YG New Girl Group: Does This Means The End of 2ne1?

2ne1

In spring of 2012 YG entertainment announce they were in the mist of creating a new female group. While members were not official named yet YG compare their new girl group being similar in sized to Girls’ Generation, T-ara and After School. YG also over emphasized that this new girl group would consist of natural beauty unlike some of their competitors who are suspicious of plastic surgery.Since that announcement only two potential members have been named, Jennie Kim and recently Kim Ji Soo. There is little information to be know about each girl. Only Jennie Kim has shared some spot light time after being feature as G-Dragon’s love interest in his solo song “That XX.”

Jisoo

A recent update on YG-Life features Jennie Kim doing a cover to Wale’s “Lotus Flower Love.” As well a  picture update of Jisoo. But despite the little news known about the group YG fans, particular Blackjacks, are not responding warmly to them. Blackjacks are genuinely worry that this new group will replace already preexisting  2ne1. Are the Blackjacks worries legit to think this newbie girl group will take the crown from queens 2ne1?  Well sorta.

The truth is that 2ne1 seems to be on top and most likely has reached their peak. Yet this doesn’t indicate that 2ne1 is falling from grace just need to expand onward in order to live up to their own hype. In the summer of 2012 2ne1 release their comeback single “I Love You.” A daring new image concept sense the group ditch their in-your-face attitude and settle down to be more sultry and sensational. 2ne1 did this after their stint in Japan  2011 that lead to a small mini tour. It was clear that 2ne1 has grown since their debut days and was trying to mature their image. The comeback was successful but short-lived as the group prepared themselves for their 9 city New Evolution World Tour. Making them the first female Korean group to embark on a world tour in the history of K-pop. The year 2012 was probably one of the best years, on a growth level, 2ne1 has ever endure. So why do Blackjacks still fear the end is near for their precious group?

The issue is not that 2ne1 has manage to create a name of themselves through the media and touring but the lack of a U.S debut. Since 2010 2ne1 and American electro-pop producer Will.I.Am, along with Teddy Park, are collaborating  an American single or mini album for 2ne1’s U.S debut. In 2012 2ne1’s “Take The World On” was not an official debuting single but was the first single produce by Will.I.Am. The track alone was less than the bombastic “I Am The Best” and a total generic sleeper.  Way to similar to 2ne1’s Japanese singles “Scream”and remix to Madonna’s “Like A Virgin which equally lack so much spark and charisma. Whatever happen to 2ne1’s more aggressive dance beats?

The decision to change not only 2ne1’s sound but to tone down their image was a bit drastic. Even though 2ne1 carved a niche market for themselves in Japan and South Korea it is very clear YG isn’t confident about their expansion westward. Other factors  may arouse Blackjacks suspension of 2ne1’s demising is the success of PSY’s “Gangnam Style.”

PSY

PSY is no idol rapper or pretty boy but a pudgy man who can horse dance. His silly music video “Gangnam Style” which makes fun of Korea’s wealthy elite was infectious. His unique look of wearing a suit and humorous approach to rap help him stand out from today’s artists. Whether or not American K-pop fans agree to PSY popularity as a freak of nature and ever furthering the image of the Asian male as a joke. In matter of months PSY surpass any K-pop idol star or group could ever dream of and didn’t change a single thing about his music or image.

I don’t think 2ne1 is falling from grace but is reaching an obstacle in their careers. The lack of confidence in fans only shows that 2ne1 is missing something that will complete them as a whole. This new female group shouldn’t worry fans whether or not 2ne1 is coming back stronger but are they coming back more true to themselves than they were before. If anything the success and experiences that 2ne1 has endure on their world tour and meeting different artists from the west can only show through their music. You can suspect that YG is already in the works of creating a new single for 2ne1, so in the meantime all fans can do is patiently wait.

The arrival of the  new female group will only strengthen and expand YG’s brand power in K-pop. YG has to see success even after 2ne1 is long gone and still continue the tradition of making good music. YG fans forget that the first debut female group under this label was SWI.T and the second Big Mama. Both did not manage to be equally successful as 2ne1. But I doubt 2ne1 will be the last female group YG will ever produce nor are they ditching them any time soon. It is possible for a record label to have more than one female group be successful? Fans need to realize without this ability I feel its YG who will fall to the wayside not their idols.

Big Bang &2NE1:Light The Torch for 2012

With this new world tour and album T.O.P isn't the only one who will be needing oxygen

I’m not the biggest Big Bang fan but when news broke out that YG and Live Nation was teaming up for a world tour. I almost crap my pants for a second. With Girls Generation on Late Night With Litterman and Live With Kelly in the U.S. Plus the Wonder Girls TeenNick movie Wonder Girls At The Apollo . K-pop in the west is no longer a hidden little secret but not necessarily a huge success. While other groups like Beast(B2ST) is on their own world tour this method seems to work best for groups who plan to expand.

Touring is the best way for an artist or group to promote their music. Giving them the ability to show case their talents and develop a theatrical performance of an epic size. Going beyond the music video and truly giving a song the artistic justice it needs. Those lucky fans get the full treatment from their favorite bias. Something K-pop lacks experience in but in recent years of expansion has the golden opportunity to capitalize.

Big Bang in 2011 started off the year so right but things turn for the worse. Despite a successful solo comeback for member Seungri and the group’s mini album Tonight. Half way through the year Daesung car accident and G-Dragon marijuana scandal end 2011 on a bad note. Due to the amount of controversy YG stock prices went down and fans began to wonder if Big Bang was coming to an end.  Although some fans and critics were being overly dramatic YG allow Big Bang to reflect and regroup.

Thus allowing for a new album and a resume of solo activities. But nobody suspect the group would return with a possible 24 countries 16 cities world-wide tour. Invading Asia; Europe; North and South America. Starting on March 2nd-4th at Seoul Olympic Park Gymnastic these shows are already sold out. Those awaiting shows on foreign soil have not yet been confirm with official dates,venues and purchasing.

Like YG promise Big Bang will be working with the best in order to put on a memorable show that usher them into global pop hood. Teaming up with Laurieann Gibson (director) who work with Lady Gaga Monster Ball Tour 2011  and Leroy Bennett (stage/lighting)  who work with Eminem and Linkin Park. YG is living up to their name of ‘going big’ but will they maintain hype with this being a ‘world tour?’

The promotional hype wheel is already spinning as YG-Life blog release Big Bang new album. Disclosing a new title track “Fantastic Boys” compose by Teddy Park and G-Dragon. Also another featuring Daesung solo song “Wings.” Schedule drop February 29th but don’t hold your breath. yG is infamous for using delays build up anticipation.

All things put aside there is also another major idol machine in YG that is making a comeback 2ne1. According to YG in March 2ne1 will return back to Japan. This new album include original material. Details on the album haven’t been reveled but some fans began to wonder if 2ne1 truly has a chance. With their first official Japanese album Nolza selling 26,000 units wasn’t what fans suspect. Although it was solid enough for 2ne1 to create some sort of ground in Japan. Here is something YG should consider the possibility of 2ne1 being an opening act for Big Bang Alive 2012 World Tour.

This can help 2ne1 in their expansion into the west and continuous in Japan. Many major acts have collaborated together by touring not just always by a song. With 2ne1 still being the new gals on the block and Big Bang the veteran mega super stars. This will give 2ne1 the pedestal not only conquering Asia but developing a more hardcore fan base in the west. I feel 2ne1 should release a Japanese album with original material. After that release an English one (if desire) than travel with Big Bang on tour. This will not only give YG a stronger front for both band globally but also the ability for 2ne1 western debut left unnoticed of a higher possibility of a bigger turn out.

In the end this new world tour will open new doors for YG and also explore unfamiliar territory. This can strength Big Bang presence on a much larger scale and live up to the Best World Act. For 2ne1 this could possibly be the golden ticket to be the leaders or top runners for K-pop going to the west. YG can’t lose what hasn’t been measure. Both acts can only grow from this experience and overall this benefits both fans and K-pop genre as a whole. Like most  when the hype dies down, the speculation no longer the voice of reason and  popularity is put to the test we’ll know if Big Bang/2ne1 will be the ones to light the torch.

Source: YG-Life Photos: Soompi

2ne1 TV Season 3 Episode 5-7

I’m not sure if MNet and YG is able to keep up with English subbing on YouTube. Because of this you may see two different version of each video. The original aired version from MNet prior to any translated material. The English subs are secondary and used specifically for YouTube fans to watch. So suspect delays on English subs as the season progress. Each video will be indicated (KOR) Korean and (ENG) English. I don’t work for MNet or YG I just have good common sense.

Note: Although English subs are preset on some videos it can also be a scroll options menu separate from the video offer by YouTube. When  you see a symbol that represents a ‘page’ that is English subs or use Google Chrome browser.

English Sub

 

 

 

K-pop Battle For Japan: Who Will Win?

No secret K-pop is invading Japan aggressively for the past couple of years. Yet many have enter but only the elite stake claims to Oricon victory.

While K-pop is on the path to globalization thanks to the greatest universal promoting tool of the world music. The whole year of 2011 is a mix blend of dynamic Korean comebacks with Japanese ambition.

While summer Japanese comebacks is coming to an end with TVXQ,2pm, MBLAQ and Big Bang  on the cool down. Winter will keep the coils burning as more K-pop idols bump heads,put on some glitter and try to sing in their best listenable Nihongo.

Girls Generation (SNSD/Shoujo Jidai)

Consider them the leaders of the pack next to Kara. These 9 fierce  ladies dominated Japan without fail. By unleashing  the Japanese versions of “Gee” and “Genie.”  Which usher in the new era of Hallyu wave performers. Within this year alone  their first self title Japanese album is certified platinum by RIAJ in physical sales exceeding over  500,000 + plus units sold. Charted Oricon Daily and Weekly at #1. Ending on Oricon Monthly  at #2 and also snagging #1 on Billboards Japan. Raising the bar even higher for other K-pop groups who wish to enter. To continue with their Japanese promotion SNSD has  release a teaser for “Bad Girl.” Which shows off a more sexier bolder side of  SNSD.

Bad Girls Full Audio -Japanese-

 http://youtu.be/GjYmS56Bb6A

Bad Girl MV Teaser

Super Junior-M

Beaming from their success with ‘Perfection” ranking #1 for 60 consecutive weeks in Taiwan. The Chinese division of Super Junior will try their luck with a collective album schedule to debut in Japan August 24th. The album will contain the Japanese versions of “Perfection” and “Destiny.” Along with the Chinese versions and Korean version of “Perfection.” Also other known songs from the mini album. The Japanese version of Perfection will have Type A ( CD and extra bonus CD) and Type B (CD +DVD). Both version are currently available for pre-order on yesasia.com

Perfection Audio Teaser -Japanese Version-

Destiny Audio Teaser -Japanese Version-

B2st (Beast)

Please don’t consider them a rookie group no longer as B2st(Beast) tackles expansion. Last year during November B2st shock their Korean critics when 20,000 plus fans showed up for their Japanese showcase. In May B2st drop the Japanese version of “Shock”  ranking #2 on Oricon Weekly. But could not follow up with promotions do to 2011 Tōhoku earthquake. Despite the set back B2st  surpassed their senior male group Big Bang upon their first Japanese debut. Now on the eve of their So Beast Japanese album there is only hope for major success. The album includes the Japanese version of “Mystery,” “Fiction” (also orchestrated), and “Bad Girl.”  Along with known Korean favorites “Soom,” “On Rainy Days” “Beautiful” etc.. This albums has 3 types Type A  (CD+DVD), Type B (CD+DVD+32 page Photobook) and Type C (CD Only) available on yesasia.com

Fiction Full Audio -Japanese Version-

2ne1

Certified bad ass in their own right 2ne1 reenter Japan  still under YG flag. In an  attempt to maintain artistic colors YG created a sub-label with Avex Entertainment called YGEX. This new sub-label will debut all YG base artists that includes Gummy, PSY,Se7en and Big Bang. 2ne1 will be the first to debut under this new joint label. Earlier this year 2ne1 debut back in May (against B2st) but do to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake promotions were called off. It was suspected that 2ne1 would debut with the Japanese version of “Go Away” on Music Station but it was canceled. Two weeks later 2ne1 release a collective Korean album through Avex that did not contain previous planned promoted songs “Go Away” Japanese Version and “Can’t Nobody” English version. The album sold 9,000 copies upon its release. YG consider the whole situation a “disappointment” and instead focus on a Korean mini comeback. A stream of 6 songs plus MVs that were certified all-kills on digital charts in Korea.This comeback also will showcase the group’s first  concert on August 27th  at Chamsil Olympic Park in Seoul,South Korea. Tickets for the event sold out in minutes.

2ne1 plans to tackle Japan in September with the release of “I Am The Best” and “Hate You” already in rotation. There is no information leading whether or not 2ne1 will drop a mini album for their revamp Japanese debut.

I Am The Best Full MV -Japanese Version-

Hate You Full MV -Japanese Version-

SHINee

Some people would say SHINee is the next big thing and others stress THEY ARE. SHINee release their first Korean to Japanese single “Replay” in May of this year. Which turn certified gold by RIAJ with 100,000 copies sold by June. The group is on the verge of releasing Juliette Japanese album. With “Kiss Kiss Kiss and their smash hit “Juliette” set for Oricon conquest. SHINee Juliette will have 3 types Normal Edition (CD+ DVD+ 40 page Photobook +postcards)  Type A Limited Edition (CD+DVD+Playbutton) Type B Limited Edition (CD+DVD) available for on yesasia.com drops August 29th.

KISS KISS KISS Audio Preview  

Secret 

Still fresh from their Korean promotions of Starlight Moonlight and Jieun solo debut single “Going Crazy” these ladies still have fire for Japan. Secret debut with their female empowered funkadelic tune “Madonna”  which Japanese fans respond positive with 13,000 units sold upon release. Secret will continue promoting in Japan well into August.

Madonna Full MV -Japanese Version-

4minute

Once group member Hyuna is done promoting her solo mini album Bubble Pop, 4minute will return back to Japan. The group plans to promote Japanese version of “Heart to Heart”  schedule to drop September 7th. Along with their DVD Emerald of 4minute. In the meantime 4minute duet with Japanese pop princess Thelma Aoyama in “Without You.”

Without You -Japanese Version-


2ne1 TV Season 3 Episode 3-4 English Sub

More focus on their “Ugly” promotions enjoy

2ne1 Ugly

2ne1’s release their MV and single title “Ugly.” The MV goes back to their “Fire” day look (upgraded) but not sound. The girls’ head bang to a straight forward acid pop rock  song produce by Teddy Park. I feel like the 80’s are back and alive in K-pop just missing amazing guitar solos.

The main course is sung in English so a treat for international fans. The lyrics express the insecurities of fitting into society image of beauty. I’m pretty happy that 2ne1 release a song like this instead of a typical club song to enforce some sense of empowerment. Anyone can relate to this song without a doubt. Consider this the master piece track to 2ne1’s comeback album. **** 4 stars More further proof this group is ready to take on Japan in September. As YG has created a sub-label under Aven entertainment YGEX. This label will debut not just 2ne1 but also Big Bang and Gummy is also preparing for a Japanese debut.

On the other hand this also allows groups to genre mix in K-pop. It’s unfortunate that Korean pop culture unlike Japanese pop culture doesn’t allow many music genre options. Do to K-pop being so image driven its difficult for groups to explore. This past year many big name groups have been mixing it up. To this date I still feel TVXQ “Why?Keep Your Head Down” is still on of the strongest debuting songs this year. It single handily usher in rock with pop complimented by strong vocals.  Ever since then groups like Big Bang, MBLAQ to miss  A have incorporate rock guitar parts/samples into their music. In American music pop rock ballads are making a comeback along with 80 synths and electric guitars. So I guess the world is starting to dance to the beat of one drum.

Reminder: You can purchase 2ne1 album and singles in iTunes also yesasia.com

Ugly Full MV

2ne1 Season 3 English Subs Episode One

If you are really into behind the scenes stuff than you’ll find this interesting or it will drag no end.

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