Gif of the Day

This made me lol.

Fany’s fail!acting ❤
Congrats on the 45k sales, girls. They will rank pretty well on the monthly Oricon (I expect around #10 +/- 5 or so) and I really think they will be able to break 100k in a month, and if not, at least 85k+. More money for their pockets.

Co-Ed…?

Dear Co-Ed:

How did we go from this:

To this?

It’s similar to the concept of that other mixed group that debuted even worse than Nine Muses did (F1rst), but since Co-Ed has at least Soomi of ex-Seeya, they immediately get an up for having a non-whiny, talented vocalist. However, I saw a predebut video of that “Little Goo Hara” girl, Hyewon (or should I say “One Star Hyewon” now) singing, and that girl sings like Hyuna – good projection, poor pitch control. To this day I’m still questioning why Core chose to stick that girl under Hara’s shadow of all people – I can’t tell the facial resemblance at all, Hara’s a DSP artist, and as much as I love that girl to death, she can’t sing (and DSP is too cheap to even train her to be adequate). It’s like calling a girl “Little Yoona” or “Little Sulli.” You are asking for the ZOMGoverrated trolls.

Their stage names are also very DBSK, with some pithy, symbolic epithet before their names:
Balance Noori (가온누리)
Smile Soomi (미소수미)
Rascal Kwanghaeng (악동광행)
Star Light Chanmi (별빛찬미)
Hot Blood Kangho (열혈강호)
Solid Sungmin (알찬성민)
Sage Taewoon (지혜태운)
Sky Earth Yoosung (천지유성)
One Star Hyewon (한별혜원)
One Light Hyoyoung (한빛효영)

^It sounds a lot better in Korean, but still kind of tacky.

However, Core has promised no “bling bling song,” opting instead for a strong, electro beat. Well, you know me, if it’s anything T-ara like I’ll eat it up.

Lastly, I don’t know who this guy is (yet) but this was too funny not to include.

OIC. JYP, SM, DSP – just give me a Lil’ TOP or Mini-zy and my life will be perfect.

Dalmatian, please sing more of this in the future

Ok, so I can’t differentiate the three vocalists’ voices yet, but DAMN Dalmatian, that sounded good. Actually, from their previous work and extensive training, I expected them to sing very well, but the good pronunciation is an added bonus (and DayDay attended the University of Maryland? Bonus kudos to him, since I have a HS classmates there).

This is just another classic case of wrong debut song, because First Round was so little kid cute that it destroyed any potential for the boys (more like men, yay no more prepubescent K-Biebers) to run with the badass hip-hop boys image they built up with the concept photos. The clothes with puppy spots should have served as a warning… Regardless, while I was expecting something like 1TYM, the debut song sounded like DBSK’s Hug, hip hop style complete with “woof woof woof.”

First Round wasn’t bad, to be honest – it simply wasn’t what people expected or wanted, and won’t provide Dalmatian with the big break they need. They simply need more R&B and soulful music with a touch of angst (it’s the spice of life, people), give the three fantastic singers parts with more freedom for vocal expression (and harmonies, kthxbye) and keep the rapping tight and neat as it has been. Dalmatian’s a group like the Boss – it has wonderful potential, but need to make that magical match with choice of song and a little luck with the reception from the general public.

Credit: Lackadaisily2

Can’t Sleep

EDIT: Bwahahaha 2NE1 thinks CL’s acting is bad, renders the haters’ argument irrelevant and the situation funny. And soju still tastes like butt.

From Dara’s Me2Day:

Even just up till a while ago.. I was worried about CLroo’s bad acting..I said that and then..After watching that I changed my opinionㅠ That comic visual and bad acting.. makes me want to really drink some soju!ㅠ An embarrassing video is born! The truth is, when we were filming that scene, Chaerin said it was too funny and burst into laughter and took a picture of me. Since then, it was already funny..

And it’s partially attributed to 2NE1. The new 2NE1 mv for Go Away is actually pretty deep, if you look for the substance. It tackles a lot of sensitive topics beyond your regular relationships/breakups. Domestic abuse, alcohol abuse, revenge, etc. To really get the full message, you would need to read the lyrics (or translations) and contrast it to the storyline of the mv – someone on AKP called the storyline a “cautionary example” of what not to do in a negative relationship.

Ironically, the best interpretation I’ve found came from YouTube comments of all places.

Cl’s old self in the MV died and was reborn as a strong woman…She was full of anger and frustration so she decided to get revenge on him but it didn’t work out..What the video wants to say is that no matter how much you hate that person, gettting back at him won’t get you anywhere and you won’t be able to move on…By killing Cl’s character, the director is basically telling us that “You can just turn your back on him and make him GO AWAY..Why did you have to go through all that?

But wow, we are slowly approaching Gaga level mv depth here, Kpop. Maybe in five years 2NE1 will release a new song that somehow ties together nuclear proliferation, global warming, and of course the Illuminati.

And the acting – you know, I don’t find CL half bad. I didn’t think the beginning was overly cheesy either, because I do plenty of people watching in my time and that’s EXACTLY how highly conscious people act in public. The mv’s mood was all over the place, too, first giving me the false impression it’d be I Don’t Care funny/lighthearted, then freaking beatings went down, then it made me care more than I ever should about a car race (I realized I didn’t even match CL to the correct car the first time – seriously thought she was in the orange one), then the worst CGI crash mindfuck ever, then…she’s alive?

Regardless, YG did a nice job. I haven’t been so emotionally/mentally provoked by a mv since 2AM’s I Did Wrong, which made me sob like a hysterical fangirl (I blame it on not sleeping for 48 hours beforehand, though).

I realized that I would stan like crazy for 2NE1 if only they were more public. I don’t need to see them all the time, but a couple set of shows would be nice. Just 2NE1TV isn’t quite enough, but on the other hand I respect their clear separation between them as the musicians and we as the fans – it’s quite Western, quite un-idolish, and definitely refreshing. And again, mad props to all the North American views of this mv – it seems YG music is the only type of Kpop that might appeal to the US’s mass market.


Credit: 2NE1, in da flesh

SKpop’s TOP 5: August 2010

So starting this month, I’m going to pick my favorite songs from the month and put in some comments! Anything goes, so that means they don’t have to be title songs, from idol groups, etc. but it will stay Korean fo sho. I stole this idea from a YouTube video I saw – five seems like a reasonable number, since no one pays attention past number 4 on a top 10 list anyway. Plus, this will allow me to spew thoughts on songs I probably wouldn’t have time to address.

And of course, it’d be so boring if this was just a regular top 5 list. So I’m adding a WTF!Panda Top 5 as well, for miscellaneous songs I want to comment on that don’t belong in the top 5 because 1.) I hate instead of love them, 2.) they’re way old, but I just have to comment, 3.) something about the song/lyrics/mv was just exceptional…ly weird.

#5 FT Island – Love Love Love
Yeah ok, I complained and moaned about FT Island’s emo music again and again, but I couldn’t help but fall back in love with their music. Sure, Hongki’s “pushing” motions get repetitive, but FT Island’s songs are so emotional, well-written, and well-song. And yes, I still do love angsty music. So for now, the FT Island boys are again back on my good side. And Hongki’s wine-colored Beethoven hair didn’t even bother me much – I thought it looked good.


Credit: AsianMusicWorldHD

#4 Shady Girl – Sistar

Hyorin is perfect. In all honestly, the girl is a fantastic live singer and has such a positive personality that simultaneously make me feel happier and depressed that I in comparison seem like a hardcore emo. Shady Girl is such an improvement over Push Push, especially because Boram, and to a slightly less extent Bora (the rapper), finally shows the world that omg, she has a voice. Dasom, unfortunately, is still a bit lost in the background, and come on, she even dyed her hair a horrible shade of hooker blonde. It’s another solid song that will help build up this rising rookie group’s resume. And Heechul ❤


Credit: iAznSamManMV

#3 I'll Be There – Taeyang
In Korea/Japan, G-Dragon and TOP are by far the most popular Big Bang members. However, overseas, especially in North America, Taeyang rules. He is so freaking popular here I don't even pretend to try to understand – we kind of see him as the Asian Usher/Ne-Yo, and though I don't see it/think he gets a bit overrated at times, there's no denying that more people from the U.S. watch Taeyang videos than any other Kpop act.

I more or less expected something like this from Taeyang – I Need a Girl was so not his style (because, surprise! It was supposed to be Se7en's song, nice to see how YG mix-and-match like that…), and though I enjoyed happy Taeyang, I know he loves his emo songs more – what set I'll Be There apart from Where U At and Wedding Dress, however, is that it is much more pop feeling. Yes, Where U At had enough Teddy-synths to blow the moon up, but it was at its base very R&B. I enjoy I'll Be There a lot, I like the dance, the MV, the dark concept, etc. It's very good, and the best I've seen from Taeyang yet.


Credit: YGTaeyang

#2 Hurricane Venus – BoA
BoA's epic mega comeback yielded her 6th Korean album that I didn't care for at all. It's always been like that, though, hit or miss. I love Valenti but Hurricane Venus was blah. Oddly, I didn't hate Game like everyone else (until Nikki from PRN revealed it was f(x)'s Ice Cream 2.0), but Hurricane Venus totally did not float my boat at first. However, it started growing on me, and I even used it at a recent party. For me to change my opinions on a BoA song is quite an accomplishment. Plus, she racked up the music show wins/album sales. My hat off to you, and welcome back!


Credit: sment

#1 Madonna – Secret
My blog, my choice 😛 MADONNA DONNA. I'm so happy that they moved out of their craphole basement apartment with the foil window. That was a huge no no. I've anticipated their comeback since Sunhwa's teaser pic was released, and loved them enough to even review their minialbum. The song is so catchy and fun, and most importantly stays true to the Secret style – they may be aiming to sell, but they aren't going to abandon their classy identity to do it. My last hopes against autotune-mania. Plus, I thought the MV was gorgeous. Remember that week when every girl group in existence seemingly came back? One had to stand at the top. Congrats, Secret!


Credit: iAznSamManMV

…and now

WTF Kpop?
WTF!Panda Top 5!

#5 Homme – I was Able to Eat Well

So I’ll keep this short since I’ve already written about this, but wut, I love 2AM and 8eight but please keep my Kpop superficial and country free. I’ll go home and listen to the radio if I really wanted to hear country. Actually, I’m just really surprised at how popular this song became – Cyworld Song of the Month? Okkkkkay Korea, it’s your call.

#4 Beside You – BoA

Yeah. See why I made this poll? This song came off her million-copy selling Valenti Japanese album in 2003, and it’s not even the title track. However, I only got around to listening to it about 7 years later. Have you heard it? Read the lyrics? OMFG IT’S SO MAGICAL. I love this song.


Credit: diando

#3 2Me – Kara

2Me, Me2, whatever it is, it’s another case of “Nicole refuses to proofread anything English for Kara” as one Omona! post so helpfully wrote 😉 I actually kind of like the song – it represents the ideal equilibrium of Kara cuteness with some electropop in there to prevent me from gagging at the sheer amount of sugar, spice, and everything nice present in certain other Kara songs (Rock U, Pretty Girl…-__- I’m judging you. I’ll forgive Pretty Girl for its positive message, however). But WTF. The LYRICS. I could not take the LYRICS. I’m willing to tolerate a lot lyrically, considering my own Korean is so damn broken, but they even have to make it sound like some adult phone service in ENGLISH. Touch me, hold me, teach me, take me… It’s the worst Kara-gedy since the AWESOME BEST NIKCUF FIVE shirts…

The only reason wankfest isn’t occurring is because they are singing it so happily and innocently. Can you imagine of After School rocked some of those lyrics? Let’s just say I know how Micky Yoochun bagged Kahi as his hot noona.

Your Engrish are belong to us

#2 First Round – Dalmatian

Yeah. Was not expecting that. Did you know that I actually was about to dedicate a post to them? Inati’s life story is so touching, plus I’m so happy that a non-Bieber age group debuted, plus I was willing to overlook their name because of their looks, and most importantly they seemed really well-trained and had previous experience. I expected…well…a MC Mong sounding song, since he is the  “seon saeng-nim,” or at least something catchy like Joosuc’s Pop and Drop, but First Round was so out of the blue. It’s not a bad song, but…er…WHERE ARE MY BAD BOYS T__T. The MR removed sounded good, though, so kudos to the boys.

#1 Utada Hikaru goes on 2+infinity hiatus and I want her album
See how major this news is? It’s Jpop but it made it on my blog. T__T Ok Hikki is a lazy cow for the slow rate she releases but OMG I cannot bear 2 years without her. I think I will shell out money to buy her Best of album. OMG so upset. Rest of you Kpoppers, go back to work.

…And ok, let’s add a third section of “Notable Kpop News”

#5 Park Gyuri went kumquat blonde. WTF. At least she looked better in subsequent pictures taken.

#4 Kara shakes booty in Japan, sells Lupin EP x2 amount of CDs in a month.

#3 SMTOWN 2010 in LA. I hate my UCLA friends. Tiffany, I can’t recognize you no more TT

#2 Eru – Tae Jin Ah – Choi Hee Jin conflicted often psychotic yet tragic but mostly confusing circle of accusations, blackmail, abortion, and sabotage.

#1 Tablo has some major problems with 130k+ netizens. I honestly think that they are attacking him due to his outspokeness on “controversial” topics like depression and lack of tolerance and understanding for psychotherapy in Korea/Asia in general. The man is very smart – I was watching his CNN interview yesterday, and I got to thinking. Here’s a guy who doesn’t just make music – he is intelligent enough that he actually observes the world and contemplates weighty issues. While other idols rub off as very materialistic and commercial (it’s all about their music or their sales), Tablo emanates the aura of a conflicted, contemplating soul. That’s why he’s so susceptible to these netizen attacks – his strength lies in his brilliance in the intake of ideas and the complex churning and processing that goes on in his mind to create cutting lyrics and profound writing. This is also his weakness – he takes in everything, even the baseless derision and accusations, and contemplates over them too much. All we can do now is pray the courts shut the netizens up and hope Tablo stays strong 😦

Back to the 2NE1 album – gotta get at least 3 more repeats before I can start reviewing.

Nippon Banzai! [TEASER]

This will be updated because it’s taking a lot longer than I’d thought it would take to write. Whet your appetite!

So, without further ado, let’s talk Kara and SNSD, and to a lesser extent, 4minute and Brown Eyed Girls.

4minute seemed to have wrapped up Japanese promotions as of now, since the girls are again appearing on Korean variety and have signed up for Idol Star Dance Battle and some other concert thing SNSD will but Kara will not be attending. I honestly believe 4minute’s venture was a trial period – both to test out the Japanese reception and to give 4minute a first-hand experience of serious foreign promotion. Their IMMM single didn’t sell so hotly, the promotion was much less than , people were complaining that the B-side track was better than the A-side (ouch, but seriously, Japan loves a good ballad – it’s what started Utada Hikaru’s career, after all), but most importantly, I don’t think the general public was too attracted to 4minute’s concept. The promotion of HuH/IMMM saw a departure from their “candy funky” style to a more mature but still electro-infused style, but it’s not Western-sounding or J-electronica sounding enought – it’s kind of in limbo land. Still, the girls looked like they had fun, and I honestly think they will do fine. Their music has been very consistent in quality and style, and no matter how much I disagree with Cube’s musical/stylistic philosophy, it’s a great company, and hey, public desires change all the time. Plus, I’m pleased at certain member’s development (Sohyun) and Hyuna’s uncanny retention of popularity.

Housecleaning before 2NE1’s comeback

So, 2NE1’s coming back 9/9/10 (which is also Zhang Liyin’s debut day, so please wish her a good one, if only because I love her so), and I want to clarify a few things, especially to new Kpoppers, so they can witness their comeback with full objectivity. I don’t really care what CL is wearing, who GD is dating, or who’s the winner of that eternal catfight of 2NE1 vs. SNSD vs. 4minute vs. Sistar (omg, they wear flashy colors, must be copycats) vs. [insert girl group or slightly feminine boy group name here]. However, it gets on my nerves when people start trying to smartass me with the following two comments:

1.) “Minzy cannot sing, she can only dance [and usually insert some reference about ‘humping’ here]”

No no no no no no. There’s a reason her voice is my favorite in 2NE1 – please don’t judge her just after watching an episode of Strong Heart or something like that.

2.) “CL cannot sing, she only shouts”

*facepalms again* Ok, neither CL nor Minzy’s singing will fit everyone’s tastes, but to flat out reject that they can sing is like saying Taeyeon can’t use vibrato (saw that in some AKP thread and cracked up so bad XD).

You absolutely are not required to love 2NE1 at all. However, denying that Minzy and CL can’t sing is just…it just makes me scratch my head. Next time just say you don’t like their style/timbre/something more sensible, please and thank you.

And to spread my Liyin love, here’s her performance at SM Town.

There’s a reason why some guy said “Wow…” at 3:41, ya know. I’m not going to complain (here anyway) about how she only got two songs in the entire 6 hour concert, because I’m just so glad to see her again T__T

I remember when she used to be so nervous for her Timeless lives and would constantly slip up. She’s trained so hard since then – her old songs seem so effortless now, and she seems so much more confident. Can’t wait for some LA fancams.

Credit: 1. BigBangSHINeeWorld – nice name btw
2. choompichocolyn