Welcome to our first edition of K-Crunch, a great big monthly bowl of Hallyu news. Huzzah!

This is going to be a end of the month segment (rather than weekly) in which we discuss the Hallyu things that interest us. This month’s episode is just covering the important Kpop releases of July, but next month we’re thinking about adding more to the segment, like K-Dramas and K-Movies. We’re still tinkering around with the ideas, but one thing is for sure, there is a lot more Hallyu to Korean then just music…it’s just difficult to cover everything!

Anyhow, we wanted to make this video as also an intro video to help those new to the Hallyu wave, and since we can’t cover every single Kpop video that comes out, we thought we’d give a brief recap of the four biggest songs and one rookie group, in our opinion, for the month. We focused on the votes that came in through our Kpop Music Monday request page, rather than other music charts, because we’re more interested in what our viewers are interested in. And so, the five videos are:

1. 2NE1 – I Am The Best
Back when we first reviewed 2NE1′s “I Am The Best” we were a bit confused by the whole point of the video. At first we just thought that they were playing with fun stuff. But now we see something far more insidious. The song has a very tribal feel to it, and looking at the video through the tribal perspective, it seems like everyone’s trying to appease the terrifying 2NE1 through tribal sacrifices. Here…take my car…take my dog…take this train…please! Just don’t murder us! Yes, we will play the drums for you blindfolded! Yes please have mercy! Oh no don’t murder us with your guns noooOOoooOOooooOOoo!

Yeah. That makes the most sense to us. Kinda disturbing video, but the song’s still pretty awesome. Bombaratatata! Buy the mini album Through iTunes or get it shipped to you via the banner below:

2NE1

2. T-ara – Roly Poly
Cowbell. Cowbell Cowbell cowbell. Needs moaaaaar cowbell. Holy cowbell.

For those of you who are unappreciative of cowbell, WTF is wrong with you? It’s the greatest instrument ever made. It instantly improves a song’s quality. Listen to Roly Poly. It’s fun at first, and you think to yourself, “yeah, I can groove to this song” but then when you hear the Cowbell breakdown, then you instantly shake your ass and dance like a maniac and start kicking things in pure joy. Well, perhaps that’s just Simon…with the kicking things that is…but man, what a GREAT DISCO FEVER SONG!

The only thing we don’t like about the song, is something that we don’t like so much, that we’ve started loving it. That was a mind twister, right? Holy crap, the English “rap” during the cowbell breakdown is…so…hilarious.

I LIKE-A-LIKE-A DIS,
I LIKE-A-LIKE-A-DAT,
I LIKE DIS
I LIKE DAT
…………yeah.

It’s like, they were so into it, and they were building up steam, and then at the end of it they said to themselves “well, wtf do we say now?” and then they just ended it with an awkward “….yeah!” We do that as well. It’s a funny way to break the silence.

Anyhow, even though we laughed at the rap part, this is definitely Simon’s favourite song of the summer, even more than Bubble Pop.

YEAH!

Anyhow, since it’s so raw-diddly-awesome, make sure you get the album via iTunes or through the banner below

T-ara

3. HyunA – Bubble Pop
Ok, had to include this video with its unheard of millions-of-views in just a few days on Youtube. As we said before, great song, terrible video. Correction: terrible video if you’re used to kpop videos having more to them than just gyrating. HyunA herself supposedly doesn’t like the idea of being accused of being too sexy. She says she’s not trying to be too sexy, and she’s trying to be boyish. Umm, seriously? Since when do boys wear dresses, press their boobs together, bend over, and do one giant wipe from the top of their buttcracks all the way to the tops of their crotches? Maybe this was a part of boyhood that we just weren’t aware of. Canada…just didn’t raise us right!

Hogwash. You’re 19, you’ve got a nice body, and the director told you to shake what your mama gave you and you said, “OK!”. But, for all of our criticism of the video, that doesn’t stop us from constantly loading it, minimizing the screen, and listening to the song on full-blast. What a freaking fun song this was. It was a fantastic song for the summer, regardless of how inappropriate the video was.

You can buy the album via iTunes or through the banner below

HyunA

4. MBLAQ – Mona Lisa
It’s funny how your opinions change of songs the more you hear them. Back when we first reviewed it, we were torn. Martina loved it, Simon didn’t. But it’s grown on Simon since (*cough*Martina played it all the time*cough*), and he now finds the accordions a lot catchier than before. (*Martina LAUGHS MANICALLY and pets her evil fluffy cat)

We’re still disappointed by the video though. We still can’t wrap our heads around the concept of “Mona Lisa” existing in this video. The lyrics suggest a girl who is indifferent to their attempts to woo her, not really encouraging or discouraging in a Kindof Mona Lisa-esque manner, but no one is wooing anyone in this video. It’s just cut eye from the beginning to the end. And it doesn’t change the fact that they’re at what looks like, a weird gas station. And of all locations to serenade a girl at, why a gas station? They probably smell like gas. Seriously. Let’s see how good you are at picking up girls if you’ve been pumping gas all day. Perhaps it’s just the fumes that have clearly gotten to their heads. Nonetheless, don’t let the video discouragege you, support the use of accordions in kpop songs and go listen to it! RIGHT NOW! GO!!!

No iTunes links for this one, unfortunately. Come on MBLAQ! Get on iTunes NAO! You can still go through the banner below, though, to get the full CD mailed to you.

MBLAQ

5. Girl’s Day – Hug Me Once.
Oddly, we didn’t hear about this video as much on other sites, on Facebook or Twitter, but maaaan did we get a lot of email requests for this. And we were really meticulous when we looked over the emails as well to make sure there weren’t any spammers. We know who you are, spammy spam spam spam spammerson people, who think that by submitting the form 100 times your vote will count 100 times. Or for those of you who try to be more clever, and change up your email. [email protected], [email protected] Come on! Martina did that once for a Big Bang video, but NEVER AGAIN will we be fooled!

Anyhow, these votes seemed to be genuine. Maybe they got out on some fan site? We’re not sure. All we can say is that we actually loved Girl’s Day “Twinkle Twinkle”…Hajima Hajima! MAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA. BUT this song doesn’t really have that same amazing catchiness. It really didn’t do it for us. We’re not really into that whole “cute concept”… especially when it lasts for 5 minutes + overly cute video with finger poked squishy faces and fist scrunching wiggle dances. But what we can appreciate and understand about Girl’s Day is that their sound isn’t really imitative of Western Music. It’s fun and peppy and has that extremely distinct Asian Pop sound to it.

Oddly, we can’t find a banner or an iTunes link for Girl’s Day :( Sorry guise!

And on that note, that’s it for July 2011. We’re still playing around with the format for next month so hopefully by month three we’ll have something more settled upon. If you’ve got anything Hallyu you’d like us to cover for the month of August, we’d love to hear your suggestions :D

ToFebruary
Gmarket
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