Posts Tagged ‘Korean pop’

Listen, and read

For people in a crappy place right now.

Way too many words on Exo

1) Let me be verbose, lest my brain explode.

2) Let me use the amazing photographs fans have taken at events, lest my Tumblr explode.

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SM Entertainment in China

This post is a long time coming, and probably has been in the making since Super Junior first started promoting in China.

Hallyuism at this stage in the game is all about the money. Korea is a place where trends catch on in a millisecond, and people have caught onto the fact that K-pop can make money, and a lot of money at that. So I get it: it’s a cultural product worthy of pride, and it’s an important national export.

The thing that drives me nuts is the extent to which the people exporting their pop and their business in pop have so little consideration for the cultures and countries that they want to export to. I’m not going to call the kettle black, because I understand that I, as an American, come from a country that is notorious for disregarding the cultures and sensibilities of other countries when it comes to forcing our media and culture onto others.

But I obviously have a horse in this particular race, which is why I feel the need to call K-pop out on this. I work and deal with K-pop, and as a non-Korean observer of K-pop, seeing things happen in K-pop that affect me on some level trigger certain reflexes and emotions. At a moment when K-pop is being so highly self-lauded and whose output is being so aggressively marketed outside of Korea, it disgusts me that it will on the one hand pay so much lip service to the markets and countries it’s trying to pursue, and then on the other hand exploit the shit out of it while maintaining fake deference.

And this rant will be primarily about inklings of things I hated when I watched Super Junior M promote, and now stirring me once again with Exo.

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Mama Mia

I’m glad I spoke too soon in my previous review of “History,” because I think K and M are equally talented, and what’s even better is I think SM’s releasing some of the best material they’ve released in years for this debut. Yay concentrated efforts funneled all into ONE group! That’s not a bad idea at all for a company with a roster of 11 active groups/artists! Bad for them, good for me who hasn’t cared about anything any SM group/artist has done since f(x)’s “NU ABO.”

Onwards!

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Current K-pop #6: Exo M vs. Exo K

There’s finally enough material to warrant a “M vs. K” debate. What is Love was nice and all, but K-pop is moot without seeing idols in action, aka DANCE.

Now there’s a more holistic picture of the groups with History since the music video is a little more linear and less like a random sci-fi montage of clips. There’s still some grey area ambiguity with who’s doing what, and whether or not that translates live, which I don’t think we’ll be able to judge with Exo-M since China/Taiwan/HK are going to be their stomping grounds and good luck finding live anythings, but I digress.

I also have to get this off my chest: That desert storm set is SO ugly. The color palette, the way the clothes blend in with the ugly rocks in the back. Everything is SO ugly.

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