Unflinching Reviews

[Review] SISTAR’s “I Swear” is SISTAR at their highest level of SISTAR

SISTARISwearTruck

SISTAR’s second release of the summer, “I Swear”, is predictable and safe but it’s also damn good. Editor’s Note: Glad you were able to write this after the blood deprivation to your brain for the past day. So dedicated. The first ten seconds of “I Swear” may be the most interesting bit of the song, but what follows isn’t bad ... Read More »

[Review] Orange Caramel’s “My Copycat” predictably (and unpredictably) marvelous

OrangeCaramelMyCopycat

At this point, Orange Caramel operates in a gleeful paradox. The group is consistent but their concepts are not like anything else in the K-pop scene. They don’t shock, but it’s incredibly hard to predict what they’re going to do next. The only thing that can be confidently predicted about each Orange Caramel release is that it will be memorable ... Read More »

Indie Focus: Beenzino effectively delivers a concept rap album with “Up All Night”

BeenzinoUpAllNight

Beenzino has been blowing up big time. Ever since debuting with ‘24:26‘, the third leg of 1llionaire Records has worked with so many people, from Hi Lite Records’ Okasian and Sean2slow to big names like Verbal Jint, Dynamic Duo, and Hyori. Seriously, the kid’s on fire, and he hasn’t even released a second LP yet. Fucking bonkers. While working on ... Read More »

[Review] SECRET’s “I’m In Love” a great example of basic K-pop executed flawlessly

SECRETImInLove

SECRET may not be doing anything new with “I’m In Love”, but when everything is working in sync like it is here, that ends up not mattering much at all. SECRET has made a career out of repurposing retro 50s and 60s tunes and putting a modern K-pop twist on them, and “I’m In Love” wisely continues that tradition. The ... Read More »

[Review] HyunA’s “RED” works against all odds thanks to the impossibly charismatic lead

HyunARed3

In many ways, “RED” follows in a long line of HyunA hip-pop projects. It has the requisite hip-pop hooks and verses, and the visuals are bright, colorful, and often hot in ways that still manage to surprise. Of course, when a project goes for bright, colorful, and shocking, it can often unfortunately veer off into the realm of the nonsensical ... Read More »

[Review] SISTAR’s “Touch My Body” brings fantastic simmering summer heat

SISTARTouchMyBody

With their latest comeback “Touch My Body”, SISTAR proves that even their more easygoing singles can bring enough heat to power the long summer months. If “Touch My Body” surprises, it’s with its relatively laid-back hip-pop beat. SISTAR singles usually vacillate between sensual disco numbers and energetic pop songs, so a more subdued, warm backing track is a pleasant shift. ... Read More »

Indie Focus: leeSA thrives with breezy pop hooks on ‘Where is leeSA?’

LeesaWhereIsLeesa

I will be the first to admit that I did not care for leeSA‘s ‘Wiv Hcube‘, which I thought did not blend the r&b and singer-songwriter elements very well. I enjoyed her original songs, but her covers didn’t quite hit home with me. Her latest album, however, puts all of my worries to rest. —– Leaning more on her singer-songwriter ... Read More »

[Review] Girl’s Day’s “Darling” is an average summer release wrapped in glorious packaging

GirlsDayDarlingPoolside

It’s near impossible to discuss Girl’s Day without examining the dichotomy in the group’s image. What started off as a group largely defined by its insanely (and somewhat aggravating) cute image evolved into a group dedicated to all the sexiness this side of SISTAR. “Darling” splits the difference between Girl’s Day’s past and present, and while the group appropriates both ... Read More »

[Review] f(x) produces another winner with rejuvenating album, ‘Red Light’

FXRedLightLeftEye

First of all, let me begin this review by stating that I absolutely loathe the term ‘hipster’ being applied to music. The word has been tossed around more than Attila The Hun‘s dick to describe this album, and it actually makes me angry — mainly because the concept of a hipster makes me angry. But also, trying to equate K-pop ... Read More »

Indie Focus: Humming Urban Stereo remakes his hits with the help of idols on ‘Reform’

HummingUrbanStereoReform

For all his adventures in electronic music, Lee Jeereen, or Humming Urban Stereo, loves dance music. Throughout his career as a producer, Humming Urban Stereo firmly placed his music in upbeat dance that’s seemingly energetic and quiet at the same time. So it’s appropriate that for his tenth anniversary in the business, Humming Urban Stereo released ‘Reform‘, in which the ... Read More »