K-Pop Standout Instrumentals

There are plenty of good songs in the world of K-Pop, but only a few stand out for their amazing music. When you are a fan of certain idols or groups, we are sometimes biased about their music. But do we really like the song, or are we playing favorites?

There is nothing wrong with not liking a new song that your favorite group released. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but sometimes we get a little bit blinded by our love for them. Here at KPOPme, we have been guilty of that a few times.

So this time, we are going to forget all about the lyrics and voices. We are only going to focus on the instrumentals. Sometimes the best songs don’t make it into singles, but the music itself is amazing.

A song is constructed by an introduction, verse, and chorus, and sometimes ad libs are added to build the composition’s intensity. After a song is composed, the lyrics give life to the melodic story.

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One of the best examples of an amazing instrumental is f(x)’s Rum Pum Pum Pum (produced by Erik Lewander).  The song is a mixture of organic drums, guitar riffs, and synthesizers. The introduction itself starts with two different guitar riffs. The guitar really has its own voice throughout the whole song. The percussions start to kick in and rise at the chorus, representing the sound of a heartbeat. f(x) has many amazing songs, but this one really stands out for us for its originality.

We talked about how it’s not wrong to not like a song from one of our favorite bands, and this is what happened with EXO. When they realeased Wolf, we really didn’t like that song too much. It was so busy and full of dubstep, although the boys redeemed themselves with the next song, Growl.

Right off the bat, the song starts with the same melody as the chorus. The music changes completely on the bridge before the chorus and brings us down to a very smooth melody. The chorus hits and we hear the same beat starting again, just a little bit faster. The music is very funky and very sexy. This song has already become EXO’s signature. It really reminds us a lot of those great boy band songs from the 1990s, and we love it!

[Editor’s Note: “Growl” is probably the only song my non-K-Pop fan friends genuinely like]

SHINee’s Symptoms is a great example of a great R&B song in K-Pop. The Underdogs produced it, and it’s the perfect mixture of R&B and Soul. It’s very slow, but it builds up on the bridge. The drums give a feeling of explosion in the chorus that really make you feel the emotions conceived in this song. Then it drops again and keeps us on a roller coaster of sounds. The song ends abruptly when the beat just stops, giving us a metaphor of how a relationship could end all of a sudden.

If you were to name a great pop song, it would be BIGBANG’s Blue. It keeps a steady beat that slightly changes on the bridge and flourishes in the chorus. The guitar adds an acoustic feel, while the piano gives life to the piece. The electronic beats synch perfectly with all the instruments and create a very dynamic melody. The song also features different sound effects in the background. Blue has been one of the most successful BIGBANG singles in their career, and that’s because it is pure perfection.

Girls’ Generation’s Mr.Mr is the perfect example of a modern pop song. The beat reminisces the disco era, but somehow feels very modern with the added sound effects. The claps before the chorus even give it a feeling that you are there, hearing the song live. Unlike what they tried to do with I Got A Boy, the song mixed different genres very well and doesn’t seem that there are different songs in one. Why is it that when a song incorporates old music elements, it makes it feel modern?

Talking about old music, IU’s Red Shoes gave us a very creative and new edge in K-Pop. The song incorporates classical swing-jazz melodies that makes us want to stand up and dance. It perfectly captured the feeling of the 1920s and gives it a modern twist, with a few electronic beats at the beginning.

G-Dragon’s Shake The World gives us an example of a song that can speak by itself. If you hear the instrumental, you can really feel how much is going on in GD’s mind. There is a feeling of despair, a lot of screaming, and a lot of hidden emotions.

The song starts with a sound effect of a cash counter, really setting a scene for the ending. It makes us feel that he is running away from a bank they just robbed. The melody is full of personality, and that trap in the end is amazing. It’s really surprising, as it constantly goes up and makes us never want to go down. My favorite part of the song is the saxophone before the exploding chorus, it’s just so unexpected!

2NE1 always loves to mix genres, and, with Come Back Home, they nailed it. The song goes from pop to reggae to trap. This holds the future of K-Pop music, where mixing different styles create a very unique concept. They had done it before with other songs, but this one was perfection. Even if the song doesn’t have a fast beat, it still wants to make us dance.

Do you know any other K-Pop songs that have amazing music? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

U-KISS’s “Quit Playing” Music Video Review & Rundown

Well, let’s get right to it. Within the first 10 seconds of “Quit Playing,” we have already seen numerous amounts of bare skin, male and female. U-KISS has definitely set the tone for this music video and comeback. The opening shots are quick cuts of numerous scenes. Some with fully clothed individuals and some with not-so-fully clothed individuals.

Right from the beginning we see Hoon and Kiseop in a room with a woman. Kiseop takes off his shirt as Hoon (already shirtless) caresses the woman in a seductive way. As the music video progresses, we see the the three of them… interacting… at a club and other locations. Toward the end of the video, we see the shirtless shots of Hoon and Kiseop with the woman, as both of them hold and seduce her at the same time.

I’m sure you’ve noticed that Hoon and Kiseop are the only shirtless ones in the video. Hey, with bodies like theirs, why not show it off, right? Aside from the bare skin, Hoon, Kiseop, and Eli are the only three U-KISS members that have intimate scenes with a woman.

And speaking of intimate, Eli… Whew, those bed scenes. Eli was the only member that had steamy scenes, yes they were both clothed, albeit underwear for the girl, but still. He also had the most close up face-to-face shots with his female lead.

Along with the bed scenes and kiss shots, he had a few scenes of the woman seducing him as she sat atop the bar, which lead to her wrapping her legs around his torso as they are, presumably, about to go to second base. Eli’s individual shots showed the seduction and lust between a man and a woman erotically.

Now let’s focus in on the last scene of Eli exhaling smoke. In many films (mostly older ones), characters in steamy scenes (hardcore make out session that undoubtedly leads to sex) are often times seen smoking afterwards. The good ol’ post-sex cigarette, if you will.

Now I may be pushing this symbolism too far, but it’s a 19+ video with plenty of steamy scenes. As I mentioned before, Eli is the only member with bedroom scenes and he ends the video exhaling smoke from a cigarette. Moments before we see him laying down with his female lead, in another steamy scene. So I’m sticking to this theory, you don’t have to agree with me on it.

Kevin and Soohyun also had their solo shots in the cinderblock room and hallway/corridor/alley, respectively, as they sang and danced with a backup dancer. But neither of them had any individual one-on-one shots with a woman that did not include the choreography.

With this music video, KISS ME got their first official look at new member Jun in action. Although there were not many shots of him, I think he held his own in the music video. It will be nice to see more of him as time goes on.

A lot of fans and other people are asking the question how can U-KISS have a 19+ rated music video when their maknae is only 17? If you watch the music video, Jun’s individual scenes are definitely PG-13. The only time he’s with a girl is during the group dance parts and when he’s in the yellow Hummer. There are three girls around him who run their fingers and hands up his arm and on his fully-clothed chest. In my opinion his scenes were done tastefully and realistically in regards to his age.

The choreography was pretty good. I like the interactions with the female dancers, it obviously suits the song. I love that each member has their own back-up dancer to dance with as well. The dance definitely fits the sexiness of the music video is done very well. The guys are strong partners for the girls and the girls know how to move their bodies and make the dance look sexy, not trashy.

I hope they release a dance version of the music video so we can see the whole dance from start to finish without any interruptions. Unfortunately we won’t be able to see the dance on music shows because U-KISS’ choreography was deemed inappropriate for the televised music shows.

I also liked the muted color tones throughout the video. The color schemes were tones of blues, grays, and greens, which fit the tempo and lyrics of the song. There wasn’t an over abundance of bright colors or peppy objects in the scenes. The muted tones reflected the sentiments of the song.

Obviously, in some scenes there were pops of color. For instance, the yellow Hummer and the red lipstick, red hot pants, and red velvet wall. Red lipstick pops whether it’s highlighted in a black and white scene or surrounded by color. The dance scenes were mostly black and white, which really allowed for the female dancers’ red hot pants to really be the highlight of the scene.

The lyrics to “Quit Playing” express a man’s desire for the woman he loves, and tells her to stop with the mind games, hence the title of the song. He doesn’t like that other men give her attention and the she welcomes all of the attention and reciprocates by flirting with these men. The man wants her for himself and all she is doing is playing with him. These lyrics clearly state what the man feels:

That smile you only showed me
Why are you showing it so easily to others?
Words that I held in but can’t anymore
If you love me, then stop.

It is clear that the man is far more into the woman than she is into him. She enjoys the attention from other men and doesn’t seem to mind that she’s toying with one or more of them. Clearly these two are not on the same page.

As for the music of the song, I enjoy the acoustic guitar that begins the song and it goes into a modern, mid-tempo beat. You can hear chimes and some funk guitar thrown in there as well. I think the music suits the style of song quite well. In all honesty it took a few listens for me to like the song. The chorus is where I got hooked.

Overall, the music video is steamy and sexy. I enjoyed watching it and seeing a more grown-up concept for U-KISS that reflects their age better. Check out the music video and let us know your opinion:

Do you guys like the song and music video, or was it too much? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

Artist Spotlight: 15&

Yerin and Jimin make up the talented duo 15&. They quietly debuted in 2012, and since then they have been relatively scarce in the music scene. It wasn’t until April of this year that I became interested in 15& when they made a comeback with Can’t Hide It. Not only did the two come back with a new single, but JYP Entertainment’s official YouTube released a number of teasers, live performances, and music videos to promote 15&’s comeback.

I really wanted to highlight 15& this week because: 1. JYP has been promoting them much more this comeback than in the past and 2. these two girls are extremely talented.

They may only be 16-years-old, but 15&’s member’s voices boast maturity and control. When Can’t Hide It came out, I was immediately drawn to the powerful vocals and the R&B feel of the song. But it really wasn’t until I saw Yerin and Jimin on After School Club that I became a fan. These two girls are not only talented in the singing department, but they speak fluent English and know how to have a good time. Throughout the entire episode all they did was joke around and enjoy themselves. Not only that, but you can tell that these two get along with each other and work well together.

The videos on JYP Entertainment’s YouTube really showcase the vocal talent of these young women. Not only are their talents highlighted in these videos, but as I mentioned before, their personalities truly come out.

Jimin is extremely outgoing and quirky. She just loves to have a good time. Yerin is a little more quiet than Jimin, and shy when she is the only one on camera. But she still knows how to joke around and enjoy herself.

An added bonus is the relationship between 15& and other JYP artists. For example, throughout the After School Club episode, Jimin constantly (and innocently) poked fun at GOT7’s Jackson. Her sarcasm is something that I locked in on right away. Even in 15&’s behind the scenes video for Sugar, we see Yerin and Jimin joke around with 2PM’s Chansung and GOT7’s BamBam, among others.

These kinds of attributes draw fans in because Yerin and Jimin seem more personable, approachable, and more human as opposed to untouchable idols. It is clear from their actions, personalities, and overall demeanors that fame has not affected them and that they are in this industry because they love music and they love to sing.

To be honest, I would love to hang out with these two. I imagine we would laugh and make fun of ourselves all day and then they would hold a mini concert so I could hear them sing in person. As I keep emphasizing, Yerin and Jimin are a talented duo whose power vocals will blow you away. As if having amazing vocal talents weren’t enough, Yerin and Jimin will also draw you in with their fun and addicting personalities.

If you’re new to 15&, check them out on JYP’s official YouTube account. If you’re already a fan of 15&, what’s your favorite song by the duo and are you enjoying their recent comeback? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

8 K-Pop Girl Power Anthems

K-Pop’s filled with love and break-up tracks that we enjoy, but what about girl power anthems that make you feel empowered for being a woman? Not all girl groups’ songs revolve around boys all the time. Some female artists have great lyrics about being confident, sticking up for yourself, go about getting what you want, and friendship. Here’s a list of eight songs that cover those subjects:

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K-Pop’s Queen of Sexy Pop begins the list with “Bad Girls,” a song that teaches you what a bad girl is and how she acts. It’s all about being confident as a woman and letting the world know why and just how bad you really are. You’re sexy? That’s great. You like to get your hair and makeup done? That’s fine too. You’re determined and strong? Yep, definitely a bad girl by Hyori’s standards.

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Following Hyori’s mantra, CL reinforces the “being your fierce self” concept with her first solo song. Like her bad predecessor, 2NE1’s leader sings about embracing your ability to be a strong woman. Yes, “Baddest Female” might seem like a vain manifesto to some, but if you look past the “I am,” you’ll see that she acknowledges her worth and is confident in herself enough to flaunt it. This is the perfect anthem for all the grown women, as Beyonce would put it, out there.

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Miss A delivered a strong anthem for all the women who have been slut-shamed by a guy before with their debut song. The track calls out the ex-boyfriend for enjoying the girl’s freeness, let’s say, when they were together, but then talked ill of her when they broke up – the classic trope many of us go through after a break-up. “Bad Girl, Good Girl” says that there’s nothing wrong with being confident, forward, and sexy, and that what’s actually wrong is men’s hypocrisy.

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This song might not be a single, but it’s definitely one of f(x)’s most meaningful songs. “Toy” talks about not letting men mistreat you, not needing a man in order to live, and being your bright self. The concept is definitely a more mature one than what we regularly see from this group; I hope they continue this path in the future.

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Orange Caramel consistently delivers cutesy and weird style concepts, but “Lipstick” is a perfect example of being a go-getter. You know, a girl who doesn’t feel the need to act shy and is confident enough to pursue any man she likes. The song is the boy crazy type, but since it talks about going up to a boy and kissing him and tells him to stop playing hard to get, it’s inevitable to recognize the guts behind a woman who would do this. The girls seem coyer in the music video than what the lyrics say, but it makes the list nevertheless.

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Similarly to “Lipstick,” “Female President” is also a boy crazy song where the girl asks the guy what’s wrong with them being forward, I mean, they do have a female president in South Korea, so what’s the fuss? This song brings up the topic of it being modern times, and tries to normalize girls who seek out men and don’t just wait around to be pursued. Furthermore, in contrast with Orange Caramel, Girl’s Day did deliver a sexy music video, even if member Yura got in trouble with netizens for her nude colored dress.

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“I Like That” is a breakup song, but that doesn’t mean it’s full of bitterness and spite. No, this track talks about being ok with and actually liking doing couple things by themselves. The girls sing about going to eat BBQ for two, singing karaoke, getting home when drunk, etc. all by themselves. It’s a great song because it addresses a woman’s ability to be independent without having to be rescued by men.

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While this might be in Japanese, it doesn’t minimize South Korea’s most successful girl group’s message of the fun and happiness of being a girl. Moreover, the music video is a big party with lots of fans and drag queens at an amusement park.

Do you know of another girl power anthem? Share it with us on the comments section!  Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

C-Clown’s Rome is the Producer Idol

I’m sure a few of you have seen C-Clown’s series Crown the Clown on YouTube recently, which gives fans a look into the members’ daily lives. You’re probably thinking this has been done many (MANY!) times before, so why is this one different? Well for starters, the man behind the creation and filming of Crown the Clown is none other than C-Clown’s leader Rome.

Rome films and produces the Crown the Clown videos for C-Clown’s fans, which already sets them apart from other idol groups who have a so-called “YouTube reality show.” Many idols have the stigmas of not singing or acting or only being able to do these things. But Rome is proving that there is more to him than being an idol who can rap and dance. Aside from this series being completely created, filmed, and edited by a member of the group being filmed, there are also English subtitles graciously added to each video. Rome uses English quite often in the videos as he mans the camera and partakes in banter with his fellow members.

The description for the new series on YouTube says all you need to know about Crown the Clown:

Crown the Clown a series made and directed by ROME (The Pink Reel). The series made especially for the fans, shows an up close more insight view on the life of a K-pop idol as well as going in depth to each of the members true characters. FUN, CRAZY, WEIRD and most of all REAL.
THE PINK REEL WOULD LIKE TO PRESENT TO YOU
CROWN THE CLOWN
BY CCLOWN

The Pink Reel is the name of Rome’s start-up production company. If you follow him on Instagram, you already know that Rome has been creating videos brought to you by The Pink Reel for months now. Although I am not a video or editing expert, it is evident that Rome has a knack for directing and editing. His 15-second videos are enough evidence to prove that. If you’re not following Rome on Instagram, I highly suggest you do.

Rome uses his presence on Instagram to not only interact with fans, but to help promote C-Clown as well as his own endeavors. In fact his Instagram updates informed me about Volume 1 of Crown the Clown and Volume 2. Many artists and idols already do this through Twitter, Weibo, Instagram, and other social media platforms. But I have noticed that Rome seems more personable, in my opinion, on Instagram. He films videos of the members of C-Clown as well as personal videos from him to all of his followers. There’s something about opening Instagram and seeing a new video or picture posted two seconds ago from someone you follow. It feels more personable and that you are part of the moment.

Rome’s first Pink Reel video shows six photos of some of the members in a montage set to Jon Mcxro’s Girlfriend. All of the photos were taken by Rome or The Pink Reel as shown by the hashtag #photobyrome and #photobyPR in his previous photos. The filters used on the photos really highlight the whites and show off the blacks of each photo. A couple of the photos clearly show a pink ‘PR’ mark on the photo, whereas for the other photos it shows up in the corners or off to the side. Even though the video is a montage of photos, it shows Rome’s passion and interest in creating these types of videos and shows that there is more to Rome than rapping and dancing.

There are currently two volumes of Crown the Clown on YouTube and fans can expect to see a new episode every Sunday on C-Clown’s official YouTube channel.

Have you guys seen the series yet? If so, how do you like it so far? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.