This Week in Kpop: November 30-December 6, 2014

Starship Planet Holiday Song

We're going to admit it: this week was mellow. Sure, there were scandals and award shows and some new releases. But This Week in Kpop seemed to be the calm before the storm. We took it slow this week, waiting and waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe we're damaged after a very tough year in Kpop. Or maybe we'll seem prophetic next week. In any case, enjoy the quiet, while it lasts.

What Are the Best Site to Listen to Kpop? 

So you want to listen to some Kpop, but you’re not sure which site will give you the best experience and widest selection of content? If you’re anything like us, answering this question is a daily struggle, bouncing from site to site looking for the perfect Kpop player. There’s plenty of options out there, but which one is right for you? Find out right here, friends.

MAMA 2014 

MNet had their yearly awards this week in Hong Kong, as you surely know by now, and the event was full of great moments like BTS and Block B having their battle, IU and Taiji's beautiful duet, and Girl's Day and Ailee's fun collaboration. As an award show, they also had awards, some that confounded us completely. We could see Exo winning Artist of the Year by popularity alone, but Sistar winning best female group? Based on what criteria? Even the biggest Sistar fan may question the validity of the award, considering (and we're being kind here) Sistar's forgettable year. 2NE1, Girl's Day, even Girls' Generation had more notable years than Sistar. What's the deal, MAMA?

Starship Planet's "Love is You" 

Speaking of Sistar, they're featured prominently in likely one of many upcoming Christmas songs. While our cold, cynical hearts here at Critical Kpop usually groan at the sight of these agency Christmas collaborations, there's a lot to like with "Love is You," especially if you're a big fans of the idols featured (though some Boyfriend fans are upset at their lack of lines). Get ready, 'tis the season for cheesy Christmas collaborations - and by New Years you may be groaning too.

Infinite F's "Heartbeat" 

After debuting in Japan first, Infinite F released their Korean debut this week, and well, it's cute. Super cute. But who says guys can't have a cute video too, in a year where Block B and BTS have brought more hyper-masculine fare. Woollim Entertainment seems to want to corner the market on cute sentimentality, if this and Lovelyz are any indication. And while we readily admit that this style isn't really our jam here at Critical Kpop, we're really not the target audience for these groups anyway.

Shannon's "Daybreak Rain"

After years of training, and her stint on SBS' "Star King," Shannon has finally made her idol debut this week with "Daybreak Rain." And we're liking the song, and the dancing in the rain, though we wish we'd get a solo debut that really went for the gold with a stellar pop song. "Daybreak Rain" is another understated debut, much like Nicole's "Mama," songs that will make their fans happy but not explode onto the scene. And that's great, and that's safe, but we'd love to see a debut that redefines. Maybe we're expecting too much here.

November 30-December 6, 2014 

And that was This Week in Kpop! While this week was relatively mellow, we're expecting more surprises as we begin to finish off the year. Or at least more Christmas videos. Get ready for that. There's nothing we can do to stop them.


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