It's taken me a while to do a post on f(x)'sRed Light comeback because I've been trying to decide whether I actually like it or not. Much of that has to do with what f(x) is as a group, and the way that they've been designed by the SM laboratory. Both their image and music are experimental, but in a mainstream way; their fashion is cool and cutting-edge, but still wearable, while their music rejects the typically uncool sounds of 'cute' k-pop for a style that I'd describe as a slightly more avant-garde version of Britney Spears. Because (for some reason) most K-pop listeners consider trendy fashion and electropop to have more credibility and authenticity than matching stage outfits and Asian-y bubblegum pop, it's easy to fall into the trap of just praising f(x) for being f(x) without really thinking about whether or not they're actually any good -- or at least if they're really that much better than other Korean girl groups.
About a month or two ago I told myself that if I saw one more hipster urban artist blowing up the blogs or one more pop tart copying the aforementioned hipster urban artists from the blogs that I'd bludgeon myself in the head with a portable cassette player. Fast forward to last Friday night: I'm sitting at home stoned watching Rage (Aussie music video show, FYI) at 1am, Rochelle Jordan comes on, and I think to myself, "She's not so bad..." and "I wonder if Domino's is still open?"
I've been making a big effort to start listening to more J-pop lately for a few reasons. The main one being that everyone seems to be covering K-pop now and I've lost my crown as the Caucasian Kween of K-pop, and the second is that my thirsty black soul has been craving the kind of crazy creativity and diversity that only J-pop can really deliver. I chose a good time to start delving deeper into the good ol' JPN too, having recently stumbled upon the best new Japanese girl group since Tokyo Girls' Style: Especia.