Post by IceCat on Mar 3, 2016 9:35:44 GMT
Herein is a brief summary of the year so far in the K-pop scene. The first two months were relatively quiet between the holiday songs slowly exiting the charts in January and the slowdown in releases around Lunar New Year, but there have been a few noteworthy releases.
The first bona fide hit of the new year is that rarest of rarities: a collaboration between two artists from different labels. Even more significant is that they were from two of the so-called big three. The senior member of the duet was Suzy from missA (JYP Entertainment); her younger male partner was BaekHyun of EXO (SM Entertainment). The song "Dream" debuted at #1 on the weekly Gaon chart and remained there for three weeks, within which time it also won twice on KBS' Music Bank and three times on SBS' Inkigayo during January.
The sophomore girl group known as Gfriend released their third EP in late January in the wake of winning best new artist or best new female artist at the MelOn Music Awards, the Gaon Chart K-pop Awards, the Seoul Music Awards and the Golden Disk Awards over the winter. The lead single "Rough" won fifteen times on the various TV music shows during February, including a sweep of all five which still have charts in two different weeks (MBC's Show! Music Core did away with their chart late last year).
Two significant comebacks took place at opposite ends of the past month. The 1st of the month saw the release of 4Minute's seventh EP "Act 7". The lead single "Hate" was produced and co-written by Western EDM producer Skrillex and to date has over 11 million views on YouTube, featuring for two weeks on SiriusXM Hits 1's "YouTube 15" show. Since it was competing with Gfriend's new song it failed to win a single TV music show.
Perhaps the most significant comeback of all is the now-three member girl group Ladies' Code. The mini album "Myst3ry" and its lead single "Galaxy", released last weekend, are their first since the tragic car crash in September of 2014 that claimed the lives of EunB and RiSe and left the remaining three members, Sojung, Ashley and Zuny, with physical and emotional wounds which took months to heal properly. Given the sensitive nature of this particular comeback their appearances will be limited to showcasing the music.
A recent addition to my required listening is the new podcast put out by Jeff Benjamin, who writes about K-pop for Fuse TV and Billboard magazine. Teaming up with fellow Fuse TV staffer Tina Xu, they discuss the latest happenings in the genre. This week's episode includes their first ever interview as CL was in New York during their Fashion Week.