Archive for September 2008

SHINee ≠ Big Bang

It really annoys me that people always have to find something they don’t like about SHINee. SM doesn’t have the best reputation with non-SM fangirls so I feel that when SHINee was first announced, and people saw their new concept, they were miffed that it didn’t look like what typically came from SM. Yes, it’s another boyband, but nobody expected the trendy menstyle streetwear, the fashion designer stylist, or the choreography. Yes, SM was using pretty underhanded techniques in trying to make the young group’s age seem like it’s insignificant by appealing to the older female audience, but I think it’s unfair to be critical of their style just because they’re using that style. This is primarily a response to Big Bang fans getting upset about SHINee “copying Big Bang’s style” but “doing the pastel version”: Big Bang didn’t INVENT that style, ladies and gentlemen. They do not claim ownership to that style and people are allowed to interpret that style as they wish and also, other people are ALLOWED TO WEAR colorful sneakers and skinny pants and graphic tees. When Big Bang first came out, they were straight up cornrows, bandannas around the head, baggy-panted “gangsters.” Well, how times have changed, and no hip hop fan was criticizing Big Bang for their style. Now they’ve gone and done a total 360 on their image and are all now hipster, trendy, colorful. Where’s the finger pointing? There is none.

It’s okay to enjoy both groups. Both groups are allowed to co-exist and share a similar style but still do their own thing. Carry on.

Pretty cover art

Song of the Day:
Been listening to some Fly to the Sky lately because the Seoulbeats team and I met up with Brian for an interview when he appeared in the city. He really has a lovely voice. Listen to 취중진담 (Feat. AND) here:

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Watch the music video for it here.

Tofu robot

I went to Kinokuniya yesterday and managed to nab this bag:

Tofu Robot comes from the Spicy Brown company, which sells a lot of food-inspired knick-knacks: bags, scarves, hats, t-shirts. Within the Spicy Brown food family is also Miso Soy and Sushi Neko. You can check out their page here and you can check out an introductory page to the Tofu Robot family here.

They are most definitely back

I got into Dong Bang Shin Ki last year right after their “Five in the Black” concert was broadcasted on TV, so I missed all of the hooplah that went into their third Korean album promotions from the previous fall. Now, I’ve been in fandom for a year plus and I know what’s coming. The promotion for their fourth album is absolutely astounding — you can tell by SM’s very perfectly controlled releases of teasers, the new use of a fashion designer as stylist, the choreography by a Western choreographer, the production of the album by a Western team. (Not that Western = automatic good imo, but Kpop’s been very America-longing lately.) MNet’s site has a full fourth album promo page and this comeback is seriously going to be unprecedented.

As for the “Mirotic” song…I’m not too sure yet. I really loved what I heard of it from the music video preview, but I was slightly let down by the full version. I’m used to something more jarring and hardcore from their title tracks since their last three album title tracks have been SMP songs. I’m not entirely fond of the SMP genre because I think it’s really too repetitive but this song doesn’t sound groundbreaking. I listened to it once and then I kept listening to it because it was on loop, but after a while, I just went back to what I was doing and forgot about the song. It just blended in with the background. I wasn’t like that when “Purple Line” was released. I was so impressed with the beat and pace of “Purple Line.” I couldn’t sleep at night because I was thinking about how good the song is. I imagine that the slower pace for “Mirotic” may be to accomodate a storyline in the music video but we’ll see.

동방신기 ; 주문 (MIROTIC)

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Lots of orange-tinted food

Noodles and ramyun and the sort aren’t usually too filling by itself so this go-around I decided to make some ddeokbokki to go with it. The sauce was fine (something I actually have to get used to) but I think my preparation time was too short, and thus the taste didn’t get absorbed into the rice cakes as nicely as I wanted it to be. The sauce served more a “superficial” flavoring so once you got to the center, the taste got a little bland. I’ve always enjoyed nian gao (what rice cakes are known as in Chinese cuisine) so this was a good new food to add to my list of “eat these in order to prevent starvation.” Heh.