Welcome back to Best of Weekly Music Shows! This week saw Lee Si-eun and S.E.T make their debut; B.A.P’s Jongup also made his solo debut. INA, Jeong Jin-woon, NCT 127, Pentagon, Soul Latido, and T-ara were among those who made comebacks to the stage. Wins were spread out this week: Seventeen won on The Show, Show Champion, and M! Countdown, Twice won on Music Bank, and G-Dragon won on Show! Music Core and Inkigayo.
Without further ado, here are the performances that stood out to me this week.
NCT 127’s “Cherry Bomb,” MBC Show! Music Core, June 17, 2017
NCT 127 have had an interesting week. “Cherry Bomb” itself is an intriguing stitched-together song that was banned on Music Bank, due to lyrical content. Opting to not change their song to meet Music Bank standards, they performed “0 Mile” only on Music Bank while performing “Cherry Bomb” on other shows. Aside from that drama, the song and performance hits hard at times but is a bit uneven. While there are moments that catch your ear and eye, it doesn’t all come together smoothly which is unfortunate because these guys have the pieces of the puzzle and you get glimpses of the big picture but it’s not all there yet, which is exciting because when you do get the full impact, it is sure to be impactful.
Twice’s “Signal,” KBS Open Concert, June 18, 2017
“Signal” has really grown on me. The drum refrain and off-kilter structure –for Twice– has breathed some new life in the line of title songs they’ve had. The dance is also quite fun. It retains the cuteness of previous Twice choreo and there are moments where the ladies can groove as well. Momo has especially come into her own, showing some caliber movement. While “Signal” took a while to gain steam, it has since become another number 1 hit in the Twice catalog, proving the group’s popularity is not going anywhere but up at the moment.
B.A.P’s Jongup’s “Try My Luck,” SBS Inkigayo, June 18, 2017
After Daehyun‘s string of performances last week, Jongup made his way on stage this week to promote “Try My Luck.” Ever the blossoming performer, he really had an opportunity to show his dance chops. Jongup has grown tremendously since B.A.P first came onto the scene. He continues to show his improving vocals, and if he continues to refine his craft, he may prove to be quite the successful soloist in the future.
Astro’s “Baby,” Mnet M! Countdown, June 15, 2017
I feel like I’ve mentioned previously that Astro has grown on me since I saw them at KCON LA last year. “Baby” adds onto their impressive string of title tracks. This time their song veers on the smoother, funkier side with an addictive keyboard/synth melody. Their live stages continue to show their class. Astro are quality performers. Their energy and the physicality of their performances make them standouts, and hopefully their consistency and talents are met with commensurate popularity.
T-ara’s “What’s My Name?” Mnet M! Countdown, June 15, 2017
T-ara has seen their fair share of member lineup changes. Near the tail end of their contracts with MBK, they have now returned with only four members. “What’s My Name?” is a fairly simplistic dance pop number, but it has some great moments. Jiyeon and Hyomin have a wonderful section during the second verse that gives a nod to their “Troublemaker” cover that made rounds a few months back while also showcasing some nice harmonies. The girls also execute some tight choreography in the instrumental-laden post-chorus. Overall, it’s a decent showing from a veteran girl group — who will be dearly missed if they end up disbanding like other girl groups of their generation.
Seventeen’s “Don’t Wanna Cry,” KBS Music Bank, June 16, 2017
“Don’t Wanna Cry” has proven to be an outstanding comeback for Seventeen. The whole package is so tightly put together. The music rides the future bounce trend while the choreography is beautifully crafted to add a lot of dynamics on stage. These guys are meticulous performers , and they were able to tap into a more emotional side of them as well. “Don’t Wanna Cry” continues Seventeen’s trajectory upwards and shows why they are currently considered by many as one of the top boy groups in K-pop.