Monday, February 23, 2015

The tragic number: An exploration into how badly trios fail at being good

Every time I clap my hands, a seven member boy group debuts, every time I blink, a six member girl group debuts with either a fierce or cute concept depending on the result of a coin toss. From solo artists through to 204920491 member groups, there is some quality to be found somewhere in the K-Pop sphere, yet one number seems to have been forgotten by the gods of good music: 3. Whilst trios have succeeded in such irrelevant categories as making a lot of money, they have never passed the most important test of all: my opinion, and that's all that matters really. This is why I despaired when Tiny-G lost based Myung-Ji, I knew it wouldn't work and I went on to be proven right because Ice Baby was an ejaculate stain of a song. In this article I will be going through a series of three member groups and sounding off to whoever will listen as to why they are so bad. I will not be including sub-units because three member sub-units usually turn out quite well. It will be a thrill ride for all involved.

Seo Taiji and the Boys

"Sohyunna! Founding fathers Seo Taiji & The Boys were a trio, clearly the number is not as bad of an omen as you once thought, please fuck off back to your squalid pit". Unfortunately Seo Taiji and his rentboys made very bad music which just so happened to influence people to make better music. Really, this song has boring and lax production, low quality rapping, and poor vocal melodies; it hits every box that it is trying to avoid. Seo Taiji's boys add very little to the song or the aesthetic of the group so you may feel that it is unfair to call them a trio, but I say that they made their own bed with this one and should be judged as such. Seo Taiji should have foreseen the horrible thing that is K-Pop that he created and predicted that trios would be shit and dropped YG so that we could have been spared the existence of Blackjacks. That would be a wonderful world, but unfortunately Seo Taiji made shit music for shit people. Despite this, his existence did allow this badass version of his song to be done: 

Seo Taiji still has an annoying voice and is incapable of rapping but I appreciate the effort.


I promise that once I have insulted S.E.S, for a paragraph or so, I will only talk about one more super-old K-Pop trio because making fun of any 90s K-Pop is rather easy and not very imaginative. S.E.S exude that certain 90s feeling of boring bubblegum pop that had an upbeat tone to it so people justa te it up and it somehow made millions of nondescript units of currency. Let's call this the S Club 7 model of making music. SM clearly kept making music videos in exactly the same way as "I'm Your Girl"(and every other video they did) makes it appear as if S.E.S are trapped in a series of boxes and the only way they can escape is by pretending to dance and singing in a mediocre manner, don't forget to rap unnecessarily angrily and throw in a sudden key change. In every moment of the 'golden years' of S.E.S, every single member looks a bit like Bjork - on a bad day. I find it hard to put too much more effort into this paragraph because SM put such a tiny amount of effort into making SES appealing in the slightest.


I wanted to talk about Fin.K.L here, but I realised that they are a four member group so had to desperately hunt for another 90s K-Pop trio because chances are, that if they exist, they would be shit. Lo and behold Koyote presented themselves to me and I was utterly disgusted by what I heard. It had everything; a rapper who tried too hard, a singer who tried too hard, and a female singer who doesn't try hard enough. I know that Koyote have shifted in numbers over the years so you may claim that their consistent shitness has nothing to do with number of members, but I say to you that they were built on the foundation of a trio which can only lead to greater levels of disappointment and failure. For those who think that I just listen to one song and call it a day, let me present to you another of Koyote's songs which is currently riding high on my list of 'worst K-Pop songs ever conceived'.

There are no redeeming features, only a never-ending onslaught of horrible music on all possible grounds. I would take S.E.S and Seo Taiji over this any day of the week. Please, make it stop and allow me to move into the twentieth century. It can get no worse than this.


You might have thought that I was tempting fate with the way I signed off on Koyote. I can safely say that 8eight are a much better group than Koyote, but commit a crime almost as bad as being ear crushingly poor; making music boring enough that it could induce hibernation. I am pleased that K-Pop music production has left the veritable stone age that was the 90s, and that the singers are good at what they do (seriously, especially the dude; I really like his voice) but they do absolutely nothing with their positive points. The rapper has no charisma, the songs are slow as molasses, even when they try and fill themselves with life, their music videos always look like some terrible variation on the 'love triangle romantic comedy' genre with the linked video looking like a street dancer and a mens' rights activist are in love with the same girl who is in love with neither of them. Also their songs also sound incredibly similar and follow the same pattern of emotions, often the same chord progression. They disbanded, probably, because they disappeared into thin air after realising that they were of so little consequence.


I could make a penis joke, but I will refrain, partly because they all look about twelve, but mainly because there are so many more things to make a joke about with D-Unit. Their entire existence is a joke and has been ever since they debuted with the musical shart that is ''I'm Missing You''. They clearly wish that they were 2NE1, but they aren't blessed with YG's producers, any discernible talent, or any discernible charisma (akisame: do 2NE1 even possess that?). Their songs grind into your skull, but not in the cool harsh noise way, rather their music makes me want to take up trepanning. They also had some line-up shit mess, with them, and made the unintelligent decision to take on a member of the even worse group 'GP Basic' as a member, but D-Unit's key contributions to civilisation and culture come from their first two singles (the one that is not linked is called "Luv Me" and I refuse to link it because I love and care for you more than you do for yourself). There is no reason to consent to listen to D-Unit.


At this point I have had about enough, so this is the final group of people who I will hurl insults at. For today at least. Phantom decide to be like 8eight and attempt to simultaneously have soulful, wanky vocals, along with a rapper with sufficient levels of $wag. This unfortunately sounds like that type of early 2000s rock song that made its way into the top 40. Their sound has rather shifted all over the place, but they always sound like they are attempting to please to vocalists before they please the rapper with songs that are just as easy to place on as background music as they are to categorically hate. One thing that makes Phantom stand out is that one of their teasers caused a bit of a stir for being altogether too nude for daytime TV, I will embed it below because sex sells.

The song that went with this got people talking about Phantom and was surprisingly really rather good, I didn't want to have to sing any praises but New Era strikes a sensible balance between hip-hop and vocals, all with a cool guitar beat behind it. The video also features lots of sex which ought to please the readers.


There we go, whilst the final example showed that trios can make good songs, they never make good groups consistently. As we know, my opinions are absolute fact and should always be treated as such so I will ask you to quietly accept this. I was going to put in a sub-section about how Lunafly were a good trio because I remember liking a song of theirs but unfortunately that is the only good song they have done or are ever likely to do. Take my advice, if you ever want to make the big bucks by creating a K-Pop group, never form a trio; you will make bad music and there is nothing you will be able to do about it.


  1. Kpop can't do trio groups sadly.
    But trio groups can be done.
    Perfume is a perfect example of a trio group that works and is AMAZING!

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  3. The concepts for D-Unit's Luv me video are really wonderful:

    - Cute androgynous vampire girl, check.
    - Breaking bad like girl with school's stolen chemestry kit making zombie revival perfume, check.
    - Girl with korean black-like rasta dudes holding toy weapon replicas, check.

    You can make at least a dozen good films with these, no need to have plot anyway. There are other nice touches in the video, like a big ass car for comparison agains the shorter than Mario without muschroom girls, the girl at 1:42 who is a man trapped inside a corean girl body, bats with spikes (and holding them awkwardly), trying too hard to look cool biting your lips… it's a goldmine.

  4. Its MV is cringetastic, but "Luv Me" is amazing. You are doing readers and fans of Boram-like creatures a disservice by not linking it. For shame, Sir.

    1. It was certainly better than their debut. That's something at least.

    2. I tried watching it and almost threw up at the little girl kissing a grown man in the truck.

  5. New Era was good because it involved four people, not three. Also, eight member boy bands, why is that never a thing?

  6. Phantom suck. BBCs love them because one of the members had a chance to debut with Block B but blew it somehow, but he's forever and idiotically known (along with Winner's Mino) as "original line-up Block B".

    Hey dummies: the original line-up is the one that debuted. Anything before was just a rough draft.

  7. I liked last year's "I'm the Best" by Bebop (a trio). Unfortunately, being a more rock-oriented song, it was inevitable that it was going to flop. As far as I know, Bebop has disbanded.

    1. You're in luck!

  8. I like v.o.s. I thought they were a great trio boy group. Granted, I like 2am as well. So im kinda a sucka for ballads. But not sm the ballad. Unless its that parody video that made me pee my pants.

  9. There's also SeeYa (Orig. Group) which was a trio who had relative success but it was really Nam Gyuri feat. Vocalists

    Busker Busker = Disbanded
    VNT = Disbanded
    Lip Service = Is now a duo since Cora left
    Tiny-G = After Myungji left
    Shinvi = SM's S.E.S successor group who flopped

    Not that you'd care, but I don't remember Koyote's member lineup actually changing over the years. I always thought it was a male singer, a female singer and a male rapper.

  10. Replies
    1. TTS are also good which is why I discluded sub units, they would have ruined my entire argument

    2. well well after going cold turkey on the blog whaddaya know, AKF left AKF somehow.
      Or not.
      One of my fave authors he was too.

      Sohyunna, you are one of the better writers on this blog.
      Seriously we need to bring back the MORE GIFS + pics + staying relevant to the actual topic - too many words on each article.
      Which you have managed to pull off.

      Write more articles please!

    3. Actually it's only my posts that have too many words and go off-topic (which I won't change). Everyone else's are more or less the same as the old days. People always talk about how this site has changed over the years but really... no it hasn't.


    1. I really like how you managed to ramp up the tension with this argument but

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  13. The bom look alike was cute, 6/10 would watch video again

  14. "They clearly wish that they were 2NE1, but they aren't blessed with YG's producers"
    their song you linked was written by Kush tho (member of YG's Stony Skunk, writer for 2NE1 and Big Bang) and also DM (member of YG's YMGA).

  15. Lol at Akisame's cheeky edit.
    It says a lot about me that I didn't notice anything wrong with the Phantom teaser until I read the text above it.

  16. You left out all the good ones:

    - Clazziquai, best coed, best trio, best DJ. All their songs are good
    - Epik High
    - Phantom - you didn't listen to their best song HOLE IN MY FACE
    - House Rulez (awesome house-jazz)