2012 has seen the Kpop world really explode particularly with the amount of groups that debuted. Wiki lists at least 70 rookie groups in 2012 and even then there are a few favourites missing. When we visited the KBS studios during our trip to Seoul, our eyes were opened to the world of rookies as we sat and watched all the performances for a Music Bank recording. As international fans, what we are exposed to is pretty much restricted to what companies and other fans choose to upload onto the internet and make accessible to us, so it’s hard for us to discover new groups especially with the language barrier. With inspiration from a close friend who is a rookie fanatic (code name SN), we’ve made extra effort this year to keep up with new groups, but when we sat in for this 100+ minute show, we realised our knowledge of Kpop was still just the very, very tip of the iceberg.
Of course this year has seen the debut of some epic groups backed by some of the biggest record labels/agencies in South Korea, and have easily and already won a top spot in our hearts *whispers EXO*. But there are many rookies out there whom do not have this luxury and often get their hard work overlooked. At Music Bank we saw over 25 performances and discovered many new rookie groups: A.cian, MonsterZ, Goddess, ChAOS, 24K, OFFROAD, SPICA, Phantom, A-ble, Two X, 100%, Fiestar, VIXX, B.A.P and BtoB. Obviously a few of them are quite well known such as B.A.P, BtoB and 100%, who have support from high profile label mates such as Secret, Beast, 4 Minute and the fabulous Teen Top. VIXX (whom we are huge fans of) had the help of a reality TV show where their selection, training and debut was documented. So these groups were able to start building a fan base from the very beginning or with the help of a thousand tantalizing teasers (you know who you are).
Rania performing Style
We watched as hoards of fans fill the auditorium to watch and scream for B.A.P and you can really see how much energy they get from their fan’s support. Even though they were a rookie group, the amount of fans that turned up for B.A.P’s recording rivaled veterans FT Island. The screaming was enthusiastic and intense, we also spotted a lot of international fans amongst the audience. When B.A.P’s set was finished the fans were lead out and we could hear all the fangirls complaining about their painful throats. After being deafened by B.A.Ps fans, it was kind of heart breaking to then see Rania not having any sit in fans during their pre-recording. Rania actually debuted last year but have gone through a lot of change ups with only 5 members remaining. But with bright smiles and bucket loads of energy, they performed their latest track Style 3 times in a row with great professionalism and class in front of a silent and hard working production crew. It’s quite strange and eerie for us to see a Kpop performance without the usual screams but we flashed them huge smiles and thumbs up to hopefully give their moral a boost. We also saw adorable new girl group SPICA pre-record with 4 fans present, but the loving screams from these 4 fans rivalled that of a hoard of fangirls to support this new rookie group, and you can really see how appreciative SPICA were of their dedicated fans.
So this post is dedicated to all those hard working rookies – 2012 has seen the debut of many amazing groups, many which we have already fallen in love with, and we wish them all the success for 2013!
So what’s to come for 2013? Even though we are only half way through January, we have already seem some comebacks from 2012 rookie groups. Unsurprisingly, one of the most hard working rookie groups of 2012 B.A.P are back with their 6th single!!! Can someone please give these poor overworked boys a break? We don’t know how they managed to always stay so energetic and focused! Showing a very dramatic and serious image, we can’t wait to see what B.A.P have in store for us for 2013:
Another comeback that we have instantly fallen in love with is VIXX! We here at Korean Class MASSIVE are huge VIXX fans and their latest song has us all giddy with excitement. We love this strong and powerful sound along with a very striking and fabulously dramatic look, we love the make up which sort of reminds us of a sexy version of Lion-O from Thundercats. The dance is immense, we love all the moves and formations, although we are a bit disappointed with how the dance was changed for LIVE performances. If you have not checked out VIXX yet then please do give them a go. They are a very hard working band with some crazy impressive dancing. We love each and everyone of them from the perfect leader N, adorable maknae Hyuk to hilarious Ken, rambletastic Ravi and of course personal favourites handsome Hongbin and super emotional and misunderstood Leo. We know 2013 has only just began but we think this will definitely be a favourite song of the year!
With such a promising start to 2013 we can’t wait to hear more from our 2012 rookies and really pray that they all make it through to 2013 and beyond (we’re still quite heart broken about Taken). We’ve looking forward to more from 100% after they gave us such a nostalgic boyband style Christmas, and of course we can’t wait for more fashions from Ren and the fabulous NU’EST. But like a lot of Kpop fans, the one come back we are really, really waiting for is from EXO. Come on SM, it’s almost been a year!!!
Leaving you guys with a few rookie recommendations that we feel really need a bit more attention and exposure!!!
CROSS GENE, their crazy unconventional dance moves deserves to be noticed!
Excite, with song “Try Again” we LOVE this song, it’s so addictive, but they’ve rarely had any chance to perform on music shows :(
A-BLE – we saw these guys perform in the most ridiculous fashions ever. And just for that we think they deserve some love. No one over the age of 13 should suffer a bowl cut!!! Check out the tattoo tights too.
And just to show that we’re not completely boy group bias, here is the hilarious Crayon Pop with possibly the most refreshing girl group concept of 2012!!!