Many Kpop releases were postponed as a result of the heart-breaking Sewol ferry tragedy on April 16. The postponement of new releases and the cancellation of the weekly rankings shows meant that April, understandably, was a slow month for Kpop. We earmarked “Jackpot” early on for a potential music video of the month, but we were expecting heavy competition from the likes of Exo. The lack of that competition shouldn’t take anything away from Block B, however. This was a killer song and a gorgeous music video. With or without April being a slow month for releases, it’s hard to see anyone beating out “Jackpot” for the honors.
Lords of Chaos
The circus theme is very appropriate for “Jackpot” and Block B, which we have now dubbed, the Lords of Chaos. Block B are very much the mad hatters of the Kpop world, and when our heroine falls down their rabbit hole, they torment and toy with her with a manic energy only they can sustain. There are guns, knives, punches, bike chases, all in good fun, of course - they even have time to play dress up and make absurd faces to accompany their slapstick choreography.
The song moves with such a frantic and disjointed intensity that, at first listen, the abrupt twists and turns may be jarring. But, believe us when we insist, this song just gets better with every listen. Infused with TNT, “Jackpot” gets points just for the most irresistible fun we’ve seen from a music video in ages. In many ways, with pure pop anarchy, Block B is everything that Kpop should strive to be.
What this Means for Block B: 7 - 7 - 7 - Jackpot!
In a slot machine, hitting three 7’s is called a jackpot. Seven members, under the label Seven Seasons, producing their seventh album. But for Block B this is more than just an excuse to celebrate numerical perfection. These men have had a rough few years. Without hitting a “jackpot,” it would be hard to see a long-term future for them.
First there was the 2012 scandal in Thailand, where the group was seen to behave disrespectfully during an interview, eventually leading all members to write apologies and leader Zico to shave his head. Then in 2013, the group filed suit against Stardom Entertainment, their label at the time, claiming they had not been paid in a year. Five months after the suit had begun, former CEO Lee Seung Yeon committed suicide. The court eventually ruled in favor of Stardom, and Block B left the company to join another label.
The switch to Seven Seasons seems to have brought Block B back to life. Jackpot is their second album with the new label, following on the heels of Very Good (which we thought was very good). And that is why this song means so much to them. Block B have clawed themselves out of a bad situation, but fans have long memories. In terms of promotion, the timing could not be worse for them, having released the album but not been able to promote it. But with “Jackpot,” Block B have shown that they have a lot more to offer to Kpop. But don’t take our word for it, watch the video, on repeat, and get lost in the fun!