September-October 2008 Overall Thoughts
In addition to my monthly K-pop round-up, I’ve taken a look at my favorite three singles from each month since 2009 and factored them into my ultimate Bias List scorecard, which can be found here.
The problem is, prior to 2009 it becomes harder to find reliable sources for K-pop release dates. I’m going to do the best I can with the information I have, but occasionally I may place a song a month early or late (it becomes even more confusing when you factor in separate release dates for mv and album!). And because K-pop releases were far less prolific fifteen years ago than they are today, I’ve decided to feature two months each week. That gives me more music to choose from and ensures I’m not spotlighting songs I dislike simply because there’s nothing else that came out during that period!
As we draw closer to the end of 2008, the months of September and October unleashed some serious firepower. Nearly every a-list star of the moment released something, whether it be in the form of an album, a single or a repackage.
Chief among these releases is TVXQ’s Mirotic – the group’s final Korean album as a quintet and a mammoth success. At the time, it set the record for highest first-week sales and proved popular on a global scale. Also riding high on international popularity was Rain and Wonder Girls. Coming off his role in the feature film Speed Racer, Rain delivered some of his most iconic, enduring music. Rainism is a stellar title track.
In fact, this era represents the seeds of K-pop’s western expansion. BoA tried her hand at the English-speaking market with Eat You Up, which would later be followed by a full English album. Wonder Girls released their iconic Nobody – a song that would later break the Billboard chart when it was re-released in 2009. I actually find Nobody a bit overrated as a song (don’t kill me!), but there’s no denying its place in K-pop history.
As if this wasn’t enough, heavyweight acts like Brown Eyed Girls, SHINee and Son Dam Bi all released new music. We also had the debut of soon-to-be massive IU with Lost Child. The industry was really starting to shape its next generation. Super Junior’s Chinese sub-unit Super Junior M also unveiled their first original single, which received a music video after its initial release in the spring. Me is a forgotten gem.
Even among all these milestones, we can’t forget the debut of boy group U-Kiss. I’m not a big fan of their single Not Young, but they’d quickly grow into a popular and super-solid act.
Brown Eyed Girls – How Come (video)
FTIsland – Heaven (video)
IU – Lost Child (video)
Rain – Love Story (video)
SHINee – Amigo (review)
Son Dam Bi – Crazy (ft. Eric) (video)
Super Junior M – Me (video)
Notable English Releases from K-Pop Acts
BoA – Eat You up (video)
TOP THREE SONGS
3. Wonder Girls – Nobody
2. Rain – Rainism
1. TVXQ – Mirotic
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