16.07.12

Words by: Charlie Jones

Five essential K-pop bands

2NE1 
The four-member group were first introduced to the world through label-mates BIGBANG with the promotional song Lollipop in 2009. What followed was there debut single Fire, I Don’t Care, Go Away and arguably their biggest hit to date I Am The Best. With ex-1TYM rapper Teddy Park at the helm of songwriter and producer for many hits, these girls often encompass a strong, independent, and empowering message through their hip-hop and electro guise.  At the moment they’re gearing up for a world tour and an English album with Black Eyed Pea’s Will.i.am as producer. 

Infinite
Infinite are a seven-member boy-band who only began releasing music in 2010. Their music often contains a very 1980’s synth and guitar tinged sound; making it a common trait in this groups music. The Chaser is their latest release in Korea from the upcoming album INFINITIZE

SHINee
With 4 years in the K-pop sphere, the 5-member group SHINee under SM Entertainment illustrate a strong and unique talent in singing with dancing. Already well known in neighbouring Asian countries with hits Replay, Juliette, and Hello amongst others, they’re also widely popular in Europe performing at concerts in Paris and London.

BIGBANG
Starting out in 2006 with RnB influenced hits We Belong Together and La La La, BIGBANG have developed into one of the biggest boy bands in Korea. This well-established group are known for being experimental in their musical sounds thanks to the collaborative spirit of each of the members. With a fusion of electro-pop, trance, with an Urban-music influence, BIGBANG is a name you will most likely hear more of in the near future. The song Fantastic Baby released from their latest album Alive, with its Boom-shaka-laka hook, conjures up images of Apache Indian and Inner Circle, but with far more exuberant tones. 

Girls Generation
Girls Generation are one of the biggest girl groups in Korea who began releasing music in 2007. They released hits like Gee, Hoot, Tell Me Your Wish, and with their latest single The Boys which was also released in the US featuring rapper Snoop Dogg. The 9-member girl group holds bubbly and endearing personalities that only add to their musical appeal.