This was the week of PSY. Love him or hate him, PSY has become a major, polarizing figure in Kpop. And his "Hangover" release caused an expected stir. Of course, we had to talk about him. We also had to talk about the amazing album from Crush, and maybe after you've read what we've written, you'll have to talk about "Crush on You" too. This week saw so many releases that we've struggled to fit everything on this page! New videos from Taeyang, Boyfriend, Beast, the debut of Bob Girls, the return of the much-maligned Tahiti, and many more - let's get this started already!
Is PSY Good or Bad for Kpop?
When "Hangover" came out this past Sunday we asked, is PSY the sidekick or the star? But we had to dig deeper than that when we asked ourselves if PSY, ultimately, is good or bad for Kpop? We tried to be as fair as possible, but we're human too, so we might have overlooked something. Take a look, and give us your opinion, won't you?
Crush's Award Bound First Album
Crush really knocked us on the floor with his amazing debut album, "Crush on You." If you haven't listened to it, check out why we think you should here. Trust us, it's going to be receiving award nominations in the coming year.
BTS Celebrates One Year
Can you believe it's been a year since BTS broke onto the scene? The hip-hop group has been active since June of 2013, and here they reflect on that with an emotional performance of "So 4 More."
Major props to Boyfriend for filming their new music video, "Alarm," in Chicago, the founding city of Critical Kpop! There is not much like seeing one of your favorite groups walking around a city you love, singing a song that is absolutely gorgeous. It's like a sandwich of greatness.
U-Kiss may have had an implied threesome last week, but Taeyang's bedroom kiss may have up the stakes as far as sexiness in videos. We reviewed Taeyang's amazing video last week for "Eyes, Nose, Lips," and he keeps with the simplicity here. That kiss may be getting the most attention, but the video and song are what should give you no doubt that this is a killer comeback.
BEAST's "No More"
Beast released their new app, Beastagram, an Instagram-like service that only shows pictures and videos of the members of Beast! If only that existed, right? All jokes aside, "No More" is a great ballad, and their use of social media in the music video will resonate with pretty much anyone who has ever held a smartphone!
Cross Gene's "Amazing - Bad Lady"
Everyone's favorite multinational boy band released their comeback single, featuring plenty of sexual hand motions (inspiration a la Michael Jackson). The song is sure to be a summer hit, with a strong beat and good momentum. And thanks to some selective coloring, the video is an artistic endeavor worth watching!
Hyomin's "Are You Ready"
We usually don't cover teasers here, and if there's any week we shouldn't it's this one, when we have so many videos to cover, but...it's Hyomin we're talking about here. And yes, we're ready for her solo debut. But are you?
Gummy's "I loved...have no regrets"
Gummy came back with an emotional ballad that really exhibited her powerful vocals. While overwrought, like most Korean ballads, we still found it compelling and worth a listen!
Bob Girls' "No Way"
Crayon Pop's sister group, Bob Girls, finally made their debut with this debut video. We really liked the song, though the video and choreography are pretty unspectacular. Still, the girls look classy, and pulled off a subtle sexiness. Hopefully they'll find a way to stand out.
Tahiti's "Oppa, You are Mine"
Tahiti's had a rough start. First, their debut, "Tonight," failed to impress fans. Then, arguably their best song, "Love Sick," was plagued with accusations from American Kpop fans of ripping off music from Aly and AJ's "Potential Love Song," a move probably common and one that these girls had no control over, if true. Even the constant member change has made it hard to root for Tahiti, the popular Jungbin the latest member to leave the group, supposedly for health reasons, and temporarily (supposedly). But we're still hoping for good things from Tahiti, and by that we mean, really, Jisoo, the only member we still recognize (she's gained traction from appearing on variety shows). Tahiti proves that the world of Kpop can be truly unforgiving, and we really hope they succeed just to prove to us that fans can also forgive groups for their agencies' (here: Dreamstar) incompetence.
Seven Kpop Songs to Help You Cheer on Korea in the World Cup
The World Cup started this week and Korea's all in! We help you make a playlist to cheer on the Reds with our seven favorite World Cup songs of all time! You can check that out here.
June 8-14, 2014
And that's a wrap! Did we miss anything? With the amount of comebacks, new videos, the World Cup, and PSY's long shadow, we were bound to. But still, let us know in the comments. This week was unexpectedly PACKED, and we loved every minute of it. We hope next week gives us all the surprises we've come to expect from Kpop!