One of my absolute favorites is A'ccel In A Story. The band formed in 2000, touring festivals in and around Hongdae for awhile, until they produced their demo CD. In 2006 they got a record deal and released Story of the A'ccel, an eight track EP. They released Episode of the A'ccel in 2007 and most recently we were treated to Antinomy earlier this year. Epilogue is one of the tracks off of this particular EP. I find their music to be a pleasant mix of hard rock, and soothing melody. I could listen to them all day, it's just too bad they haven't released enough music to do that yet.
Someone asked me if I knew about Kim Sa Rang (김사랑 )the other day, and I had to shuffle back through my collection to pick out a favorite. So to be honest and warn you, I probably will throw a few songs in here. He is such a diverse musician that it was hard to pick a song, especially since the song that interested them was a slower ballad. Yes, he does ballads amazingly well, and to be perfectly honest, when he sings them, he reminds me very much of Yoon Do-Hyun. Which, is why they sing such great harmony in their duet on Yoon Do-Hyun's Love Letter back in the day:
This was the song that caught someones' interest. Yes. He does lovely ballads, but the man can rock too! He debuted in 1999, with the album titled I Am 18 Years Old. It was such a solid album, ranging from hard core rock, to soft ballads, even a little rap/r&b/hip-hop feel to a couple songs. For whatever reason, he decided to take a few years off away from the music business, not to release an album until 2001 with Nanotime. Another great album. In fact, his entire discography is mind blowing, considering he does all of the composition on his own. I picked Snob as the song of the day, because it displays his talent in rocking out, as well as his powerful voice. I'm going to maybe throw you for a loop, by not using Sound Cloud, but my minutes are running low, and since this song is conveniently available on YT I'm gonna use it:
I also love the rock ballad 괜찮아 (Kwenchana-Ok) off of his third album, U-Turn. And A+ from Behind the Melody is a pretty amazing track as well, I like that he mixed in a little Indian instrument flavor.
KSR-A+ by K-RoKer
In short, it's too hard to pin-point him and just pick ONE song. You need to get his entire discography, because it is just too good to miss out on.
So, I'm minding my own business on twitter tonight, when one of my followers and soon to be editor just mentioned how much she enjoyed the Yellow Monsters after my little pimp post about them. Jae-Hyuck, one of the band members is on twitter (and follows me.) We were jabbering back and forth (YAMmag and I) and lo and behold: I'm gonna be interviewing him now. I think I squirmed and squealed like no one's business. Anyway, I'm sure there is lots of arranging to do for this, but just know that it is on the way. AND THAT I'M SO EXCITED.
At the moment, I'm not feeling all that "cheerful," but I was a day or two ago, when I thought of posting this song. I only have a few weeks to post these types of songs anyway, so I'm going to take advantage of it. I've gotten you all at least a little acquainted with No Brain (노브레인). After someone mentioned it to me, I realized I forgot to tell you that they were, in fact, the band that collaborated with Big Bang for "Oh My Friend." That video is actually one of my favorite Big Bang videos. Yes, contrary to popular belief, I do enjoy some K-Pop. Just don't expect me to say I'm a huge Orange Caramel fan, because that's SO not happening! Anyway, No Brain released this song on it's own as a digital single last year, much to my delight. I'm usually "little miss Holiday cheer," but having some stress issues right now that I hope will go away and not ruin Christmas for me. Without further ado, here is No Brain with We Wish You A Merry Christmas
I know I have little chance of seeing this in theaters, as I'm sure it won't reach even independent theaters here in the United States, but I have high hopes that it will release on DVD eventually. (Hopefully with subtitles) For those of you who didn't know, YB is releasing a documentary on December 1st. The film is centered on their VANS Warped Tour stint from last year. (If I had known in time/had the money I would have gone. Now, I'm kicking myself and crying for not being able to see them live.) I'm really happy they decided to do this and are working towards putting Korean rock into the spotlight where it belongs. I just hope enough people go see it. I'll be interested to know the sales numbers. Here are the teaser trailers so far:
When the one above released, I hadn't heard anything about it before and I squeeled like a little girl and danced around and cried. Hahaha. I'm such a YB nerd!
Number 2: (Main)
Full Flying Butterfly song version. (I love that they mixed the Korean and English lyrics in this version)
In honor of Sung-Min of Schizo tweeting me today, I decided to feature them. :) They're a metal/screamo/punk/little bit of everything band that debuted in 2003. Also - they have a female guitarist! How hot is that? (She's hot too, look! ) I picked their cover of Blue Monday because I kind of thought it would be a neat idea to start a cover feature every once in awhile too. Blue Monday, of course was originally released in 1982 by the British band, New Order and covered by Orgy in 1998. There have been countless covers, but I, of course, am partial to this Korean one. I hope you enjoy it as much as me.
(Note: I would have tried to pick a "thankful" song today, since it's Thanksgiving and all, I was, actually. Then, Sung-Min tweeted to me and all bets were off! Happy Thanksgiving! )
Another great female fronted band, Biuret was formed in 2002, but made their debut in 2005. They have two full albums out: Be Full of Spirit - their debut album in 2005, and Dreams Come True which released last year. Aside from those two they have a handful of singles and EP's out as well. Band members are:
Moon Hye-Won (leader, vocals, main song writer)
Ahn Jae-Hyun (bass)
Lee Gyo-Won (guitar)
The drummer isn't credited, so I assume they kind of filter through drummers. :P They've actually opened for Oasis before. :)
This live version of Mama is them presenting at the '09 Pan Asian awards (which they won!)
Ok, it's just an EP, but still. EVE is back again! I hope they put out a video for this one! The album is called Gloria, and contains 4 tracks:
2) Stay Alive
3) Don't Say Goodbye (2010 Vers.)
4) Butterfly City
It's nice to have them back after such a long break/break-up/trip to military duty (?)!
Free preview! :D (go look for the album, srsly, it's readily available)
Man, Kim Young's vocals are just as on-point as always. *jams out to Gloria*
In honor of the lives lost in the skirmish with North Korea November 22, 2010. I post "Oh Pil Seung Korea." YB released this song in 2002 for the World Cup and it skyrocketed them into fame. They had been pretty well known in Korea previous to this, but they became a household name after this. "Oh! Pil Seung Korea" roughly translates into Go! Korea! And is one of my many happy Dae Han Min Guk songs. The video I found for it has poor audio quality and has "dong-hae??" instead of Pil-Seung in the chorus. Not sure what it means, as I'm sadly not fluent in Korean yet, but you get the gist of the song.
And here is the audio version. It's a shortened version - but really the song get's a little repetitive with it's OH!!! Pil-Seung KO RE A!!! anyway!~ YB - 오! 필승 봉순영 by K-RoKer
HEHE! Just found this version of it too, on YT from the 2006 World Cup in France:
Good evening good K-RoKers. Are we ready to jam? I thought so.
Tonight I have for you Guyz. A quartet that debuted in 2005. Their first single was Crazy and contained 4 songs. They moved on to release their first full album in 2006 with "Diary." They proceeded to release a series of singles until their sophomore album Like a Movie in 2008. Last year we were blessed with an EP and a single too. Their single this year "New Stage" garnered some attention here amongst some of the K-Pop fans, as they performed on MNET Rookies alongside some of the idols. They're also reaching out into the Japanese market, having release New Stage in Japanese as well. They also sang one of the Korean theme songs for Bleach. I think they're a little more mainstream than some of the other bands I've featured, but I just love them. Especially the bassist Ki-Hyeon. He's too cute!
Without further ado, here is (are?) Guyz with Faraway (Track 9 off their first album: Diary)
I know that I requested this one on Asian Pop Addict awhile ago, so some of you may have heard it already. But, it's still one of my favorite songs by Wiretap In My Ear AKA: Prana. Wiretap in My Ear is a rock band from Korea. They’re musical styles vary from punk, to a more eccentric style more similar to Japanese Visual Kei than anything. The members are Lee Hyuck (vocals), Jung Jae-Hoon (drums), Hwang Ui-Jung (bass), Kim Tae-Jin (guitar). They’ve released 4 studio albums and several digialt singles and have contributed to soundtracks as well. Their 4th album, Observation contained a collaboration with YB frontman Yoon Do-Hyun as well. They're really one of my favorites and I plan on doing a profile on them soon. for now, enjoy Festival! :)
For you to stop caving in to pressure to be pop artists and go back to being rock-stars? YES. I am ready. For those of you who have not heard of The Trax (who sometimes DROP their "the" and come out as simply "Trax") They are actually an SME group who used to be really good rock musicians. Nowadays they spend their time among CN Blue and FT Island basking in the idol glow. I dunno about you, but I kind of miss the old days. When they looked like this:
Ok, I love Dr. Core 911. They're a fusion band. Some say nu-metal, some say rapcore. Whatevs. They're awesome. The band formed in 1998 but didn't make their debut until 2000 with their first album 비정산조. They've been featured on Life magazine's website before. I'll write even more about them in the future. I have a profile coming up on them. :) Enjoy!
Off their 1.5 EP Oh Rock Go Rock! Here is the kinda lulzy, but rock-tastic Rabamuba:
Since it's officially the 1 week anniversary of this blog, and I know metal isn't everyones cup of tea, I thought I'd throw another one out at you that I was really enjoying at work today. It's hard to categorize Super Kidd. They're a rock band, but they have a rapper/mc. They play to clubs, but are also featured on music shows. Sometimes they sound hip-hop, sometimes like hard core rockers and in the case of this track - very FUNKY. I LOVE their versatility. Of course, if you pay attention to my favorites, you'll find that's true about most of the bands I really enjoy - they know how to mix things up.
LOL - they're such dorks. But, I love them for it. :)
I asked for genre suggestions on twitter and someone asked for metal. SO here we go: Crash is a metal band formed 1991. They like to experiment with the different sub-genres of metal and therefore shirk the titles bestowed on them such as "Thrash Metal" "Black Metal" and the like. They were the first band in Korea to start stage diving! LOL. If you're familiar with Seo Taiji they've done some collaborations too. They've had some member changes throughout the years, but have continued to come on strong. This is the video for their most recent release of the album Paragon of Animals (available on iTunes!) http://itunes.apple.com/album/the-par...
As always - ENJOY! (Comments? Suggestions? Requests?)
Today I'm picking another punk/alternative band that I really enjoy. You'll be hard pressed to find this album ANYWHERE else. It doesn't exist. I had to buy it myself - glad I get to share it though. If you're interested about someone ALWAYS feel free to ask for more. :) This song is a good little punk ballad off their most recent album Say Yes released in October. The 7 track EP is a great addition to their almost 10 years together.
YB (Yoon Do-Hyun Band) is releasing a 15 years "Best Of" album...THIS WEEK. What? They sure haven't promoted this AT ALL. I mean, I follow the web site, the blog, the facebook fan page and all of them on twitter and still..NOTHING. I was looking on YesAsia for something completely different and saw this:
And I was like this:
This was JUST THIS MORNING mind you. I'm on my way to pre-order it now. It's a 2 disc collection of their best hits in live performances. I assume it's because they have the documentary coming out in a couple of weeks. Go get it! :D
Today's choice is the premiere punk band of Korea - No Brain. I think they paved the way for a lot of the newer punk bands that are popping up around the RoK. This song was kind of their break out song. It features Tiger JK on the album track, for whatever reason, the video does NOT. I, of course prefer the album version since I'm also a Tiger JK fan. :) Other people might no like Sung-Woo's voice. It's a bit on the rough side, I will admit, but I adore him anyway. They've been on a bit of a hiatus lately, and since the news on Korean rockers is undoubtedly hard to come by I'm not sure why. I always tend to assume that it means some of the members are currently serving their term in the armed forces. They did put out a song on this summers Into The K-League though, so I have high hopes that they come back soon! :) You should also check out the movie Radio Star in which the whole band play a part.
Without further ado, I give you No Brain (feat. Tiger JK) with You're Stuck On Me
From their 2005 album: Boys, Be Ambitious
That translates roughly to: Moonlight Nymph Grand Slam Reversal OR Moonlight Fairy's Come Back With a Grand Slam Home Run. LOL, we just call them Moonlight Nymph for short over here. I'm posting this song in memory of Lee Jin-Won the lead vocals of the band who passed away on November 6th. He suffered from a cerebral hemmoraghe on November 1st and struggled to survive in the ICU until his death on November 6th. He was a very avid baseball fan, as evident in the band's name as well as the album titles (Infield Fly, Sophomore Jinx, Goodbye Aluminum) The album art of the albums are also all baseball themed. In fact, his last tweet was about him watching the World Series. Rest in peace Mr. Moonlight Nymph - you will be missed.
I picked 361 타고 집에 간다 (Take 361 - Going Home) because it's a beautiful song. It's generally telling a story about a journey home, which kind of rings true at this time.
Here is alive fan-cam performance of the song - it's fun to watch, but the audio doesn't do the song justice.
Song lyrics! (if you can translate, I'd welcome it! :) I had to use Google translate, and well..that sucks)언제나 이 시간만 되면 막히는 이 길
난 그동안 군대도 다녀 왔고
내가 태어났을 때보다
짜장면은 열배나 비싸졌다는데
짬통같은 버스가 뒤굴뒤굴 굴러다니는 이 길은
두배쯤은 좋아졌다, 두배쯤은 넓어졌다
나머지는 어디에 흘렸나
언제나 이 시간만 되면 울리는 전화
오늘은 또 어디서 날 부르나
처음 술을 배울 때처럼
술값따윈 아직도 만만하기만해
그래서 사람들은 벌컥벌컥 마셔대는 건가보다
그래 오늘 기분이다
내가 한번 쏴줄테다
어디 한번 맞아봐라, 천국으로 보내주마 행복하게
달려라 날아라 하늘 끝까지
밟아라 엔진이 불타 터져버릴 때까지
말 좀 해다오 시내버스야
내 갈 곳이 어딘지 좀 말해다오
언제쯤 되야 내 차를 가질 수 있을까
오래전에 면허는 따놨는데
어쩜 까먹었을지 몰라
오락실에 들러서 점검해봐야지
옛날처럼 똑같이 두근두근 내 마음은 설레지만
정말 예전과는 달라
몇천 배는 좋아졌다, 몇만 배는 복잡하다
'제비우스, 갤러그, 엑스리온'
달려라 날아라 하늘 끝까지
밟아라 엔진이 불타 터져버릴 때까지
말 좀 해다오 시내버스야
내 갈 곳이 어딘지 좀 말해다오
이제는 집에 다 왔다, 나는 내릴꺼다
바퀴벌레만 나를 반기는 곳
그 곳으로 나는 향한다
그 녀석들과 함께 티비를 볼꺼다
여기저기 빨래가 나뒹구는 방에서 한판 자주고
내일 아침 다시 보자
구질구질한 세상아, 버스에서 다시 보자
그 때에는 어딘지 좀 알려다오
달려라 날아라 하늘끝까지
밟아라 엔진이 불타 터져버릴때까지
말좀 해다오 시내버스야
말좀 해다오 시내버스야
내 갈곳이 어딘지 좀 말해다오
P.S. Comments would be lovely. Does anyone even listen yet?
I'm going to post another recent release. This time, the newest single/video from TransFixion. A band that has been around for 10 years now, they've continued to transform themselves and keep up with the ever changing face of rock, without losing their original flavor. I love their punk feel, but they know how to mix things up. That's what I love about Korean rock -they don't put out an album that sounds like the same song just with different lyrics. You all might recognize them from this summer - they put out a re-vamped version of their Shouts Of Reds song for this summers World Cup. And no, the lead singer is not foreign. Sometimes even Korean's are fooled and they even think the band is foreign, but these guys are just another little Korean jem! Enjoy!
I'm still working on my YB post - it's taking longer because I have so much love for/information on them I want to do it properly. But, I also have people asking for new songs. So, here goes.
Yellow Monsters debuted this year. I first heard them on a compilation album from this summer and was immediately intrigued. They have a good range of sound on the debut album, ranging from punk to emo and basically, just a lot of awesome rockness. :) Here is their debut single: Late
I'll try this out - just posting a snippet of info and a song daily, then do reviews/profiles when I can. Does that sound good? What say, good K-RoKers?
I'm working on my epic YB post still but I wanted to drop this here since someone mentioned it in the comments of the first post. The band is now called Story Seller, but they were formally known as Bloodie Cookie. I can see why they might have changed it, probably hoping to seem a little friendlier to the audiences. I liked Bloodie Cookie - it gave them an edge right from the start, but oh well. Here is their single from earlier this year: Super Girl SG by K-RoKer
Hi there! I'm Kamala-Chan. I've been lurking around the internet for awhile now, pulling all kinds of information from the depths and bowels of the interwebs about a ton of amazing rock musicians from Korea. I've decided to create a whole new universe separate from my other blogs and start this little piece of Korean music heaven, devoted exclusively to K-RoK! (a play on the Republic of Korea.) Follow along and learn about the greats of Korea! :) I'm going to try and find a good way to give you sample tracks to listen to while we go along too. Because really, what is a music blog without the music?
To start off - My absolute favorite, that I will probably be posting a lot about YB (Yoon Do-Hyun Band) with one of my favorites: HaruSari:
P.S. - If you are unfamiliar w/SoundCloud be alert that the songs play a little loud and there is no volume button - so be sure to turn the volume down on your compy if you want to listen! (Or UP if you have it low and want to ROCK OUT!)