Welcome to Best of Weekly Music Shows! This week saw the debut of MCrown on MBC Show! Music Core. It is turning out to be quite a busy comeback month with Brown Eyed Girls, December, Gavy NJ, High4, Joo, Rania, Romeo, VAV, and Year 7 Class 1 all making their way back on to the stage. F(x) received first place trophies on Mnet M!Countdown and KBS Music Bank. Show! Music Core aired last week’s pre-recorded episode, as it didn’t air then due to a baseball game. SBS Inkigayo announced IU‘s “Twenty-three” as the winner for the second week in a row.
Also, the awards season got under way with the Melon Music Awards kicking things off with a big bang (bad pun intended). Seoulbeats will be putting out a recap on the event later this week, so keep an eye out for that.
Without further ado, here are my picks for the week, and please share your favorites in the comments below!
F(x)’s “4 Walls” on KBS Music Bank, November 7, 2015
I am really enjoying this comeback from F(x). The choreography has a powerful punch and the backup dancers are used in a smart way. When Krystal drops her shoulder and everyone follows, the resulting illusion of everyone falling into place to match the leader is so satisfying to watch. They also punctuate the house beats with great shifts in choreography. F(x) have a magnetic quality and seem to get better with each performance.
Rania’s “Demonstrate” on Mnet M!Countdown, November 5, 2015
Rania have undergone so many changes in the past few years. Since their last comeback, there have been even more member changes. And, can you believe it has been two years since their last promotions in Korea? Rania have always given a fierce live performance, and they don’t disappoint here. Their staging is done well, with the backup dancers adding depth to their stage. I am still undecided as to whether their rubber band prop was a good addition or not, but it certainly is unique. Newest member Alex has great stage presence. Hopefully in future performances, she’ll be integrated into the choreography more seamlessly so that her inclusion will bear the semblance of actual membership rather than simply a feature.
BtoB‘s “Way Back Home” on SBS Inkigayo, November 8, 2015
BtoB have been channeling their inner Boys II Men for their last two singles. The smooth vocal harmonies, slick dance steps, and meaningful lyrics all come together to make quite an impact. Even though Sungjae has been absent for a good portion of their “Way Back Home” performances due to his busy schedule, he looks overjoyed when he can perform with his brethren. While I love BtoB’s ballads, a part of me hopes to see them promote double A sides next time around — one that emphasizes their vocal abilities and another one that shows off their high energy dance side.
57‘s “U&I” on Naver On Stage, November 4, 2015
Indie band 57 — composed of singer-guitarist Yoon-joon and drummer Kim-seol — bring a garage punk energy to the stage. With only the two members, creating an atmosphere of a four piece band is a tall task, but they do not let that hinder them. Kim-seol creates complex rhythms on the drum set, and Yoon-joon is equally excitable with his quick guitar work. K-indie and rock fans should keep an eye out on this band because they are a blast and put out great music!
Big Brain‘s “Welcome” on MBC Show! Music Core, November 7, 2015
Big Brain may have only debuted a few weeks ago, but they perform like veterans of the stage. This ballad quartet complement one another to the tee. “Welcome” is built for the autumn season, and their singing is poetry to the ears. If you love vocals and harmony — which should really be my theme this week — then this is the group and performance for you.
Red Velvet‘s cover of Baeho‘s “Hello” on KBS Immortal Song 2, November 7, 2015
Wendy, Seulgi, and Joy, Red Velvet’s vocal line, performed on Immortal Song 2, and they were exceptional. Their modern take on the Baeho classic has undertones of R&B and soul in it. They switch off doing two part harmonies throughout the performance, and the result is nothing short of spectacular. Red Velvet may not have won the night, but their performance was a declaration that there is a lot more to this group than a catchy song and dance.
Brown Eyed Girls’ “Brave New World” on KBS Yoo Hee-yeol Sketchbook, November 6, 2015
I found it difficult to decide whether I preferred the Brown Eyed Girls’ bright Music Bank stage or the loud fanchants on the Inkigayo stage. In the end, I opted for the more low-key Sketchbook performance. The girls performed “Abracadabra” on the show as well, but what made me choose this iteration of “Brave New World” was that their vocals had more clarity on this stage — with the backtrack not being as overpowering. I absolutely adore this comeback from the Brown Eyed Girls. When these four ladies come together, the product is nothing short of magic. Ga-in is energetic during her choreography bits. Narsha puts forth a fierce section. Miryo‘s rap, although not my favorite part of the song, changes up the rhythm in interesting ways. Jea, as always, is outstanding and powerful in her vocal delivery. Together, their synergy is of a different level. Welcome back Brown Eyed Girls, you have been missed!