If you are looking for a more serious review of 2K12 Korea Night (the event) as a whole, check back on Monday. Monday’s post will look at the event from its marketing to its execution and will talk about what they did right and what needs work. But today’s review is all about the music and the performers, and it’s gonna get a little excited!! Seriously, the concert rocked so much I wanted to shed my professionalism (and did at times) and jump & scream with the younger fans. All the performers were so amazing; it was all I could do to keep from screaming 대박!!!! (That’s awesome for my non-Korean reading readers.) Okay, I’ll admit – just between you and me – that I did cheer and sing along but shhh… don’t tell anyone! Honestly, the performers were so much fun it was hard to remember I was covering the event as media!!
First up were the K-pop performers! And from the screams – which more than drowned out my more sedate cheering – the fans were ecstatic to see K-pop in Toronto again.
A Pink (에이핑크)
I’ll be the first to admit that I hadn’t really listened to A Pink before it was announced they were coming to Canadian Music Week. But while I wasn’t all that familiar with them, the crowd certainly was! And they didn’t disappoint! They came out in the cutest outfits with megawatt smiles and lots of aegyo (애교 = cute behaviour). Seriously, they were adorable and the crowd loved them. While their flavour of K-pop (more on the bubblegum pop side) isn’t my cup of tea – I loved the enthusiasm and personality they showed at the concert. I was impressed by their attempts to connect with the crowd (which was much appreciated with cheers) by talking about visiting Niagara Falls and saying they loved Toronto.
Teen Top (틴탑)
OMG! I thought I was going to go deaf when they came out, definitely a crowd favourite! Holy screams Batman!! There were two girls beside me in the crowd who I thought were going to faint they were so excited. When Teen Top introduced themselves, they promised to be “crazy, hot and sexy” and from the screams and sighs in the crowd, they succeeded! Personally, I thought they were more cute 🙂 but they definitely delivered a great performance. I think I’ll add them to my list of K-pop to buy and follow, as they are fun to listen to and they have tons of charisma onstage already! Can’t imagine what they’ll be like once they hit their 20s! I’m a sucker for great dancing and they rocked – hey, who doesn’t like great dancing!
Another crowd favourite, I was a little surprised that she didn’t mention she was Canadian more. Yeah, I know she’s a K-pop singer but she’s also Canadian and us Canucks love to support our own. Regardless, I was super impressed in her professionalism as she must have been totally jet-lagged having only arrived that afternoon but she still nailed a great performance. Her chat with the crowd was sweet and the only negative was her set seemed short. But wow, what a voice! Plus she had an absolutely killer outfit!
Brian Joo (브라이언)
**Happy dance** Wow, the fan girl in me was super happy and I lost all semblance of professionalism during his set and sang along with the rest of the crowd. Love, love, love his performance!! Okay, I already loved his music and have been a fan since his Fly to the Sky days but live… he’s bloody amazing!! Such a great connection with the crowd, adorable (& sexy) smiles… wow… so fantabulous (that’s fantastic and fabulous all in one!!). I’m so happy he sung the Korean version of 너 따윈 버리고 (Let This Die) as it’s become one of my favourite songs. I wish his set was longer but simply because I loved it so much. He’s truly amazing to watch live and funny to listen to as well.
And Brian did a song with C.A.P. from Teen Top which drove the crowd wild!
And there was a suprise guest appearance by KRNFX which rocked! Terry Im – KRNFX’s real name – rocked as usual! This was the third time I’ve seen him live and he’s always amazing! For those of you who aren’t familiar with him, he’s Canada’s first & reigning beatbox champion. For more information, check out my review of his 2012 Toronto Beatbox Battle.
But the night wasn’t all about K-pop (although some of the crowd thought it was) and next up were the Korean indie bands. And man, did they rock the night! I’d heard Crying Nut before, although never live but fell in love with another band thanks to 2K12 Korea Night.
Crying Nut (크라잉넛)
So much energy! They are simply amazing live! Crying Nut is one of those bands that you can see again and again and never become tired of watching/listening to them. The crowd had dispersed quite a bit by the time they came on (it was a school night so a lot of the younger fans had to leave) so there was room to dance/jump to the rocking music. And it was great punk rock music! How can you not like a punk band that has an accordion!! Love how Park Yoon Sik (박윤식) went right into the crowd during one song, talk about getting the crowd involved! Plus they got the crowd to sing “룩 룩 룩셈부르크 아 아 아리헨티나. 룩 룩 룩셈부르크 아 아 아리헨티나.” I’m so buying their latest album!
3rd Line Butterfly (3호선 버터플라이)
They were a complete change of pace from Crying Nut, much mellower. I can totally see them playing in a trendy jazz lounge in Toronto while the audience chills with a nice glass of wine. Great music to chill to but not really my thing. However, they did have some fans in the crowd.
Yellow Monsters (옐로우 몬스터즈)
Wow! I loved them! I’ve totally found a new Korean band to add to my alternative playlist and am definitely buying whatever they have on iTunes this weekend. They rocked!! Now I already liked them because of what I’d heard on YouTube but live… they completely killed the set with tons of energy, great connection to the crowd and of course, fabulous punk rock! Love how they all sing and bring different styles together. The drummer – Choi Jae Hyuk (최재혁) – totally played to the crowd near the end of the set with the towel. If you every get the chance, go see them live! And if you can’t, buy their music!
My favourites of the night were definitely Brian, Crying Nut and Yellow Monsters! I thought that they all not only were fabulous vocally but truly connected with the crowd and looked like they were totally enjoying performing. I would go see all three again in a heartbeat. However, all the performers rocked! I just like those three the best!
Interested in seeing other reviews or mentions of the night? Check out the review in the Torontoist of the first half of the show. Or allkpop’s article on Teen Top’s performance. Or a random blogger’s post that I came across about the event. Or a review in the Korea Times (in Korean).
Now you know what I think (and what a couple of others think if you clicked the links) about 2K12 Korea Night. What did you think about it? Did you like it? Check back on Monday for a total event review (with more pictures and video)!