the artists making musical sounds with their voices like du-ru-do-do do do do do du-wa – kinda doo-woppy.
According to 1TheK,
“The indie band “Rooftop House Studio”, chosen by Sunny, is well-known nation wide for its unique, eye-turning performances and vocals.”
For the Rooftop House Project, producer Kim Dong Young wrote the song “Heart Throbbing”. It’s a main-stream medium folk song with a refreshing 16-beat folk rhythm combined with an acoustic piano and guitar riffs, about the lovey-dovey stories of couples that are just starting to date.
San E Makes a Cute Track With Baek Yerin(백예린) Of 15& in “Me You”
Awww.. this is a sentimental love track with a lovely melody, and the video is adorable with San E floating on ceilings and bouncing off of walls.
The concept seems to be talking about feeling weightless from new found love feelings. It’s colorful, playful, light, and fun. And, Verbal Jint’s picture makes a cameo.
In the song San E raps, and Yerin sings, well. As San E used to be with Yerin’s company, JYP, these two do go back a while. This is not their first MV together. The third character in the MV is Instagram – San E unfollows his ex-girlfriends, and seems to be demanding she do the same to VJ.
The song was released on April 22nd on YouTube.
Gummy(거미) Returns with “The only thing I can’t do” (해줄 수 없는 일)
The former YG Entertainment artist, Bak Ji-yeon who goes by Gummy on stage, has returned with a sad love ballad for the brokenhearted.
The video starts out with a short skit of a pitiful young man breaking the heart of his girlfriend, because he says he is afraid to hurt her in the future.
The video comprises largely of the brokenhearted lady chasing after the fella, bewildered and in a daze.That is until she happens up him in a park, having a hearty laugh on the phone. Basically not the attitude of someone who’s feeling any remorse or was genuine about protecting her feelings.
In the song http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gummy_(singer) is accompanied by an orchestra. The single was released on April 16, 2014.
Apink(에이핑크) Makes a Promise in New MV “Promise U”(새끼손가락)
The quintessential aegyo girl group A-Pink made a comeback with a beautiful sentimental music video on April 19, 2015.
The song starts out with fingers snapping, which is nice, but then moves into some low-notes singing, which really sort of saps the energy out of the song. However, as the singing progresses into higher notes, the song gets sweeter and melodically more palatable. The chorus is a simple “la la la la la,” which is delightfully cute.
The low notes in the second verse are more easy to accept, and seem to help actually bring the song together. The bridge, which is really strong, will have you tapping your feet, because it’s so beautiful and heartfelt. But then the hook was actually not that strong, although it is a good contrast to the bridge.
As an aside, when reviewing MVs sometimes I listen to the music while typing my thoughts, before actually watching the video. When I clicked on Apink’s music video to watch it, the stunning visuals almost took my breadth away – it’s that APink cutesy Kpop signature.
The video doesn’t show the girls singing, but shows them in different scenarios, in a field of flowers, under a stage, at a photo-shoot, at a concert, striking different poses, and at fan-meets and concerts. It’s a beautiful video, as if to memorialize a feeling – or a person – like a memorial – as if someone is leaving – or a planned break up. All in all, its very cute.
According to 1theK:
On April 19th, 2015, Apink releases the surprise digital single to celebrate the 4th anniversary of their debut.
The song ‘Promise you’ will be glad news for fans wondering recent stories of Apink, who are doing activities abroad as the next artist leading the Korean Wave, after finishing their domestic activities successfully with the song ‘LUV’ last year.
Sweet rose piano, groovy drum and base make dreamlike sounds that Apink has not shown so far, and expand the musical potential of them which was thought to be limited.
Lim Kim (김예림) of Togeworl’s (투개월)) Seductive “Awoo”
Another Superstar K alumni has given us another solid track, showing how effective the competition has been in digging out talent and putting them on the world’s stage. Lim Kim competed in Superstar K3 as part of Togeworl and placed third.
In “Awoo,” released on April 21, 2015, the video and music is seductive, and uses lots of pastel colors. The video has Lim Kim interchangeably seducing a black cat and then a guy. It also has other seductive elements including a luscious strawberry cake with thick white frosting, she shoots apples with plastic arrows, and singing in her underwear certainly adds to the theme.
“I flirt with you. You fall for me,” which is the chorus, and is just those two lines.
And, yes there is some rapping, which starts out in a steady pace, but then she suddenly goes from rapping to singing without skipping a breathe. Music is captivating at first, but she kinda loses you in the chorus. The bridge, however is awesome, and after multiple listens the beat in the chorus does begin to grow on you. The electronic beat is solid, simple and has a short melody. The hook is nice, too.
Hwanhee(환희) _ Heart-breaking(아프다) (Orange Marmalade(오렌지 마말레이드) OST Part.1)
I’m including this today, because the vocals are very powerful, although it’s short. And, I don’t know much about the Hwanhee (who it seems like is a the other half of Fly-to-the-Sky).
Gavy NJ(가비엔제이) _ Ju ju ju(친구가 널 봤대) (Feat. Hip Job(힙잡))
It seems Gavy NJ, who’ve been around since 2005 have come back, and the very resilient group who’ve gone trough multiple rotations, return with musically sensual single with a gentle delivery. The three girls dress in white, in a room also painted in white fits the sensibilities of the song
The rapping is a little out of place – you know, not every song needs a rapping a section
Kpop seems to be going through that phase RnB went through in the late nineties and early 2000’s where every single had to have a rap section
Okay!!! Time for K-Hiphop!!!
“Defconn” (데프콘) Wastes no Time in “SLEEPWITYA”(우리집 갈래?)
Now this is one hot beat, characteristic 90’s hip-hop and will fit right into your next k-hiphop themed house party. I have to say, Defconn got a little carried away with his appreciation of “venus”, but who can blame him – “mars” can get pretty dry and patched. So he’s pretty direct – no waste of time. But, he’s forgetting Venus … needs to be wooed, sometimes. Right?!
The music video was released on April 16, 2015.
According to 1theK:
“Defconn, who showed potentials as a multi-player through many activities as a musician as well as entertainer and achieved great success personally, came back with a new album after 4 years. The new album boasts Defconn’s outspoken style at his early ag,e has tracks that fully embody his musical mindset as the title says.
The title song ‘SLEEP WIT YA’ sings the honest feelings of trendy men and women in the straight expressions in the unique style of hip hop regardless of deliberation. Impressive chorus and lines you cannot hear from hip hop ballads or other K-Pop songs! The song devoted faithfully to the hip hop attitudes!”
Seasoned Defconn(데프콘) Parodies Modern K-hiphop in Frankenstein(프랑켄슈타인) (Dirty Rap City)
So after the playful single above, Defconn then went on to release a second powerful music video also on April 16. This time the concept is reported to be a parody of new Korean hiphop. who could be be talking to… who else Dok2!
“Welcome to the street of assholes The shitty streets ruled by money,” says Defconn in the bridge.
That dirty south beat is fire, tho. And, his grungy husky rapping adds to he griminess of the music video, which is in mostly black and white. The chorus “Dirty rap city, dirty, dity rap city is of the chain. Would be amazing to hear this in English.
Okay… I have a confession. I’m afraid putting all the hot sounds being release out of Korea into one post is not practical. And, they are mostly of such top quality – I cant choose. We should be putting up another post on K-Indie and possible one dedicated to K-hiphop.