The very online QWER make their debut with a fun J-pop style track in “Discord”

Normally I’m reviewing J-rock groups that are going unnoticed or I feel deserve some more recognition from the West. Today, however, I’ll be covering QWER and their debut single “Discord” from their single album HARMONY FROM DISCORD.

QWER is a four-member project band under Tamago Production and 3Y Corporation, which were founded by CEO Kim Egg, who is a pretty popular YouTuber in Korea. Chodan, the group’s leader/drummer, was the first chosen to join the group, which makes sense as she’s not only a successful drum major in university but also a YouTuber and Twitch streamer.

The rest of the group was introduced through a YouTube series called OSHI NO KO Project. This is where members such as Hina, who also has a huge internet presence, joined the team, along with another Twitch streamer in Magenta, and finally former J-pop idol Lee Siyeon (no, not Dreamcatcher‘s Siyeon, but hopefully their recently announced comeback is a return to form).

All in all it’s a very online group, with even the fandom name following their gaming hobbies, with it being called Scuttle Crabs (바위게), which are the infamously cute crabs that roam the map in Summoner’s Rift in League Of Legends.

None of that would matter much if “Discord” wasn’t a quality debut, but they push a lot of right buttons.

Right off the rip we’re greeted with a wonderful pop-rock guitar rift that’s very reminiscent of something you’d hear off a J-rock group. This helps set the stage for a heavily influenced J-pop/rock debut, and when Lee Siyeon’s vocals kick in we’re reminded how catchy those J-pop melodies can be. The slow build into an addicting chorus, along with fun instrumentals, had me humming this song all night after my first listen.

The guitar work is rather simple but very catchy, as is the theme with this one. It’s not trying to be a Lovebites shred feast or a NEMOPHILA crossover banger, it’s just an addicting pop track throughout. I have to give it up for Chodan’s drumming, as it really fits this style of debut track, from a dialed in standard pop tempo into the small explosion as the chorus rises to the next melody taking over. Hina’s addictive main riff is a staple throughout the track as well, and even got me picking up my guitar to mess around with that riff. The song finishing off with a wonderful explosive J-pop style final chorus into hard stop is a great touch that just makes that repeat button feel so addictive to hit.

With all four already having a online presence, I wonder if we’ll finally see some crossover of idols streaming on Twitch while still being active in K-pop at large. I know there’s been actresses in the past, or like LE SSERAFIM‘s Sakura actively uploading on YouTube during her time with IZ*ONE, but nothing like all members having large online communities with their Twitch/YouTube presences. Overall, I loved QWER’s debut and I can’t wait to see where they go next.

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