It would be slightly wrong to call this a cover for a couple reasons. It owns so much that terms like cover shouldn’t apply and they redid the song in Korean and added a rap verse. Also, that harmony is done so right that scientific researchers should immediately start studying it to find magical healing properties. No other group has five members who are as talented singing from top to bottom. They have less dead weight than Teacyeon’s tummy. They are all so fuqing good…
Having listened to Kpop for several years, and converted all my friends to the point that they know bands by name (and I feel very proud of this because they primarily listen to indie), its hard for me to remember what my perspective on music was before kpop. In early high school I was in a Nu metal / rock phase and my musical journey has been peppered with some pop, hip hop and a healthy dose of classic rock. In a way, that really hasn’t changed. Instead of an ipod, I have a dinky mp3 player that has all rock on it, I can only listen to pop and hip hop in the car because rock makes me angry and classic rock makes me sleepy. Classic rock is music that I listen to with friends and when I just need some Jethro Tull or Led Zepplin in my life. Layla by Eric Clapton remains my favorite song of all time. However, no other musical genre has captured my attention the way Kpop has, and I think it has to do with the music videos that come out for each artist. What the music video looks like greatly impacts how I perceive the song being featured. Case in point, Orange Caramel’s “Lipstick” which is a mediocre squeaky song with a bloody brilliant music video. When music becomes less about music and more about the whole production (clothing, make up, dance, acting, etc.) if you are at all into the music being played you get sucked into the genre so far that you become disbelieving that others could like any other genre of music.
I very much appreciate the Fine Brothers for their react videos, and the following two videos have injected a little perspective back into my life, if only the realization that repeated viewing of Kpop videos has really imbued me with appreciation for Korean beauty ideals so much that they surpass many of the ideals indoctrinated by American society and that lack of exposure to a culture really does make everything seem the same.
First, kids react to Kpop (released 6 months before Gangnam Style):
And youtubers react to Kpop (released several days ago):
They also have reaction videos to both of Psy’s recent songs, but they treat those as viral videos instead of regular music videos, so they have a different vibe. It’s just useful to understand what non kpop fans see when they look at kpop, as to better understand passing youtube comments and trolls.
Kpop Music Video: Day 23 Wedding Dress by Taeyang under YG Entertainment
Taeyang is the main vocalist from the band BIGBANG that I reviewed for my 9th Kpop MV day (https://kpopfornoobcakes.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/kpop-mv-day-9/), and I feel he is the most talented member in that group, GD being the runner up. He can dance, play piano, sing R&B, look unbelievably good without a shirt on and has released solo songs in English. I think his only short coming is literally that he’s short. He’s shorter than me by 2 inches standing at a whopping 5’3″. I don’t know, I’d be much taller than him if I wore heels but I would still go on a date if he asked me. I’m not picky about height like other people are.
I really wanted to show this video because I think that people should really give Taeyang’s solo work a good listen. I compare him to Ne-yo and I feel that’s a flattering comparison to both parties involved. All of his solo songs are well put together (save the meaning of “Only look at me” which sets my inner feminist ablaze even though my ears love the song). I put the dance version of “I need a girl” on all the time, but it’s this song that’s my favorite probably because it hits me in the heartstrings every single time. Now you may have noticed that I’m not using the official video. For this song to have the biggest impact, you need the English translation of the lyrics during the song. When those are there, the song may make you cry.
The only other thing that might be important while watching this video is to know that Korea has recently been transitioning from an arranged marriage culture to a dating type culture. Because of this transition, the situation of a proposal without dating if they are childhood friends will make sense to a Korean person where it really wouldn’t to most Americans and Western cultures.
That’s it. Taeyang pretty much speaks for himself.