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5 reasons to go to Hyuna’s North American tour


When first asked to write something to get people excited about Hyuna’s upcoming North American tour, I thought “what’s the point in that? Who wouldn’t already be excited to see Hyuna?” It took me while to accept that some people may not be as excited as me. After that realised that it’s really just a good excuse to write about Hyuna, a woman whom I think to be a singular K-pop artist. Few idols had carved out such a successful solo career outside of their groups quite like her. Best of all, she did it with a confidence that few others can attest to. That’s only a tiny part of the reason you should go see her, though. Let’s take a look at some more and remember as well her great career.

“It’s all because I’m the best”

Has K-pop ever topped “Bubble Pop?” Probably not. Hyuna certainly hasn’t. That’s not to say her output since her debut has been weak, of course. “Bubble Pop” is just the greatest.

Her career after it has been sharpened with every release. She has seemingly found her sound in the bass heavy electro rap of “Roll Deep” and “How’s This?” Those songs are at best, growers. I came to enjoy them for purely dance reasons after a number of listens. Performed live they’ll bring the energy but her qualities lie elsewhere.

The song that started that sound for her, “Red,” is her best after “Bubble Pop.” The brash fun of Hyuna repeatedly saying her name and the obtuse lyrics make it the best Hyuna experience. The not-even-trying-to-be-cute “Ice Cream” is a more hypnotic song; its synths whipping around the beat with a refreshing elasticity. It also contains a vocal range that Hyuna is capable of, but uses less often these days. Although, she did on recent b-side “Morning Glory,” a breezy slow jam with wonderful details. There’s a diversity to Hyuna’s discography that doesn’t get the recognition it deserves. Songs like this and “Unripe Apple” and “Get Out of My House” show a more vulnerable side to the seemingly all powerful queen that Hyuna is. Her image does her a disservice, and there’s nowhere better than on stage to make this right.


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“Red is Hyuna, Hyuna is Yeah”

Hyuna didn’t get to where she is now in her solo career purely thanks to her looks and music. She has something that few idols can match up to without help of choreography or strong vocals. When Hyuna is on stage, no matter who else is there, she owns it. Her stage presence runs through her whole performance, be it dancing or not. It’s thanks to a confidence she brings in being sexy. Sometimes we see sexy as just another concept in K-pop, something a group can try out to see if it sells. With Hyuna, it’s almost a lifestyle. Her performances and music are all based around it, and this shines through when it comes to being on stage. She really came into her own with the promotions of “Red.” It is, after all, a song about how great and sexy she is. Hyuna picks her moments, glaring down cameras or interacting lovingly with the audience. She holds off singing, or lip synching at times, to give herself a break, knowing that everyone watching understands that it’s not easy to continually sing while dancing. Breaking through the facade, we see someone who was born to be on a stage.

 

“There’s no meaning, They’re just dancing”

Listen to any Hyuna song and it’s obvious dance is going to be important. She is supreme, to say the least. There are few idols who carry such an ease of movement with moves like hers. Her every moment on stage is filled with clear enjoyment. A regular criticism has been that she has turned to sexy choreography too often now. Which is true, but it fails to look at her choreography as a whole. She has gotten sexier, but has simultaneously been getting more intense as well. Watch her perform the endless body rolls of “Roll Deep” and the incessant shaking of “How’s This?” and tell me that’s merely sexy.


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“When I stand next to you, I’m a trouble maker”

This is really wishful thinking, but something we probably all thought about. The recent shake up at Cube Entertainment left her and Hyunseung without their flagship groups (4minute and Beast). But as many noticed, both Hyuna and Hyunseung are the only members remaining in the company. So a Trouble Maker comeback has to happen, right? That does seem likely given their success, yet we really are dreaming if we think they could appear on this tour. I want to dream for a moment, though, just to remember how great they were. Co-eds may be getting a revival now with K.A.R.D seemingly gathering buzz, but Trouble Maker are co-ed at its peak. Watching Hyuna and Hyunseung feels like you’re being told a story. They move together so closely and sensually that I can’t help but think it’s all real. Nothing would be more exciting than to see them once again burn up the stage. Also, it’s way more possible than my real dream for this tour, a Dazzling Red reunion.

 

“What’s wrong with going out late at night?”

Literally nothing, Hyuna, and there never will be. The best possible reason to see Hyuna is because it will be a party. Those who think she’s too trashy for their taste are missing out on a K-pop concert that won’t be like the rest. Catch her in these cities:

February 22: Vancouver @ Hard Rock Casino
February 24: Toronto @ Danforth Music Hall
February 26: Montreal @ L’Olympia de Montreal
March 1: Chicago @ VIC Theatre
March 3: New York @ The Town Hall
March 6: Dallas @ Granada Theatre
March 9: San Francisco @ Regency Ballroom
March 10: Los Angeles @ The NOVO

Are you excited to see Hyuna in the US? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

4minute ‘Hate’ Music Video & Song Review

4minute Hate
Looking like a schoolyard gang and Posh Spice cosplayers, 4minute return with yet another big track, “Hate”. Produced by Skrillex, it follows “Crazy” into chaotic banger territory but with a certain pristine quality. Again, unfounded comparisons between YG Entertainment artists are bouncing around due to the sound and look of the music video. As we will see, 4Minute and Skrillex bring a higher level of craft when it comes to run of the mill electro tracks.

Song

Calling this an electro song is a bit reductive. It is the centre of controlled chaos between genres vying for dominance. Where “Crazy” started at top speed, “Hate” allows consecutive parts to sound completely different. They lead to a huge chorus that does not let up once it comes out.

From Gayoon’s opening to Sohyun’s pre-chorus, each part of “Hate” that leads up to the chorus increases in tempo as they come. Gayoon’s beautiful intro threatens us with a ballad. The pain in her voice sets the song up though, as something that won’t take any prisoners. While not hateful there’s a defiance to her pain; she’s done with this man once and for all. The piano melody takes us slowly by the hand into “Hate,” not giving anything about the destination away. Right after, a beat is finally introduced with Hyuna rapping on top of it. Her usual snarl is restrained for the moment, she allows the build before going for the jugular. Jihyun continues with this beat but with added drum flairs, her voice perfectly balanced between singing and rapping to prime us for bigger moments without giving it away. This comes in the form of Sohyun’s electrifying pre-chorus. Skrillex introduces his well known dub over her shouts of “go, go, go.” The song and girls are fed up of playing nice, the hate is real. Like in “Crazy,” the increasing tempo of the beat and screams leads perfectly into a chorus that is at once predictable and surprising.


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The chorus is predictable, given the nature of the song and the name of the producer. Surprising because the song’s build up at first masked it, and because of just how big it is. The horns explode with glee as Hyuna snarls in her familiar nasally voice “I hate you.” At first listen, these horns jar, using music rather than vocals as the hook is still relatively rare in K-pop. Despite their inherent conflicting sound they are shaped into a force by 4minute. It’s a sound to be angry to, to take action to.

Once it ends, “Hate” does not stick to what it knows. Jiyoon replaces Hyuna for the rap verse, similarly sounding as if she’s holding back. She knows she’ll get her chance in the chorus. The big change is the pre-chorus, which Gayoon takes and molds it into her own. Her banshee wail, a call for the hate filled chorus. The song always takes the time to got to quieter moments between those choruses. Mercifully giving us a break but more importantly creating contrast to sit the chorus on a pedestal. A throne to hate.

Music Video

The video does little to prop up the theme of the song with a story, it does have the distinction of being 4minute’s most beautiful video to date. Like the verse chorus relationship different sections of the video contrast with each other. Gayoon’s opening of restrictive mesh clothing, veils, and small frames shows a woman trapped in her hate filled relationship. Right after, Hyuna walks open deserts. The frame stays full as she walks amongst the dust. The expanse is just as scary, too open to the point of loneliness.


Also on KultScene: 4Minute’s ‘Crazy’ Music Video & Song Review

They do something similar with the styling too. Gayoon’s vengeful bride aesthetic and Jiyoon’s dominatrix look are total opposites, but work to tell the same story. Gayoon’s innocence, similar to the song, creeps up on you. Something that doesn’t seem hateful at first can quickly change. Jiyoon is the chorus then, an image of controlled hate.

Overall

Over the years, 4minute have changed their style time and again to showcase everything a girl group can be. Mostly focused on a heavier sound based in hip-hop and electro, and every time they executed it perfectly. This era of trap and dubstep influenced work suits them just right once again. “Hate” is a slow burn that tortures the soul of weak men. It cracks with dubstep flourishes and bites with mean raps. No other song has fit these type of sounds so well before.

What do you think of “Hate”? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter,Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

Video of the Top 25 Korean Songs of 2015

BTS

So far 2016 has been a slow year, aside from Dal Shabet nothing of any interest has been released. This has led us to looking back at how great of a year 2015 really was. To celebrate it, one of our writers cut together a video of the top 25 songs of the year as voted for by the KultScene writers. As you may have seen our top 50 list, this video takes the top 25 and edits them together in inventive ways. This is something to celebrate the year in music with, but mostly we hope you have fun watching it.

What was your favorite Korean song this year? Share your picks and thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

Best K-Pop Music Video Fashion: February 2015 Releases

February has been a busy month for K-pop; companies debuted a few solo artists and several groups shone with long-awaited comebacks, resulting in a lot of new fashion for fans to admire. Beloved idols like f(x)’s Amber debuted while showcasing her well-known fashion sense and style, and girl group 4MINUTE got the chance to express a new badass attitude with their fashion. Let’s take a look at the best fashion featured in some of the K-pop music video releases of February 2015.

VIXX Love Equation

VIXXBESTMUSICVIDEOFASHION

VIXX came back with Love Equation, a remake of R.ef’s track Farewell Formula. VIXX is known for interpreting the themes and concepts of their music very well and this time around they didn’t disappoint. The song fits perfectly with the styling of the members as the upbeat ballad calls for very cute and trendy boy next door outfits, sporty chic outfits, and custom made uniforms. The color palette is very on trend and accurate for the season and makes the boys look very hip and cool. Ravi, in particular, looks stunning with his bleached blonde hair. VXX proves once again that they look amazing on everything they get styled for.

Zion T. Just (feat. Crush)

ziontcrushjustbestmusicvideofashion

Zion T. collaborated with solo artist Crush for his newest single, Just. The music video for the track was filmed beautifully and gave off a very mysterious feeling. The black and white through the whole video really enhances the styling of the two artists. Zion T. and Crush wore outfits inspired by the ‘90s and ‘70s, pairing oversized blazers with wide legged trousers and various ‘70s silhouettes. The combination of this two eras made a very interesting and modern look for both men. This is a perfect example of a great and inspiring styling that surely will have many fans trying to recreate their looks.

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4Minute’s ‘Crazy’ Music Video & Song Review

Apart from Girls’ Generation, no girl group has been as consistently great as 4Minute this generation. Since their debut with Hot Issue, their popularity has gone up and down even when they went through changes with Brave Brothers over the last two years. They blossomed recently, garnering the biggest successes of their career and I expect them to continue this with their new single Crazy.

Crazy is the type of song that would seem stale and overdone in any other group’s hands. The trap beats and overloaded sound have become regular enough in K-Pop that they’re almost outdated, yet here they feel cataclysmic. The hype of the ‘Revamped’ teasers have been completely lived up to and have given us the best song of 2015 so far.

Song

Judging by the comments of the music video on Youtube Crazy is the kind of song that Blackjacks think 2NE1 are masters of. Of course, they’re wrong. While it is most definitely YG-styled, 2NE1 as a group couldn’t pull off this song even if YG were to give them something so complex. The varied vocals and choreography would be too much and the already busy song would be filled with even more parts.

While the song itself sounds packed with too many components, it is structured perfectly to create something busy but measured. The verses are split into three different parts; a rap, Sohyun’s part, and Gayoon’s pre-chorus. This allows the song to be challenging yet not jarring for an audience. Each part is executed to perfection with even Sohyun and Jihyun getting more prominent, longer solos than usual, and also slaying them for once.

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In particular, Gayoon’s pre-chorus works to bind the whole song together. It acts as a time for the whole song to slow down for a second and build up again. It does so quite slowly for a pop song but works so well in tandem with Gayoon’s vocal. Every second beat is skipped right before the chorus kicks in and creates the most satisfying transition you’ll ever hear in K-pop.

The song is brimming with trap snares, kick drums, sirens, synths and an alarmingly good horn loop in the chorus. That sounds like a lot on paper but thanks to the structure and perfect vocals everything comes together to create the perfect commercial club song. Lyrically, there’s nothing interesting going on but that doesn’t matter as this is a song to get crazy to and it achieves that without any doubt.

Music Video

The video is standard dancing in a box stuff. It works with a song like this though because it’s all about going crazy and looking fierce. 4Minute do not fail at this. Their charisma feels genuine and jumps off the screen. The choreography is badass and the styling (apparently done by Gayoon) is cool. Also this marks the first time 4minute music video is not the Hyuna show. It’s always nice to see lesser members getting attention even if they are indeed lesser.

Dance

To cap off a perfect comeback, 4Minute’s dancing does not let them down. It looks like they went to their local club, took the moves of all the girls on the dance floor and turned them into highly choreographed moves ready for the stage. The girls dance with power and vigour, seemingly making it up as they go along. The dance perfectly matches up with the tone of the song.

Rating

4Minute have taken the most used and popular concept in pop music today and reinvigorated it in 3 minutes and 10 seconds. Everything sounds, looks and feels completely fresh when compared to similar K-pop songs. 4Minute have set the bar for 2015, I’m excited to see if anyone can match it.

What’s your opinion of Crazy? Leave your thoughts on the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.