Here we go with the final part of my list of Best K-pop releases from 2017! After that, I will be considering whether to make a list of Best MVs or Best Albums as well or not. As for MVs, I think I could handle picking 10 most aesthetically pleasing Music Video, but for albums… I barely had time to check out all albums this year, so my preferences are really limited and very subjective to more like “I like it” rather than “It’s so balanced and nicely produced”, and I’m trying to go for latter kind of content when it comes to such lists.
To tell you a secret, I’m planning to make Top-10 favorite and Top-10 best produced NU’EST songs, and believe, both lists are freaking different.
Anyways, if you missed out previous parts of this long ass list of best 2017 releases, make sure to check them out in Best K-pop songs of 2017 MASTERLIST, and for those not aware of how my lists work, here’s a quick guide: each month will feature Top-5 released songs + list of Honorable mentions for those tracks that didn’t make to Top.
Table of contents:
1. HA:TFELT – I Wander (feat. Gaeko)
This song is so good, I seriously love everything ex-Wonder Girls member Yeeun have been putting out as a solo artist. The lyrics are really beautiful, with such a deep meaning. And oh my god, can we talk about this blissful instrumentals? Despite me having a lot of bias groups coming back that month with strong bops, this song remains superior release for my October.
2. BTOB – Missing you
I was amazed at this song. Like I said, I’m usually not into ballads, and I’m very picky about both classic and dance ballads, but BTOB just proved me that they can do better and better with each release. This song was composed by Hyunshik, and I can’t remember crying over lyrics earlier this year as hard as I did over Missing You and one more song I will mention in November section.
3. NU’EST W – Where You At
Ah, even a million words cannot describe how far NU’EST have come as musicians and artists, and this song is a top notch of their significant music style they finally have found after Bumzu and Baekho took over the producing process. Istg, Pledis trio producers (Bumzu, Baekho and Seventeen’s Woozi) are the most fatal combination ever happening in 2017’s music scene. Read my full review of this track and NU’EST W’s mini album “W,HERE” to know more.
4. JBJ – Fantasy
Coming from a hit show of this year Produce 101 season 2, JBJ is the first fan-imagined group that became reality. Their debut track Fantasy is everything I was waiting from a bunch of boys that suited rude, dandy sexy concept so, so well. Donghan’s You’re not a daydreamer is still THE killing part of the whole song that strikes you from the very beginning. One of the best post-Broduce debuts for sure.
5. Rainz – Juliette
Another fan-made group that, unfortunately, don’t get as much exposure as JBJ gets, but their music is still of high quality (like, what do you expect from a maker of so many SM artists’ hits Ryan S. Jhun). Concept-wise, they’re total opposite of dark JBJ, and Rainz brought their vocals to highlight the bright and funky title track Juliette, which is, as you could guessed, a damn bop.
Honorable mentions (too many, to be honest):
- GOT7 – You Are: really impressive comeback for this quarter. I feel a bit sorry towards iGOT7s for being overly focused on getting NU’EST W their long awaited wins. Your song is also beautiful and deserved music show trophies, but I hope you understand how devastated LOVEs were.
- DIA – Good Night: I wasn’t fond of the sound at first, but then it just grew up on me 🙂
- Taemin (SHINee) – Love: Taemin seriously outdid himself in this album. These contemporary dance-worthy tracks are everything my ears needed.
- Epik High – Love Story (feat. IU): Epik High never disappoints, right?
- BTOB – Blowin up
- Highlight – Celebrate
- NU’EST W’s Aron – Good Love
- NU’EST W’s JR – With (feat. BUMZU)
- NU’EST W – Just one day / My beautiful
- SF9 – O Sole Mio
1. Wanna One – Beautiful
The name of the track already describes everything about the song: BEAUTIFUL. From instrumentals, to lyrics, to vocals, to rap, to dance routine. This song completely my ultimate trio of sad dance ballads: NU’EST – Hello, BTOB – Missing You, and Wanna One – Beautiful. Read more of my impressions on this repackage album.
2. NU’VENTEEN (NU’EST W x SEVENTEEN) – Heaven
Each day I non-verbally ask Pledis: WHEN TF YOU’RE GONNA DIGITALLY RELEASE THIS MASTERPIECE? This is a superior collaboration. Superior work of Pledis Golden Trio Bumzu – Baekho – Woozi. Superior combination of vocalists and rappers. God’s work of choreography.
PLEDIS, YOU HEARD THAT.
3. EXID – DDD
EXID are back at their significant addictive sexy sound, with DDD being another seductive track with witty lyrics about confronting a man who’s caught on lying, and shaking at the fact that his lies were exposed. Ahhh, love LE’s job on EXID’s songs.
4. Super Junior – Black Suit
This song was a BLAST. Dramatic piano, electro swing elements, and hella entertaining MV? YES, PLEASE. I, an electro swing appreciator, am freaking satisfied with this comeback from Super Junior. More about why this song deserves more love in my review!
5. Red Velvet – Peek-A-Boo
I love Red Velvet’s Velvet side. Like I said many times, I’m all in for sensual, sexy concepts that can be pulled off by stage presence (rather than provocative outfits). Peek-A-Boo is another blend of their Red and Velvet sides, but, unlike Red Flavor where the Red side was dominant, this Halloween-esque track highlights the girls Velvet side. And damn, I love it so hard.
- Seventeen – Clap: loved the grunge sound!
- Super Junior – The Lucky Ones: a very nice turn on trendy tropical house genre!
- Astro – Crazy, Sexy, Cool
1. NU’EST W – Let Me Out (Hwayugi OST)
Hahaha, bet you didn’t expect one of the most recent releases to end up here, huh? Nonetheless, NU’EST W for the first time participated as OST singers, and well DAMN, they freaking slayed. I’m not sure if it’s relevant to say it, but they almost OWN the dubstep/heavy EDM genre in K-pop (I mean, I know what many other artists are capable of doing it, but in my opinion, Nuble are almost the only artist managing to pull it off so nicely and with a distinctive flavor that when you turn on any song, it’s easy to think, “Ah, this is definitely NU’EST kind of song.”). Even when this song wasn’t produced by Pledis house’s masterminds, the boys managed to make this OST their own. I 100% wouldn’t mind seeing them promote this song on music shows.
Also, that VOCAL GLOW UP from Ren and Aron! ♥♥♥
2. Han Donggeun – Love and Cage / In the cage
I’m saying this for a 1000th time: I’m super picky with ballads. I gave Han Donggeun’s 1st mini album a full listen, and out of all 6 tracks, I liked this one the most. Just… beautifully done.
Since there is no separate audio on YouTube, I recommend you to check out his full album (all tracks are really good, to be honest), with Love and Cage / In the cage being the second one.
3. Taemin – Snow Flower
Taemin’s repackage album MOVE-ing was beyond beautiful, and this track did so much justice to the boy’s improved vocals. 역시, our icon of improvement.
4. Twice – Heart Shaker
Perfect song for a Christmas mood! Trust me, I am so fed with all those similar songs full of nothing but bell sounds that you can use to sing Last Christmas’ lyrics over the instrumentals, that this Twice’s track, despite me being very judgmental towards their overall music, was a grasp of fresh air.
5. Uhm Junghwa – Ending Credit
A wonderful, legendary woman with a wonderful song. That’s all I can say about Ending Credit.
- Uhm Junghwa – She: she just dropped it when I was drafting this post, and OMG! Looks like I really need to deep check her mini album.
- Heechul, Eunhyuk, Shindong (Super Junior) feat. Solar (MAMAMOO) – Charm of life: Super Junior proves once again that they can have fun while making really high quality music.
- The Boyz – Boy
- Taemin – Day and Night
This concludes my list of Best 2017 K-pop releases! I hope you enjoyed it, and more important, found some new hidden gems for your playlists!
There are still few days left in 2017, and several more releases set to be out within that period, but I guess I will not include them into this list.
To see the previous parts, go here:
See you soon with the list of Best MVs of 2017! ^__~