Thursday, March 27, 2014

My Top 50 Albums of 2013: 20-11

Okay, finally back! Going to try to get these out quickly! Getting down to the wire! With out any further rants, I bring you numbers 11 through 20 for 2013!! As always, here is the link to the YouTube playlist!

| Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 |

20. Voodoo - Vixx [216 Points] Released: November 25, 2013 

Oh this album. In 2013 I became a big, a huge, a ginormous fan of Vixx. I had seen their music videos and listened to the singles they released for their debut year in 2012, but Oh My Goodness have they stole 2013 for. They started off the year with On & On (AMAZINGNESS), brought out the mini album Hyde and repackage Jekyll for the summer, and ended the year with another single with Okdal Girls and their first full album, Voodoo. As far as On & On and Hyde/Jekyll go, they'll be further up on the list. Honestly, the only reason that isn't in the top ten is because of it's late release. I still have been listening to a good chunk of the album a bunch, and it's almost to the end of March. Starting out with Voodoo, the promotion song, oh my goodness. Now this song has a little bit of the genre mash-ups that was popular in 2013 for Kpop, but I think this is one of the ones that is done right. The song just completely grabbed me and the music video is full of wonderful and gross creepiness. The dance is really awesome, especially with the stick the members pass around and stab each other with. I'll post the clean version below, but if you want to watch the rated one, click here! Also, if you enjoy the live videos, here is a comeback video full of fan-chants! I also bring you another practice video! As for the rest of the album they have a good mix of ballads and dance, with my favorites off the album being Beautiful Killer, B.O.D.Y, Secret Night, and Say U Say Me (besides Voodoo). Honestly thought, just looking at plays none of the songs have less then 10 plays (and Voodoo above 50 at this point). Anyways, if you enjoy the more darker side of Kpop, definitely check out Vixx and their MVs (especially from 2013 on). Before I continue ranting for the rest of the blog post, I bring you Voodoo! 

19. Incredible - Xia [228 Points] Released: July 15, 2013 

July of 2013 brought one of the former members of DBSK and current member of JYJ, Xia Junsu's comeback with a second album. The promotion song (and title of the album) is Incredible. Most of the album is ballads, which isn't really what I want to listen to in summer, so I mainly just listened to Incredible, but that song alone has over 80 plays. Incredible was produced by Bruce Automatic and features Quincy who is P.Diddy's son. I had to look that up when they announced he was featuring.... Just saying. Anyways, the music video was also filmed in California, so it's mainly foreigners (to Korea)! Yay! It's a simple video with the setting a pool party in Cali and a girl creepily wandering around Junsu's bedroom. Plus we get some really good dancing. Also, Quincy's rap is a little....let's just say JYJ certainly picks odd features when they choose American rappers. I still have no idea what he means when he says he wants me to "shake my spaceship candy," but whatever. Xia also released a music video for the ballad song 11am. The video is pretty cool, because the first three minutes or so is just Junsu singing out in a field with no music or anything; then a piano comes in. It has a very pretty acoustic feeling to it. Definitely worth checking out as well!

18. Endless Game - Arashi [231 Points] Released: May 29, 2013 

Yay! Arashi's 41st (yes 41st) single came out in early summer of 2013 and the title song Endless Game was the theme song for rapper Sakurai Sho's drama Kazoku Game (Family Game). With just a single, Arashi once again grabbed me with just a few awesome-sauce songs. And speaking of Arashi, I just want to throw out there that I have now officially listened to Arashi for 11 years in January. I don't remember the date, but yay! I also want to through out that September this year will be Arashi's 15th anniversary! So awesome! I wish I could go to their concerts! Okay, focus, back to Endless Game. I don't know how else to describe it besides being very Arashi. It's got their great harmonies and solo parts, and I guess has a little more of a pop-rock feel to it. The other songs on the single are Intergalactic (LOVE), Monochrome (SUPER LOVE), Magic Hour (LOVE). Magic Hour is a little more of a ballad feel, while Intergalactic is a fun pop song with lots of space references. Monochrome is my favorite song off the single with it's fun guitar opening and just good melody. The first time I listened to it I was smiling before they even starting singing. It's just a song that makes me feel good and happy and like I could walk in the sun forever. It's got this fun little funky twist to it that reminds me a little of the french film Triplets of Belleville soundtrack! So if you like Arashi, definitely check out this single!

17. Collage - U-Kiss [237 Points] Released: March 7, 2013 

2013 brought fans U-Kiss's third full album Collage. The promotion song for Collage is Standing Still. Standing Still is a great mix of a dance pop melody with ballad type singing and lyrics, and is absolutely brilliant. I love Standing Still even now, and it is one of my favorite U-Kiss songs, and is my favorite when I look at Korean promotion songs. The music video has a good feel between U-Kiss' spot on dancing and belting out close-up moments. My favorite dance move is during the chorus when they pop their knees out and travel going both directions. I don't know why, but I just find it incredibly sexy (weird I know) and it also looks really easy. However I think I would break my leg or something if I tried to duplicate it. Going back to the music aspects, Collage has a lot of great songs, some of my favorites being Sweety Girl사랑하니까, Party All the Time, and Can't Even Breathe. U-Kiss are one of my favorite bands so if you like Kpop definitely check them out. They also release some songs in English, and are very active in Japan as well! 

16. Calling/Breathless - Arashi [243 Points] Released: March 6, 2013 

In early 2013 Arashi released their 40th single Calling/Breathless. This is another one of their double sided singles, with both Calling and Breathless being promotion songs. Calling was the theme song for Aiba's drama Last Hope and Breathless was the theme song for Nino's movie Platinum Data. The single overall has a rock tone to it, which completely excited me when Aiba mentioned it in interviews before it was released. Then it was released and I couldn't stop listening to 3 of the 4 songs. The fourth song is full of love and a ballad, which completely got overshadowed by the others. Now a funny story, when I pre-ordered Calling, for some reason I completely missed that there would be two versions of the DVD version. I ended up getting the Calling version and was super excited when it came, watching it immediately. However, when I went on Live Journal to fangirl I saw a second PV. Completely flabbergasted I searched and searched for the Breathless version, which of course was out with preorders in Japan. However I got lucky and stumbled across a version that was released in Korea, so the packaging is a little different, but I was able to get all versions and see both PVs. Anyways, I'll only be posting Breathless since the PV is a bit more entertaining. If you would like to watch Calling, click here! As for the other song on the single, it's オーライ!! and is a completely fun song that has me jumping up and down chanting オーライ! along with the song! 

14. On & On - Vixx [245 Points] Released: January 17, 2013 

In Januray of 2013, Vixx officially not entered my top ten favorite Korean boy bands, but my top five! On & On really brought me into the Vixx fandom and even now it's one of my favorite Vixx songs. It's got such a good rhythm and beat, plus is super catchy. "I need therapy. la-la-la-la-la therapy!" This song itself is one of my most listened to songs at 98 when I started typing this paragraph. Honestly it'll be over 100 once I sync my iPod and finish this blog post! The dance is super awesome and fun, the music video is super weird and a little darker with their concept being space vampires. The other song on the single is I Don't Want to Be an Idol and is a pretty ballad, but nothing else can really compare to On & On...except maybe Hyde and Voodoo. But anyways, here is the link to a live performance so you can see more of the dance and be blown away at how good they are live; they had only debuted the year before and released only two singles! Also I am giving you the link to the dance practice video! As stated above, Vixx popped into my life with this song and I'm so happy they have. If you would like to know their current standing, wait for the last part of my 2013 countdown! Anyways, please join me in the amazingness that is On & On!

14. What's Happening? - B1A4 [245 Points] Released: May 6, 2013 

"Everyday-ay-ay-ay-ay...Ya!" Okay, so when B1A4 released their min album What's Happening? two very big things happened. First, I was completely addicted to What's Happening the song. Second, I got it stuck in EVERYONE's head, including my own. This song is so fun and addicting and makes me laugh. B1A4 is another band that is in my top ten that I adore and have since they debuted. I remember reading all the articles about them before their debut and the endless teasers WM Entertainment released (granted not as endless as EXO). Anyways, What's Happening? is a great song that's catchy and has a really fun and crazy music video. My favorite scene is Baro's rap in the elevator! It's very B1A4! Currently it's the 4 most listened to song that was released in 2013 (after On & On and two songs to come!). Of the few other songs on the extended play I also enjoyed Yesterday, but let's be honest. What's Happening? has like 70+ more plays than Yesterday. Anyways, if you have seen B1A4's music videos before and somehow missed What's Happening?, YOU NEED TO WATCH IT NOW! That is all! XD

13. The Classic - Shinhwa [248 Points] Released: May 16, 2013 

In 2013 many fans were greeted by Shinhwa with their 11th studio album, which also happened to coincide with their 15th anniversary. Apparently I like bands with older members... Anyway, This Love is a pop song that they meant to be for an older audience (most Kpop fans in Korea are around the high school/college age). Anyways, Minwoo (one of the members) choreographed the dance (once again) and it has some elements inspired by Madonna's Vogue. I loved this album, particularly the songs Scarface and Hurricane. This rant may seem a little smaller, but I have to make dinner soon, and I already have a few longer rants above, so the song is good. The album is great, as well as the other songs I've linked above. They also have a dance version of the music video, so check that out as well if you want!

12. Super Show 4 Concert Album - Super Junior [253 Points] Released: June 28, 2013 

Super Junior finally released the live album from Super Show 4 recorded at their Seoul concerts in the summer of 2013. I had been waiting what felt like forever since I wasn't able to see them live and just had to fangirl with partial fancams. I was super excited when I found out it was finally getting released, and the album is to no disappointment. We've got rearranged versions of several hit songs (Bonamana, Superman, Don't Don, etc.) plus we have all of the members solo songs! Just listening I love Teukie's version of She, Kyuhyun's version of Kyuhyun, and Shindong's fun song Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. As for watching the DVD, it's Ryeowook's Moves Like Jagger. We also get Henry and Zhoumi songs for the first time! Yay! Super Show 4 is also the birth of Oppa, Oppa by Donghae and Eunhyuk! Anyways, this is a great version and so much fun live, and it get's even better once you've seen the DVD so you can picture it as well. Since there isn't any real promotion songs, SM Entertainment has posted two different highlight clips for Super Show 4. Displayed below is Opps featuring f(x). This song is awesome, each corresponding member wrote their own rap. Plus we get a VR version of Heechul since he started his mandatory military service right before Super Show 4 started. The second clip is of White Christmas a remake of an old song. The clip is fun and cute, so check it out here!

11. Pioneer - The Band Perry [254 Points] Released: April 2, 2013 

Rounding out our top 20 albums of 2013 is country group The Band Perry with their second album Pioneer. I saw them perform Better Dig Two at the Country Music Awards in the end of 2012. I was super excited for their next album and couldn't wait for Pioneer to be released. Once released, I saw them perform Done on Ellen and knew I had to get the album immediately. I love the album, ballads and all. My favorite songs off the album are Better Dig Two, Done, and Chainsaw. Below I have the music video of my favorite song Done, but they also released one for Better Dig Two. We've got another American band on the last, and only a couple more!

That's it for Part 4 of the 2013 countdown. Stay tuned for Part 5, the top ten albums of 2013! Until then, keep listening to the music that moves you!

Stasi ♫

Thursday, March 6, 2014

My Top 50 Albums of 2013: 30-21

Okay, well now that things have calmed down a little bit, I'll finally be posting the rest of my countdown. I also have the stats for January and February all ready, so expect the both of those to be posted by the 15th! (That's my goal!) Anyways, sorry for the delay! Let's get right back into it! YouTube Playlist!

| Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 |

30. All About My Romance OST - Various Artists [189 Points] Released: April 24, 2013

Once again we have the cute and fun Akdong Musicians gracing the list! Now I enjoyed All About My Romance as a drama. It was fun a quirky with a political setting (which I was hestitant on at first). But honestly, with Dal Shabat, Tiffany, and various other artists contributing to the soundtrack, Akdong Musicians really grabbed me. I loved the Music Video released (which didn't really have anything to do with the drama) and was as cute and sugary as the song is itself. If you like K-Drama soundtracks definitely check out the All About My Romance OST, and if you like K-Drama, All About My Romance is definitely lolz worthy at times. If you enjoyed the previous Akdong Musician song (Kkong Ddeok Bing Soo) I think you'll like this one too! 

29. Eraser - ALi [192 Points] Released: January 30, 2013

So ALi has got to be one of my favorite South Korean solo female singers. Scratch that, just one of my favorite solo female singers. PERIOD. I love the uniqueness of her voice. Her first full album was released in the end of 2011 and I was immediately hooked. The tone and power of her voice just grabbed me, as well as the accompanying music video. Anyway, she came back with a mini album here (YAY!) and I was super happy. The main song is Eraser, a pretty ballad (and the music video down below). However, my favorite song of the album is Selfish, which has more of a pop-rock vibe and completely became my anthem for the first half of 2013. Unfortunately, there isn't a music video for Selfish, but HERE is a live video for one of her comeback stages. She sings Selfish and Eraser, but Selfish is first. I really implore to click HERE and be sucked into vocals made of amazing. She has released other songs since this album, but most of them have been digital singles or songs for dramas. Which are amazing, don't get me wrong, but I want another album, mini or full. Please ALi, bring us more music with that amazing voice of yours!

27. Letter From Secret - Secret [193 Points] Released: April 30, 2013

Yay! Secret came back in late April with a fun, summery feeling mini album. Secret (for those that don't know) is my favorite girl group in the Kpop industry! (Sorry but worldwide Spice Girls is still #1 in my heart!) I really enjoy all of their personas, from cutesy to super sexy spy/assassin/saloon girl (Poison anyone?). The promotion song for Letter From Secret is Yoo Hoo and more along the lines of their cutesy image. I enjoyed it and it was on my main playlist late into fall! Also on the album were three other songs that are ballads. I enjoyed them as well, but my favorite of the three is B.O.Y (Because of You) (can someone explain to me why a lot of these abbreviations are missing the last period? I don't get it. T_T). It's really pretty and stayed on my playlist almost as long as Yoo Hoo did! The Music Video is fun and summery, involving Secret's boat somehow leaving them stranded on an island. I won't spoil the ending, but it's cute and fun and silly, and will bring a little warmth into this crazy cold! :)

27. No. 1 - Teen Top [193 Points] Released: February 25, 2013

"La-la-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la-laa-laaa" Teen Top presented fans with a full album late February. One of the songs, I Wanna Love, was pre-released digitally and had a music video. The promotion song is Miss Right (if you've heard the song, you understand the previous las) and also had a music video. I enjoyed both songs, but I think overall I like I Wanna Love just a tad bit more. Miss Right involves a silly video where the boys get stuck in jail with one girl (WHAT?) and sing about her. I enjoyed the dance a lot, and the Las as well as the "몰라몰라몰라몰라몰라." Honestly, those make the song for me. Plus CAP's hair. Back to the music, HERE is the link for I Wanna Love, my favorite of the two. It's more of a pop-rock-ballad-electronic mix (that's mixed well) and I really enjoy the song. The music video pretty much has them being sad (or eating unusually large amounts of canned fruit) and wandering the streets, out in the world! Once again, check both of them out! Let me know what you think in the comments between the two!

26. Boys Meet U - Shinee [197 Points] Released: June 26, 2013

Mid year Shinee released their second full Japanese album. I enjoyed a good chunk of the songs on the album, including a few from their previously released singles (Dazzling Girl & 1000年、ずっとそばにいて…). Of the new songs, their PV was for Breaking News (PV=MV in Japan), my second favorite song off the album. My first though is Kiss Yo which is just a fun song that has some hip-hop undertones with Key's awesome English rapping. Plus, I like to make fun of the ending. So the song starts off with the sound of a telephone ringing. At the end of the song we here a dial tone and then Key asking, "Hello? Would you like to kiss me?" I don't know why, but I always say the same stupid line and laugh to myself afterwards. But the music is fairly SM-like, focusing on Shinee's dance and close up of the members singing. But Shinee is a group of awesome dancers, so I'm not complaining! Above I linked the previous singles that were compiled into this album, although I think they're are a couple more. But I liked those the best. Also, what PVs that get posted on YouTube are almost always short versions, so if you would like to see the entire video, try here! PS: EVIL! You better watch all of them because I'm pretty sure you have seen them all. Bad Shawol! XD

25. XOXO - EXO [208 Points] Released: June 3, 2013

Oh EXO, I was super impressed by the promotion songs they released for XOXO, both the normal and the repackage versions. Below is the first, Wolf. This song has some parts that have odd lyrics, but has a fun chorus! I showed it to my roommates and Billy kind of walked around for a few days randomly going "a-wooo." She probably will now since she's listening to the song again with me.... but that's beside the point. I thought the drama version was cheesy, but I really enjoyed the dance. And the vocals were really good, especially during the crooning parts. And for those that haven't seen the lyrics for it....some of those lines. Here's a link, the official video is below and doesn't have lyrics.  As for the second  promotion single, I actually like Growl more. It has a really good R&B feel to it. Also the dance is pretty cool and the music video is all filmed in one shot. I like things like that. The only thing I don't get is why are they dancing in an empty warehouse?'s SM. Oddly lit rooms for everyone! Check out Growl if you haven't already! Especially if you like more of the songs that have good head nodding grooves. Just saying; I head nod to it. You should too.

24. Re:Blue - CN Blue [209 Points] Released: January 14, 2013

In January of 2013 CN Blue released their fourth mini album, Re:Blue. The promotion song for Re:Blue is I'm Sorry, a good pop-rock song. I really enjoyed the mini album overall, my favorite songs are I'm Sorry, 나란 남자 (Guy Like Me), and Coffee Shop. They also released a song completely in English called Where You Are. I enjoy Where You Are, although sometimes it makes me laugh at how it can be misconstrued as a stalker song. "I'm searching where you are." Although if it's where I am, why is he still searching? I don't know, but I enjoyed the mini-album overall. Another fun lyric: "Oh please touch my body and my face." It just makes me giggle. Don't mind me. If you're a fan of the more pop rock style and looking for something Korean (or just foreign), definitely check out CN Blue and this album (also FT Island {speaking of FT Island, anyone else watching Bride of the Century and completely addicted already?}). Check out the links above for the other songs I enjoyed, otherwise just watch the video for I'm Sorry. It involves CN Blue playing on a rooftop and kind of just being miscreants around a city. Plus Jonghyun has his hair styled up, and goodness gracious does it look good. Plus we get to see his forehead/face. Just saying. :)

23. The Blessed Unrest - Sara Bareilles [211 Points] Released: April 23, 2013

Oh my goodness this album. I love love love Sara Bareilles and was so happy and excited when she announced a new album. I immediately got The Blessed Unrest and still have a few of the songs on my main playlist. What would be considered the promotion song in Korea is Brave. The song itself is amazing, with such a wonderful message lyrically, but just has a melody that makes a person feel good. Well, at least it's a feel good song when I listen to it. As for the other songs, some of my other favorites are Hercules (the video has some info about the name of the album before her singing), Little Black Dress, and I Choose You. My favorite song off the album, with over 60 plays (just in 2013 - it's gone up since then) is I Wanna Be Like Me. I find it completely empowering (like most of Sara's albums and songs) and was completely sucked in only after a few seconds. It's got some fun background sounds and is a good mix of string instruments and more electronic tones. Seriously, I can't fully express how much this song means to me both musically and how it just generally makes me feel. Please, please, please listen to it and share it with anyone and everyone. It needs to be heard. So check out the fun music video of people dancing in random areas and pay attention to the great lyrics!

22. A's Doll House - Ailee [213 Points] Released: July 12, 2013

Ailee came out during the summer, promoting with the diva-licious song U&I. I love Ailee and I love this mini-album. Ailee has such a powerhouse of a voice and definitely in my top three female solo artists in South Korea (with ALi and BoA). U&I has some big trumpet parts and gives it a little bit of a big band vibe, which I find completely awesome and music-licious. Apparently Ailee just has -licious descriptors. Back to the music, Ailee is one of the singers referred to as Korea's Beyonce, with her power voice, strong rapping and snazzy moves. To top it off, I also give major props to Ailee for not being obnoxiously stick thin. She's got some thunder thighs and some curves, and a lot more sexy to me than some of the really popular girl groups out there. Most of the other songs on the album are more ballady, but I really enjoyed No No No and Rainy Day. Honestly though I love everything Ailee's released so far. Her voice is so pretty. Excuse my fangirling, but really. If you enjoy Beyonce and power vocals, definitely check out all of Ailee's stuff. Plus she just debuted within the past couple years. Big stuff already! Also if you didn't notice, most of what I linked above are the live versions. Yes, she's pretty good live as well!

21. Black Box - Brown Eyed Girls [214 Points] Released: July 29, 2013

So I have to say, Brown Eyed Girls definitely popped back up into the top of my rankings with this album. A big part due to the promotion song Kill Bill. The normal music video (posted below) is a fun take on Quentin Tarantino's hit movie series Kill Bill. Now for the actual song, I love it. The girls and back-up dancers look cute and sexy in their western/cowboy styles and the opening dance move in the dance version...holy guacamole! Plus...let's just say I have a thing for cowboys...and dancing....and the back up dancers.... <_>_>... So the music video is a fun parody (but more serious than most parodies are), the dance is fun and sexy (as one would expect from BEG), and I just overall love Brown Eyed Girls and the more mature material they grace all Kpop fans with! 

Well that's all for now! Stayed tuned for the last two parts of the this countdown, as well as countdowns for January and February! Any comments or questions, leave them below! Until then my music loving peeps! YouTube Playlist!

Stasi ♫