As one of Korea’s leading indie rock band, Apollo 18 has released four albums since 2009 with each named after a colour: Red, Blue, Violet, and the last is Black. They have won many prizes and toured the world.
In sitting down with them for our last exclusive interview from the Korea Rocks Tour in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, I was not interested in any sort of average questions as we already have held a thorough interview with the group’s past, present and future last year. So this time, I dug inside these awesome rock and roll artists to find out what their hearts were made of, and I was not disappointed.
Some of the questions sparked long discussion among the members before coming out with a satisfied answer. Here we bring you the inner story about Apollo 18, which you may probably have never known about them; the meaning of their music and the meaning of being Apollo 18.
Our dream is not to become rock stars (…) what is really important is that we are together.
It’s your first time in the UK, are you excited?
Dae Inn: Very excited, the weather is beautiful (laughs as it was currently raining)
What is your target as a group? What do you want to achieve as Apollo 18?
Sangyun: There is no target. We want to enjoy ourselves; to have people watch our show and enjoy the music.
But what was your initial dream when you started?
Daeinn: Just play music really, expressing our feelings…
Are you satisfied with your current status or do you still want to become bigger?
Daeinn: Sure, we want to get bigger.
What if things never change and keep going with the exact same level of success, same audience, same album sales for the next 20 years; would you be happy with this scenario?
Hyunseok: Actually, we’ve been together for a long time. That’s really important… our dream is not to become rock stars. Of course having success and earning a living is important but what’s really, really, important is that we are together.
Daeinn: Keeping playing together, that’s what’s important.
Could you tell us a bit about your recording process? Do you have a precise plan when you create a new song?
Daeinn: No, no, we have no plan. We just jam.
Hyunseok: But then of course we don’t just record jam sessions, we rework and make many, many, small changes to the bits that we like.
Daeinn, you acknowledge Kurt Cobain as a personal influence while growing and Kurt Cobain always claimed that the lyrics didn’t matter, only the music does. What is your personal view on that? What kind of balance do you try to find between music and lyrics?
Daeinn: We have no lyrics in our last album; well we hardly use any.
Hyunseok: For us it’s not about delivering lyrics; this is more about using the lyrics and the voice as part of an instrument.
In joining this UK tour, do you feel you are representing the Korean indie rock scene, and have a mission to promote it?
Hyunseok: We don’t think we are representative of indie bands of South Korea. We have more opportunities to go abroad and tour unlike most other artists. I mean, we have this opportunity to do those international tours, but still a lot of people do not recognize us in Korea. We’re not mainstream or Kpop; that’s what South Koreans are really interested in.
Last year, The Koxx produce a song for 4Minute. What would be your reaction if an idol company approaches you about producing idol music?
Hyunseok: We don’t want to change our musical style; but we’re assuming that if an idol group like 4Minute asks for a song or a collaboration, they would expecting us to stick to our own sound rather than us adapting to theirs.
Potentially, we want to prove that we can go abroad and do the tours or concert freely, without any complex and having people recognizing us. As long as we can prove that other bands in South Korea will get inspired by it.
What do you think of a group like Glen Check? Do you think they belong to the same music scene as you or are they different?
Sangyun: No they are different, completely different from us.
I’m asking this because Kpop is expanding as a genre, embracing all its artists at once and not just one or a few isolated ones like SNSD or T-ara. Do you think there is a similar process for Korean indie music?
Apollo 18: We don’t think the Indie music will ever be as popular as Kpop inside or outside Korea. But what we want to do, potentially, because Korean Indie is still behind other any other Western rock band, or any kind of bands, we want to prove that we can go abroad and do the tours or concert freely, without any complex and having people recognizing us. As long as we can prove that other bands in South Korea will get inspired by it. But it’s not really our intention anyway.
Ok, what about Jrock? Do you think Krock can become as big as Jrock internationally?
Apollo 18: Well it’s going to take some but we hope so. Jrock has this fundamental base; it’s been there for a long time. We don’t think we’re going to catch up on it easily, but as long as we keep doing tours and good music, then eventually, we might be able to catch up on it.
Alright, what do you think about an artist like Lee Seung Yeol? Do you think you belong to the same indie scene?
Apollo 18: He’s major. He’s very famous. He belongs to one of the biggest label in Korea; we can’t really compare to that. He is a mainstream artist, however he plays indie.
Would you consider signing for a big label while still playing indie?
Apollo 18: As long as the label does not ask us to change our music style, there is no reason why we would not join a major label like Lee Seung Yeol.
We think [our music is] just a sketchbook. We provide the page and people write their own story. It’s up to the listeners to give our music a colour, an image.
Could you describe your sound as a band in one image?
Apollo 18: There is no image; just Apollo.
What about a colour then? Since you use colours for your album names and covers, what colours fits you best, defines your sound?
Apollo 18: Oh, very hard question (laughs). We think it’s just a sketchbook. We provide the page and people write their own story. It’s up to the listeners to give our music a colour, an image. This is part of the reason why we don’t write lyrics that often because if we do so we give directions, a definition to all the tracks. But we would rather leave the listener decide and figure out what the music is.
But then what precise role plays the colour chosen for each album? Isn’t that an indication, a direction, a definition?
Apollo 18: Again, it’s very difficult but it’s ok, we like it. We’re happy with the question but we want to be careful at what we say. We don’t have our own colours. The colour that we decide depends on the album we make; it can be red, it can be blue, it can be yellow next time. It is referred by the style of music we make at the time. The colour chosen for the album represents the mood, not the story. We don’t actually put album title on the covers. They’re known as red or black because of the cover’s colour. Again, we want to leave things to the listeners; they can think on their own, freely, as they listen.
What context suits best the listening of your music?
Daeinn: Sex (laughs)
Hyunseok: Maybe by the river side.
Sangyun: I think it’s best in a club, as live music.
Is your lifestyle matching your music?
Hyunseok: It was, but not anymore; because we don’t make a living out of it. There are bad things and good things about being in a band – there are actually more good things. However, if we’re too hungry and unable to make money out of it, we can’t enjoy as much as that as a band.
Is there any moment in your life that you forget being part of Apollo 18 or being a part of Apollo 18 is your identity?
Apollo 18: No. Everyday, nonstop. We are Apollo 18 and want to be together and keep making music. As we said before: our hope is to keep together till death.
As I came to the conclusion of this interview, the heartfelt answers left a deep impression on me and the burning passion they have for the music they believe in. On behalf of hellokpop, I would like to wish them what they hope for: to keep making great music together until death!
You can read the following related stories from the Korea Rocks Tour at Tunbridge Wells:
You can find out the latest updates of Apollo 18 by following them:
Coverage provided by Marty M.
PR/Technical Assistance provided by Nicole@hellokpop.com
The first multicultural American band to professionally cover K-Pop, Dave Tauler Music Group (DTMG), has become a hot topic among US K-Pop fans in the last year due to their awe-inspiring and interesting twists on some of K-Pop greatest hits.
With past remixes of songs such as 2NE1‘s Lonely, Big Bang‘s Blue, and PSY‘s Gangnam Style, they have managed to grab the attention of fans all over the world in record numbers. DTMG has set out to release a remix that not only paid homage to the genre and culture that they truly respect but also to give the fans something to remember.
Their newest remix is sure to have all the SHAWOL‘s out there cheering and dancing along as DTMG officially released their remix of SHINee‘s latest hit Dream Girl today featuring another Star King alumni and YouTube sensation, Pumashock (aka. Natalie White).
Natalie White has garnered massive amounts of success on her YouTube channel with her remixes and covers of Kpop super hits such as JYJ‘s Ayy Girl, 2PM‘s I’ll Be Back, Kara‘s Step, Super Junior‘s Mr. Simple, TVXQ‘s Mirotic, Wonder Girls‘ No Body, and Girls Generation‘s Gee and has been highly praised for her amazing and emotion-stirring vocals.
DTMG and Pumashock’s dual collaboration music video was shot at Studio 51 in March and was directed by Brad Baerwald and assistant director Christian Oh, the co-founder and executive director at Kollaboration DC. DTMG’s Lead Vocalist David Tauler was joined by his regular band-mates Teo Lee (bassist), Tim Kim (pianist), Paul Eldridge (lead guitar), Kyra Koh (main backing vocals) along with their latest additions to the group, DeJuan McCrimmon (keys), Brian McFarly (drums), Andrew Glaros (rhythm guitar) and Shervonne Brown (backing vocals).
On the eve of the release of their latest cover, DTMG members Dave Tauler and Teo Lee, along with Pumashock, sat down with us to discuss how the collaboration came together and what it was like working together.
What was your first impression of one another when you first met?
Natalie: “The most surprising thing was when we first actually got together on the phone. I understood it was a business call but, honestly, as soon as we got on the phone, I felt like I was just talking to a bunch of old friends – just catching up. There were a lot of laughs. It was a really, really cool conversation. I really like these guys. It was awesome. I was so happy and stoked to work with them. My expectations were very high when meeting DTMG in person and I think my expectations were completely met –if not completely exceeded. It felt very organic. We all hit it off right away. ”
Teo: “She looked exactly like she does on her Facebook page. She was all glamorized and all shiny.”
Dave: “For me it was a surreal experience because I have never gotten to know someone as well as I have gotten to know Natalie (through social media and by phone). Later on we became friends on a personal level. We talked for a long time (ten months), and then all of a sudden, there she was getting off the plane. I said, ‘Oh-my-gosh, that’s her.’ She had a big smile on her face and I could tell she was an artist right away.”
Natalie: “I’m still weird-ed out by about how much we (David & I) share in common, and to think that we’re both here in America, but the thing that brought us together was the Star King stage. I think that’s the coolest thing about our friendship, this creative connection that we made, is that Star King is what brought us together – all the way from Seoul.”
Were you at all worried whether or not your vocals would meld well with one another?
Dave: “Once I started hearing Natalie sing for real in the studio, when we put the mic on her, I was like, ‘Oh My Gosh, I’m going to have to bring my A-Game.’ She is a brilliant vocalist. I had a small idea, but what she brought to the table that day, just blew all of our minds. For me, I knew right then and there I had to step up. I wasn’t too worried about our voices working well together because, the one thing about Natalie I respect so much, is that she is a true musician. She has a lot of soul and strangely enough a rock edge too. (laughs) I was just trying to keep up. Her stage presence blew my mind. The second thing that blew my mind was her vocals, it (the music video), only took two takes and that’s phenomenal. She murdered it.”
Natalie: “The thing I was concerned about, my only fear was, ‘Don’t let me be wasting these people’s time and money. Let me be an asset to this process.’ It was very intimidating for me because I’ve been a one-woman-show for so long. I would love to be in a band and I love playing with other musicians. It’s been a really long time since I’ve had the opportunity to perform with other people and here I’m coming into this situation where the group is just meshed, cohesive, solid and full of first rate musicians. They’ve got a sound and I have to find a way to become a part of that. That was my only concern. I wanted to add to the process and not slow them down in anyway.”
Teo: “We paid careful attention in our (DTMG) rehearsals to try and wrap the sound around what we imagined Natalie’s vocals were going to be like. We had to find something that had that edge, but was still sexy and cool, that would support her vocals. It was so nice to hear it all come together.”
Why did you choose SHINee’s Dream Girl?
Dave: “We loved this song. I loved it for so many reasons it was hard to really say what we could bring to the table to make this even more special. The challenge is that the song is called Dream Girl and ultimately, when you look at SHINee and what there singing, they singing about their dream girl. It can be pretty awkward when you have a song that’s so gender driven. If you listen to the lyrics (with our performance), I’m really singing the guy lyrics and the lyrics that Natalie’s sings works from a girl’s point of view. So it doesn’t get weird in that regard.”
When you were in the studio, what was the atmosphere like?
Dave: “I knew something special was happening. It’s not every day that you’re going to have this many people who otherwise wouldn’t be together if it wasn’t for music and K-Pop. We have all kinds of different people from different backgrounds. We have Korean speakers, Korean, non-Korean, and non-Korean speaker, yet were all there together – not just in front of the camera but behind the camera as well. We had Brad Baerwald -a Grammy nominated engineer, and who is he working next too, but this distinguished filmmaker and film professor, Christian Oh, who is Korean. We’re all in it together. That, by itself, made this one of the most special experiences for me. They all brought their A game and everyone was having fun. It was just good to be there. It never felt like a job.”
“The reason why we do this is really because of K-Pop fans. K-Pop fans are the coolest fans that we know. They genuinely care deeply about the music and those who support the movement. We love K-Pop fans and K-Pop. We can’t wait to share this (the music video) with the K-Pop world. We do this for the fans.”
Pumashock, what was it like for you working with a live band?
“Oh, it was incredible. It felt natural to me. That’s what I want to be doing all day, every day. Hearing other musicians who are at the top of their game, feeling the base, hearing the drums kick in, and the guitars rippin’ – that just excites my soul. That’s my element. I absolutely love performing with a live band.”
In three words or less, how would you describe your collaboration and music video to the fans?
Dave: “Absolutely unique, 대박”
Teo: “Way Cool, exciting”
Natalie: “Mind-blowing-ly rad”
Is there anything you’d like to say to the fans before we let you go?
Dave: “팬 여러분! 너무 사랑합니다 (To all the fans! I love you.) I love you. I really do. K-Pop Fans make making music more special than it already is.”
Natalie: “I just want to say thank you! Everyone is so supportive. I’m getting ready to come back and, it’s all because of the fans support, that I’ve gotten this far. I’m going to work really hard to bring them good music and keep spreading the K-Pop wave.”
As we reported earlier, Pumashock has now officially signed with Billboard Entertainment Group LLC under the tutelage of Tyrone “Niddy” Buckner. For both DTMG and Pumashock the news doesn’t just stop here. Pumashock will be guest judging Kollaboration Atlanta‘s talent showcase this weekend, where the winners will be in the running for a $20,000 grand prize at Kollaboration Star later on this year.
DTMG will be performing as the headliner act at this Friday’s Tasa Night Market event at Princeton University with another longstanding friend of hellokpop, SNRG. DTMG will also be headlining Mayor Gray‘s 2013 Asian America and Pacific Islander Heritage Month celebration at Washington, DC’s historic Lincoln Theater on May 30.
Source: Video: DTMG, Photos Provided By DTMG/Melting Earth.
Boy band CNBLUE has released its first video teaser for BLUE from its upcoming fourth mini album entitled Re:BLUE.
To be Alive, is to be marked by much life, animation, or activity and also, knowing or realizing the existence of something (Merriam Webster).
Without a doubt, on the 27th of October, 2012, Stadium Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was alive with a crowd of 15,000 who turned up to support the group named after the cosmic explosion marking the beginning of all things -BIG BANG, which comprises of members G-Dragon, Taeyang, Seungri, Daesung and T.O.P.
Indeed, BIG BANG Alive Galaxy Tour 2012 began and ended with a bang. A good one and a half days before the concert started, at 10am on the 26th of October, the first group of fans hailing from Sabah had already began queuing up at the stadium. Hours before the concert commenced, scores of fans had congregated outside Stadium Merdeka. From official merchandises to freebies, the thronging crowd showed no qualms about having to queue up to obtain all these, snapping up the free and the expensive with no hesitation at all. BIG BANG stickers, a lighted bracelet, a customized badge made on the spot were some freebies distributed on the ground, but shirts and other goods were being sold just as quickly. Many were seen sporting blue hair, were dressed fashionably and totting light-sticks; some improvised and made their own crown hairbands while others flaunted the skeleton-hand hairclip G-Dragon wore in his Crayon music video. Preparations to welcome BIG BANG did not stop here: fans distributed lighted red and blue rings, spreading the message to synchronize the lighting up of the red and blue rings during Fantastic Baby and Blue respectively. Even peddlers selling food, beverages and raincoats set up stalls behind the stadium, contributing to the festive atmosphere that was not only characterized by gaiety, but also by the electrifying tension and anticipation.
BIG BANG too, had no qualms about making this concert a grand fanfare, as this was after all their first time in Malaysia. With a production value of a staggering RM 4 million, the one-night stage in Stadium Merdeka was only completed after one week with props and equipment shipped in from Korea, Australia and Malaysia.
Yet, even with all these preparations, the open-air stage was subject to the weather-the downpour delayed the performance by about half an hour. Decked out in raincoats and chanting ‘BIG BANG’ at intervals before the concert started, the crowd’s spirits were hardly dampened by the heavy downpour. When the curtains finally came down to reveal the BIG BANG members standing in capsules and breathing through oxygen masks, the audience forgot to breathe. Going wild with delight, the crowd began to scream even as the members emerged from the capsules and greeted Malaysia with a cheery “What’s up Malaysia! Make some noise!”
Bursting into their opening song Tonight, BIG BANG indeed made Tonight special for the fans by braving the rain and venturing onto the open-air stage at intervals. After they “got the [crowd] going crazy” with Hands Up, G-Dragon and T.O.P undoubtedly made their fans swoon and go crazy with Knock Out and High High, and then it was Seungri ‘s turn to dominate the stage with Strong Baby and What Can I Do. With Gara Gara Go and Number 1 and Cafe, “BIG BANG rocke[d] tonight” as the VIPs’ “number one”. Leader G-Dragon charmed the audience with short parts of Crayon and One of a Kind, and BIG BANG then played up their image as heart-breakers with Bad Boy.
Without letting the enthusiasm fizzle out even by a bit, BIG BANG slowed down the tempo with Blue, charging the atmosphere with a melancholy suffused with their gratitude, as the history of this song reminded both Big Bang and fans alike of the difficult times they had faced. After more sad songs like Love Song, Monster and Feeling, the spotlight was first on Taeyang while he performed Look Only At Me and Wedding Dress, and later on Daesung during his solo, Wings. Although fans were familiar with the lyrics of most songs, it was old song Haru Haru that most could memorize fully. Even without the accompaniment of the BIG BANG members, the audience serenaded BIG BANG, who in turn directed their microphones at the crowd and listened with pleasure to the fans’ singing.
Repeatedly, BIG BANG apologized to their supportive fans for not being able to stay long and professed their love for their VIPs with their songs, firstly with Lies- Baby Baby Baby-“[we are] sorry but [they] love you…[we] need you…and [we are] leaving..I love you, bye bye!” –and Baby Baby-“I don’t wanna be without you…Baby Baby Baby”. Emanating energy from start to finish despite this being their 9th stop in their world tour, BIG BANG clearly had fun on stage and enjoyed performing to the appreciative audience, whom they could not stop thanking for giving them ” such a memorable time” and for “supporting [BIG BANG]”. As this was BIG BANG’s first time in Malaysia, they promised to “never forget tonight. It was beautiful” and they were touched by the fans’ sincere enthusiasm “even though it was raining”. With a message to fans to “please take care till the day [they] meet again”, BIG BANG bid their farewells, yet with each “bye”, the VIPs would cry “no” so sadly that they seemed reluctant to say goodbye as well.
The stadium reverberated with the loud chants of “encore, encore”, and when BIG BANG reappeared for their encore stage, the frenzied crowd cheered as if they had only just seen them for the first time that night. BIG BANG returned with Heaven, bidding farewell to the crowd with the promises of [we] will love you, [we] will remember you”. Then, apologizing with Bad Boy again, the VIPs were reminded that even though the BIG BANG members were indeed Bad Boys for “abandoning” their fans with the end of their concert, this first meeting with their Malaysian fans were well treasured. Closing with Fantastic Baby and Hands Up again, BIG BANG lifted the spirits of the Malaysian VIPs, leaving them feeling very much Alive and rejuvenated, but not wholeheartedly satisfied, for which VIP can ever get enough of BIG BANG?
BIG BANG’s Alive Galaxy Tour 2012
With an entourage of 88 in total, BIG BANG and crew were in Malaysia for a total of 76 hours, and resided in 60 hotel rooms. A world tour with this magnitude only depicts the huge successes BIG BANG has and will achieve, with this tour covering in total 25 cities in 16 countries. Kicking off their world tour in Seoul, Korea on the 2nd of March, BIG BANG performed to three sold-out concerts in their homeland before packing their bags and heading to Japan’s Nagoya (17-18th May), Yokohama(25-27th May), Osaka(31st May-3rd June), Saitama (16-17th June) and Fukuoka(23-24th June). Next on the itinerary was China’s Shanghai (21st July), Guangzhou (28th July) and Beijing (4th Aug), Singapore (28-29th Sept), Thailand’s Bangkok (5-6th Oct), Indonesia’s Jakarta (12-13th Oct), Taiwan’s Taipei (20-21st Oct), Philippines’ Manila (24th Oct) and their 9th stop, Malaysia’s Kuala Lumpur (27th Oct).
To date, BIG BANG has performed in US Los Angeles (3rd Nov) and Newark(9th Nov), but their tour is far from over. With upcoming concerts in Peru’s Lima (14th Nov), Japan’s Osaka (23-24th Nov), Tokyo (5th Dec) and Fukuoka (22nd Dec), their aptly named Alive Galaxy Tour 2012 will see BIG BANG finishing their tour with a bang tantamount to that of their cosmic counterpart, and herald in a new age in which they rein. With these achievements and more to boast of in future, who could ever say that a real galaxy tour in future is an impossible feat for BIG BANG?
Event covered by Huiying@hellokpop (L) and YunTing@hellokpop (R)
Additional information: starindex
Picture credits: Huiying@hellokpop and Running Into The Sun (without watermarking of hellokpop logo)
SINGAPORE – Imagine an eclectic mix of Chinese traditional instruments, some Western orchestra instruments, drums and even electric guitars performing K-pop tunes arranged to accommodate the different instruments? For the skeptics who cannot even conceive how these can go well together, there have been many attempts to marry the sounds of traditional instruments and their modern counterparts.
For those who have been exposed to this unique mixture of instruments through Korean drama Heartstrings (starring Jung Yong Hwa as a guitarist and Park Shin Hye as the female protagonist who plays the gayageum-a Korean traditional instrument), or seen the recent live performance of AOA’s Get Out featuring Mina, this risky and meticulously crafted pair-up can either be a success, or downright painful to the ears, lest to say undermining the traditional instruments, who often cannot be heard due to the nature of modern instruments to be louder and more easily heard by the audience. Nanyang Polytechnic Chinese Orchestra (NYPCO), however, proved their mettle with their concert K-ATTACK II, held on the 3rd of November, 2012, at the Esplanade Concert Hall, Singapore.
The first section began with a majestic rendition of IU’s You and I, then continued with melancholic tunes like SISTAR’s Alone and 2AM’s I Wonder if You Hurt Like Me, and finishing with CNBLUE‘s Hey You. A percussion-only performance of BoA’s Only One, KARA’s Pandora and 2NE1’s I Love You, a song that shook the K-pop industry with its distinctly un-Kpop-like-sound, NYPCO performed songs across a range of genres, exploring diverse repertoires even under the K-pop umbrella itself.
Performing T-ara’s Lovey Dovey, SHINee’s Sherlock, SNSD’s Paparazzi and Huh Gak’s It Hurts and even the then yet-to-be-officially-released 2PM’s Masquerade in the second segment, NYPCO showcased their ability by covering recent and popular songs. The Sherlock performance was exceptional, made complete with the chants of “SHINee’s back, SHINee’s back” by the orchestra members. Fast numbers like Lovey Dovey and Paparazzi were no easy feat either, but the orchestra seemed to have fun even whilst having to deal with the huge number of notes. NYPCO ended the second segment by bringing the house down with an expected performance of the song that has been taking the world by storm-PSY’s Gangnam Style.
From a PSY doppelganger, sunglasses, the cheesy horse-dance, orchestra members dancing to Gangnam Style with style, to a girl member standing up and saying “Oppa, Gangnam Style” in a cute voice, NYPCO put in much effort to ensure that the audience would enjoy this particular song.
More great songs, for example, DBSK’s Keep Your Head Down, followed in the third section. The last song was most memorable, as it was not a single song, but a seamless mash-up comprising BIG BANG’s Fantastic Baby, Blue, Monster and Love Song. For the encore, the maestro apologized for not being able to play more songs, and to make up for that, the orchestra would “play one last song with at least ten songs”, and among these songs were SNSD’s The Boys and Mr Taxi, 2PM’s Put Your Hands Up, T-ara’s Cry Cry, F.T. Island’s Hello Hello, CNBLUE’s I’m A Loner, KARA’s Mister, BIG BANG’s Tonight, 4Minute’s Heart to Heart, B2ST’s Fiction, SNSD Taeyeon’s Can You Hear Me, U-Kiss’ 0330, and many more.
Songs that were most spectacularly delivered and which stood out in their powerful and accurate delivery and conveyance of the emotions were later revealed to be the songs arranged by one of its members. Displaying superb skills in blending the sounds of the different types of instruments, as well as in arranging pop songs for traditional instruments, this laudable accomplishment has not only depicted how the NYPCO is not only just a place for students to improve their craft, but also to try their hand at challenging the abilities of the instruments in terms of the songs they are usually associated to and deemed fit to perform. Although there is an absence of an overarching theme to the whole concert and thus the songs did not contribute to the whole flow of the concert-flitting from light-hearted songs to groovy songs and to emotional songs-, both orchestra and audience enjoyed themselves tremendously.
What makes K-ATTACK II a refreshing performance is that they pay homage to the music preferences of today through their traditional instruments . Having come a long way since being formed in 2009, the orchestra has grown from a mere 45 members to the current 155 members under the helm of conductor Mike Chiang. Majority of the friends who turned out to support members of the orchestra were evidently K-pop fans rather than fans of the traditional instruments. However, this concert merged the traditional with the modern, and even though the creation of this new sound inevitably eradicates a little the beauty of both the traditional and the modern, it is testimony to a brave new vision which the NYPCO has embraced to keep the Chinese instruments relevant in today’s society.
If you , the K-pop lover, want to wave light-sticks to your favorite songs with like-minded friends but cannot afford the skyrocketing prices of tickets to see your idols, why not look forward to next year’s concert by NYPCO? Besides being treated to a performance full of laughs while learning to appreciate music produced by a Chinese orchestra, this is one concert where you definitely can experience that wordless sense of contentment derived just from listening to music-it will be an attack (or K-ATTACK) on your senses!
Event covered by Adrian@hellokpop and Yunting@hellokpop