2018 In Review: Day 12 – Best Collaborative Work

By  | 

2018 In Review

1. Introduction + Best Album Art
2. Song of the Year
3. Album of the Year
4. R&B and Soul
5. Rock and Alternative
6. Rap and Hip-hop
7. Dance and Electronic
8. Pop and Ballad
9. Folk and Country
10. Jazz and Blues
11. Crossover and World
12. Best Collaborative Work
13. Rookie Artist of the Year
14. Artist of the Year
15. Other Recognition
16. Concluding Remarks

2018 gave us plenty of surprising collabs, ones that bridged gaps between generations, genres, and borders. Our Collaborative Work category has a somewhat broader set of criteria for inclusion: while the most celebrated works tend to be those that were able to generate unexpected and meaningful synergy out of a collaboration, we recognize that sometimes it’s just plain cool to see a pair of particular names co-starring on a track. Novelty value does count for something here, as does the sheer quantity of people working together (which is why the hip-hop scene is so well-represented year after year). As a result, you’ll see many works that were not featured in our genre-by-genre recaps the past week.


  • The “next-best ten” and honorable mention lists are sorted by artist name.
  • This year, we’re providing Spotify playlists of music featured in these lists (provided that Spotify carries the music). The 2018 Best Collaborative Work playlist is here and also embedded below:


Best Collaborative Album 2018

Primary & Anda – Do Worry Be Happy

Do Worry Be Happy was a bit of a reach for both Primary and Anda: bubbling synthpop isn’t exactly where the producer made his name (although his work with Uhm Jung-hwa was a bit of prelude in hindsight), and the vocalist (perhaps unfairly) was still better known for her visually striking music videos than her music. But it worked! The EP’s four sumptuous and rousing compositions secured both catchiness and staying power, as Anda put in emotional yet nuanced performances that brought them to head-turning life. The unlikely pair went on to craft two of the best dance tracks of the year (“The Open Boat” and “Dressroom”), and the EP as a whole was perhaps 2018’s most tantalizing in its short length.

Runner-up Collaborative Album 2018

Doe Jaemyoung & Sunji Lee – A True Travel

The product of a serendipitous meeting (as these often are) at a jazz festival, A True Travel was yet another all-too-short glimpse at what can happen when two masters of their crafts meet. The EP’s leisurely compositions generally followed the mold of Doe Jaemyoung’s rock-ballads, with the inscrutable la-la-las of “This Song Being”‘s chorus being particularly reminiscent of a Loro’s album. But Sunji Lee’s piano and organ work added rich details and understated emotion to the soundscape, and her jazz roots produced some really special moments in the urban “The Time Passing Slow”. The two artists’ loving attention to instrumentation was apparent in the album: it remains a joy to track the intertwining of keys and guitar through these tracks.

The Next-Best Ten

Cho Jung-chi – 3

In collaboration with Jung In, Echae Kang, Kim Greem, Kinie.K, Savina & Drones, Fromm, Lady Jane, Sunwoo Jung-A, Yeonjin of Linus’ Blanket

DJ Wegun – Band Wegun Effect

In collaboration with Sogumm, Punchnello, Loco, OLNL, Changmo, Yumdda, Uneducated Kid, Jay Park, Gray, Chancellor, Nafla, Simon Dominic, Coogie

Jang Pil-soon – Soony Eight

In collaboration with Penicillium Music artists

Justhis & Paloalto – 4 the Youth

In collaboration with Jinbo, YunB, G2, Illinit, Huckleberry P, Chancellor, Crush, Ugly Duck, Cifika, Bassagong, OLNL, Yeseo, Ku One Chan, Cherry Coke, Minje, multiple producers

Lee Moon-sae – Between Us

In collaboration with Gaeko, Heize, Jannabi, Kim Yun-hee

Mild Beats – Secondhand Smoking

In collaboration with Chaboom (and the Legit Goons crew), Justhis, DSEL, Easymind, Rhythm Power, Don Mills, Quesa Dilla, Nucksal, Deepflow, Leebido, Khundi Panda

Mothervibes – Mothervibes

In collaboration with Sunwoo Jung-A, Ahn Shin-ae, Echae Kang, Koh Sang-ji, Elaine, Choi Min-ji

Paje, Lee Gwon-hyeong, Park Young-hwan – 인천의 포크 (Folk of Incheon)

So-hee Song & 2nd Moon – 모던민요 (Modern Korean Folk Songs)

Younha – RescuE

Co-produced with GroovyRoom; also in collaboration with pH-1, Chancellor, and multiple producers


Best Collaborative Song 2018

GroovyRoom – My Paradise (Feat. Chungha, Vinxen)

It’s quickly approaching cheating territory to pick GroovyRoom in this category, as “My Paradise” was their third production to make a top-two spot here in just two years. And yes, the pulsing, stuttered beat was indeed crazily addictive and full of intrigue, bringing a bit of mid-noughties crunk and clubtune back to the future bass era. But maybe even more impressive was the performance of the two featured artists put into a perhaps-unfamiliar arena. Chungha navigated the tumultuous melody in a consistently high tension and high range, while Vinxen nearly stole the show with a unique interpretation of the heels-over-head theme that incorporates his characteristic melancholia even into a moment of euphoria. The meeting of these young artists, each up-and-coming leaders in their fields, was a sight to behold.

Runner-up Collaborative Song 2018

Seulgi, SinB, Chungha, Soyeon – Wow Thing

Cross-group collaborations among idols who are 1) not in the same label and 2) not retired from their initial group are so rare, even historically, as to be counted on a couple hands. So it was a refreshing shock to see these names headlining a single together. We had three of today’s top groups in Red Velvet, GFriend, and (G)I-DLE represented, as well as a major soloist in Chungha (herself not far removed from the I.O.I days). The composition itself was excellent – brassy, attitudinal, and performance-oriented – and the four personalities showed chemistry in a track tailor-made for them. “Wow Thing” was a compelling case for more of these “dream team” scenarios, especially when rostered with theme and purpose.

The Next-Best Ten

1SaGain & Nuun – Fade Away

Lee Jin-ah – We Are (Feat. Sam Kim, Kwon Jin-ah, Jung Seung-hwan, Chai)

MC Sniper – 이솝우화 (Aesop Fables) (Feat. TakeOne, Gasinaedeul)

Mommy Son – 소년점프 (Shonen Jump) (Feat. Bae Gi-sung)

John Legend X Wendy – Written in the Stars

Park Ju-won – 10월 아침 (October Morning) (Feat. Sinae Yoon)

Rico – 까지까지까지 (Come Around) (Feat. Yeseo)

Ryu Jisu & Woog – 어른이니까 (Yet)

Sumin – 너네 집 (Your Home) (Feat. Xin Seha)

Vinxen – 그대들은 어떤 기분이신가요 (How Do You Feel) (Feat. Woo Won-jae)

Honorable Mentions


Babylon – Caelo [with Vinxen, BewhY, Verbal Jint, The Quiett, TakeOne, Nucksal, Superbee, Jeebanoff, Sophiya, Nafla]
Cracker – Start, End [with Kim Ho-yeon, Crucial Star, Choyoung, Yoon Hyunsang, Kim E-Z]
Deepshower – Colors [with Ugly Duck, Paul Blanco, JB, Jeebanoff, George, Hoody, Hanhae, Rick Bridges, Min, Mrshll, Sumin, Noair, Maurice Moore]
Django – Seoul Jazz [with Horim, Loco, U Sung-eun, Double K, Horim, Paloalto, Kim Hyemi of Kumapark, Um Ji-hee, Hanhae, Crucial Star, Louie, Sumin, Dmeanor, TakeOne, Paul Blanco, Choi Choa, Ja Mezz]
Hippy was Gypsy – 언어 (Language) [with Cifika, Jjangyou, Hwaji, Jeebanoff, Kim Oki]
Ja Mezz – GOØDevil [Han Yo-han, Dean, Jinbo, Chancellor, Woo Won-jae, Mrshll, Car, the Garden, Dok2, Mino, Jay Park, Koonta, Skull, Coogie, EK, Kor Kash, Tommy Strate]
Jindoggae X Willyeom – Good Is Bad
Peterpan Complex – 1999 [with Yozoh, Jung In, Oohyo, Jeon So-hyun, Fromm, LeeSA]
RD – Breath of Purple Ocean [with Lee Jong-min, TSUN, Rude Paper, Zion Luz, Im Chae-seon of Kingston Rudieska, Choo Il-yeop of Acousouljah, Linda Floresta, D-finga, Cool Running, NST, Kevon]
Reddy & Year of the Ox – eightyfivesoul
Robbin & Gasinaedeul – Normal
Somdef – Some Definition of Love [with Loco, Bravo, Crush, George, Hoody, BewhY, Jinbo, Sumin]
Soul Sweet & The Gita – On & On
Spray – Mindspray [with DJ Son, DJ Wegun, DJ Pumkin, L-like, Sumin, Ugly Duck, Giriboy, Kirin, Lazykuma, Yumdda, Soma, Shaun]
Stella Jang & Pleyn – Staples


015B & O.When – 세월의 흔적 다 버리고 (Without All the Traces of Time)
AshRock – 뭐다냐 (WTF) (Feat. Samuel Seo)
Asol – Bucket List (Feat. OLNL)
Bang Yumi – 실루엣 (Silhouette) (Feat. Pomme)
Boycold – Youth! (Feat. Haon, Coogie, BewhY)
Cosmic Boy – 동서남북 (EWSN) (Feat. Choi LB, OLNL, Kid Milli, Giriboy, Han Yo-han)
Don Mills – Mills Gon Do It Remix (Feat. Woodie Gochild, Zene the Zilla, EK, Bill Stax, Odee, Deepflow, Changmo)
DRB – Butterfly (Feat. Mikyung of MKS)
Dress – Somebody Like Her, Like I Do (Feat. Cifika)
Dynamic Duo – 북향 (Hemi’s Room) (Feat. Ohhyuk)
ELO – Don’t You Worry (Feat. Kirin)
First Aid – Farewell (Feat. Jinbo)
Flash Flood Darlings – Wolflove (Feat. Kirara)
Flowsik X Jessi – 젖어’s (Wet)
Han Heejun – Deep Inside (Feat. Sojung)
Han Yo-han – 1.2GB (Feat. LeeSA)
Horim – Movin’ (Feat. Mxxg, Odee, DJ Noah, Kim Oki)
Huckleberry P – Wave (Feat. Stella Jang, Bassagong)
HyunA, Jo Kwon, BTOB, CLC, Pentagon, Yoo Seonho, (G)I-DLE – One
Iamnot – Crazy (Feat. The Barberettes)
Im Ingun & BMK – 그대여 어제는 왜 그리 취했나요 (My Dear, Why Were You So Drunk Yesterday)
Im Ingun & Kim Mokin – 군산추억 (Gunsan Memories)
Ja Mezz – 錬金術 (Alchemy) (Feat. Dok2, MINO)
Ja Mezz & Salu – Pink is the New Black
Jang Seo-yoon X AudioBanana – Blossom
Joe Wonsun – 서두르지 말아요 (Take It Slow) (Duet with John Park)
Jub & Fatcat – Adam & Eve (Prod. Space One)
Jung Yi-han (The Nuts) & Kang Hye-yeon – 니가 너무 싫다 (Hate You)
Justhis & Paloalto – 4 the Youth (Feat. OLNL, Yeseo, Ku One Chan, Cherry Coke, Minje)
Ju Yoon-ha & Jang Yoon-ju – 낮선 꿈 (Strange Dream)
Keem Hyo-eun – Hit Em Up (Feat. Ignito)
Lee Jin-ah – Run (Feat. Gray)
Lee Seung-hwan – 너만 들음 돼 (For Your Ears Only) (Feat. Stella Jang)
Lee Sora – October Lover (Feat. Roy Kim)
Luna – 그런 밤 (Night Reminiscin’) (Feat. Yang Dail)
Maniac – MoneyMakerz (Feat. Jessi, Jay Park)
Martin Smith – Need a Love (Feat. Yeseo)
Moonbyul – Selfish (Feat. Seulgi)
Mothervibes – Every Time You Call My Name (Feat. Sunwoo Jung-A, Ahn Shin-ae, Echae Kang)
NakJoon – Still (Feat. Luna)
New Authors & Elaine – Goodbye
Nuol – Finder (Feat. Basick, Kid Milli, Noel, Hash Swan, Huckleberry P, DJ Tiz, Snacky Chan, Coogie, Olltii, Kebee, Odee, Nuttyverse, Justhis)
Ohhyuk & Cifika – MOMOM
Ovan – 취한 밤 (Confusion) (Feat. Jinsil of Mad Soul Child)
Park Kyung – Instant (Feat. Sumin)
Ravi – Nirvana (Feat. Jimin Park)
Richard Parkers – 생일소원 (Birthday Wishes) (Feat. Stella Jang)
Risso X Jida – Lullaby
SAZA Choi Woo-joon – Tear My Heart (Feat. Horan)
Shaun – 생각나 (Thinking Of) (Feat. Ovan, Sumin)
Siedah Garrett & BoA – Man in the Mirror
Simon Dominic – 데몰리션 맨 (Demolition Man) (Feat. Kim Jong-seo)
Simon Dominic & Pharaohe Monch – 왈 (Simon Says)
Sleeq – Heat (Feat. Jin Dong-wook, Yeseo)
Soma – Boogeyman (Feat. OLNL)
Songyounchang & Jaejooboys – 못하면 어때 (Who Cares If You Can’t)
Soul One – 좋더라 (Wondering) (Feat. Satbyeol)
Sultan of the Disco – 미끄럼틀 (The Slide) (Feat. Sumin)
Sunwoo Jung-A – 고양이 (Cat) (Feat. IU)
Sunwoo Jung-A & The Barberettes – 차트밖에서 (Outside the Chart)
Suzy – Holiday (Feat. DPR Live)
Suzy – 잘자 내 몫까지 (Midnight) (Feat. Yiruma)
Swyzii – 떡 됐슴다 (Wrecked Again) (Feat. Kang Saneh)
The Trax X Lips2hot – Notorious (Feat. Sophiya)
TSLW – Say Something (Feat. Tarin, J.Yung)
Vinxen – 별 (Star) (Feat. Kim Jong-wan)
Xia & Lim Chang-jung – 우리도 그들처럼 (We Were)
Yang Dail & Wendy – 그해 여름 (One Summer)
Yang Hee-eun & Sung Si-kyung – 늘 그대 (You)
Yein – Cry
Yong Jun-hyung – 소나기 (Sudden Shower) (Feat. 10cm)
Yoona X Lee Sang-soon – 너에게 (To You)
Yun Seokcheol & Echae Kang – 처음 먹는 나이 (Passing)
Zion.T – 눈 (Snow) (Feat. Lee Moon-sae)
Zion.T – 말라깽이 (Malla Gang) (Feat. E Sens)

Read our past series:

2017 In Review

2016 In Review

2015 In Review

2014 In Review

2013 In Review

2012 In Review