The countdown continues with 2014’s top 50 K-Pop songs. Numbers 50 through 41 rang in yesterday, so who will shine today? Here are numbers 40-31. Where did your favorites rank and who is yet to come?
40. Lip Service “Yum Yum Yum”
Lip Serviced earned attention for their food anthem for good reason. The then duo (now trio) showed they can be cute, fierce, and relatable with a kitschy song that quickly earned them a fan base. But in all honestly, how can anyone turn down a song with hamburgers and Americanos?
39. Berry Good “Love Letter”
Their name suggests they’re an aegyo group and Berry Good members are quite aegyo. However, if you’re not a fan of cute groups, don’t let those feelings deter you! “Love Letter” is a sweet song with an amazing chorus and great harmonies. The instrumentals have an early-2000s K-Pop feel, so nostalgia may ride high for those who’ve been around K-Pop since that period. If anyone remembers and liked BP Pop from 2013, Berry Good echoes their style but with stronger vocals and music.
38. EXO “Overdose”
2014 gave EXO better songs with both arrangement and lyrics, and before EXO-M began falling apart, EXO released “Overdose,” a song that marked a nice comeback. The chorus really hooks a listener, and the melodies are much better. In typical EXO style, “Overdose” won plenty of music shows and year-end awards. Sadly, “Overdose” tended to be overplayed on the radio, so it was possible to OD on it.
37. Ladies’ Code “Kiss Kiss”
With each comeback, Ladies’ Code showed moxie and continuously improved. “Kiss Kiss,” although similar in style to 2013’s “Pretty Pretty,” should have helped the ladies gain more recognition for their vocal talent, quirky nature, and personalities. “Kiss Kiss” is a relatable song since it covers fears of the first kiss. The chorus captures Ladies’ Code’s strengths with blending their vocals while each girl remained distinct enough to pick out. Months after their accident, it’s still difficult to grasp Kwon Risae and Go Eun-Bi are no longer with us, making “Kiss Kiss” difficult to listen to for the most part. However, its strengths can’t be overlooked.
36. Sunmi “Full Moon”
Sunmi and JYP trainee Lena pair up to create a song that has a haunting quality. Lena doesn’t sound much like a trainee which adds to the tune’s appeal. Sunmi’s voice, though thin-sounding at times, impresses with each verse. The story tied into “Full Moon” is also pretty sweet for those still into vampire romances, although the video can be laughable since who knew vampires like to dance awkwardly on rooftops.
35. Soyou & JunggiGo “Some”
As an international fan, it was humorous to see how people fought over this song this year. I-Fans couldn’t quite understand why it was popular and while K-Fans helped keep the song on top of the charts for several weeks. The song is cute, upbeat, and Soyou and JungGiGo knocked it out of the ballpark. The beat of the song just induces happiness, so why hate?
34. Orange Caramel “Catallena”
Orange Caramel wouldn’t be Orange Caramel without a weird, quirky concept? “Catallena” serves up seafood with a story and pairs it with disco and Pakistani-Panjabi influences. The fusion makes “Catallena” unique and enjoyable.
33. AOA “Miniskirt”
AOA made a comeback with a sexier comeback, but this one was classy compared to many comebacks—from both males and females—this year. “Miniskirt” earned them plenty of recognition that propelled them to becoming a contender for a top-tier group position. The only downfall for “Miniskirt” is that it is a departure from how AOA started: A girl group with a band concept. Hopefully, 2015 will bring that concept back around because fans need to hear how multi-faceted AOA truly is.
32. 2NE1 “Gotta Be You”
“Gotta Be You” is one of several 2NE1 releases this year. While “Come Back Home” held the emotional appeal, “Gotta Be You” is the song picking up year-end awards. The song’s dance track is impressive paired with 2NE1’s voices. The lyrics are interesting and fit CL’s rapping. Minzy, Dara, and Bom shine well, especially since Bom doesn’t sound out of place. The MV, however, sends a message that it’s okay to go back to a cheater if he apologizes. Has no one heard the saying “once a player, always a player”?
31. SPICA “You Don’t Love Me”
Why SPICA doesn’t get more recognition will always remain a mystery, but they should considering how they are a chameleon in the K-Pop industry. They can cover just about any style with ease. “You Don’t Love Me” recalls the Motown era; SPICA owns the sound and the feel. Plus, Lee Hyori helped with the MV and track.
Stay tuned tomorrow for numbers 30 through 21! Who do you expect to see?
— Joelle Halon