The K-Pop Takeover Is Coming!

The number of international fans of Korean pop (aka K-Pop) has been growing for the past few years and it looks set to explode in 2012. This article by MTV’s pop expert Sam Lansky is a great introduction to what it’s all about and how the trend is spreading in the US. K-Pop groups are also building up a huge following in the UK now – you might even say it’s replaced metal as the geek’s favourite musical genre, and for that we have to say THANK YOU KOREA!!!

In December one of the biggest Korean talent agencies, Cube Entertainment, will be bringing a selection of their top artists to the UK to perform at The Brixton Academy (find out more and get tickets here). I’m hoping to go along so have been researching the acts on the line-up, and here are my reviews of them all:


This girl group were the only act on the line-up I’d heard of before. They’ve been around since 2009 and have released three mini albums and one full length album. They have caused controversy with some provocative dance moves and lyrics, but compared to typical Western artists they seem fairly tame. Their music videos are colourful, sometimes with a storyline (the one for Heart To Heart is hilarious), and although the group has one lead singer the others show their different characters through their outfits. My favourite is the rapper Sohyun, the youngest at age 17, who brings the most personality to her parts in the songs (such as listed here).


Originally known as B2ST (Boys 2 Search for Top), this boyband changed their name to BEAST (Boys of East Standing Tall) and played on both names for their debut album Beast is the B2ST. They broke through in 2009 and in 2010 got their first no.1 in Korea with Shock, which I think is one of the best male K-Pop songs I’ve heard, although my favourite BEAST video has to be Bad Girl which is brilliantly camp. They call their sound “rocktronic” as it’s a mix of rock and electronic music, but they also sing ballads which have gotten them a reputation as one of the best male vocal groups in K-Pop. They even released a slowed down version of one of their hits, Easy, called Easy (Sincere Version)!


G.NA is a Korean-Canadian girl named (you guessed it) Gina who was originally set to be part of a girlgroup, but when that project fell apart she was taken on as a solo act. Her positioning is quite sweet and girly, with shiny pink outfits and ballads that sound like Martine McCutcheon. Of the three acts I would say she’s the least interesting as her music is a little bland compared to the others, although recent single Top Girl is a bit more poptastic so could be the beginning of a more fun G.NA. Also I did enjoy this video interview where she talks about her experience as a Korean popstar having grown up in Canada.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *