Edited by Yoon
Translated by Kim Yoo Hyang
Brave Girls’ “Rollin’” took first place on music shows by going viral four years after its release. It’s a phenomenal event that followed EXID’s “UP&DOWN.” Great songs find their ways to become successful when their artists are talented. Hence, I introduce to you bops that deserve their recognition, like “UP&DOWN” and “Rollin’.”
ONF – Sukhumvit Swimming (2020)
ONF never goes unmentioned under the list of ‘bands that should go viral.’ They are consistent in presenting quality music since their debut, and many choose “We Must Love” as the group’s best song. However, I would like to recommend “Sukhumvit Swimming.” Based on Reggae and Latin music, it succeeds at expressing the heat of an exotic atmosphere. Compared to their songs from their early days, the mood and message of the song have gone through a big change. But thanks to Monotree’s dependable production and the members’ professional vocal skills, this change is compatible. The song’s title, “Sukhumvit Swimming,” and its lyrics are unique, but the song’s best part is the captivating EDM after the chorus.
SunnyHill – on the way home (2016)
SunnyHill received attention for songs with lyrics that raise social issues, like “The Grasshopper Song” and “Princess and Prince Charming.” They were also loved for their slower track, “Goodbye to Romance.” “on the way home,” sung by Kota, Misung, Jubi, Seungah, may remind you of a new wave song’s lyrics because of its title, but it is not sad. The music is cheerful, and with Kim Eana’s SunnyHill-esque lyrics, it is relatable. It delivers a typical message atypically. The song heightens emotions with multiple string sounds, and Lee Min Soo’s arrangements in its later half make it more alluring. The piece will be meaningful to listeners as well as SunnyHill, as seen in the music video.
Stellar – Sting (2016)
While there were many disappointments, this single seems like it could make up for it, at least partially. Putting the music video and stage costumes aside, let’s try to focus only on the song. The vocals on the chorus of the song are charming, and the rhyming lyrics are trendy. While they probably made the song to please the eyes, it’s more pleasing to the ears.
B1A4 – Rollin (2017)
Jinyoung had been famous as a composer, but this song surprises us with his arranging skills. The smooth progression of the melody from the introduction to the chorus, the repeated lyrics “Rollin in the deep,” and the refreshing genre of tropical-house prove how clean and thorough the song’s arrangement is. It demonstrates his abilities as someone who also produced the groups’ tracks, “What’s Going On” and “Lonely.” Personally, the song seems like he should have released it in summer instead of autumn. By all means, not all tropical-sounding songs should be dropped in summer; however, the instruments used in the song and the music video would be more suited to summer vibes.
LADIES’ CODE – Galaxy (2016)
A good song is necessary when an idol group is trying to change its concept. “Galaxy” seems like one of the best works of the composing team Monotree. It gives off a calm and collected feel and the arrangement is sophisticated. Words associated with “Galaxy” are well-assigned to their places and the rhyme of “Emergency” and “Gravity” is astonishing. A lost star in space asks listeners, “Would you please welcome me, who you are unfamiliar to?” Perhaps this was LADIES’ CODE’s message for us.
Rainbow Blaxx – Cha Cha (2014)
Rainbow appeared as a follow-up to KARA from DSP Media but gained less attention than anticipated. Rainbow Pixie benchmarked “Orange Caramel” and “Rainbow Blaxx.” With “Rainbow Blaxx,” they attempt to attract the audience like GIRLS’ DAY’s “Expect” did, which succeeded with controversies surrounding how explicit it was. However, these projects also went in vain. It was disappointing when even the agency was hesitant in planning because it had not previously established its presence.
Nevertheless, the song itself is a charming disco track. If we were to sort Yoon Sang’s works based on how much of a banger it is, this song would be on the top. The song goes well with Kim Eana’s lyrics that unfolds the confidence and desperation while hitting on a man. This song makes you wonder what it could have been if it was released just as a great song of Rainbow, instead of being used as their medium for changing concept.
FIESTAR – Vista (2012)
LOEN Entertainment prepared for their girl group FIESTAR in earnest as IU was its breadwinner. They received a good amount of support even before their debut, releasing a duet with IU titled “Sea of Moonlight.” The group’s debut song “Vista” brought Latin music to K-pop girl groups, and we can feel how passionate, and ambitious the rookie group is in the song. The great thing about “Vista” is that it is not limited to the traditional girl group concepts like innocence, sexiness, or ‘Girl Crush,’ which is a popular theme nowadays. It sought success not through making an impression with its theme but purely by its tracks. Expectations for the group were high as they followed the song up with the energetic “We Don’t Stop.” It truly is a pity that the team fell apart due to excessively explicit attempts, despite the popularity of Yezi and Cao Lu.
Editor Yoon: I love music, especially K-POP, and I dream of becoming an A&R person, lyricist, artist, etc. I will cover various articles, including song reviews, artist reviews, and K-pop market analysis.