What is Love? TWICE is.

JYP sure has struck gold with TWICE. The band’s brand of bubbly pop, sugary voices and smiley faces sells ridiculously well, while the views on Youtube reach some crazy new heights (TT is at 350 million, while the newest song is already at 74 million).
The band made a comeback earlier in April with a new EP entitled ‘What Is Love?’. The title track doesn’t really bring to the table anything groundbreaking stylistically – it’s exactly what one would expect from a hit made by Twice, and apparently, it’s exactly what the masses want, as the girls have won on most of the Korean music shows over the last few weeks. I’m kind of picky when it comes to TWICE songs – I’m constantly rocking to TT, Like Ooh AAh, and last year’s Signal and Likey, but my response to Knock Knock was lukewarm at best, and Heart Shaker is way too cringy for me (‘yeah yeah no no’) – What is Love? fits into the first group of tunes, as the song is the right sort of catchy and the music video is really cool. Continue reading →

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Yukiko Okada and the bygone golden age of idols

Yukikofeature70s/80s idol pop had this crazy-addictive (and adorable) quality which I miss in the modern day Japanese popular music. Production is a bit different, and the sub-genre itself has evolved to fit the standards of today. I believe that at some point I mentioned here how this sort of music is not particularly challenging and repetitive.
Sure, but damn did it sound delightful back in the day. The period when lots of good stuff came out lasted up to mid 80s or so, and is referred to as the golden age. The singer I discovered only recently is Yukiko Okada, but she’s quickly becoming one of my favorite idol pop performers. Continue reading →