Welcome to 2023, folks.
Almost mercifully the year-end festivals are over, but at least we got a cover of KARA‘s “STEP” out of it. Speaking of that, it sure seems like KARA’s comeback has led to the resurgence in covers of their classic songs on year-end festivals (they were done before but not like this), which I’m happy to see because it shows their considerable efforts have paid off.
Anyway, a special unit they’re calling 99z covered “STEP”, which effectively necessitated that I post about it. The members would be an all-star girl group of sorts with Oh My Girl‘s Arin, Weki Meki‘s Yoojung, (G)I-DLE‘s Yuqi, Choi Yena, and Chuu repping for the 99-line.
Thought they did very well, and Yuqi in particular would seem to vocally fit KARA perfectly, though they really all work. Probably one of the most well-rounded collab stages in terms of visuals, singing, and dancing this season.
Additionally, I already love “Love Dive“, so IVE making a rock version was always going to interest me.
But man whoever had Wonyoung and Leeseo lip-sync to IU‘s “Strawberry Moon” despite sitting down and using an old cover as backing just set them up.
It’s seriously baffling to me just from an optics perspective, much less to my ears which running to go listen to IU’s version immediately.
The other stage I enjoyed? Not from a marquee group but CLASS:y featuring host Jang Sungkyu doing Koyote‘s “Sad Dream“.
In particular the pre-chorus and chorus were just excellent and made me wish they tried out something like this themselves.