Road to Kingdom: Episode Three Recap and Ranking

I wasn't shy when it came to criticizing many aspects of Mnet's Road to Kingdom, but I will be indebted to him forever on ONF's incredible remix of Rain & # 39; s classic mid-00 track "It & # 39 ; s Raining ". This special mixture comes at the perfect time. The different pieces and approaches perfectly illustrate where the K-Pop industry should go with regard to boy groups.

Listen to the title first and then we'll see what we can learn from it:

1. There is a massive gap in the market for hard electronic radio.

I'm a little bit biased because this is one of my favorite genres. And K-Pop used to deliver it pretty regularly. SHINee had long cornered the market for this kind of high-octane, MJ-style dance pop – especially from 2012 to 2013. I assumed they would pass the coat on to a younger group like NCT Dream. Instead, all NCT units have mixed in essentially the same sound.

Elsewhere, TXT flirted with this style on her B-sides. Big Hit, however, seems to be trying to drive them in a more fearful direction, although they are characterized by funkier concepts. Other optimistic groups able to unleash electro-radio masterpieces (Seventeen, Golden Child, Astro, The Boyz … even ONF itself) have since withdrawn to darker sounds. So we have a big, massive hole. There is no group that consistently challenges this genre. And for a big fan like me, that's incredibly disappointing.

ONF's It & # 39; s Raining mix shows how strong this style can be. I mean listen to these verses! Listen to this last chorus! It is crackling with the energy that we rarely heard in 2020. Why don't you put more of it on the table, K-Pop? You are clearly able to do it well. Are you just too lazy

2. Install the electric guitar. Generous.

I've heard a lot of J-Pop from the 90s lately, and regardless of genre, the electric guitar seemed to be a staple.

And you know what? It's a surefire way to give every track a robust feel for texture. One of the (many) reasons why I complain about trap music is that it lacks this feeling of musical depth. I often call it a skeleton because it sounds exactly the same to me – bones, without the flesh that makes a song lovable. It's a cheap, flimsy sound.

So … K-pop industry, don't be stingy with the guitar! And don't just banish it with a tricky breakdown or a too short post-chorus boom. Weave it directly into your song as this remix does during its opening verse. After all, your idols trained hard! Let them show off. They are not mop sad sacks that can only longingly stare at fancy set dressings. Give them a chugging rhythm for the guitar. Increase the energy! Put some meat on these dusty old trap bones.

3. Accept a brighter sound palette.

I have the feeling that my demand for better boy group concepts is often misunderstood. When many hear the word "bright", they think of overalls and sailor costumes … childish facial expressions and aegyo. This has its place and can be fun, but this remix by It & # 39; s Raining is what I really mean by "hell". It's no fun. It is not overly affected. It's just a galvanizing surge of energy.

This type of song doesn't want to prove how bad or "deep" an artist is, but it's pretty bad and lacks depth of musicality in most trap rap bops on the market. It is a song that you can really have fun with. Imagine? Have fun listening to music ?! What an incredible concept!

Nowadays I swear that every K-Pop producer draws from the same small suite of loops, samples and patches. Each song must contain the same moody synthesizers, the same EDM beats, and the same string samples. Find a new range of sounds, producers! Brighten up these synthesizers! Play around a bit!

Can we just convert the magnificence of this remix into original material? I know you have it in you, K-Pop. 2020 is a tough year for everyone. We could all use a little excitement.

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