Katherine’s Top K-Pop Releases of 2017, Part Two: #41-50

It’s hard doing rankings when you’re multifandom. Your favorites change like clockwork, and you literally like everything. I’ve been stubbornly pretending I don’t have a new ultimate bias for a month now, because I’ve switched four times this year alone. The only thing that’s ever certain is that you want all your bias groups to do well.  So while I want to honor all my faves in these posts, I struggle because I really just want everybody to be #1.  But for the sake of this blog, I confronted my indecisiveness for once. And I think I’ve come up with a Top 50 that best reflects my tastes as a multifandom K-popper.
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Katherine’s Top K-Pop Releases of 2017, Part One: #51-100

About a year ago, I kicked off this blog with my 50 favorite K-pop songs of 2016 listed by season.  This time, I decided it would be fun to do an “official” ranking. So, I grabbed a set of index cards and wrote down all the songs I wanted to talk about… only to end up with 100 tracks instead of the planned 50.  I change my favorites constantly, so I probably should have known how it would go. After all, this is what happens when you’re unapologetically multifandom. I eventually narrowed my choices down to a Top 50, but I decided to make the extra effort and do a “bonus” post. I wanted to share the other songs I liked, and it’s always important to promote good music!

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Kim Jonghyun

These past few days have been a very sad time for the K-pop community.  The news of Kim Jonghyun’s passing was the first thing I saw Monday morning, and I’m still processing it in some ways. I’d like to send my deepest condolences to Jonghyun’s family, his fellow SHINee members, his friends and colleagues at SM Entertainment, Shawols, and anyone else who knew and loved him.  Though some time has passed, I still don’t know how to articulate everything I’m thinking and feeling. All the same, I’d like to try.

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Mid-Month Check In + End of the Year Plans!

Wow, it’s been a while since I made one of these! I feel like an eternity has passed since November and the National Novel Writing Month challenge. I really tried to keep my eye on the K-pop scene, because there was so much awesome music being released. Though I did manage to stay up to date, ultimately it was just too difficult to make posts and attempt writing a book at the same time.  But I got my 50,000 words done, and I’m ready to jump back into blogging!

December is a much slower month for K-pop, so it’s a lot easier to play catch-up.  I just published the rest of my October posts, and I’m working on November’s as we speak.  I’m also going to keep posting recaps of The Unit and Mix Nine, although that might be slower because they’re more time-consuming. I’m not going to do any profiles this month, since most of the ones I have up right now need serious updating. But since we’re approaching 2018, I’m planning on doing some year end summary posts!

I hope you’re having a happy holiday season, wherever you may be!

Love,

K

Favorites of 2017: October

October is one of my favorite months.  It’s definitely fall, but it’s still the warm and sunny part (there was a week in Paris when the temperature was up to the mid-70’s ).  The leaves are still on the trees and there’s lots of nice colors, and it’s just a very pleasant time of the year.  It’s also one of the best months for K-pop! This month there were so many good releases to fit the mellow autumn mood, but there were also some fun and upbeat surprises.

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Rapid(ish) Reviews, October 2017: BTOB, GOT7, TWICE, SF9, and More

Fall is one of the best times for K-pop because pretty much everyone makes a comeback. Like September, October saw the rise of some of the most talked about boy groups – who all delivered quality music. And though there was little to no activity on the girl group front, TWICE swooped in at the very end to remind us all why they’re the princesses of K-pop.  There was so much going on to like, but here’s a look at the comebacks (and one debut) that really impressed me.

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MIX NINE Episode 1 Recap: The Agency Tour Begins

Forgive my word play, but I’ve had a pretty mixed reaction to Mix Nine so far.  On one hand, I like the idea of shining the spotlight on relatively unknown artists. I’ve been involved in the entertainment industry for most of my life and I never got a “big break,” so I really appreciate what these people are going through. Also, some of the contestants belong to groups that I like and want to support.  (So basically, all the reasons I watch The Unit) On the other hand, Mix Nine just seems like a big showcase for Yang Hyunsuk as a character person. It feels like the editing is 75% his comments and reactions and 25% actually getting to know the people auditioning.  But it’s just the first episode, so hopefully the balance will be better as time goes on.

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THE UNIT Episode 1 Recap: A Chance to Start Fresh

There are certain groups every K-pop fan knows about: the top stars, the “legends,” the “super rookies,” etc. But for each one that you’ve heard of, there are probably three that you haven’t. K-pop is filled with groups struggling to make their mark, from freshly debuted rookies to five-year veterans who never found their groove. According to The Unit‘s intro, there are 436 actively promoting K-pop groups.  I could maybe name 100, and that’s me being optimistic. So now we have The Unit, which hopes to shine the spotlight on idols who never got their big break.  And as someone who listens to a lot of K-pop groups – both popular and somewhat unknown – I couldn’t be more excited.

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