It’s been a magnificent year for Kpop, with groups new and old gaining recognition worldwide as they continue to redefine their own musical boundaries. As the year draws to a close, I want to take this chance to celebrate the amazing songs released in 2018 by revealing my top 10 favorite comebacks.
For me, 2018 has been a year to dive into all that Kpop has to offer. Writing for the Korea-Canada Blog has given me so much appreciation for the hard work that Kpop artists put into everything they do, and I’ve been so thankful for the opportunity to share their creativity with all of you. In listening to more of the genre, I have fallen for many new groups and loved countless songs – making it very difficult to narrow down this list!
That being said, here are ten comebacks that especially touched my heart in 2018. I hope you enjoy my personal favorites, and are as excited as I am for what 2019 has to offer! Happy New Year, dear readers!
#10 – My Flower, JBJ
This bright single from temporary group JBJ – Just Be Joyful – was a perfect start to the year as it radiated the cheerfulness of the real-life friendship of the six members. By giving each member a representative color, new fans (like me!) could easily learn who was who, and the playful MV and addictive melody brought me back to My Flower repeatedly.
#9 – Starry Night, Mamamoo
I discovered Starry Night while researching my cinematography post, and although I didn’t have a chance to include it there, I was instantly struck by the beauty of both the MV and the song itself. While I enjoyed all of Mamamoo’s comebacks this year, I found the wistful mood and arching vocals of Starry Night to be particularly engaging.
#8 – Scentist, VIXX
My only knowledge of VIXX before this year was their song Hyde (which came out back in 2013), so encountering the mature, polished VIXX of Scentist was a pleasant surprise. I was captivated by the crisp execution of the dance, and by the smooth transitions between the honey-like vocals and Ravi’s deep rap, which gave everything balance.
#7 – Blooming Day, EXO-CBX
The MV for Blooming Day is an aesthetic delight, with photoshoot-like features for each member against floral backdrops that suited my taste exactly. This magnetic offering from EXO-CBX – along with the rest of the album – quickly became a staple of my playlists throughout the summer, as the vocal artistry of this trio never disappoints.
#6 – Call Call Call, Seventeen
While Call Call Call is a Japanese single, the face-off of three rival gangs told through stellar choreography was so classically Seventeen – and so indulgently fun – that I had to include it here. By mixing up their typical units and making the most of their individual strengths, they gave Call Call Call a dramatic and memorable flair that I adored.
#5 – Baby Don’t Stop, NCT U
As you may know from my NCT Primer, I am a major NCT fan – but before all of that, Baby Don’t Stop was a song that demanded my attention. With a beat that instantly ignited a desire to dance and lyrics that I found myself singing non-stop, this Taeyong-Ten collaboration was a seed that grew into a love of all things NCT.
#4 – Boomerang, Wanna One
Wanna One’s March comeback was doubly impactful for me, with the group releasing the heartfelt I Promise You and then following it up with the explosive Boomerang. Packed with energy and style, this showcase of Wanna One’s all-star line-up served up luxurious vocals, confident rap lines, and stunning visuals, giving me endless reasons to want to know more about them.
#3 – Shine, Pentagon
Although Pentagon has always been versatile, Shine was one of those magical moments where just the right ingredients came together to create a hit song. Whimsical and catchy, it shot into popularity to the tune of over 100 million views, and between the charm of each member’s expressive acting and the ridiculously fun fashion, Shine never failed to make me smile.
#2 – Always You, Astro
I will be forever grateful that I happened upon Always You, as this sweepingly melodic song – a gift to their fans – was my first proper introduction to Astro, and inspired me to support them. Right from the beginning I fell in love with the light and shadow concept of the MV, and was equally mesmerized by the way the members carried the emotion of the song, both physically and vocally.
#1 – Dejavu, NU’EST W
While I tend to become enamored with songs fairly easily, none could quite compare to the level with which I devoted myself to Dejavu. Everything about this summer single from NU’EST W drew me in – from the fluid and graceful choreography, to the mysterious storyline and sensuous style, to the musical progression throughout – and ultimately, my ardent passion for Dejavu brings me to crown it as my song of the year.
Categories: KOREA-CANADA BLOG 2018