This Week in Kpop is brought to you by Solar, the stunning leader of Mamamoo. Just look at her! We're happy to see her and the rest of Mamamoo back just in time to kick of a slew of major summer releases. But they're not alone out here - with Sistar and AOA on the horizon, and 2PM continuing boy band dominance, slaying the world while inviting everyone over to their house. Things are about to get interesting, so let's get started already!
Mamamoo's "Um Oh Ah Yeh"
Mamamoo is back, and they're sillier than ever! They had maybe one of the best rookie debuts we've seen last year, and we're so excited to see them making their comeback with this energetic, quirky crowd-pleaser. It's a shift away from their more snazzy, jazzy, big band roots, into something a little more generic, but if there's one thing that will always remain it's Mamamoo's killer energy and them massive vocals.
We have mixed feelings with the gender switches in the video, especially since their transformations and use of prosthetic jawlines are borderline grotesque (Solar is the sole member who gets to avoid the horrid transformation, and pretty much looks stunning throughout the video, though Moon Byul does get to be boyish with dignity). It almost feels like Mamamoo thought this switch would be funnier than it ultimately is, and the gender reversals don't say as much as they could beyond the pervy nature of their characters. The "twist" at the end is another slapstick turn that seems a bit outdated, but perhaps right at home in a Korean culture still catching up to more progressive norms.
But when the girls jump into the chorus, "Oh yeah!" you just about forget all moral reservations, and the raw talent takes you away in a song that really grooves with a kinetic energy that other girl groups should take note of. This turn to the slapstick may have been inevitable with Mamamoo's behind-the-scenes videos really showing the wacky (and unbelievably charismatic) nature of these girls. While we'll miss the more old-school vibe the group was sporting in 2014, change was inevitable here too. Hopefully, Mamamoo will continue to evolve and show their wide-range of talents and musical stylings. Their popularity is growing, as is their fanbase, so maybe a more generic release is just what they needed right now.
2PM's "My House"
"It's alright. Let's go to my house." How can one say no to that request? What starts as sexy plea from 2PM slowly becomes a surrealist fairy tale dreamscape, and we're all invited. It's a bit weird to see our main heroine essentially in love with, and pursued by, all of 2PM, but, in Kpop logic, this type of scenario works just fine. We're nitpicking here. This is a fun, silky smooth release that seems to perfectly compliment the more energetic but just as strong, "Go Crazy" of last year. 2014 was all about going out all night and getting trashed. 2015 is about staying in, hunkering down, and making some sweet, sweet (secret) love! We're loving this release, quirks and all (did you SEE the singing bunny rabbit?!) and the boy groups seem to keep capturing our hearts this year. Will their dominance ever end? Speaking of which...
Sistar vs. AOA
It's happening. It's finally happening. We feel like we've been tortured for weeks. We can only take so much teasing here! Every time we turn around there are new pics or videos or, yes, teasers, of either AOA or Sistar (and now we're seeing more from Nine Muses, but let's stay focused here). So much so that it seems as though these two major girl groups are about to square off in a no-holds barred death match. Which probably isn't fair, since these two girl groups are very different when it comes down to it.
Here's what we're hoping for. We're hoping that AOA keeps the momentum going and provides a killer comeback on the heels of Jimin's Unpretty Rapstar surge. We think they're just about ready to be considered an elite group here. And Sistar, which is already an elite group, we're hoping (but skeptical) that they'll get out of these summer releases and slay, as they say, with something more in line with "So Cool," or "Give it to Me," or heck, just anything that takes them out of summer and beaches and cheesecake. But...it's summer. And the song is called "Shake It," so...
Five Reasons Why Seventeen's Ecstatic "Adore U" is Irresistible and Refreshing
It took us a while, but better late than never, right? Inexplicably, Seventeen's "Adore U" has captured our attention, and, also. Our hearts. You can check out five reasons right here.
CL Forces Us to Make a Difficult Choice by Promoting in America
Difficult choice? But what could that mean? you may ask. We love CL and we're excited for her American debut, but that may put some Kpop fans in a difficult position. Want to know what we mean? Find out right here.
June 14-20, 2015
And that was This Week in Kpop! We feel like this week, much like last week, has everything on standby while a bunch of major releases tease - but we still got Mamamoo and 2PM with comebacks, so we're happy! This summer is going to be a battle between some major Kpop idols, the likes of which we may have never seen before. And when that happens, everyone will win! Until next week, have fun and be safe!