K-Pop is a genre of music that welcomes and includes all other genres. In addition to Korean rock bands like Nell and Hyukoh and K-pop / rock groups like DAY6 and CNBLUE, to name but a few, some other idols – soloists and groups – have experimented with rock.
To learn more about their versatility, here is a list of K-pop artists who have tried rock (and rocked it!).
1. Kim Heechul (ft. TRAXs Jung Mo Kim) – “Close Ur Mouth”
Kim Heechul teamed up with Kim Jung Mo from TRAX to form “M & D”, which stands for “Midnight and Dawn”. The duo chose rock as their distinctive style and released a number of songs in which they demonstrated their talent. To get you back to where it all started, check out their very first single, Close Ur Mouth, composed and played by Jung Mo and written and performed by Heechul.
2. Younha – “Dark Cloud”
Younha is no stranger to rock. Her music is strongly influenced by the genre that her characteristic sound is a mix of piano rock and modern ballads that she has had with her since her debut. This following sweet melody would appeal to ballad and rock lovers alike.
Another idol to bring relaxed rock music back on the table is Suho in his debut release as a solo artist. In his title track “Let’s Love” he sends us on an emotional journey through warm lyrics that perfectly match the slow instrumental.
4. BIGBANGs G-Dragon – “crooked”
G-Dragon has explored many concepts over the years, and rock is no exception. In fact, “Crooked” from his album “Coup D’Etat” is one of his most memorable releases. The single embodies a popular punk rock sound, which is clearly illustrated by the lyrics, the instrumentals and the visual performance.
5. Sunggyu from INFINITE – “60 sec.”
Sunggyu’s story with rock started long before he became an idol. When he was in high school, he was part of a rock band called Coma Beat. He later auditioned in hopes of becoming a rock singer, but was eventually hired as an idol. Nevertheless, Sunggyu’s passion lived when he finally made his dream come true through his solo debut “60 sec”, where he became one with his favorite genre.
6. BTOBHyunsik – “swimming”
Hyunsik is another group member who chose rock music as a solo artist. With an indie vibe, this is the perfect combination for fans who appreciate both genres. The sentimental track puts the listener on an emotional roller coaster ride, while they are accompanied by a gentle beat.
7. BTS – “Boy in windward”
Looking back at the early years of BTS during the “Skool” trilogy era, in which they made a rather explosive comeback with their promising hit “Boy In Luv”. The septet remains true to its musical identity, as they usually blend genres like they did with hip hop and rock in this track. Combine these two with powerful performance and a rebellious attitude, and you get the rock show!
8. YY project – “Tomorrow, today”
If you ever want to host a rock concert during a long drive, you should definitely have “Tomorrow, Today” on your playlist. The drum intro alone sums up the genre wonderfully, followed by the inspiring lyrics that Jinyoung and JB wrote together. Adding her gentle vocals to the mix makes this duet a soft rock song that is just perfect for field trips.
9. WINNER’S Kang Seung Yoon – “Wild and young”
Before WINNER came into being and Kang Seung Yoon became its leader, he made his short debut as a soloist in 2013. He integrated rock into his early releases, namely “Wild and Young”, which literally scream rock’n’roll. This genre fits perfectly with Seung Yoon’s strong vocals and fits with his wild and young aura. Enjoy the nostalgia!
10. B.A.P. – “Bang X2”
B.A.P has always been known for their energetic and fiery style and they have delivered again. This song, co-written by Bang Yong Guk, adopts a typical rock concept and invites the audience to celebrate in hard rock style and to leave their worries behind.
11. PENTAGON – “spring snow”
Pentagon gave us a taste of many genres during their music releases, and the inclusion of rock was only a matter of time. The cheerful spring mood hides a funny, alternative rock melody, which was composed by the cinema. It goes without saying that this song should get you on your feet and jam carefree!
What other K-pop idols have pulled the rock genre through? Let us know in the comments below!
Esmee L.. is a Moroccan lively dreamer, writer and Hallyu enthusiast.
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