Now that March is here and the nights are growing shorter, we can finally start to dream about the end of winter. Here are some K-pop songs to accompany you through the change of the seasons as you wait for the warm weather to come.
1. G-Dragon, Crooked: GD has given us more “f**k-it-all” anthems than we probably deserve from this king, and “Crooked” is one of the best. This is the song I’ll be returning to whenever I start to miss him while he completes his military service.
2. Ladies’ Code, The Rain: Few songs recreate their title in sound as elegantly as “The Rain” does. Ladies’ Code’s rich voices are the finishing touch on the sophisticated electronic track.
3. Heize, And July (feat. Dean & DJ Friz): It figures that one of Heize’s best songs and one of Dean’s best songs is the collab they worked on together. Sparks fly when the reigning K-R&B king and queen collide in this breezy 2016 single.
4. EXO, Beautiful: Simply put, this is EXO’s softest song of all time. It’s also one of their most consistently overlooked. The starry synths and dreamy melodies are sweet to be sure, but what sets the song apart is the intricately layered vocal arrangement that marks all of EXO’s music.
5. A.C.E, Callin’: You’d be hard-pressed to find a K-pop sound more unique than this song’s technicolor synths and frenzied dance breaks. What’s more, the song only gets better the more you replay it.
6. The Boyz, Walkin’ In Time: 2017’s most underrated rookies flew under some people’s radars because they debuted in December after awards season began, but the production value of their debut album is rapidly gathering enthusiastic fans (like me *cough*). “Walkin’ In Time” is a wonderful example, with an incredibly patient dynamic structure that milks the song’s nostalgia for all it’s worth.
7. BTOB, Come to Play: Leave it to BTOB to break out the classy bops. Jazzy horns meet bright rap and spectacular vocals in one of the group’s most upbeat tracks.
8. TWICE, You In My Heart: The electric guitar in “You In My Heart” lends the song a dramatic atmosphere that you don’t often hear from TWICE’s music. It’s an interesting change of pace that the girls pull off beautifully.
9. BTS, Cypher Part 3: Killer (feat. Supreme Boi): This is truly one of BTS’s most iconic songs, straight out of one of their most iconic eras and featuring some of their most iconic lyrics (looking at you, Suga). Plus, revisiting this song will surely help whet your appetite for J-Hope’s mixtape, set to release in just a few hours (!).
10. PENTAGON, Lose Yourself: Underrated B-side “Lose Yourself” is as slick as any of PENTAGON’s best title tracks, and as well-constructed. In fact, just writing this is making me nostalgic for the whole mini-album.
11. f(x), Red Light: Why does this feel like such a throwback when it only came out three years ago? The song’s edgy, bass-driven concept was one of f(x)’s best, and I can’t help but wonder when—no, I won’t say it. Let’s just focus on the fact that Amber’s dropping a mixtape sometime soon.
12. VAV, Winter Breeze: I know I’m pushing VAV for like the third time this month, but it’s really about time that people start noticing them. The composition of this wistful ballad made my day the first time I heard it, and the track remains one of the group’s best.
13. Girls’ Generation, Genie: SNSD have always had a way of embodying their concept, but “Genie” was everything the title promised: beautiful, beguiling, and boppy all at once. I could listen to this song on repeat for the rest of my days if I had to. Heck, I could listen to the fifteen seconds of Taeyeon’s ad-libs for the rest of my days if I had to.
Listen to this playlist on YouTube here.