This Week in Kpop came at a crawl, with us waiting, expectantly, for releases from 4Minute and Amber. This week seemed just about forgettable. And then there was No.Mercy. This massive collaboration between Giriboy, Mad Clown, Jooyoung and Starship Entertainment's hungry trainees gave us a glimpse into Kpop's hip hop future. And the future is bright. Did we forget to mention that Zion.T and Crush had their own massive collaboration, that Kemy apologized publicly to Park Bom, and trot may very well be returning? Maybe it wasn't such a quiet week after all...
Giriboy, Mad Clown, and Jooyoung's "0 (Young)" (featuring No.Mercy)
Mad Clown, who's having a stellar year already, introduces the song, along with fellow rappers Giriboy and Jooyoung, but this song belongs to No.Mercy who tear through "0 (Young)," the rabbits speeding past the turtles in the Kpop world (as they keep repeating, they do know that the rabbit lost the race, right?). No.Mercy, as you may well know, is part of a reality show competition, pitting various hip hop artists under Starship Entertainment against each other in two groups vying to make a debut. Determined, supposedly, entirely by the audience, this whole process seems a bit cruel to us, but hopefully all the trainees will find their place, if not within Starship Entertainment, somewhere in Kpop.
Though it seems like a killer debut (which in many ways, it is), the song spawned from the competition itself, with Giriboy's team beat Genius Nochang‘s team and won the right to release this as a digital single. The group isn't finalized yet and will apparently feature seven members, but from what we're seeing here there's going to be an outpouring of talent no matter who wins a spot (this single consisted of seemingly fan-favorite Jooheon, Wonho, Seowon, I.M, and Kihyun). You'd think with this many rappers this could be an incoherent mess, which makes this collaboration, and the fact that No.Mercy wrote their own lyrics, all the more impressive to us. In a time when groups like BTS and Block B have finished their current promotions, getting a song like this, with as much energy and enthusiasm it brings, is truly a gift. These young men are ready to break into the scene, make no apologies, eat the old. Watch out, iKON, the future will not just be yours for the taking.
Hong Jin Young's "Love Wifi"
Is trot entering a new resurgence via Kpop? Quite possibly (though honestly it might already be bigger than we believe as we do not read up on trot trends). Hong Jin Young's first solo song just happened to be a trot single called "Love Battery," so it's fitting that she modernizes that song with wifi. And the video is fun, though we don't quite understand it. People go along their maddening routines, but then come face to screen with an old TV streaming...wifi, which causes their hearts to go aflutter for...life? Themselves? We're not exactly sure, but being able to read the Korean words that pop up on the screen would certainly help. Anyone that reads Korean want to tell us in the comments?
Kim Taebum's "Party Street" (featuring Sojin)
So, this video tripped us up at first, featuring Sojin's singing but Yura's acting (Girl's Day Fighting!, right?). We really thought this was a beautiful song, though we've been burned out by slower Kpop songs for a while now. We're happy to hear Sojin after a pretty terrible January, where EXO fans made her a target of derision when dating rumors surfaced between her and D.O, rumors that some in EXO-L believe that Sojin has perpetuated. We think that it's absurd and sick how some fans will justify their venom. Try as one might to make their cause just, you're just a crazy fan when you start harassing and verbally abusing. But, we digress. Sojin and Taebum sing beautifully together, and Yura, as always, looks gorgeous in the video - what more could you want?
Review: Just Listen to Zion.T and Crush's "Just"
Though it's been a relatively quiet week, February is about to explode with releases. And what better way to start the month than with Zion.T and Crush's latest collaboration? That's what we ask in our review of "Just," which you can read right here.
We Reluctantly Take Back Our 2014 Apology of the Year Award from A.KOR's Kemy
Our hearts were broken this week when word got around that Kemy, who was criticized relentlessly for insulting Park Bom via rap and not apologizing, apologized publicly for the first time. She even received an award for not apologizing and this is how she repays us! Read our personal statement right here, as we try to make sense of this madness.
Reviews: Episodes 1 and 2 of Hyde, Jekyll, Me
As you can see, we've been taking a closer look Korean television lately, and we're just about to delve into the pop psychological drama of Hyde, Jekyll, Me, which we are now hooked on, unabashedly. We take a look at both Episode 1 right here, and Episode 2 right here this week. But seriously: You need to be watching this show!
The Relationships of Goo Hara: A Look at the Fourth Episode of "Hara On & Off"
Speaking of shows you need to be watching - Hara On and Off: The Gossip has captivated our hearts. This week we look at Episode Four, and the focus on Goo Hara's relationships. With her fellow Kara members, with her crew, and with her fans. You can read about that here!
King and Queen: Episode 5
Can you believe we're on episode 5 already? BELIEVE IT. Kpop High is in lockdown. JYP has been shot. What will happen to Rap Monster and Ailee? Find out right here.
February 1-7, 2015
And that was This Week in Kpop! Next week should prove to be huge in the Kpop world, so check us out to see the latest reviews and commentary, friends. Until then, have fun and be safe!