kpopandkimchi
8 months ago1,000+ Views
Unoriginal Kpop: Is This a Bad Thing?

Okay, disclaimer time.

This is another one of my cards that doesn't really have a point. More like its something I was thinking about while I was getting dressed and I wanted to talk about with you guys to get more input. I am NOT trying to put down any groups or praise others. This is just a general thing I wonder about with the music industry as a WHOLE (you can pick any genre you like, but I know most about kpop^^)

With that out of the way, here's my discussion topic lol:


I was planning to write a card about MVP and their debut song which I think had elements of Teen Top, BTS, and even Seventeen in it. When I thought about the response to this card I figured someone might say "ugh stop comparing them to other groups" (though on Vingle people would probably be much nicer haha)

But that got me thinking...for a debut, especially a debut from a label with no other big names:

Is it so BAD to have a not-super-original debut track?


Check out their MV here:
Personally I think its a JAM AND A HALF and I love it (the choreo is awesome!) but, is it mindblowing original and a style unlike anything we've ever seen? No! But is that a problem? I dont think so :)

There are a few debuts that were definitely unlike others and really blew everyone out of the water, and that's why they stood out so much.

For example:

But even groups that we think of as really experimental and trend setting now, they played it pretty safe in their debuts.

Look at VIXX for example. Here's their debut:

Superhero is super normal Kpop with their outfits, set, and song being pretty trendy for the time. It's still a great track but they definitely weren't trying to break any molds at the time.

Now look at Fantasy:

This is really unique and they're totally pushing the boundaries of Kpop (honestly it sounds like it popped out of some supernatural creepy Broadway musical) But again, this was after they grew as a group, got their name out, and grew a strong fanbase. They started pushing it with their crazy contacts in On and On which blasted them to fame (such a good concept omg) but they stayed pretty calm with their music until their first win :)

Personally, I think that groups debuting with a track that fits the trends of the time is no problem, since they need to play it safe to make sure their first track does well.


If their first track doesn't succeed because its too ~out there~ then they risk losing money and not getting the chance to have another high-quality comeback.

So here's where I want your opinion: Do you think groups should play it safe and just make trendy music for their debut or would you prefer the risk of a brand new kind of sound?


Or: is it so bad that groups sort of sound similar?

Even when groups sound similar I think the members give each group a different flavor and if you look at any other genre there are plenty of examples of this. I don't have a problem with it as long as concepts aren't copied completely.

And at the end of this, I hope you guys listen to MVP because seriously I can't get it out of my head and they can sing live which is so refreshing for a rookie group with strong vocals and choreo :)

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I don’t see a problem with groups doing similar or trendy things. I was reading an article just the other day about how Eric Nam prefers to promote in the States because it's less of a rankings thing im the music industry than how it is in Korea. Sure, in the U.S. chart rankings and such matter but they matter more to the artists themselves instead of the fans in my opinion, namely because, in most cases, it's like the fans here really only matter for imcome. In South Korea, it seems like half, if not majority, of their music industry is heavily reliant on fans. It’s about the views and the sales and the popularity all just for the artists getting opportunities to do various things, such as appear on a variety program, music program, drama, commercial, etc. To me, there's so much more fan influence in the South Korean music industry so I feel like playing it safe for your debut is fine because it's such a thin line to walk for a rookie. As the years go on, I would actually suggest stepping out of the box and finding that uniqueness that the group brings. Admittedly, I think that's one reason BTS has seen so much success. I feel like their debut with No More Dream was safe. I still am in so much awe that those are the same boys that I once thought "Oh, they're cute. They seem interesting. I wonder what they're going to be like later." They didn't go too far out but they also didn't necessarily stick to norms, as in dolled up pretty boys. They had chains, a masks, and gloves, lots of dark street wear. When I was getting into the whole Kpop/Korean music scene, SHINee was the group that really brought me in, so I was used to see flower boys and bright colors and high fashion. The shows they were on were the popular shows and all. But I got into Kpop and all only in 2011, just before SHINee released Sherlock, so I've seen quite a few debuts and how a good amount of the boys seemed to be flower boys. NU'EST was the first group I really watched from debut and they weren’t exactly flower boys but were finding their style and their sound. I could go on listing the groups that I like and have either paid attention to or really stuck with but the point I'm trying to make is that I feel like, like with BTS, it even takes time for the artists themselves to really find their balance and where they fit in, both with the group as an individual and with in regards to their talents as an artist. I don't think it's a bad thing. Music is an expressive art and it's all about finding and exploring yourself. Nothing wrong with similarities. ♡
8 months ago·Reply
hmm, I think it's fine especially when your first coming out to "Play it safe" but personally I like groups and artist who are a bit out there and have a wow factor about them but really at the end of the day as the great G-Dragon said "Music is just music" lol ~~❤💛💚💙💜
8 months ago·Reply
I feel as though that's what everyone does, debuts with something normal and generic then goes into their own style later on, take Lady Gaga for example, when she debuted, she was somewhat normal, look at her now. Lol
8 months ago·Reply
I can honestly tell you that it's not just with Kpop, it tends to happen in all genres. With music there are only a certain amount of mixtures you can make, while that number maybe a huge number with the amount of songs and different artists out in the world its not surprising for it to happen. If an artist notices that a group of people like a certain sound or number of beats per minute other artist are going to follow suit. While it may make music sound similar to another its not a bad thing because through lyrics and execution of the song it can make it entirely different from another. Who knows there could be songs produced and published on the same day on opposite sides of the world that sound almost identical to one another. I apologize for how long this post was and I do need to mention a disclaimer that I am not an expert in music, just very passionate about it and most of this is based off of assumptions and things I've noticed while listening to several different music genres and playing instruments.
8 months ago·Reply
It isn't a problem in the beginning, all they're trying to do is put their name out there, but if it is a constant thing where they're developing as a group and still keep it safe, then that's where it does begin to be one. A group needs to have SOME originality to them, or else they'll just be dismissive, as they are predictable
8 months ago·Reply
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