The K-pop Round Up: October 2013

September 2013 was the worst K-pop month in the world. There was literally nothing going on! But this month is filled with hearty comebacks and artists that make my mouth water. Welcome to the October 2013 edition of The K-pop Round Up!

Block B - Very Good

It’s been a while, hasn’t Block B? One of my favorite boy groups are back after their nearly 9-month long hiatus due to their lawsuit against the stingy Brand New Stardom. Very Good is the title of the boy’s latest release on October 2nd, 2013. I’ve already heard positive reviews about this song and video, so let’s see how the title track holds up!

Block B has taken it into their own hands get what belongs to them: the muthafuckin’ dough. The boys decide to rob a bank, swaggerlicious and all.  These fools also decided to take off their masks. Uh, you’ll be spotted, guys! Taking out the video camera isn’t going to erase the data it has, ugh.

Including the scenes with them fucking around in the bank, we have some extra takes in which some curious things go on. For one, Jaehyo is boxed down by a random chick in what looks like the vault halls. Alrighty. Next, we have Zico going Marilyn Manson on us in a horrifying black wig and lipstick. Don’t forget the one member having his head served as dinner along with the “conductor” getting ready to serve him! Gross!

I’m sure to a lot of you this might just seem like a mish-mash of odd visuals–something K-pop usually spurts out. Well, you may be forgetting one small detail… They never even took any money. Okay, so how does that apply to my point? And what if they did and the video just didn’t show it? Think about it, guys. The money is the most important part of a bank robbery–why wouldn’t they show at least a portion of the money being taken? They showed them playing around with it, but none was taken to the getaway van. It all comes down to one factor… Symbolism. One of my favorite things in the world.

The lawsuit between Block B and Brand New Stardom was because of money. For nearly two years, the boys weren’t paid a cent. They rose to fame so quickly, becoming household names and still nothing came from their company. Make any connection yet? The boys arrive at the bank masked, no one knows who they are or what they bring just yet. Unmasked, now everyone knows what they have to offer. The one member  whose head was fed to the greedy bastards is being forced to do something only for someone else’s gain. They go through all this trouble and are put through all this work only to leave with nothing. Bam. Symbolism exposed.

I’m going insane for how they incorporated their real life situation with their latest music video under a different company. The song itself is influenced by a rock sound, rather unique for the usually hip-hop-styled group. But admit it, it works out well.

Zico is also making his way up my list of adored K-pop individuals.

T-ARA - AGAIN

 

Going through a couple more member changes since their Hwa Young controversy, T-ara are back as a 6-member group for the first time in 3 years with their latest release, AGAIN, on October 10th, 2013. The lead track was Number Nine. Apparently there are two versions of the video, so let’s just take a look at the first one.

So it starts out looking like a deep, serious songs with the group styled in long, turtlenecked slit dresses, but we were fooled.

A horrific opening to European dance track cuts off the autotuned “hoo’s” and silly acoustic guitar. Everything looks pretty dramatic draped against the sheer white curtains. You know, playing with an antique candle holder, eating pink roses, sitting fully clothed in a bathrub–all very dramatic things. Clearly something traumatic has happened to these girls. Right? Right!?

I’m sorry, I just can’t. It reminds me way too much of a 4minute video: a bunch of budget but no finished product. And what the hell was the one girl saying during the “break?” I’m aldic? That’s not even a word… Anyway, let me get back to what is wrong with this video. First! That dance! Does anyone see this dance? It looks like the laziest, boring dance shot ever. All of these girls look extremely tired and the only thing keeping their eyelids open was eyelid glue. It looked like they were constricted to having their hands by the sides every time the dance was shown. Next, that emotion. Where was it? Seriously, wrinkling your eyebrows is not an emotion.

The best thing about this video was the styling. Oh, and I liked the distorted “number nine” vocals during somewhere in the song.

Kahi - Who Are You?

 

My K-pop queen, Kahi, returns to the scene after her graduation from After School over a year ago. The 32 year-old released her second mini-album, Who Are You?, on October 10th, 2013. It’s ME was announced as the lead track, featuring the amazing Dumbfoundead. You can’t really tell, but I’m literally frozen with excitement.

A surprisingly simplistic video released by the dancing queen. It basically just celebrates the simple things that make Kahi absolutely flawless. She’s just like us. Puts on makeup, rides the bus, walks the streets, ain’t it hot? But in all seriousness, this is an extremely tame video that has me captivated for some reason. I don’t know if it’s just because I absolutely adore Kahi or if the video is just that unexpected that it becomes invigorating in all ways. Let’s go with the latter just for the sake of this review.

That dance shot, doe, guys, amirite? I am especially drooling over these shots. Could it be Kahi’s rock hard abs? Her pinpoint accurate dancing? Or the swaggerlicious getup? I’m gonna go with a combination of all of them. I’m a little disappointed that Dumbfoundead isn’t featured in the video, but honestly I’m not surprised. Has anyone ever seen his face? It’s a mystery.

One thing that worries me a little bit about this video is… well, Kahi’s weight. Yeah, I said it. She’s kind of… Angelina Jolie bony. I really can’t tell if she’s always been that skinny or if this is something that’s coming with her age, I just don’t know. But it worries me if it’s something unnatural. Kahi is really too beautiful inside out to let her body wither away…

SHINee - Everybody

 

Unf, my niqquhz. I fell in love with all of their Misconceptions albums, so what about their latest mini, Everybody? SHINee have been on-point lately, pulling me back into their fandom after many years of abandoning them. Released on October 14th, 2013, time to see what the title track has in store for us Shawols. I’m excited, man .___.

Attack of the dubstep fooled me into the thinking SHINee had gone back to their demented stage from a few years back. Gladly, I was wrong and this insanely upbeat toxin reared its cute head.

EV.RY.BOD.AY. Can you hear me? Apart from the freaking amazing–as usual–dance, we aren’t given much except some flashy visuals by the guys. Like normally, Onew has a bad hair day on the day of filming with those strange pieces of yarn on the back of his head. It seems as though Taemin is using some raspy vocal tips from his bandmate Jonghyun. It’s paid off nicely, darling. Speaking of Taemin, I’m noticing a lot more passion in his face while he dances. A lot of lip curls and eyebrow-wrinkling going on here–I’m liking it.

Excuse me while I find something wrong with this video. Oh right, THERE ISN’T ANYTHING. Like, I’m not even being biased guys because you know that I haven’t been that into SHINee until this year. Well… That’s a bad reason, I could still be biased. Anyway, shut up! The dance is on point, the wardrobe is up to SHINee standards, and those visuals are entertaining. Sure, there wasn’t a lot offered in the video but the high-energy dance kept me jamming. The song can be considered a little generic, but the usual dance track was given an awesome twist with the cheery sound.

I love this. Brb while I faint.

U-KISS - MOMENTS

 

This is it. U-KISS‘s first release without maknae, Dongho. MOMENTS was released on October 31st, 2013. Nae Yeojaya was used as the lead track. Shall we see how the boys do without their little brother?

What.

Who.

What the fuck did I just watch? Who the fuck did I just watch? Was that really U-KISS? WAS THAT REALLY AJ RAPPING LIKE A COLD-HEARTED THUG? It just can’t be…

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.

I’m sorry, I had to let that out.

Seriously, who pulled the hip-hop plug off of U-KISS? It’s actually working! The sound, the singing, the rapping, the visuals–it all looks absolutely amazing. The black & white is sleek and the gold & colorful accents are a cute touch. Did anyone notice how the song got noticeably sweeter once Kevin started singing? Is that not cute or what!?

AJ absolutely blew me away with this song. I’m at a loss for words here, guys.

This wasn’t the longest K-pop Round Up in the world but a 4/5 success rate isn’t too bad.

One thought on “The K-pop Round Up: October 2013

  1. I like how you wrote about Block B’s Very Good and the meaning of the video. In fact I like what you wrote more than the actual song… I mean ‘I’m very very good’ is not exactly the lyrical heights xD… oh well

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