This Week in Kpop: May 11-17, 2014

Kris of Exo-M

This week was one for the Kpop History books. We had major comebacks and debuts and incredible ups and massive, massive downs, sometimes happening simultaneously. Let’s take a look at some of the stories we’ve been following this week, shall we?


Of course, we have to start with Exo. Exo-K won the first new M-Countdown with “Overdose.” Little did we know, trouble was brewing, as Kris, the leader of Exo-M, filed a suit against SM Entertainment to nullify his contract. There seems to be a lot of confusion and misinformation floating around right now but one thing is clear: Fan outrage and support has been massive to an almost unprecedented degree. You can read more about our take on that developing story here.

Hyoseong’s “Goodnight Kiss”

We also saw the first of many solo debuts of female idols with Hyoseong’s stunning “Goodnight Kiss.” You can check out our review here. In the meantime, her MelOn Premiere Showcase gives us a first glimpse into her live performance. It’s a must watch!

G.NA’s “Secret”

G.NA's Secret

Surprisingly, we found that G.NA’s comeback was a disappointment. We feel that Cube Entertainment really needs to step it up. Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments.

IU’s “My Old Story”

IU came back with a new album that reinterprets Korean oldies. It’s an intriguing idea, one that makes sense for IU, considering where her work has been heading since the old-timey “Modern Times” album. The first single, “My Old Story,” is a beautiful ballad and IU certainly impresses (and charms) again. We just wish a bit more was done with the video, as half of it involves a sullen man crying alone. Still, worth a look.

4Men’s “Erase”

4Men came back with not one, but two videos. While “OK” was, well, OK, we thought “Erase” really stood out as a powerfully emotional ballad. The video itself has some interesting effects with motion that were unexpected, and impressive.

Megan Lee’s “8 Dayz”

Youtube star, Megan Lee, made her official Kpop debut this week with 8 Dayz. Born and raised in Southern California, Megan has the benefit of knowing both Korean and English, and has made two versions of the song with two videos, in an effort, we’re sure, to bring more English speakers into the Kpop world. The English version (above) is missing Junhyung’s rap but is mostly identical besides that. It’s a fun song and beautiful video and we really enjoyed this Folk-Kpop mix. Megan definitely has a bright future ahead of her.

BTL’s “Too-G”

This week also saw the debut of BTL (Beyond the Limit). While some of the effects in the video were cheesy, and definitely unneeded, we liked the song and think the music is a good mix of rock and electronic pop. We’ll be interested to see what these guys do next. Hopefully the Exo scandal hasn’t overshadowed their debut completely.

Baby Kara?

We’re not sure how we feel yet with this whole “Baby Kara” contest. But above is one of seven teasers that we’ll be seeing of the contestants and it’s worth watching. We’ll keep an eye on this as it develops but we hope for the best for Kara. With their members leaving and Exo’s scandal, it’s been a tough year for many Kpop fans.

Nicole’s Dance Practice

Speaking of Kara, Nicole is currently training in America for potential solo comeback. Here she is in New York, with the famous choreographer, Luam. It’s good to see Nicole again. Her dancing has only gotten better. We have no doubt that she’ll be a huge star as a solo artist when she comes back to Korea!

The Sexualized Self-Identity in Lee Hyori’s Going Crazy

This week we interviewed Jarryn Ha, a PhD student in Historical Musicology, about Lee Hyori’s transformation in “Going Crazy.” He had some interesting things to say about sexual identity and Lee Hyori as an artist. Read the full interview here, then weigh in with your own take in the comments!

May 11-17

So that’s a wrap for this week. Did we miss anything? Any videos we should have listed? Songs we should have reviewed? Let us know. Next week will see the solo debut of Jiyeon and, hopefully, more information on Kris. And we’re sure there’ll be some surprises too. Who would have seen this Exo scandal coming? We just hope next week will have less heartache and more fun. Here’s hoping!


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