It’s time for Kpopalypse roundup! Let’s check out some new releases
Agust D – Amygdala
The guy with a name that sounds like someone stumbling over a keyboard is usually just kind of mediocre and pandering to art aesthetic for cred, but this is just downright pathetic. Music for cyberbullying weirdos just got even worse.
LE SSERAFIM feat. Nile Rodgers – Unforgiven
The A-list is nothing but trash this week. I really do want to like these songs but damn they’re making it difficult. I don’t know who Nile Rodgers is or where he is, as he seems mostly absent here and honestly if I wrote this I wouldn’t want to be seen either.
Taeyang – Seed
It’s “Eyes, Nose, Lips” but without the nudity, so in other words without the only thing that song had going for it.
Taeyang feat. Lisa – Shoong!
Lisa does a bit of hideous charity work to try and revive Taeyang’s flagging post Burning Sun career but… oh who am I kidding, their career is just fine. BigBang is more popular than ever and Seungri is traveling the world with his true love as I type. OT5 comeback when uwu
Jackson Wang – Cheetah
Jackson Wang is one to occasionally turn out surprising quality but not this time. He just wants to be Michael Jackson just like everyone else. At least he picked the good era of MJ to imitate musically, but the decent textures can’t hide the fact that nothing much really happens.
Jackson Wang & Ciara – Slow
This other song is just bullshit. Who is Ciara I don’t even know because I don’t follow whatever the fuck her scene is but this song is trash.
Xikers – Rockstar
Rarely have I heard such a good song turn to such absolute crap so quickly. This song is fantastic until exactly 1:06 and then it just starts falling off the rails because they had to add about six different genres to it for no reason. We could have had a top ten song of the year here easily if it wasn’t for the “change up” trend, thanks for nothing JYP.
Minnie – Pink Your Moment
Just another shitty advert for hard liquor in a country with more loser alcoholics fucking up their lives than any other, meanwhile you get years in jail there for smoking a near-harmless plant that used to grow wild in the countryside all over Korea until the dictatorship banned it because they didn’t want their soldiers getting stoned.
MOONCHILD – Don’t Blow It!
Just telling you that this exists so people won’t bombard me with messages about me having forgotten it when in fact I’m deliberately ignoring it. Now let’s never mention this group ever again.
Xdinary Heroes – Freakin’ Bad
I wouldn’t go as far to say this is ‘good’ or that I ‘like’ it, but amongst the sea of absolute shit from the A-list artists this week, just some simple mediocrity really stands out.
New Hope Club, P1Harmony – Super Chic
“New Hope Club” sounds like what a Christian group would call themselves and that’s all the reason I need to hate this.
P1Harmony – Black Hole
Okay I don’t hate it, it’s got a decent backing track at least. Could lose the “na na na” shit though.
NCT DOJAEJUNG – Ordinary
I know what you NCT fans are like, there’s so many of you in my comments these days. This is straight up pornography and is probably debuting soon on the gay version of r/ktributes.
iKON – Tantara
Ikon just aren’t BigBang, are they. There’s no getting around it.
B.I x Sik-K x Reddy – TTM
No, I wasn’t talking to you. Why would I?
ONEUS – Unforgettable
Actually I wasn’t sure at first but then the trap break happened so I’ll be erasing this one from my memory quickly.
EPEX – Sunshower
Actually this isn’t bad and it almost gets over the line but they had to drag it down with the usual post-chorus rapping.
EPEX – Goodbye, My First Love
You don’t want to watch EPEX being forced at gunpoint to smile and neither do I, so here’s your weekly lesson in black music. Wesley Willis was a man who is hard to sum up in the length of a roundup review, but I’ll do my best. He was a schizophrenic guy who would write whole albums of songs of just him singing about various topics, from his ‘harmony joy ride’ songs about the things he loves like his favourite performers and seeing bands, to random songs about his life, to his ‘hellrides‘ which document his battles with mental illness, and ultra-explicit gross-out songs that he wrote to try and ward the demons away. To accompany his singing, he would use the same patch on a arranger keyboard’s auto accompaniment for every song on any particular album, of which he made hundreds in a very short time. Each song has a very defined structure, with a talking verse and a singing chorus in exactly the same style, and he always signed off with an advert, because he dreamed of getting an endorsement one day. He was more or less unknown outside his hometown until Jello Biafra released a “greatest hits” album on his label, which is a great listen because since all the tracks are taken from different albums they have a variety to them that the individual albums don’t have. However probably the strangest thing about Wesley Willis was that he also started a rock band called The Wesley Willis Fiasco, and they were actually a fucking great live act. The musicians in the group were clearly willing to work around his quirks and make music the way that he wanted to make it. With his DIY ethic and determination to create music from his heart no matter what the outcome, Wesley Willis embodied the true spirit of punk music as much as anything I can think of. Rock over London – rock on Adelaide – Wheaties, breakfast of champions.
Super Junior – The Melody
Not sure where the melody is, maybe they called it this hoping they’d remember it.
DKB – Turning Point
Another quite reasonable backing track that would have worked well in almost any other context besides this one.
BOY STORY – What’s Poppin
It’s not bad, but after listening to Wesley Willis today it’s hard to go back to unserious music like this.
Yaochen – Yaochen
I always find it really weird when artists name a song after themselves. I supposed he’s going to have an album called Yaochen too, and maybe even a tour or a phone app. So you can go see Yaochen perform Yaochen from Yaochen at Yaochen… but if you miss it, you can always check out out later on Yaochen.
XODIAC – Throw A Dice
These nugus got no money, what the fuck are they gambling with? Not their clothes, clearly. Maybe they get six months knocked off their slave contract for every full house.
The Wind – I will give you the light
This nonsense that sounds like a Christian music camp song made by boys who look about 12 years old on average is actually the best k-pop song this week. I know we want to protect underage performers and rightly so but if that recent law had any actual teeth to it you would have missed out on the only good song this week.
MUSTB – Memory
No colour in the video, no colour in the song either.
CMDM – Already go ready
Worth it just for the incredibly stupid interlude where the car appears for no reason and some boy gets out. At least he was wearing his seatbelt, that’s a nice touch actually.
WOODZ – Journey
I’m sorry roundup was so late this week, I’m kind of broke lately so I had to go make money, I don’t have much choice at the moment. No I wasn’t offering my ass up as a gay prostitute but I would actually rather be feeling some guy’s wood up my ass than listening to Woodz, because at least I’d be getting paid to be fucked.
Maymay Entrata feat. Wooseok – Autodeadma
I don’t know who this girl is but the song is average and having generic k-pop boy #4368 on it doesn’t really change anything.
Jueun feat. Seo In Guk – Easy Breeze
This girl used to be in DIA so that’s enough reason to at least give this a click even if you don’t like it much. I don’t like it either to be honest but I might play it on loop for an hour or so just so she can earn her first ten cents.
Kwon Jieun – Our First Love
Some girl from Lunarsolar does a ballad and it’s truly awful in that generic way like the k-pop ballads usually are. Sometimes they discover subtlety and actual heart-touching music but this definitely isn’t one of those times.
Kwon Jieun – Obvious Love Story
Her other song at least has a pulse but it’s still boring as shit and unless you’re writing a thesis on recent technological advancements in BB cream you’re probably not going to make it to the end.
UV feat. Yoo Byungjae, Jonathan – Shaggy Cut
Not sure what is going on here. Someone please explain this one to me.
Cotoba – Water Blue
I deleted a ton of stuff from roundup because every week I always have to, but I left this in. Cotoba are good, honestly. They’re definitely a band that sounds much better live though, none of the music videos really capture what’s good about them which is a shame. If you have an opportunity try to go and see them.
Kim Hyerim – Blossom
Starts off dull, but then a wild chorus appears!
Dok2 – Gah-Yah
I know he’s pronounced “dokki” but I just can’t get into the habit of that, he’s “dock-two” until the day he dies as far as I’m concerned. This rap music is pretty weak but it’s actualy on the better end of rap music these days, that’s how sad rap in general is in 2023.
YLN Foreign – Shawty
This song reminded me that there was a person who wrote an entire essay on the word “Shawty” and how it came to be a thing in rap music. That’s all I’ve got to say about this crappy music.
Fleeky Bang, Royal 44, Polodared, Yeoho – YG
There’s a guy in a rap collab called “Fleeky Bang”. That’s all I need to know. I don’t even need to listen to this. Let’s stop roundup right here, clearly we are only going downhill.
BONUS RANDOM VIDEOS OF THE WEEK
Rockit Girl – Put Your Records On
I’m here for Leeseul in summer dresses. Rockit Girl’s ability to deliver content in a variety of formats is definitely very appealing. Hey we had NCT in cardigans in this episode, so it’s only fair that this also gets in.
DareDB – K-Pop Idols That HATE Their Own Songs (PART 2 of 3)
Part two of this absolutely great series, where DareDB makes several points. Definitely one of the rare YouTubers out there in the k-pop world who is actually brave enough to create content that has a decent sense of perspective. It’s always worth reminding k-pop fans that there’s no reason to act like such a fucking batshit crazy religious freak about your fave’s songs when even THEY hate them half the time.
Chocolat – Syndrome
While I’m a big fan of Melanie just for her incredible courage and honesty in reaching out and talking to me about her experiences in Chocolat, I was never much of a fan of her group. I actually agree with her that “Black Tinkerbell” was by far their best song, nothing else they ever did really hit with me, and “Syndrome” definitely falls into the ‘meh’ bucket. It’s nothing awful but was very generic for the time and doesn’t really stand out now either. Melanie was super young when she debuted in this group, and part of the large dialogue that’s happening right now about protecting very young people in groups plus certain recent industry changes are actually part of a movement that Kpopalypse helped start by being the first person to do a completely raw, unedited interview with someone who went through their entirety of their k-pop career while underage. The next time you read some bullshit what’s-your-favouite-colour promo interview on some revenge-porn-promoting or death-exploiting k-pop website, just stop and think about how good k-pop interviews COULD be, if more people had her courage and more online publications had my ethics.