MONTH IN REVIEW: NOVEMBER 2016 K-POP RELEASES

A look at of some of the K-pop releases in November.

And just like that December is here, time to start counting down to Christmas! Before we do that though, I want to look back at November and see what it gave it. It went by so fast this year, that I really need to take a moment and see what happened. Also, if you want to get the season’s greetings from your favorite group for 2017, now is the time!

1〉 Taeyeon

November started off with this lovely release by Taeyeon. She’s great at expressing the emotional aspect of the song with her voice and portrayed the story very well. What makes this release even better for me is the music video. The filming is great, as well as the little details and the switching between the present, past and moments that symbolize Taeyeon’s feeling. You have to the watch the video a couple of times to appreciate everything. All in all, it’s one of the few ballads I love!

2〉 BlackPink

Next up we have BlackPink playing with fire. Literally, there’s a lot of fire in the MV. The girls sing about being on fire due to their “intense” emotions toward their love interest. Not a very new topic to be singing about. They sound and look great though. But somehow they don’t manage to hold my interest for very long. Maybe because I expected them to sing about more refreshing topics. Oh well, they’re still a talented group to keep an eye on. I just hope they’ll get some better songs in the future.

3〉 B.A.P. 

This is one long music video – 10 minutes! And it’s a bit of a mess. I love it when a group has a story in their MV, but this one was hard to follow. Going by the reactions to the MV, I’m not the only one who was having trouble understanding the whole plot. That B.A.P play gangsters is pretty obvious, but some of the smaller story details I didn’t get. Oh well, I think it was a lot of fun for the boys to film this, especially the stunts. It didn’t totally make sense with the lyrics either, since the song is about falling in love and not holding yourself back. It encourages you to skydive, to go all in.

4〉 Mamamoo

Mamamoo has come back for you! And how! The girls have switched things up once again, but manage to  keep their typical powerful vibe. This music video has a story that accurately follows the lyrics. “Decalcomanie” is about falling in love with a guy and going in for that first kiss. Though it may be a little dangerous, the girls feel strongly about the decision.

There has been some controversy surrounding this song, mainly because Mamamoo seemed too passive and the guy was too aggressive in the music video. Other people have written a lot about this. I agree with the overall concern. In Korea (and a lot of other countries), women are expected to be calm and submissive even when they’re really interested in a guy. So if they stick to what’s expected of them, Mamamoo can only give subtle hints and wait for the guy to make the first move. That is what we see happening in the MV.

For me, when they sing about it being a little dangerous, they’re referring to how falling in love can be scary. You know how strong and intense love can be, and how much it can hurt when it does come to a breakup. Therefore, allowing yourself to pursue this interest can be scary. But it’s also amazing. My favorite part is probably when they dance in front of the frame and mirror each other’s movements. Vocally, Mamamoo prove once again why they are considered one of the top vocal groups in K-pop. Also, can Hwasa get any more sassy?

November verdict

I thought November had been a bit of a slow month, but looking back at all the releases, that wasn’t actually the case. I didn’t even discuss some of the other releases that caught my eye. For example, SHINee! But now it’s time to focus on December. The typical December/Christmas releases have already started, including some songs with multiple groups from one agency. Anything you are looking forward to for this last month of the year?

[Sources: Hyerplinked YouTube videos]
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Dutch, K-pop lover, bookworm and secretly a poet.
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