Welcome to KPOPALYPSE‘s worst songs of 2014! Let’s round up 2014’s greatest K-pop stinkers!
-Feature tracks only.
-If a K-pop person is in it, it’s K-pop.
-No Christmas shit, those songs all suck.
-No sports songs, they all suck too.
-No OST songs.
Other Shit To Know
-These are really my opinions.
-I’m not trolling you.
-I’m not saying that my taste is superior, so don’t assume shit that isn’t said.
Let’s get down to it.
30. Mio Feat. Baek Chan – Want To Buy A House
Let’s start this list off with a lovely fairytale, because people often complain that I’m not positive enough: Somewhere in a perfect alternate universe, Korean ballads are outlawed. Armed police roam the streets of Seoul and Busan wearing high-sensitivity hearing equipment, and they raid shop fronts, houses and apartments when ballad-like waveforms are detected in close proximity, arresting the occupants and confiscating the offending material. The MOGEF rates songs not according to sexual content, but according to how closely they resemble a ballad, with 19+ reserved for mid-tempo almost-ballads, while the slowest and sappiest songs are simply refused classification altogether. Imported ballads are seized by airport customs and those transporting the contraband material are thrown into prison, while strict Internet censorship regulates the digital flow of ballads into Korea.
The result is that Korea has become a musician’s paradise, where only true and good music prevails … at least on the surface. Deep in the underground scene, ballad-makers and those that assist them continue to practice their evil craft at great risk to themselves and the community. These balladeers work their insidious and disgusting trade in secrecy, making songs and MVs in hidden basement studios. The songs are, of course, dreadful rubbish which should be listened to by nobody, and the accompanying videos have to make-do with ancient black and white cameras that don’t leave a traceable digital signature that the anti-ballad authorities can track. Performers engaging in this illegal black-market activity must also remain masked during MV shoots to protect their identities, as anyone recognising them in public could alert the police to the musical crimes they are undertaking. These shady individuals also make sure to use exactly the same generic and boring vocal style so nobody could possibly recognise them by voice alone when out in public.
Please now appreciate this contraband video, extracted from the aforementioned alternate universe by KT Music, to remind yourself of how good Korean society could be, if it dared to undertake the serious reforms necessary to ensure high music quality in mainstream culture. Until such a utopia is realised, my worst-of lists will have to do as a gentle encouragement to agencies to not produce this type of shit.
29. Spica.S – Give Your Love
Poor Spica. Poor. Fucking. Spica. They just can’t catch a break, can they? Everybody seems to “want them to get popular”, but that doesn’t end up extending in any real way to anybody actually giving enough of a shit about them to make them popular.
They keep getting lumped with crap songs like this that not only have just about zero chance of winning them any new fans, but that even half their existing fanbase can’t get behind. To their credit, the label went all-out with the textbook sexy concept, and yet, still no pot of gold.
It seems that the agency forgot the one small detail of making Spica.S sing a song that people want to listen to. I guess maybe they didn’t think that was important, and I suppose one could forgive them for thinking that way given some of the other ultra low-quality trash that actually charts in Korea (foreshadowing alert!). But what a drag, what a disappointment it must be for the girls and their company. Imagine being one of the girls in Spica. Imagine arguing with your morally conservative disapproving parents about how you’re completely on board with the new sexy concept that the label wants because at least it’ll finally make some damn money like those other groups … and then it flops anyway. Imagine photocopying your own tits for nothing. Poor Spica.
28. Ailee – Don’t Touch Me
Whoever did the styling job on Ailee performed fantastic work because there’s quite a few scenes in “Don’t Touch Me” where she closely resembles this extremely hot girl I wanted to fuck back in the day. I always find that girls on TV and in the media are hotter to me if they bear some kind of resemblance to a woman who I personally know, so this means that Ailee has now climbed up a few rungs on my fapability list. Superb stuff, and I can only be thankful.
Pity the song is the usual bullshit Ailee does now with lots of cheesy brass stabs, annoying vocal overdubs, and other unwelcome Beyonce-ish nonsense (“all my ladies, clap!” *cringe* *shudder*), as if anything Beyonce ever did in her entire career should ever be considered worthy of anything else except lining rubbish bins, let alone being influential to anybody, anywhere, ever.
Ailee will probably sadly never get back to the quality of “Heaven” and “I’ll Show You”, as she seems to have now made being the third-rate Beyonce clone nobody asked for her ‘thing’, but at least I got to see more of Ailee nude than the aforementioned girl that I lusted after for all those years.
27. JJCC – At First
“Jackie Chan to debut his new male idol group JJCC this month“, the headlines screamed. “Wow, Jackie Chan the martial arts movie star, making his own pop group? Fuck yeah, this is going to be great!” I thought to myself, “The song will probably be really uptempo and cool, a deliberately kick-ass pulsating dance number specifically designed to showcase super-fine, crazy martial arts-inspired choreography crafted by Jackie Chan himself that will kick SM Entertainment’s ass!” Then “At First” was released, and was I let down by the result after all the hype? Let’s put it this way, the climactic highlight of both the song and the dance routine in “At First” is at 2:19 when one of the group members steps dramatically in a puddle and the water splashes a little bit around his foot.
It may not be 2014’s worst song, but it’s certainly 2014’s most disappointing, and the year’s saddest moment in K-pop debuts. Whenever someone asks me, “Are you looking forward to [whatever K-pop release]?” I always reply, “I don’t look forward to anything — I’ll wait until it happens before I decide if I’m excited or not.” And the reason for that attitude is that I’ve been burned one too many times by shit like this.
Fuck you, Jackie Chan, for plummeting my faith in the K-pop industry’s ability to capitalise on a good concept to new lows previously thought not possible.
26. Crayon Pop – Uh-Ee
Even in the ultra-commercial world of K-pop, songwriting is still an inherently creative form, and creative people typically don’t respond well to performance pressure, which is understandable because it’s the lack of traditional workplace pressures which is part of what makes creative industries appealing to many seeking this career path. Of course, once a creative occupation becomes a money-making venture, cold hard reality intervenes, and those pressures will exist anyway and exert their influence as they do in any other profession … and as they definitely have here.
Not only did the songwriter of “Uh-Ee” have the enormous pressure of penning a follow-up hit to Crayon Pop’s massively viral “Bar Bar Bar”, but on top of that he would be conscious of Crayon Pop’s long history of organised crime involvement and therefore would be acutely aware of the consequences of failure. So it’s no wonder that he flaked out at the last minute — sweating in the studio control room and shaking in his boots, he could only come up with this children’s TV theme-style nonsense. “Uh-Ee” starts off sounding reasonable enough, but deteriorates rapidly as it progresses, and the chorus is so cheesy and cringe-worthy that it’d probably get rejected for an anime ending credits tune for being too babyish. Still, we needn’t worry too much — if the author of this song isn’t floating face down in a river somewhere with a few gunshot holes in his neck, he’s probably been sufficiently “educated” regarding his failings to make sure that he doesn’t write anything this offensively bad ever again.
You might have to wait a bit more time than usual for Crayon Pop’s next comeback because it takes a little bit longer to operate a digital audio workstation when you’re missing a few fingers, but don’t worry, have patience and he’ll get there. Expect a return to quality songs from Crayon Pop soon, folks.
25. SONAMOO – Deja Vu
Okay, all of you YG Entertainment fans who claim that I can’t stand YGE and am just hating for troll/clickbait/cruelty/lulz purposes, bowdown to me, kiss my feet, and worship me as your holy defending angel right fucking now. Why? Because SONAMOO’s “Deja Vu” is on this list, and it sucks, that’s why.
Is “Deja Vu” worse than YGE’s average output these days? Well, it’s certainly right down there with some of their worst efforts, horribly recalling all the most forgettable parts of 90s American dance-pop and early K-pop (cheesy keyboard stabs, tinny synthesisers, overused breakbeats), and combining it with all the things I hate about the worst of today’s girl-pop (Beyonce-cloning wide-interval melodies, awful rap sections, cringe-worthy swag-trociousness, in general). At least the song title is accurate because it’s sure reminding me of a whole lot of awful shit, and it says a lot about this song that the only musically interesting section is the part where somebody just hits one note repeatedly on a synthesiser, over and over.
It’s a shame too, because I really, really wanted to like this one — as usual when girl groups debut these days, SONAMOO seem to be copping a ton of hate for no specific reason other than that they’re girls (also see Red Velvet, Lovelyz), so hopefully they do something really good in the future and then I can stan them and irritate the fuck out of some people. But I guess for now they’ll have to wait.
In the meantime, the real reason that YGE fans should be thankful that “Deja Vu” is here is this — I had my list already prepared and good to go in advance by Christmas time, and then “Deja Vu” appeared on Dec. 28 and was horrible enough to qualify for inclusion, so WINNER’s turgid, awful wrist-slicer of a ballad, “Color Ring“, missed out on this post altogether.
Don’t thank me all at once, YGE fans.
24. 2NE1 – Happy
Speaking of YGE, they have got no idea what side their bread is buttered on with 2NE1 these days. It’s as if “Fire” never happened, and they never noticed the success of that song and thought, “Hm … maybe we should try and capture what was great about that song and use it to define 2NE1’s signature sound”. Nope – none of that thinking from YG these days!
The entire “Crush” album is just one gigantic compost heap of “Fuck it, we don’t know what 2NE1’s fans want, but they keep asking us to release stuff, let’s just throw these shitty songs we’ve got laying around out there and hopefully people will like it just because we’ve already got them hooked”. It’s just lucky for YGE that thanks to the overall high quality of 2NE1’s early material, there are now plenty of brainwashed Blackjacks out there who would buy CL’s diarrhea-infused turds in a cup and drink it like it was molten chocolate as long as YG sold it to them with 2NE1’s logo on the side.
“Happy” is a grating straight-from-a-Sesame-Street-singalong nightmare that’s musically even messier and more unwelcome than the pen-scribble on the right side of Dara’s head in the video. At least they got the “happy ending” bit right, you’ll be as happy when this song ends as 2NE1 appear to be.
23. Kiss&Cry – Domino Game
It’s always a big risk in K-pop for an agency to try something new: it takes true courage to break the mold in such a strict and competitive genre as commercial pop, and you can count on Kiss&Cry’s agency Winning Insight to do just that. After all this was the company that debuted chubby-chaser fap group Piggy Dolls (and their slimmer reconfiguration that everyone hypocritically complained about but musically sucked just as badly), but they’ve really taken it to the next level this time and have done something even more daring than eliminate the spaces between the ampersand in the group title; they’ve debuted K-pop’s very first honker concept.
It warms the heart to see that agencies with guts and determination can break down the perceived barriers within the industry that girls owning a gigantic wind-breaking schnozz surely face every day. Imagine going to audition after audition and being knocked back constantly because of your massive protruding beak, imagine the pressure to conform in such a looks-based society … it’d surely get to you after a while. Imagine all the other bitchy girls in the auditions saying, “Why did they hire THAT girl? Her face is not aerodynamic at all.” Then imagine the tears from the girl’s parents when their daughter finally got to debut with this song. “Oh my god … my daughter’s been put in the umpteenth clone of Beyonce’s ‘Crazy In Love‘ with stupid unlistenable vocal wanking everywhere mixed with some awful Ricky Martin reggaeton bullshit and a crappy out-of-tune brass thing that sounds like it was ripped straight off a Macklemore track. Her career is doomed! Oh well, at least I’ll get to see my precious daughter again soon when this song flops and the group disbands and she comes back to live with mom and dad for a while before she goes solo. It’ll be good to see her again.”
Or alternatively, don’t listen to this track or watch the video at all and you won’t have to think about any of this stuff. Won’t that be nice?
22. Ga-In – Truth Or Dare
Ga-In’s videos are always great and never fail to entertain. If she’s not fapping, or being “classy sexy“, or both, then she’s usually doing any other combination of things that would be banned under the UK’s new insanely draconian porn legislation, which is always a ticket to K-pop MV-watching fun times.
“Truth Or Dare” is up to usual standards, and features Ga-In:
-Pushing her boobs together.
-Trying to get her big tits into a corset and only partially succeeding.
-Encouraging “classy sexy” behaviour from her date (“Why didn’t you just break the door down?”)
-Wearing a boob-enhancing horizontal-striped top.
-Making everyone else in the video call her a slut.
Pity the song itself is just a “Blurred Lines” clone, and it’s quite the letdown and waste of potential after that great video build-up. Sure, it’s true that “Truth Or Dare” certainly is a bit more listenable than “Blurred Lines”, but that’s a bit like saying that cancer of the dick is more enjoyable than cancer of the dick plus arthritis in your fapping hand.
In fact, “Truth Or Dare” is even a little bit closer musically to Marvin Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up” than “Blurred Lines” is, but of course Marvin Gaye’s family certainly won’t be going after Ga-In’s songwriters in the same way they’ve been headhunting Robin Thicke and Pharrell, because why accuse someone of plagiarism when you can’t make any money off of it?
However unlikely it is that Ga-In will get a legal spanking to match the physical spanking that she gets in most of her MVs, let’s hope that the potential threat of attention from Gaye’s litigation-happy relatives dissuades any further “Blurred Lines” clones, and Ga-In’s songwriters get back to ripping off Prince or whatever the fuck it is they usually do.
21. MADTOWN – YOLO
Now I’m not one of these language snobs who complains when something like ‘adorbs‘ winds up in the dictionary. After all, any dictionary worth a damn isn’t designed to be a historical document for setting language in stone — it’s there so people who don’t know the definition of ‘amazeballs‘ or whatever can look it up and find out what it means.
A dictionary is meant to be a practical tool for deciphering the meaning of unknown words, not a device for Internet language Nazis to suck each other off with. So when I heard that the Oxford dictionary was including ‘yolo’, I thought to myself, “Hey, that’s okay – I can accept that language changes and evolves over time.” Then I heard that a nugu boy group called MADTOWN was doing a song that would also be called “YOLO“, and I thought, “Hey, that’s okay, too — the company just want to position their group at the cutting edge of Western language and culture so the group can relate to a young global audience.”
Then I heard the song, and I realised three very important things:
-This song is a fucking cancer that the world could do without.
-If it wasn’t for the use of the word ‘yolo’, this piece of music couldn’t actually exist in its current form. The word strictly defines the song’s chorus hook, rhyming scheme, and lyrics, and without it, the entire song would need to be rewritten from scratch.
-Given that the first point is true, the second point means the word should be banished.
This song completely changed how I feel about the term, so here’s some advice: next time someone says ‘yolo’ to you, or to anybody, just go up to them and start repeatedly punching them in the fucking head. No conversation, no explanation, just go straight up and start hitting. Don’t worry, they’ll figure out why eventually, hopefully before they’re on the floor bleeding out of their skull.
Or if that’s too nasty for you, just lock them in a room and make them listen to this song on repeat until they piss their pants and promise never to do it again. If we all pitch in together and do this, we can make the world a better place. If you can believe, you can achieve. Come on, everybody — let’s live the dream.