It’s been a minute since Girls’ Generation (or SNSD) brought the heat at the end of 2011 with their fantastic global release, “The Boys.” But after a 14 month hiatus (that’s approximately 12 years in K-pop time, by the way), the fabulous nine are now making their grand comeback to the South Korean music scene with a brand new album released on January 1, I Got A Boy.
The return began a few weeks ago with their pre-release single, “Dancing Queen,” a breezy, if not thoroughly random Korean-language cover of Duffy‘s “Mercy.” It was cute enough, though nothing revolutionary.
Enter the official lead single (and title track): “I Got A Boy.”
A little over a month since releasing their latest Japanese single (“Oh! / All My Love is For You”) and exactly a year since their (still amazing) US debut single (“The Boys”), the ladies–sorry, girls of Girls’ Generation are already preparing their next release.
Yesterday, GG debuted the sparkling new video for “Flower Power,” their 3rd single from their upcoming Japanese record Girls’ Generation II ~Girls&Peace~.
Girls’ Generation make you feel the heat!
In what was a history-making moment, the girls of South Korea’s mega-group Girls’ Generation took to the stage at last night’s Late Show with David Letterman to perform their debut US single, “The Boys”–and they completely smashed it!
Performing to a super jazzed-up remix of their hit (which I first wrote about a few months ago), the ladies of Girls’ Generation (SNSD for short) utterly wiped the floor with their ferocious choreography and on-point vocals. Seriously…I’m already rewinding the clip a dozen times to get these moves down. It was an absolutely rock-solid performance!
Not only was this a landmark performance in terms of the girls’ own U.S. television debut, but for K-Pop in general: As we’ve known to be the case for years, the Asian community has always been miserably underrepresented in American pop, let alone an international act. Not even BoA got to perform on a late night show during her crossover attempt! This is nothing less than a major moment in pop history.
And it didn’t stop at last night’s performance: Earlier this morning, the girls returned to the stage for a performance on Live! With Kelly. It was a smaller production the second time around, performing strictly to the single version of the track, but their moves were no less stellar. Plus, they even got to chat a bit with Kelly Ripa and guest Howie Mandel, chit-chatting about the SNSD audition process and showing off some personality–and some of their “Boys” moves.
I still can’t believe it actually happened…what a stunning win for K-Pop fans across the world! I couldn’t be more proud. Congratulations, girls!
“The Boys” was released on October 18. (iTunes)
It’s been a long time coming (and something that’ll make my K-pop Krazy friend Prophet Blog wet himself with delight), but it’s time I finally acknowledged the wonder and splendor of the force known as Girls’ Generation.
Now, I myself am more of a J-Pop connoisseur than K-Pop girl group guru (I go hard for Utada Hikaru, Namie Amuro, Koda Kumi and Ayumi Hamasaki in particular), but it’s all but impossible not to notice the extraordinary influence of Korean girl groups making their way overseas.
Girls’ Generation–sometimes referred to as SNSD (an acronym based on their Korean name)–is by far one of South Korea’s most popular acts. After their debut back in 2007, the nonet (that’s nine members) has gone on to win countless awards and smash dozens of records in both Korea and Japan, most notably for their 2009 international smash hit “Gee,” the Ke$ha-penned “Run Devil Run,” as well as their #1 Japanese hit from earlier this year, “Mr. Taxi.”
(By the way: Think a nine member group is crazy? Check out AKB48, a J-Pop group consisting of 59 members to date. Go ahead. Just try and remember their names.)
Now, quite excitingly, Girls’ Generation are set to make their official mark stateside (well, worldwide really) with the release of their third studio album The Boys, due to hit iTunes on October 19, followed by a US single release via Interscope Records sometime in November.
“The Boys” is the album’s lead single, which was recorded in both Korean and English. Today, the full song hit iTunes and the video has premiered (in both languages) and…well, it’s absolutely incredible. (To be fair: J-Pop and K-Pop videos usually slay Western videos. This is certainly no exception.)
Featuring some truly ferocious choreography, the ladies work it out in some sort of icy snow palace while rocking sky-high stilettos and killer haute couture threads. For fans of girl groups of any kind, the video relentlessly delivers everything that a good girl group video should: Fierce poses, glamorous looks, glossy styling…it’s everything!
And as for the song itself? Crafted by Teddy Riley (Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga), “The Boys” is a solid modern R&B/dance-pop effort with some attitude–a welcome change from the all-too-grating sugary-sweet sound that K-Pop girl groups tend to churn out on the regular. The chorus is an instant ear-worm. Plus, for those easily offenced by a foreign tongue hitting their ears, their accents aren’t even that strong at all–a key factor in helping them to crossover to the West.
As an English debut, “The Boys” is a pretty massive introduction for the group. I’m incredibly excited to see what the international response is to Girls’ Generation–especially in America. Yay for global pop recognition!
“The Boys” was released on October 19. (iTunes)