Get ready for a K-pop summer

Get ready for a K-pop summer
K-pop group Sistar
PHOTO: Sketchers

It's shaping up to be an estrogen-heavy summer for K-pop, with six female idol groups releasing new material.

From the lean bods of Sistar and AOA to the wholesome appeal of Girls' Generation, we suss out which of these gorgeous gals are most deserving of your attention.

SISTAR

Leading the charge is sassy, seductive foursome Sistar, widely recognised in the industry for their toned physiques. In their latest colourful music video Shake It, Hyolyn, Bora, Soyou and Dasom's famous curves and washboard abs steal the limelight as they zip around on electric scooters and flaunt their yoga moves.

Shake It is included in their new mini album of the same title, which comes nearly a year after their last EP, Touch N Move.

The quartet will be in town on July 1 as ambassadors for US sports apparel brand Skechers for an invite-only meet-and-greet session and showcase at Skechers Singapore's flagship store post-opening party at Ion Orchard at 6.30pm.

"You can expect both lovely and cute sexy numbers from our new album. We want to show everyone really exciting summer songs," Hyolyn, 24, said in an e-mail interview with M.

Dasom, 22, promised "healthy and vibrant stage performances" for their fans.

As for the secret behind their hot bods, it's down to plenty of exercise.

"I'm a big fan of weight training and leisure sports," said Soyou, 23.

Bora, 25, is currently into "pilates and aerobics".

Anyone can achieve perfectly sculpted figures, added Soyou, as long as they "keep their bodies in motion and are into regular exercise".

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 5/5

We love the positivity and confidence these girls exude. Sistar might not boast the prettiest faces in K-pop, but they are certainly the healthiest. Definitely great role models for teenagers.

NINE MUSES

If beachwear, bikinis and surfing's your cup of tea, you'll be pumped up for Nine Muses' summer return.

The group sticks to conventional sexiness, with the girls looking sporty and spunky in denim and cute polka dots.

Also, you can ogle these bombshells all you want. Nine Muses are releasing their first pictorial book along with a new album titled Special Summer Album, reported The Chosun Ilbo.

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 4/5

Since their inception in 2010, Nine Muses have gone through line-up changes and controversy (one of their former members was slapped by their company's CEO in a BBC documentary).

Hopefully, their upcoming releases can bring the focus back to their music.

AOA

Seven-member AOA burst onto the scene last November with sultry single Like A Cat. But what made them stand out among their peers was the playful music video which fashioned the girls as sexy thieves, sexy janitors and sexy hackers. Yes, it's all very sexy.

Heart Attack, AOA's new music video, turns up the heat even further. This time round, the girls morph into lacrosse players, decked out in super-tight, midriff-baring sports outfits.

It's titillating too - there are scenes where AOA are getting ready for their match in the changing room and one member helps another zip her shirt. I can already imagine the collective reaction from male viewers. Guys, please control yourselves.

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 5/5

It's a no-brainer that AOA have way more male than female fans. Right now, they are the epitome of sexiness in K-pop, so we can always count on them for a visual onslaught.

GIRL'S DAY

We're still wondering what caused the quartet to postpone their album release date to July when it was initially intended for April, a relatively quiet month for new releases.

Then, it could have been perfect timing for them to dazzle and top the charts. Next month, they'll have to go head to head with GG, Nine Muses and Apink - and will need all the luck.

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 3/5

Members Sojin, Yura, Minah and Hyeri are doing well individually in showbiz; Minah put out her own solo EP in March, while the other three have carved out acting and reality TV careers. As a group, they need songs with stronger melodies and bigger hooks to propel them from B-list to A-list territory.

APINK

The sextet have been touted by critics and netizens as "successors to Girls' Generation" and "Korea's next National Girl Group". These are lofty titles that can be intimidating for a group that has been active only for four years.

The girls should aim to expand their international fan base with their new album in July. They already have a massive home fan base (second only to GG's), so it's time to conquer overseas markets like China and Southeast Asia.

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 3/5

Apink have showed consistency with their previous releases LUV and Mr. Chu, but what they need is a surprise to shake things up. Kind of like when 2NE1 did the mid-tempo electronica jam I Love You, or when GG did club banger I Got A Boy with its rhythmic shifts and chord changes. Time for Apink to get out of their comfort zone.

GIRLS' GENERATION

Put any Korean girl group next to Girls' Generation and they'd look like babies. After all, this group has been dropping smash hits since 2007, longer than any group in this list.

Their longevity can largely be attributed to the individual charm of each of the eight members. Fans build up their favourites over the years and go ga-ga at the slightest change they see in their idols. Take the group's newly released publicity photo for their yet-to-be-titled new album in July, which is also their first album sans ex-member Jessica.

Cue the shrieks: "Yoona is blonde! Yuri has bangs! Sooyoung and Hyoyeon have short hair!"

ANTICIPATION FACTOR: 4/5

They're older and wiser, so we should expect a more mature musical effort.

keeyunt@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on June 24, 2015.
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