Day 12: Cute Zombies and “scary” wolves

Standard

Second to last day of this 13 day KPOP Halloween Challenge!

I can’t believe it!

As today’s subject line says, you can expect cute zombies and “scary” wolves…as anyone who knows me well, these two are backwards.  I am terrified of zombies ( I don’t know when or why this started) and can’t even stand the sight of pictures or previews for the Walking Dead.

But today….that’s all changed.

First up is our honorable mention: SPEED’s Zombie Party.

zombie + party + KPOP = cute nonthreatening zombies.

I know next to nothing about SPEED except that I’ve seen them live at Dream Concert….that’s it. The video itself doesn’t have much to it.  Just them dancing around like zombies, then a girl is randomly in there at one point…I don’t know.  But to me it felt almost satirical-like we weren’t supposed to take them seriously.  I mean the dance …come on.

Also the song while at times had that harsher sounding guitar in it (much like Block B’s Very Good from yesterday’s post) overall it felt like a fun upbeat dance song.  Hence, why I think SPEED as zombies aren’t meant to be scary.

Honestly, the scariest part of the entire song is when they say “we zombie party.”

Official MV: EXO’s Wolf

Here’s the thing…this MV and song is scary…but not for the reasons you think.

  1. The fact that it was a hit.  This song is horrible.  I hated it before I hated EXO. I hated it when I hated EXO.  I still hate it now that I’ve accepted that I “stan” EXO. If I was given the opportunity to unhear a song or unsee a MV….this would probably be #2 right after ikon’s “Rhythm Ta” (sidenote it used to be #1 but ikon’s debut song pisses me off for multiple reasons…beside the fact it basically stole the hook from GDX TY  Good boy)
  2. Fashion Terrorists: Luhan’s fuzzy sleeve collars. Chanyeol in a fedora+  bandanna = painful to look at, D.O. ruffled sleeved shirt (why?), Baekhyun’s blonde perm that makes him look too pretty  which then in turn doesn’t match when you see his armpit hair…. Sehun’s rainbow hair which is bad in and of itself….but when you add in the fact this is supposed to be a slightly darker “wolf ” theme….
  3. The wolf ears choreography I can’t.
  4. The best part about this song is the first 10 seconds with the tree of life…then Chanyeol says : 촉이 와
  5. The translation……if you want to be both amused and slightly horrified….

But the real scariest thing about this entire MV…..

……Kai’s braids.

Ok that concludes my EXO Wolf rant…it’s probably hard to believe that I really do like EXO after that mess…but I just can’t stand that song….my friend suggested I use it and while at first it may not look worthy…but there are many “scary” things in that MV…aside the glowing red eyes wolf sounds.

Tomorrow is the last day! I will do my best because it is not a weekday and as you probably can see I do my best to keep busy on the weekends. But I will try to remember ….hopefully…considering I’ve been waiting to post tomorrow’s since this whole thing started

Day 11: Crimes, and creepy crawling people

Standard

Can you believe it??? It’s the 11th day of this KPOP Halloween Challenge and we are almost finished!

As mentioned last post AKA yesterday, I have decided on adding Honorable mentions because shockingly enough there are just too many dark/Halloween concept videos out there.

So we will kick it off with one that I had planned on using but decided against it.

Block B’s Very Good: Now I know most people would choose to use “Jackpot” instead but I find that Very Good is more of a darker thing. Yes Jackpot has kidnapping, clowns in the opening sequence, slightly crazy carnival theme, but Very Good has clowns robbing a bank, P.O. with red demon horn hair, U-Kwon and his sparkly mask, Zico dressing up with Scary Spice double bun hair and then ….some kind of Marylin Manson (???), Park Kyung’s head on a serving platter, Taeil sharpening his knives like he’s about to eat said Park Kyung head, and BBOMB….in a corset….

The song itself was one of my first favorite KPOP songs, and one that actually got me motivated to get my butt to the gym and work off about 40 lbs.   It’s loud, it’s crazy …it’s Block B so of course it is.

Our official Music Video today is IU’s Lost Child/MIA (미아) Yesterday we did JYJ Jaejoong as only our second solo artist. Today, that is the only thing that is similar about these videos.

The song is much more restrained, and IU’s clear bright voice shines through.  It also is less dark more…weird? I know that’ a horrible word to use (side note I taught this to my Korean friend/tutor last night and now she’s obsessed with using it) but it’s kind of creepy…bizarre?

I read that the story line is that IU travels to the land of the dead in her wedding dress to find her dead husband.  She encounters all these other dead people (?) It’s creepy to see them crawling on the ground and grabbing her…kind of like zombiesque…

While she does find him he hands her their picture and her ring and she returns to the land of the living alone….it’s actually really sad.

However before reading any of that, or seeing the end of the MV I assumed she had walked into this creepy forest and now was about to be kidnapped or attacked by these “people”.

Whatever you find the storyline to be, there is no denying that has a dark quality to it.  I found that I actually enjoy the song as well….so while Jaejoong’s “Mine” failed to really impress me, this is a song I might be adding to my own music collection eventually…if only to be reminded of the weird MV while listening to it.

Only two days left!!!

Non related to the Halloween Countdown-Review, and forward

Standard

I was looking over some of my old posts.  I can’t believe that in two and a half months I will be flying back to the USA for a visit.  And it still won’t have been a year.

At times it feels like I’ve been here at least one year while others I can’t believe that I am at the stage where I need to think about contracts and locations for next year’s school year.

I also took a look at some pictures as well-I had bragged about my July music collection as growing and yet if it could see itself today….it’s more than double in sized, not including the concert DVD’s.

But I also saw that I’ve missed a few things.  This summer was crazy for man reasons.  It was my first summer camp, and I had to house sit for friends AND my parents came to visit-not to mention the insane concert/musical life I had.

I saw that I never talked about Teen Top concert back in August, still have yet to review “In the Heights” musical from last Friday as well as what I have come to know it as “EXO” problem.

So first Teen Top:  W loves Teen Top.  It’s her favorite KPOP band to the point where  she’s told me that  she can’t even listen too much because she’s overwhelmed by emotions.

W was able to buy two standing tickets because she’s apart of the fanclub.  I agreed to go with her and despite it being way too long of a concert it was so good.  I’ve bought two of their albums and their Hawaii DVD as well as becoming slightly obsessed with their Guam trip.  It’s a shame they don’t play festivals or promote as hard in Korea.  I know they are more popular abroad (except maybe Niel) and it was clear most of the fans were international at the concert.

It was obvious that despite Niel’s disfiguring large lips (Hey I love Niel…but his lips do not fit his face) he commands a stage.  CAP and LJoe had a really good duo that reminded me a little of TOP and GD.  Chunji’s solo stage was really good ….until the last few seconds where he cracked.  Sad.  Changjo (so manly despite being 19) sang which was strange since he clearly is the lead dancer.  Ricky’s solo was filled with a lot of emotion and tears …but they put his solo right after Niel, and sadly Ricky doesn’t quite have the presence or talent. It felt a little like a let down.

But as a group they really shine.  And they have songs that are catchy as hell. I’m pretty sure I went around singing “Supa Love” for a good two weeks after.   Seeing “Rocking” choereography live was also really impressive.  And because I had been listening to their latest album “Natural Born”  I found that I knew a lot of the songs.  I will be the first to say I’m glad that the stylists aren’t messed with the looks and hair as much. W did tell me they were aiming to be more manly…which I could understand why.

W is going to their fan meeting in Seoul on the 29th of Nov so she will die a happy death (this is of course after BTS on Saturday).

Next would be last Friday’s musical. For the past three months solid I’ve had booked weekends.  But as of now ….almost nothing planned.  So I chose last week to go see a musical.

With my latest EXO….thing (see below) I decided to go see Chen’s “In The Heights”. Unlike Ken’s musicals, there were so many amped fans with their Chen dolls, binoculars etc…it was like a concert without the insanity.

It was at the Blue Card Samsung Hall which is On the brown line out of exit 3.  It’s a pretty small theater but it was a very nice theater.  It was my first time going to a musical alone, but everyone was super nice.

I bought a notebook and a huge ass program.

The show itself was incredible.  Everyone was amazing and the sound was great.  The only issue I had was the girl who played opposite of Chen, while having a beautiful clear perfect voice, wasn’t able to project as well as the others and often was drowned out in sound when singing with others.

The story is about a group of latinos living in Washington Heights.  There is the bodega owner, hair salon owner, taxi owner and grandma.  I was curious as to how they were going to deal with the whole “spanish thing.”  Turns out they use a decent amount of Spanish.  Between reading the synopsis beforehand, Spanish, Korean and English I was able to follow along pretty well.

I think Chen missed his calling.  While in EXO i think he does shine (unlike others) his voice sounded more natural in the musical.

But whether it’s dancing in EXO or in a musical, he’s still…not good.  I told W he’s like the Ken of the group.  He looked like the people who stand at the back of the room during Zumba-a beat behind, overexaggerated hand and arm movement with 0 hip action.  This is not a judgement as someone who also stands in the back for Zumba…but I never believed the whole “Chen is a bad dancer”….because in EXO I guess they usually put him in the back where you don’t notice it but…there he was front and center…

Now of course as in Cinderella where Ken got his poor nose called out, Chen did have a “dance battle” with one of the other characters and proceeded to dance Growl.  It sent everyone into laugher.

But the most interesting part was when everyone went crazy because both TVXQ Changmin and EXO Baekhyun were in the audience.  You could even hear Baekhyun laughing at one point after Chen’s aegyo part.

The entire show was well put together, and the theater even had Japanese and Chinese subtitles on the side (sadly no english).  It’s a show I definetly recommend.

EXO

Ok here’s the thing…ask me 2 months ago if I liked EXO, I would have answered “while I might own their love me right repackage…there is a reason their poster is hiding behind all my coats…i can’t stand them and they all look alike.”

Ask me the same question today….i wish their was an emoji for my face now. It’s a mixture of frustration, self hate and annoyance.  Because right now, EXO somehow has destroyed my life in the same way VIXX did in March…but in some ways even worse.

I never really liked EXO from the first time I heard Wolf 2 years ago during my first few months of figuring out this KPOP song.  It came on Pandora so often that it was the only song I actively asked my friend to change.

it then progressed from there to stumbling across “Angel” piano cover and then eventually onto the song itself which I actively bought.  And it stayed in my iTunes KPOP realm.  I listened to it, enjoyed it, really loved one of the singer’s voice (I just knew it wasn’t Baekhyun/Bacon) but that was the extent of anything EXO.

Then the BFF gave me MAMA for some reason, and while the song is ok, it wasn’t something I went out of my way to listen to.  More like, if I needed a song to fill that last place on my CD.

Then I knew all about the drama with Kris leaving and then Luhan…and that was really it.

It wasn’t until I actually got the korea that i actively disliked EXO.  Thanks to the rumors of their fans and then experincing it firsthand really made me dislike them.  Then I came to the conclusion that they all looked the same and couldn’t sing (this was just blind hatred at this point) and the songs weren’t even good.

I ignored them at Dream Concert -in all fairness I was completely out of everything post VIXX- and only remembered the one with the man bun (Xiuman) and ugly outfits.

However…for some reason I decided on a fluke to buy their Love Me Right Album.  I liked the title track much better than Call Me Baby.  I didn’t really listen to it until one day I let my playlist play through and wound up listening to the entire thing.

Still it wasn’t enough to make me really like them.  I only liked Kai because I saw him in an episode of Running Man and found him attractive. (duh)

it wasn’t until I decided that it would be a great idea to watch EXO:Next Door because it was a short 15 episode 15 minute drama that I could finish in one day.  This was of course after suffering through School 2015….

Then when my parents were here, we became fanatics of nature republic who EXO endorses…and we wound up with a ton of fans…of course I had to send pictures of my friends asking which EXO person it was (hahaha oh the irony)

I don’t know what happened….one moment it’s just watching the show…next it’s learning names and faces…the next it’s watching a MV here or there…and listening to Love me right album, buying older albums…a slow decend into complete agony.

I really did everything I could, but when I realized that the voice I originally turned out to be my favorite, well the deal was done.

Then when we went to Gangwon for the concert…I loved VIXX…but I had a thought…I really can’t wait to see EXO next weekend.

Then at the OneK concert…I of course lost i over VIXX (didn’t help they had changed their hair and shocked W and I into repeating “Ravi’s hair is black/Hyuk’s hair is orange”) but then…proceeded to really lose it over EXO…like a crazy person.

Unlike VIXX, EXO is EVERYWHERE! They endorse everything, SM Town has huge stores with tons of merch….it’s hard to not absolutely lose it….and I have….

W thinks its absouletly hysterical that for a group I used to talk so much shit about (which I sadly acknowledge) and where I am now….well she likes to rag on me every once in a while.

And with the new EXO box coming out on Friday and VIXX comeback on leo’s birthday…well….wish me good luck for November.

I am thinking once the Halloween Countdown is finished….I will do another one regarding Thanksgiving…aka what are the songs/groups that I am thankful for/favorite songs…I think I might make it an 8 day challenge to make it a little easier on myself….once again I will have to fight the urge not to make it a vixx dominated list (why is everything so hard!) .  And if that turns out well then maybe a different theme ….every week? and limit to 7 songs…like “songs I can’t stand” or “best light concept”, “best dance” or whatever I feel like…because this is my blog….anyway tomorrow once again we will be back on track with our KPOP halloween count down.

🙂

Day 10:…because it’s double digits…

Standard

We are on Day 10 of the 13 day KPOP Halloween Challenge…and because there are two digits…I figured we would do one as part of the “official” countdown, and one honorable mention.

Shockingly enough, when I started I had the hardest time coming up with a 13 day list (that didn’t include half of VIXX’s songs).

But after working on this list for now 10 days, I have found more than enough.  So for the remainder of the days (i justified it as they have two digits thus two songs) we will be doing one honorable mention and one official.

I had no put any of these in order (except for number 1 which I have been saving) because some of these are songs/ MV that I am seeing for the first time.  Of course I would be biased to my favorite groups (not just because they happen to be infamous for dark concepts).

So today’ honorable mention goes to….BIGFLO: Obliviate (pronounced o-bliv-ee-ah-tay….no joke.  I really liked the kind of Harry Potter theme, and the fact they dance with capes and Harry Potter wands on the live stages.  This video will be their show performances so you can check out their “wand waving” dance….and if you really want, you can check out the MV which is also very cool Halloween feel.  The song itself is not bad, but its not something I would go out of my way to listen to.

As for the real MV included in this 13 day list, today is JYJ (or if you still need it to be a certain way DBSK/TVXQ) Jaejoong.  Other than the fact that this definitely fits the weird/creepy/Halloween/dark/evil theme extremely well, nothing else is my style.  I know a lot of people love Jaejoong’s look and voice but for me ….there is nothing there and he sounds like he’s screaming at times. (*side note I do really like Mirotic which I know everyone does)

However, other than Jaejoong there only has been one other solo artist on this list, and I did want to expand beyond bands I knew, or the easier/more common songs (that’s not to say that there won’t be any).  I’ve learned not to be close minded about groups, or songs or themes when it comes to KPOP.

If that was the case, I would still be listening to only western and classical music somewhere in America.  It wasn’t really until I went to see VIXX that I learned to open up to new KPOP artists.  That’s why I go to as many concerts as I do.  I’ve fallen for VIXX, TEEN TOP, *EXO (this is another whole issue), Junsu of 2PM, JR of GOT7 all at live concerts and shows.  So going to concerts all the time isn’t just to fill a need but knowing what I could be missing out on (HELLO VIXX), it’s worth it going.

So in conclusion, while neither song will be making an appearance on my playlist any time soon, I am glad I watched and listened to try and expand my interests as a KPOP fan.

Day 9: It Hurts…because I’ll never be as beautiful as Dara

Standard

…..just kidding…well I’m not but I am.  Anyway, we are on Day 9 of the KPOP Halloween challenge! And we have finally, another girl group 2NE1! Even though I am big fan of theirs, and I love love love Park Bom, I’ve never actually seen this MV before.

It wasn’t necessarily creepy, but more….dark fairy tale like? If that makes sense.  Like if Tim Burton’s world was suddenly a reality….you know bones on cakes and super long frizzy hair and majestic black see through umbrella’s that will not protect you from rain but make you look dark in a beautiful kind of way.

At first, I didn’t feel the song fit the MV well.  The whole “halloween” concept seemed to be too weird for a seemingly normal break up song.  But the more I watched, and the more I listened I found, while still thinking it’s a strange pairing, that it wasn’t as strange as I initially thought.

2NE1 all looks amazing in this concept, especially Bom’s hair. In the dreary, bleak MV, her hair sticks out in a great way.  It’s teal…but not a super bright teal what would blind you.

2NE1 has had so many issues….and I’m starting to wonder if they will ever reform.  That being said, they are YG and after BIGBANG’s suddent 3 year hiatus, I hope that 2NE1 will be back soon.  Park Bom had the (stupid and unesscary) drug scandal that should have never even been a thing. CL ….still waiting for her US debut (that horrible Dr. pepper mess doens’t count). Minzy recently opened a dance school and Dara is doing acting work abroad.

So I know they are working, but I really miss the badass chicks of 2NE1.  They left this huge gap when they went on this (break?) and it has yet to be filled.

I hope Papa YG learns than putting off debuts and comebacks doesn’t automatically mean success *cough* IKON gross debut *cough*.

On that note, I hope you guys find this MV as cool and interesting as I did, as it certainly fits within the requirements for a Happy KPOP Halloween.

Day 8: When Rocky Horror meets KPOP….this…..

Standard

Day 8!!! What would some KPOP Halloween challenge be without SHINee????

SHINee almost singlehandedly put me off of KPOP for life when some idiot decided that showing a complete rookie “Lucifer” was the best thing.

Needless to say…to this day that MV still scares me.  I do like the song now though.

But with SHINee’s earlier in the year comeback with View I was really shocked and impressed. The entire album was really good despite there being a creepy clown on the front (there’s the SHINee I knew).

But of course…they repackaged it and gave it a Rocky Horror Picture Show themed cover….two months two early.

When you first watch it, you’re not sure whether to be scared or to laugh.   SHINee parts (yes, I heard it) stolen to make…the perfect man? The song itself isn’t bad, I preferred View, but the MV alone is worth watching.

As for why this made the 13 Day Halloween KPOP Challnege…..yeah there aren’t any questions.

Day 7 : Shadow Shadow Shadow

Standard

So I missed posting last Friday because I was rushing to get to Seoul in time to see “In the Heights” (there will be a separate post about that later).

Number 7 is one of my favorite songs by one of my favorite bands: Shadow by BEAST.

It’s a slightly gothic MV but manages to fit in kind of creepy things like snakes and spiders and Junhhyung rolling his eyes back….

Beast was one of those groups I had heard about but didn’t get to really pay attention until their hit “Good Luck” came out last summer.  Right after I really got into the song, it blew up and I had no choice but to dive into the Beauty fandom.

There really isn’t a weak link when you look at the group at the whole.  Unlike Big Bang where clearly TOP is not a dancer or Block B where Zico really shouldn’t sing, BEAST members all perform everything pretty well.

A lot of people said they would never be able to top Fiction.  Ironically enough I’m not such a fan of the song myself and found that Shadow was the better song and concept. And “Good Luck” just dominated the summer of 2014.

I was so happy I was able to go their concert, especially if the rumors of them enlisting are true.  I’ve been so dissappointed with the way CUBE has been treating BEAST and all of its artists lately.  Barely any promotion.

I hope CUBE figures out the problem soon, otherwise I fear that groups like BEAST aren’t going to be able to reach their true poentieal and just kind of fade off into obscurity.  With all these rookie groups killing it right now, it’s hard to maintain your power and popularity as you get older, especially when your own company gives you a 1 month promotion for your 1+ year comeback

Anyway, back to the whole reason we are doing this, yes Shadow is on the darker side. While not quite as intense as Hyde or Thriller, it’s its own version…the mellow version…like if Hyde and Thriller got off the steroids.