This Week in Kpop is so loaded that we don't even know where to begin. Okay, we kinda do. We've been hearing iKON so long that to finally get their official release fills our bones with relief. But does "My Type" blow us away? Well...why don't we get started already?
In a year where Big Bang has taken hold of YG's release schedule, we've been hearing again and again that iKON was just around the corner, ready to blow these other rookies out of the water. And now, finally: iKON!
And we're a bit...surprised? As far as rookie debuts go, maybe we were expecting something closer to Monsta X rather than Seventeen's. Maybe it's our own fault for not expecting something so...chill. Unnervingly chill. It's like we want to shake these guys awake and ask them, DO YOU KNOW WHAT'S AT STAKE HERE?
So, we can't help it. We're a bit bored by this release, even though it does get better with subsequent listens. It's still not a song that we have to return to, ever, and that's troubling to us for a debut release that was supposed to slay. But maybe slaying is relative. While we've heard some disappointment and some complaints on line distribution, "My Type" has certainly dominated the charts and the views on YouTube keep climbing. That doesn't say anything on the song's actual quality, but if it's grabbing so many people, iKON must be doing something right. Right? We'll take a closer look at this release next week. We may need to give "My Type" some time to simmer.
Now this is what we're talking about. We weren't blown away by Cheetah's flat "My Number" for much of the same reason that iKON's "My Type" feels all meh. With a debut release, we're looking for some urgency. We're looking for the raw, for the uninhibited. We want to feel like the artist(s) believes they only have one shot at grabbing your attention, as if this may very well be their only release ever. Seventeen's "Adore U" had that manic intensity (surely, with Pledis' issues, much more was at stake), while Monsta X's release felt like they were prepping for war. Cheetah and iKON feel safer, like they know they'll have more chances to show their charisma.
And then there's Jessi. She's certainly a controversial, brash figure who some are just going to hate no matter what she does. But you cannot deny her intensity here, her distinct vocals, her calculated flow, or that this song just jams. Jessi's personality may feel larger than life, but maybe that's exactly what a release like this needs. Personality that will slap you in the face. "This is my moment," she sings, and you just know that Jessi means it.
Are you ready to rock? THIS WEEK IN KPOP, we said, ARE YOU READY TO ROCK?! CNBLUE and Nell! In the same week? We don't even deserve this! Props to Nell especially for their high quality low quality video, which just has to be in the running for our coveted music video of the month, right? Check these out, friends. After a long, saccharine summer it's about time for some rock. So, yes, we're ready.
iKON was not the only group that made their long-awaited debut! DIA crashed into the scene with "Somehow," and while it doesn't seem like it will rule the charts, we liked the energy. The real story here is how they're getting some flack from a small (but vocal) portion of T-ara and SPEED fans who resent the time and attention MBK is going to give the group. BUT COME ON. MBK, as flawed as they are, need new groups to SURVIVE. And regardless of MBK, DIA shouldn't get slammed for simply existing, should they?
SM JUST CAN'T STOP
SM is just killing it lately. They've killed with SNSD's recent releases and Red Velvet is just about to dominate the world. Any other week, Super Junior's "Magic" would be a cover story and Jonghyun having another solo release (even a ballad) would be big news. It seems as though SM is burning through Super Junior songs because of impending military duties, but we can forgive these abrupt releases and even questionable retweets from Siwon (who has since apologized), because rumor has it TAEMIN IS HAVING ANOTHER SOLO RELEASE.
Come on, baby, come on baby, come on baby, etc.
Why I Hate Music Shows, Part 4: The Ugly Hierarchy of Fandoms
Zadner Stachniak is just killing it here with his exploration on music shows. Here it is, the thrilling conclusion, and this time he's taking on fandoms. How so? Find out here!
September 13-19, 2015
And that was This Week in Kpop! There were just too many releases this week so maybe we've missed something? You certainly have an opinion on these big releases! Are you feeling iKON's release more than we are? Let us know - but let us know why. We'll give it more listens ourselves. Until next week, have fun and be safe!