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Jake’s Top Ten Favorite K-Pop Songs for Spring

It’s Springtime! The sun is out, the flowers are “In Bloom,” (foreshadowing) and the pollen is making us all sneeze. And if you like K-Pop, you know that the genre has a lot of material to provide for this time of year. If you don’t like this type of music or haven’t listened to it before, I highly encourage you to give my list of ten favorite K-Pop tracks a listen for Spring. 

*DISCLAIMER: These picks are based on my taste and preferences in music, I don’t know every single K-Pop song that has been made. I’d love to read all of your playlists in the comments below!

She’s a hit, she’s a classic, and she’s most definitely a staple. No, I didn’t just add this song because the word “Spring” is in the title, as it does embody the new season. The ever-so-present synth, the passionate vocals, and the 2017-esque music video, ‘Spring Day’ puts you in the mood to go for a walk in Prospect Park on a rainy day, or a partly cloudy afternoon. This fan favorite among Armys (BTS’ fanbase) is a single that everyone should add to their playlist. Everyone knows BTS, but everyone should also know this certified moody boy anthem. 

This could be an Anime intro. Red Velvet can do any genre of music and never fail to impress me. Keep in mind, that this was released a year into their career. There are buckets of energy poured into the instrumental, and of course, the vocal performance is exceptional. This track is perfect for if you want to go for a run outside, or if you’re late for work and need some tunes to speed up your usual walking pace. ‘Day 1’ is fantastic, and will teleport you into a new world during your first listen. 

Whatever happened to FUN? Cherry Bullet gave us a good time with this song. The girl group delivered a bubblegum pop hit that exuded sunshine, rainbows, and candy. With the booming chorus, cutesy beat, and good old high note at the end, what’s not to love? I guarantee you, ‘Love So Sweet’ will put a smile on your face. I particularly recommend watching the music video before listening to the song alone to get the whole vibe.  

Putting this song on AUX while driving at night hits differently. The lead single from her 5th full-length studio album, IU presents listeners with elegant vocals, on top of City Pop-inspired production with ‘LILAC.’ The 30-year-old artist’s inspiration for the song was her 20s, and how she’s saying goodbye to that point in her life. (Lilac means ‘memories of youth.’) The track feels like a smoothie of 80s and modern musical trends, with flower petals added into the blender. I am a big fan of the City Pop genre in K-Pop, it never misses in my opinion. IU is no exception, she fulfilled my cravings with ‘LILAC.’ With strong critical and commercial success, I have a strong feeling that this song is going to be a bonafide classic in the upcoming years. 

After my initial listening to this single a couple of years ago, it felt like a boost of caffeine. The production on this track is crazy, like “I just took a 5-hour Energy” type of crazy. The sophomore single from the temporary mega group, IZ*ONE, is jam-packed with vibrancy and liveliness. The group brings a playful and bright performance on this track, and the empty chorus isn’t even that bare, because the explosive beat drop makes up for the lack of vocals. 

What if the word, “Magic” was a K-Pop song? This is what fairies jam out to, I’m almost positive this song broke the charts of the Pixie Hollow Hot 100. WJSN has proved time and time again that they can provide fans with their signature mystical pop hits, but ‘Save Me, Save You’ is their biggest hit. And I believe it, it’s a stellar piece of music. The track will make you feel like you are on a trip into a fantasy land where everything is blue, purple, and pink, and where little butterflies are everywhere. 

The fan-titled sub-genre of “Christian Horse girl music” is a dying art in K-Pop. (Gfriend you will always be famous), but looking back, this specific song is more “Christian Spring girl music.” ‘Secret Garden’s orchestral elements, specifically the beautiful violin, and striking chorus make a strong impact on the overall composition and mood of the record. This is another majestical entry to the list, that’ll make you feel sparkly, and light, and will give you the urge to frolic in an open valley. 

Her name is the perfect word to describe this single, JOY! This is a cover of Park Hye-Kyung’s 1999 hit single, ‘Goodbye.’ Joy brings new life to the popular Korean song with thriving trumpets, exuberant vocals, and a hot drumline. The music video accompanies the song very well, showcasing a lighthearted storyline about discovery, connection, and new beginnings. Joy’s voice is a wonderful fit for this track, and every time she performs it, her aura is infectious. If you need a song to lift your spirits, this is your golden ticket. 

Now THIS is how you introduce yourself as a group. ZEROBASEONE showed up and showed out with their first single, ‘In Bloom,’ and gave us all the spring vibes. I feel a slight 80s influence in this track, especially with the exquisitely constructed chorus and addictive main synth/melody that is scattered throughout the record. Also, all of the ad-libs and high notes are insane and are like the rainbow sprinkles to this musical ice cream sundae. If you don’t give this smash hit of a debut single, you’re seriously missing out. 

Are we surprised? Red Velvet truly is my girl. For me, this is THE spring K-Pop song. ‘Feel My Rhythm’ samples ‘Air on the G String’ by Johann Sebastian Bach, and it is sampled to literal perfection. This is orchestral pop but cranked up to one hundred. With the god-tier production, charming vocals from the Red Velvet members (per usual), and an established ballet/garden aesthetic showcased in the single and music video, Red Velvet did their big one with one of the best singles in their discography. You must watch the music video first, do not listen to just the audio first. The video pays homage to various paintings done by legendary artists such as Claude Monet, Hieronymus Bosch, Jean-Honoré Fragonard, and more. Overall, Whenever I think of springtime, I know that it’s time to “Feel My Rhythm” and transform into the sixth Red Velvet member. 

Written by Jake Pranian

Photography by Thea Wiener

Editing by Jake Pranian

Videography by Geo Mojica

Talent: @d.xbrah on Instagram

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