Music features

RM’s second mixtape, Mono, dropped on 23 October 2018 almost two and a half years after the self-titled RM, which was released on 20 March 2015. Mono was accompanied by a music video for the final track “Forever Rain” with lyric videos released for “Seoul” and “Moonchild” on 23 and 24 October respectively. It followed J-Hope’s earlier […]

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The Top 5 Gothic KPOP Music Videos

by Colette Balmain 31 October 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain applies her specialism in Gothic Cinema to the world of KPOP – perfect for the Halloween season… ‘Gothic forces its readers, viewers, and listeners to identify the ghosts that haunt them…’ (Isabella van Elferan, 2012, Gothic Music, p. 15). 1. SHINee “Married to the Music” (2015) “Married to the Music” doesn’t sound […]

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Affective becomings and musical transformations: BTS take London

by Colette Balmain 23 October 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain, or maybe a ghost writer, reports from the biggest KPOP event in the UK this year: Taking the Plunge This is the first concert review that I have written although I have been to many concerts, some of which I have good memories of and others which I wish I could press […]

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The Garden of the Forking Paths: Difference and Repetition in BTS “Epiphany”

by Colette Balmain 21 August 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain examines the BTS comeback trailer for Love Yourself 結 Answer: “Epiphany” is the comeback trailer for BTS’ last entry in the LOVE YOURSELF Series: Love Yourself 結 Answer. LOVE YOURSELF is a transmedia and multimedia project involving the expansion of the BTS Universe through the construction of a metafictional storyworld established by Music […]

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Artistry, Creativity & Emotionality: Choreographies of the self in “Fake Love”

by Colette Balmain 31 May 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain examines the lead single from BTS’s Love Yourself 轉 Tear: “Fake Love” is the lead single from BTS’ third studio album Love Yourself 轉 Tear (they have also released three Japanese studio albums, two repackages, five EPs and two single albums to date) and follows, both temporally and thematically, the comeback trailer “Singularity” […]

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Trajectories of Meaning in “Singularity” – the BTS Comeback Trailer: Love Yourself 轉 Tear

by Colette Balmain 14 May 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain analyses the comeback trailer for BTS’s third studio album: From Serendipity to Singularity: A Universe of Meaning “Singularity” is the comeback trailer for BTS’ third studio or full length album, Love Yourself: Tear which will be released on 18th May 2018. This follows up the mini album or EP, Love Yourself: Her […]

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Neverland: Holland’s ground-breaking K-pop debut in context

by Colette Balmain 19 February 2018
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Dr Colette Balmain discusses the controversial debut MV from Korea’s “first openly gay” KPOP idol. “Never lose self-esteem and be confident” (Holland, 2018) On 22st January 2018, at exactly midnight KST, Holland released his debut single and MV “Neverland”.  Since its release, “Neverland” has racked up over 6 million views on YouTube and Holland has […]

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Ensemble Sinawi at LSO St Luke’s – don’t miss one of the highlights of COLF

by Events Editor 23 June 2014
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For many LKL followers, the highlight of the City of London Festival this year will be the performance by Ensemble Sinawi at LSO St Luke’s on 8 July. If you liked Geomungo Factory at the K-Music festival last year, or have caught Baramgot on one of their London performances, this evening’s performance will be a […]

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The Timbre of Moonlight: Won Il on bringing traditional instruments to a modern audience

by Philip Gowman 14 June 2013
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I meet Won Il (원일, 元一) in the reception area of an apartment hotel near the Barbican. He’s hanging out with some of the members of the National Orchestra of Korea, chatting. All 60 orchestra members managed to get booked into the same hotel within easy walking distance of the concert hall where they would […]

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Preview – Ahn Sook-Sun at the Cadogan Hall: the must-see event of K-Music 2013

by Colin Bartlett 11 June 2013
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Colin Bartlett explains why he’s definitely going to be at the Cadogan Hall on 21 June. To show it isn’t just me that considers Pansori is one of the truly great art forms of the world, I’ll start with a quote from Simon Broughton of Songlines: “Often described as Korean opera, the description is misleading […]

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Rachmaninov, Flamenco and Han: LKL meets pianist HJ Lim

by Philip Gowman 12 July 2012
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LKL is surprised four times in the space of a twenty minute interview with Korean pianist HJ Lim, and ends up an even bigger fan than before. Having enthusiastically listened to HJ Lim’s industry debut at Abbey Road Studios in May, and having purchased her boxed set of the complete Beethoven piano sonatas, we’re really […]

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The MBC K-pop event: HyunA and Queen will shine; EXO K have nothing to lose

by Philip Gowman 23 June 2012
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The MBC K-pop and culture showcase at the indigO2 sold out in around 3 hours. For those who didn’t get tickets, what are we missing out on? Here’s LKL’s predictions: The headline acts 4Minute Cube Entertainment’s girl band 4Minute came to London last year for the United Cube concert in Brixton. In hindsight, I think […]

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The London Korean Links Awards 2011

by Philip Gowman 7 January 2012
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The sixth of LKL’s annual unscientific and very personal recognition of the best things of last year. And in the field of film, books and CDs what is encouraging is that there is so much to choose from. There were also plenty of good Korean cultural events in London, Edinburgh and elsewhere, but there was […]

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Korean Homesick Blues: the finest indie sounds from Korea

by Philip Gowman 3 November 2010
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Bored with K-pop? Want to find something a bit more adventurous? Of course, you’ll already be an avid reader of Anna Lindgren’s excellent Indieful RoK. And now, if you want to listen to some of the most interesting alternative, indie and underground music around, you’ll be tuning in to Korean Homesick Blues, a regular podcast […]

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2010 Travel Diary #16: A meeting with Hwang Byungki

by Philip Gowman 18 June 2010
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Tuesday 4 May 2010. Hwang Byungki is probably Korea’s best known performer and composer for the kayageum. When I submitted my proposal to the Korean Culture and Information Service for the stories I wanted to investigate during my visit – of which the main one was the preservation and reinvention of Korean traditional culture – […]

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A meeting with Noeazy

by Anna Lindgren 14 April 2010
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Anna Lindgren of Indieful ROK meets with the up and coming Korean metalcore band Noeazy One of my very first evenings in Seoul, I found myself at Club FF checking out a bunch of hardcore bands. Although I had a pretty good idea of what the roster would treat me to, one band in particular […]

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The many sides of Younee

by Philip Gowman 24 March 2010
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Younee is back in the UK for a punishing schedule of live gigs, radio interviews and broadcasts. LKL is her first interview, two days after landing at Heathrow. We meet, together with her manager, Anthony Steinberg, at the now familiar rooftop bar at the St George’s Hotel, next to All Soul’s Langham Place. Last time […]

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