Sep 30, 2015

Glorious Photoshoots - September Round-Up

With September coming to an end the summer is officially over for this year, but so far where I live the sun is still shining and it appears as if the warmth is holding on to whatever remains of the season. This month's photoshoot round-up embodies the transition between summer and fall, with most of the pictorials falling somewhere in between. One of my favorites is CL's shoot for Vogue as seen above.

Sep 29, 2015

Red Velvet Reclaim My Heart With The Fabulous "Dumb Dumb"

Red Velvet made a name for themselves with their previous comeback earlier this year, as they charted high with single "Ice Cream Cake" and even won first place on several music shows. I personally didn't get the hype about said song and highly preferred "Automatic", which was the other track they semi-promoted. My slight dislike for the former song and the fact that they won with it and it was so liked by so many made me sort of irritated, as I once again, like with EXO felt myself get more and more annoyed by their success. I really didn't want that to be the case (damn you SM!), but sadly I had those kind of feelings. Now they've come back with "Dumb Dumb" and although I didn't get it at first I am now genuinely digging the song, and my relief is infinite.

I know I'm insanely late with this MV review, since the girls already have promoted for several weeks and won quite a few music show awards, and for that I am sorry. That does not mean however that I don't find this video and comeback enjoyable, because that's exactly the opposite of what I've been doing. Like I mentioned previously the song didn't quite impress me at first, but after a few listens it grew on me quickly and passionately. I talked about this in my album review as well, but "Dumb Dumb" is a song that you will either love or hate, because of how it sounds and is structured. There are many twists and turns, a loud, almost borderline noisy instrumental, and high-pitched vocals mixed with SM-like rap-talking, and as you can tell it's a recipe bound for either success or failure. Personally I've grown to like genuinely like it, but it does sound better either with watching them perform it live or hearing it together with this wonderful MV.

[OFFICIAL] Red Velvet – Concept Photo For ‘The Red’ 1400x2100Right off the bat I knew from the teaser pictures and video that this comeback would be special. The concept was odd, creative and the right amount of quirky and charming. The doll-like dresses, hairstyles and colorful outfits looked interesting to say the least, and I must say that in terms of standing out among the rest of the girl groups they did a great job in putting together this concept. The song "Dumb Dumb" is about acting awkward, stiff and silly around a crush, and feeling like your mind and body aren't cooperating properly. Shortly put: you feel a bit dumb. The girls sing about how they feel almost like mannequins or robots, like inanimate objects unable to control themselves in when they see their crush, and this comparison is also what the video is mostly built on.

I think it goes without saying that this MV is very clever and extremely visually appealing, and it shows that at least in terms of music video production SM are spending the big bucks on Red Velvet. All of their latest videos have been hugely impressive to me, because they've all stepped outside the standard K-pop formula, more or less. However "Dumb Dumb" might be the most fun out of all of them.

There are just so many things worth praising about this video, and quite frankly I have a hard time deciding where to begin. Like I said the production value of this MV is off the charts, because every detail is carefully planned out and precisely shot and edited. The camerawork is brilliant, the costume and makeup department have created magical results and the sets and props are amazingly included as well.

The main premise of the video, I would say, is that the girls act as previously mentioned inanimate objects, like dolls and mannequins. We see them in a mannequin-factory setting where they are being put together by machines and later packaged too, as well as repeating programmed actions such as stamping approval signs on papers. This is mixed with plenty of dancing sequences, colorful and uniquely edited solo shots and scenes of the members together in various outfits and scenarios.

[OFFICIAL] Red Velvet – Concept Photo For ‘The Red’ 1333x2000The general color palette of the MV is also top notch, and their editing team has managed to make it bright and vibrant without going crazy on the saturation, which makes the video so much fun to watch. The girls themselves also help bring life to it with their stellar performances and acting, but I actually think it all comes down to them suiting this particular concept really well. Seulgi in particular stands out to me while watching it, but they all contribute with their own personalities and quirks.

Speaking of quirks, this video will come off as a bit random and strange to some people, and I am definitely one of them. There are scenes and sequences that will make you wonder what purpose it served, but I've found that these kind of concepts and videos are easier to enjoy if you just let go of your own logical thinking. "Dumb Dumb" isn't supposed to be taken very seriously, neither the song or video, but it's meant to be a fun, uplifting and joyful experience and I believe they've truly hit the nail on the head when it comes to that.

I could probably write much more about this MV, including more details and analyses, but then I would go on forever. At the end of it though I've found this video to be this group's best one yet and one of SM's best ones this year. The visual value is fantastic, it's an aesthetic explosion to be honest, and the concept is just magnificent. I adore the set designs, the clothes (both their costumes and regular outfits), the premise, the camerawork and the editing, and all the members bring a tremendous amount of energy and dedication. I can't imagine how long it must've taken them to shoot this video and how much thought and planning it must've went into making it, but it all shows so clearly in the finished product. This, my friends, is a high-quality music video indeed.

Song: 3,75/5
Video: 4,85/5

Sep 28, 2015

Thus Begins The Third And Final Season of "Hormones"

How I have been waiting for this day to arrive. This saturday the first episode of the the third season of "Hormones" aired in Thailand, and finally we get to meet all the new characters of this wonderful show's last ever season. I don't know for what reason they've decided to call it the quits but I'm happy we at least get one last chance to join the teenagers of the fictional Nadao Bangkok Collage.

Sep 27, 2015

Video of the Week #12

Vixx LR - Beautiful (Band Ver.)

While I love the original version too, this performance backed up by a live band takes it to the next level. The arrangement is amazing, and it gives the song that extra push and power that makes it even more impactful and memorable. Leo sounds stunning as well, and I love his belting because his range and especially his higher register is very impressive.

Sep 26, 2015

Seventeen Performs "Mansae" In Hanboks Because Why Not?

These boys will be the death of me, I swear. And before you say anything I know I'm late with writing a MV review of "Mansae", but time just hasn't been on my side lately. However I have been following Seventeen's live performances and they are so good it's not even funny anymore. The energy, the stage presence and the vocals are all on point and it's hard to believe they only debuted this year. Since it's Chuseok right now in Korea the members of Seventeen took it to the stage in traditional Hanboks for this week's Music Core. They're all so cute and watching them makes me feel all warm and happy inside.

Keep on slaying boys!

Sep 25, 2015

TBT - Song Jieun's "Going Crazy" Ft. Bang Yongguk (1 Day Late, I Know!)

Released: March 2, 2011

When I first got into K-pop a little over three years ago I adored this song. I don't know just how I came across it and I didn't know who any of these people were at the time, but "Going Crazy" was put on repeat for weeks and weeks. Still I think this collaboration/featuring is one of the best ones I've heard in K-pop, because they are telling a story with the lyrics from two different sides and the subject in question is both emotional and thought-provoking. Their voices also complement each other so well, and the video is just as professionally made with a plot-twist that will certainly leave you hanging.

Sep 24, 2015

Got7 Is Coming Back Again And Their Teaser Video Looks AMAZING

I don't know who saw it coming but Got7 are making yet another comeback after only a few months, but I was honestly not thrilled about it. When will these groups ever rest? Anyhow I thought the concept seemed interesting and checked out the teaser video and oh my goodness this sounds fantastic. I love both the sound and look of it and I can't wait to hear the rest of the song. If there's anything this group needs it's an undeniably awesome title track. Now I'm holding my thumbs hoping "If You Do" will be just that.

Come on boys, I know you have it in you!

TBT - Sistar's "So Cool"

Released: August 8, 2011

Oh, the days when Sistar and Brave Brothers collaborated on some of K-Pop's most iconic hits are still truly missed, as right now neither of them are doing particularly great individually. "So Cool" was one of this group's major breakout hits (the main one being "Alone", of course), and despite the intro being a bit cheesy the rest of the song is awfully catchy. The video too is a treat that should not be missed, and seriously, how pretty is Soyou in it?

Sep 23, 2015

Red Velvet Show Their True Colors In "The Red"

So far in their career Red Velvet has shown us two different personas, both musically and aesthetically. The key to those sides are hidden in the name itself, as "red" is their upbeat, quirky and fun side and "velvet" is their smooth, suave and sexy one. We've seen this exemplified with their releases, as "Happiness" and "Ice Cream Cake" has been more red and "Be Natural" and "Automatic" more velvet. For this second 2015 comeback the girls are focusing only on one part of their double-identity, and present to us their first ever full album: "The Red". 

Sep 20, 2015

Video of the Week #11

GFriend & Nine Muses On Picnic Live

Seeing GFriend without their intense and impressive dancing is a bit unusual, but they are allowed to showcase their live vocals better here, accompanied by a live band. "Under The Sky" is one of my favorite songs on their latest mini album, and they all sound lovely. Eunha especially gets a chance to prove that she is, too, a great singer as it's usually only Yuju who receives credit for her skills.

My favorite eight ladies of Nine Muses join Picnic Live for the second (I think) time and this time they perform two songs from their latest album release as well. "Hurt Locker" was one this summer's best tracks and this live performance is nothing less but amazing. This group has a set of well equipped vocalists and they all sound wonderful here.

Sep 18, 2015

"Lion Heart" Presents Safe And Easy-Going Pop Music, True Girls' Generation Style

Girls' Generation are back with a brand new full album, and have on top of that released not one, not even two but three comeback singles. The first one, "Party" was released in early July and their two other double title tracks were released a little more than a month afterwards. I was reluctant to giving their new album a shot because only one of the three singles have impressed me, and I generally don't love their Korean albums too much. For some reason though I wanted to give the album a fair chance to surprise me, but I can't honestly say it has.

Sep 17, 2015

TBT - Super Junior's "Sorry Sorry"

Super Junior celebrates their tenth anniversary this year, which is crazy, and thus I decided to feature this classic K-pop hit. "Sorry Sorry" was one of the many great singles released during the awesome year of 2009, and it was the one that really made them the big name they are today. I personally think the song is extremely catchy still to this day and the choreography is just iconic.

Sep 16, 2015

Day6 Shows Huge Potential With Debut Mini Album "The Day"


As soon as I heard their debut track "Congratulations" I knew I had to listen to their rest of Day6's first mini album "The Day". I felt like this was the band I had been searching for for so long without truly finding, a group I could fall in love with at first sight. This did however make me very nervous, because what if I found out that I actually didn't like the rest of the album? That would be the biggest let-down ever. Fortunately that wasn't the case with this debut mini.

Sep 14, 2015

"Roll Deep" Is Three And A Half Minutes Of Hyuna Looking Hot, And I'm Perfectly Fine With That

If you haven't converted into a Hyuna fan by now, I really don't know what you're doing with your life. Since her style is as "controversial" as it is it's far easier to just love her rather than being annoyed by her image, because you spare yourself so much energy realizing that she is who she is and won't change her brand for anything. I personally think she's a great role model in that sense, as she's spoken up multiple times about how she's honestly enjoying her sexy concepts and want to empower other women in feeling the same way about themselves. You go girl!

After almost a year since her last solo comeback with the amazing "Red", Hyuna is back with another sexy song and video and I am ready to worship everything about it.

Sep 13, 2015

Video of the Week #10

Girls' Generation - Into The New World (Ballad Ver.) on Sketchbook

"Into The New World" is one of my definite favorite SNSD songs, and even though I love it in its normal format this ballad arrangement is absolutely gorgeous. The girls performed it when guesting on Yoo Hee Yeol's Sketchbook, and although the golden flapper dresses may look out of place you can't deny the beauty of this performance as they all sound nothing but flawless (well, apart from Tiffany but that's nothing new).

Sep 12, 2015

In Other Non-Related News; Nana Cuts Her Hair And Looks Amazing

 Is this really a news-worthy post you may ask? Well maybe not, but I've been doing so many reviews lately that I thought it might be nice just to share some eye-candy with you all. And yes, I'm planning on doing this more regularly when I find hot pictures of my biases. My main girl Nana recently cut her long locks off, and I think this might be the first time I'm seeing her in anything other than just long hair. She pulls it off perfectly, but than again, with that face she could rock anything.

My gorgeous girl <3

Day6 Makes One Of This Year's Best Debuts With "Congratulations" And I Am Head Over Heels In Love

I literally have about 10 other posts and reviews I need to write but Day6 just recently dropped their new MV and I'm freaking out. I haven't had this feeling in a really long time, you know the one when you feel like jumping up and down in your chair and your heart is beating out of your chest because you can't contain all your feelings. Yeah, that's how I'm feeling after watching "Congratulations", and I can tell you right now that this group is going to stick with me for a long time.

Sep 11, 2015

Vixx LR's "Beautiful Liar" Is A Work Of Art

[OFFICIAL] LR – Concept Photo For ‘Beautiful Liar’ 1400x2100
When I heard that Vixx was going to get their first sub-unit I didn't think too much of it, and remained fairly neutral up until I actually watched their debut MV. Sub-units for me are pretty much hit or miss, as they either are great to showcase another musical side of a group, or they are present nothing new or special at all.

With Vixx LR, consisting of Leo and Ravi, I wasn't sure what music they would put out and what concept they would do. One of them is a rapper and another a vocalist, but that doesn't really give away anything either. Both of them have however been involved with their group's music, in terms of writing music and lyrics, and this could be a chance for them to showcase their own musical flavor. When I finally watched the MV for "Beautiful Liar" I was initially shocked and surprised, but later grew to fall completely in love with everything about it.

Sep 10, 2015

TBT - B1A4's "O.K"

Released: April 20, 2011

B1A4's debut is actually one of my favorites, at least on the boy side, and the image that they had back then (and partly have nowadays too, but more grown-up) was quite unique at the time of their first MV. They came onto the scene with a bright, fresh and boyish style and a upbeat pop-rock track to boot. I still think this track is pretty great, but I'm happy they grew out of those ridiculous outfits.

Sep 8, 2015

Wonder Girls' "I Feel You" Is 80's Pop At Its Best

Wonder Girls pictures from ‘Reboot’ photobook sans watermarks and stuff | Asian Junkie

The Wonder Girls are back! The formation is not the same as last time we saw them, but they have charged their batteries and prepared long and hard to deliver this comeback. Since the news of them returning to the scene came out I was wondering what they would do to prove themselves to still be a huge name in the industry, but I never would have seen a band concept coming.

With Sunmi on bass, Yubin on drums, Hyerim on guitar and Yeeun on piano, the girls were coming back as a band and judging by the sound of their individual teasers a pretty good one too. They didn't however take the rock-pop route but instead went completely retro, with a nostalgia sound more fit for the 80's with title track "I Feel You".

Sep 7, 2015

SNSD Comes Back In Doubles: "Lion Heart" VS "You Think"

SNSD ‘Lion Heart’ Individual Teaser Images

A couple of months ago Girls' Generation made their awaited comeback with "Party", and I was less than excited. It was a fun, upbeat summer song with a pretty video but I honestly thought it was a bit bland and definitely a bit too boring for a SNSD title track. Although they've had some pretty distinct title tracks in the past ("I Got A Boy" anyone?) they've at least been interesting in one way or another. I simply wasn't feeling it with "Party", but now they've come back with two new MV's. Hopefully at least one of them will manage to excite me.

Sep 6, 2015

Song of the Week #49

Hyukoh - Ohio

I feel like my blog is slowly turning into a Hyukoh fanpage, but can you blame me? This four-piece indie band has taken both my world and South Korea by storm, and I loved absolutely everything I've heard by them which never happens to me anymore. I'm 100% positive this group will only continue to grow and gain more fans and popularity because their music is marvelous.

Sep 5, 2015

SHINee Channels The Rocky Horror Show For "Married To The Music" MV

SHINee's back! Again! Like with any full-length album released by SM Entertainment a repackaged version is bound to happen, and while I love me some more SHINee I generally don't support these kind of releases. There's no actual reason for releasing the exact same album with a few new songs except for financial gain, and I seriously don't think SM needs any more money. Still I'm not complaining too much about it because after all it's another couple of weeks of promotions from the boys, and knowing they'll be gone for a while afterwards it's definitely a treat for the fans. 

Sep 3, 2015

TBT - SHINee's "Lucifer"

Released: July 19, 2010

I can't believe it's been five years since this masterpiece was released. "Lucifer" was one of the first SHINee videos I watched and at the time it completely blew me away. The song was awesome, the members looked extremely attractive despite the questionable styling and let's not even get started on the choreography. This MV certainly holds a special place in my heart.

Sep 2, 2015

The Wonder Girls' Highly Anticipated "Reboot" Lives Up To And Exceeds Expectations

After three years of hiatus, several member changes and plenty of speculation from fans and critics alike the Wonder Girls have finally come back as four. After Sohee and Sunye's departure fans were worried what would become of the three remaining members, and I personally thought the group was done for. That's why it was both astounding and amazing that original member Sunmi, who left in early 2010 and came back as a solo artist in 2013, was rejoining the group. I love Sunmi and although Wonder Girls have been pretty absent my entire K-pop experience I was still super-excited to see what music they would release.