My relationship with K-pop is little over two years long, and my tastes grow and develop rapidly. I’m presenting some of my personal favourite K-pop hits with you in the hope that you’ll either be able to relate to them, or share your own with me. Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
First K-Music Song I Liked: 2NE1 – ‘I Am The Best’
Shortly after the release of this song, 2NE1 and YG Entertainment announced the global dance cover competition. A friend of mine posted her cover on Facebook, and that was my first experience of K-pop. The sleek video, the catchy beat and the weirdly wonderful fashion all caught my attention. So much so that when the video finished I replayed it straight away, and then plunged into the crazy, colourful depths of YouTube’s K-pop videos. Which brings me to my next choice…
Song That Gets Stuck In My Head: f(x) – ‘Pinocchio’
To this day I still maintain that this song has the most awesome instrumental. Ever. While it appears electronic and squeaky at first, the guitar in the background and the pounding beat along with the arrangement of lyrics in the chorus make this song a particularly cheeky earworm. To make matters worse, you can sort of just “dadada” your way through the chorus without knowing the lyrics, meaning there is no language barrier to stop you singing along! (I actually had to learn the words because I was so frustrated with dadada-ing.) On a side note, this video is perhaps one of my favourite K-pop videos. Probably because it was one of my early discoveries, and I feel it’s pretty representative – in my opinion – of K-pop videos as a whole.
Song That Picks Me Up: EXID – ‘I Feel Good’
Pretty obvious choice looking at the title! Though I admit to a bit of romanticism (so maybe listening to that emotional ballad in the rain is a good way to indulge one’s feelings), I’m a strong believer of blasting happy tunes/your favourite songs when you’re in a negative kind of mood. In my case, it’s my running playlist. Even if you don’t quite feel like dancing around your room immediately, eventually you start to enjoy the music and your mood will slowly brighten!
Song With The Best Lyrics: G-DRAGON – ‘That XX’
This song is my rain song. By no means am I a fluent Korean speaker, but it’s the concept that really speaks here. The most popular interpretation if this song is that G-DRAGON is talking about himself, pretty clever really. The song has a really nice feel and is a nice reprieve from the electronic sounds of a lot of K-pop songs.
Song I’m Loving Right Now: TaeTiSeo – ‘Love Sick’
Another laid-back track, this time with a hint of soft R’n’B. The smooth voices of the three Girls’ Generation members allow this track to feel relaxing and more like a modern ballad than a …regular ballad. I love the way it builds slowly, but the climax isn’t too loud or theatric. Easy listening!
Favourite Song of 2013 So Far: EXO – ‘Growl (Chinese Ver)’
Am I cheating if I put the Chinese version here? Personally, I think the language just suits this song so well. I usually prefer spoken Mandarin over Mandarin songs but ‘Growl’ is the exception. The way adlibs are weaved over the lines throughout the song, the harmonizing in the chorus and the simple yet amazingly catchy melody are all the reasons that earned this song its place here. Ever since the teaser, I had the “Eureureong,” part stuck in my head 24/7. Maybe it would be far-fetched to call this song a tiny spark of genius… I guess I just really like this song.
My Favourite K-Music Artist: Rania
I love this song so much but don’t get me started on this choreography! Rania are probably most well known for their provocative debut song, ‘Dr Feel Good’, which stirred up a fair bit of controversy after its release. Having enlisted help from famous US producer Teddy Riley, Rania have some brilliant pop hits. Despite various member losses and returns, this group never fail to come back fighting with their amazing vocal and dance skills. Their first full length album, ‘Goodbye’s The New Hello’, includes their better known songs such as ‘Dr Feel Good’, ‘Just Go’ and ‘Pop Pop Pop’, but it also has some never-before-(officially) released songs that really are worth a listen. Tracks include ‘Masquerade’, ‘Secret Party’ and, my favourite, ‘Killer’. The album also includes three English versions of some of the songs. Give it a listen!
That was my K-music Playlist, I’m glad I could share it with you. Do you feel the same way about any of my choices? Or maybe you have other suggestions? Either way, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Share with us your own, personal, K-music Playlist.