Mix Tape Monday: Once You (K) Pop the Fun Don’t Stop

Guys I’m moving. Yup, moving to a new apartment and two cats to snuggle. What does this mean? Stress! (no, not because of the cats, obviously). I don’t know why I have to turn it into a mild form of existential crisis, but I do.

What do I call upon in these (semi) dark and (self-induced) dramatic times? Music. What kind of music? The kind that makes me well, want to move. I call upon none other than the fantastic, glittery, over the top power of Kpop (Kpop for the uninitiated is short hand for korean pop). There is a lot of visual stimuli here. These videos will hypnotize your mind into state of fascination in which no external stress can exist. I’d recommend watching each video once and then listening to the song on its own to avoid overload.

This is but a mere drop of the ocean that is kpop. There are plenty more songs I love but I figured we’d ease into this one.

 

Disclaimer: Just know that once you start listening to kpop there is no going back. It has strange voodoo powers. You might think you don’t like it then suddenly 2 months later its on your phone, your computer, and in your brain.

So what will it be? The red pill or the blue pill?

Good! I’m glad to see you joined us.

At the risk of receiving laser eyes from fanguys and gals everywhere I’d say if there was one group to know in kpop it would be BigBang. Honestly this whole mix tape could be made up of their songs but I will limit myself to three.

BigBang – Fantastic Baby. This was the first kpop song I ever heard (thanks Mallory!) so it goes straight to the top of my list.  Get ready for lots of costume changes and colored hair. My intro song and by far still one of their most glamorous. You will never be able to say just “wow” after this.

BigBang – Bang Bang Bang. This song is from their newest set of releases and I wasn’t sure I loved the chorus but now I can’t stop singing it. This track is about guerrilla music with lots of references to militarization and the music industry. All the while they are slaying you with the bullets of their beats. And for all you freedom fighters out there, in case you didn’t realize it but magenta is the color for rebellion.

BigBang – Lies. A glimpse of toned down BigBang in their earlier and more emotional years. The costumes aren’t as fabulous but its a great song and MV. The obvious message to take from this is that real men can sing on rollerskates, which is more than I can do.

Brown Eyed Girls – Abracadabra. The understated hip sway in this girl group’s dance is so iconic PSY paid to use it in his song Gentleman (which is hilarious, by the way.)

Orange Caramel – My Copycat. At first I thought I wouldn’t like this song with its high-pitched, candy coated girly trot sound…but…guys the music video is a game of Spot the Difference and Where’s Waldo…and the chorus is pretty darn catchy. How could resist?

SHINee – Lucifer. I have mentioned this before in my dance mix tape and it’s still my favorite SHINee song and favorite dance in kpop-dom. When I hear it in the Hmart I start grooving to my grocery shopping.

Rain – 30sexy. Yes, I promise he is saying 30 sexy (not dirty sexy) that’s the official story and I’m sticking with it. The lyrics of this one aren’t deep but hey, try to get the back beat out of your head. If you can resist this inevitable earworm your Jedi powers are stronger than mine.

2NE1 – I am the best.  This girl’s group name is pronounced twenty-one and you will probably be hearing about them very soon since they are working with will.i.a.m. Also Lady gaga and these ladies really need to collaborate because the results would be epic. Who doesn’t love evil Bond Villain fashion?

There’s tons more Kpop to love post your favorite songs below! Any song that make you want to move? Add em! If you like these songs check out the 8tracks playlist I made for more. And of course these songs will be added to the Mix Tape Monday Youtube Playlist.

 

Updates: Technical Difficulties

Hi all!

I’ve been having some bugs on the site that need to be worked out. So this week’s posts may be a bit delayed while I adventure into unexplored internet territory (and hopefully not to my doom). The technology gods need appeasing! Thanks for your patience 🙂

Sarah (ye olde humble blogger and technology cowgirl)

Mix Tape Monday: Summer Lovin’

We all need a little sunshine.

Bomba Estereo -‘Mar. This song is pretty much made of gentle waves of sunshine and appropriate for any situation….naps in hammocks, swinging on swings, dancing down cobblestone streets, splashing at the beach…the applications are endless!

The Solutions – Love You Dear. What’s summer without a feel good pop-rock anthem? Nothing I say nothing (darn you music industry crafting my seasonal music cravings). Anyway! the video is going to make you want to run around Seoul spreading summertime sweetness with your band. (Or is that just me? I gotta find a band quick!)

Yuna – Recue. Wonderful, Malaysian artist Yuna is part musician and part motivational speaker. Her song is a summery pep-talk. The sun is out and we all got life in our veins and we are ok!

Indochine – Alice & June. We had our Korean pop-rock anthem now its time for some throwback upbeat French punk. That’s right, for all you extreme athletes out there this song delivers some serious octane (just look at how fast everyone is running!).

G-Dragon and TOP (feat Park Bom) – Oh Yeah. As Sandy and Danny will tell you all summer days turn into summer nights (that demand appropriate musical accompaniment) and these Korean BFFs of Big Bang fame are the ones to transition you from day to night.

Be sure to check out the videos in continual playlist format here! Also, tell me what your international summer anthems are below!

 

Mix Tape Monday: Monday Blues

When the heat gets you down these blues will cool you off and ease any of that heartache you may have. Grab a spot on the porch, pour yourself a glass of sweet tea or grab a brew, and enjoy these soulful blues-rock artists from around globe.

Songhoy Blues – Soubour. I’ve already mentioned this Malian band’s song Irganda. But mentioning them once is not enough! Especially when they have songs this good. For all you  Black Keys fans Songhoy Blues will definitely float your boat. And if you don’t like the Black Keys, then well you will probably still like this. I mean come on this guitar work is hot.

Jack Savoretti – Written in the Scars. I was really intrigued by Jack’s unique and raspy voice. It’s a sound that gets easily overlooked these days. Go Italia!

Tinariwen – This Tuareg band also comes from Mali but this time the northern region and while Songhoy Blues is rich and earthy, the guitar notes laid down by Tinariwen’s musicians are as bone dry as the Sahara they play in and just as beautiful.

Lowdown 30 – Asphalt (feat. Joosuc). This song by South Korean trio is as rough as it’s name and trust me that’s a good thing. Get ready for a hard blues-rock back beat with edgy electric elements with a rap solo thrown in. All together its a combo that will make you feel so hardcore.

Hozier – Work Song. Thank you Ireland for delivering Delta Blues perfection clad in plaid and topped with a man-bun into the world. Hail Hozier. This is all. Actually go listen to Arsonist’s Lullaby and It Will Come Back. What are you still doing here? Go!

Any soulful blues we need to hear? Post them below!

Mix Tape Monday: Chill Summer Days

I don’t know if y’all have noticed but….it’s summer!!!

Here are some new songs to cool you off in this new found heat. In the spirit of the season I’ve paired each song with an appropriate summer adventure. Take a listen and see if you’ll add these to your summer routine.

San E, Raina(산이, 레이나) – A Midsummer Night’s Sweetness (한여름밤의 꿀). Yes, I like to pick appropriately titled songs for mix tapes (guilty as charged). But this Korean collaboration has slow beats that are a perfect pairing with lazy summer nights and beers. Who says hanging with friends can’t be an adventure? Cheers!

Paus – Deixa-me Ser. Roadtrip! This Portuguese track is best served alongside close friends, run-down cars, questionable gas station snack choices, and unknown destinations. Time to hit the open road.

Farao – The Hours. Need some alone time? I’d recommend listening to this Norwegian track for a spin while stargazing. It will cleanse your palate and set the tone for a bout of self-reflection and meditating on your place in the universe. 

Hannah Schneider – Me vs I. This is an early morning song. So grab your cup of coffee and watch a sun rise (over the ocean if possible) while imagining new beginnings to this Danish song. Hey, its summer anything is possible!

Koala Liu – Oh Let It Be. Are you an urban dweller? Then this is your people-watching-downtown-while-eating-alfresco song. What? That’s totally a song genre. And this Chinese songstress nailed it.

Here’s the link to the Mix Tape Monday YouTube Playlist with all the old songs and the new ones added. Check it out!

Any quintessential summer songs I missed? Or can you think of a better song-to-adventure pairing? Share your thoughts below!