Katherine’s Top K-Pop Releases of 2017, Part Three: #31-40

The songs in the last post ended up being pretty diverse, with lots of different styles and moods.  This time, the majority of them happen to be really upbeat and catchy.  There are a few that are more emotional and introspective, but I think it’s safe to say my preference for dance tracks will be more prominent from now on.  We’re also going to see my love for a certain agency’s artists start to come into play (I don’t do it on purpose, I swear!), but rest assured – I’m still committed to being as multifandom as possible!

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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 music I wanted to talk about… only to end up with 100 songs 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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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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MAMA 2017: Predicting the Winners

The MNET Asian Music Awards are finally upon us!  The week-long awards started in Vietnam this past weekend, with another show in Japan and the main event in Hong Kong.  After over a month of online voting, fans all over the world are waiting to find out which K-Pop acts will come out on top. Many categories are a head-to-head battle between EXO and BTS, but there are so many other questions to answer: Will all the recent hype over BTS in the US affect an Asian awards ceremony?  Will EXO manage to grab their fifth daesang for Best Album? With three comebacks each, will TWICE or Red Velvet be named the top girl group of 2017? And after enjoying years of favoritism, will any YG artists get recognized at all?  This year’s definitely going to be an interesting one.

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[POLL] MAMA 2017 Nominees: Who Will Come Out On Top?

Awards season is coming, and the MNET Asian Music Awards (hereafter referred to as MAMA) is kicking things off with a bang! It’s only been two days, and my social media feeds are already filled with people discussing the nominations. As I write this, fans all over the world are diligently trying to get on MNET’s bugging website and vote for their favorites.  I’m multifandom, so I’m having a really hard time choosing. Also, my computer seems to hate that site. So I thought I’d do something a little different!

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Soribada Awards 2017: Winners List

 

On September 20, digital music platform Soribada hosted their first ever BEST K-MUSIC AWARDS. Eligible songs were from September 2016 to August 2017, with online voting starting in July.

New Korean Wave Producer Award: Iggy Youngbae (I assume for a GFriend song)
New Korean Wave Music Video Award: Zanybros (I’m not sure if they were nominated for a specific MV, but they worked with many of the artists that were there: B.A.P., Mamamoo, GFriend, KNK, Wanna One)
New Korean Wave Music Star Award: Sonamoo and KNK
New Korean Wave OST Award: Ailee, “I Will Go to You Like the First Snow” (Goblin)
New Korean Wave Rookie Award: Pentagon and Wanna One
New Korean Wave Popularity Award: EXO
New Korean Wave Icon Award: Red Velvet
New Korean Wave Trot Award: Tae Jin Ah and Hong Jin Young
New Korean Wave Global Achievement Award: Eru
New Korean Wave Photogenic Award: DIA
New Korean Wave Rising Hot Star Award: WJSN and Wanna One
New Korean Wave Voice Award: Han Dong Geun
New Korean Wave Performance Award: NCT 127 and gugudan
New Korean Wave Artist Award: BTS (not in attendance)

2017 SOBA 11 (aka the Bonsang Prizes): Hwang Chi Yeul, T-ara, BTOB, EXO, Vixx, B.A.P., Mamamoo, Red Velvet, GFriend, Monsta X, Twice

Digital Daesang: Twice

Daesang (grand prize): EXO

I was originally going to do a recap, but there wasn’t all that much to sum up.  Groups won awards, gave speeches, and performed their latest hits; there weren’t any special stages or collaborations. And all the artists stayed backstage, so it’s not like I can comment on their reactions to each other. Also, the streaming on V-Live was terrible. There was this weird echo/loop on the audio for the first thirty minutes, and the image kept cutting out or going out of sync.  I know it’s a first time show, but those are some serious growing pains.

I’m not sure how much of a big deal these awards are or will be, especially compared to long-standing shows like MAMA, Melon, or Gaon Chart.  It’s kind of strange that certain habitual award recipients like BTS, GOT7, BLACKPINK (and/or any YG artist), and Seventeen are nowhere to be seen. (BTS literally just started their comeback and they did send an acceptance speech, but it’s still a little weird) And to be honest, I don’t know what half of those awards mean or what the criteria was for deciding any of them.  But I’m really impressed with the diversity of the artists they awarded.  They’re mostly all groups big in the last five years, but there’s still a wide variety.  And I’m really happy with the attention they gave to all those rookies. They all deserve more recognition, and I’m glad they got it.  I’ll be interested to see if Soribada does this again next year and how it will be – hopefully a better streaming experience!

Sources: V-Live, Soompi, Wikipedia

Favorites of 2017: March

(Oops, we’re already over halfway through April….)

As I predicted, March was all about the boy groups for me. Though of course several girl groups had solid comebacks, most of my attention was consumed by favorites like Got7 and Monsta X.  But no matter your preferences, there was something for everyone this month.

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BTOB Comeback Review: “Movie”

You know how sometimes you like a group for their personalities more than their music? That was me with BTOB. I think that they’re hilarious and I always look forward to their variety shows, but I just couldn’t get into their music.  Don’t get me wrong, I can tell that they’re immensely talented. But I never found a song of theirs that I would put on repeat or keep listening to after promotions.  Luckily they came back with “Movie,” and I love everything about it.

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My Favorite Songs of 2016: January – March

Happy 2017! Time to get cracking on this blog. It’s been over half a year since I originally set this up, and I stupidly did it while I was still finishing school (practically guaranteeing that I wouldn’t have time to work on it).  But this is a new year, and my New Year’s resolution is to actually start a blog and keep it going.

I’ve been into K-pop for almost a year now.  When I get into something – especially something media related like music or a tv show – I have the tendency to go all-in. At this point I have gone through the discographies, filmographies, and history of pretty much every major group you could think of.  So as I approach the anniversary of the day I stumbled into all of this, I decided to start my blog by making a list of the songs that I really liked in 2016 – my first year as an official K-pop fan.

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