Asian pop music: A top five


AKB Senbatsu 2013. Official image.

Angelica Wallingford

After the unexpected success of Psy’s “Gangnam Style,” international pop music has been on the rise in the States. From smooth hip hop and R&B; influences to various interpretations of Western-style pop/dance genres, there’s something for everybody. You may not understand the lyrics but that doesn’t matter. Just sit back and enjoy. Music is a universal language after all.


1. AKB48 – “Heart Ereki” (Heart Electric)

AKB48 are one of the top idol groups in Japan. Made up of 89 members, the girl group is best known for their interesting music videos and addicting pop songs. “Heart Ereki” has the top 16 girls, or the Senbatsu, dusting off their instruments and playing a catchy 60s inspired j-pop tune; complete with matching marching band type outfits. This is the type of song that will get stuck in your head on the first listen and is guaranteed to have a permanent place in your iTunes library.



GENERATIONS from EXILE TRIBE are a seven-member boy band part of a collective of musical groups/artists in Japan called EXILE TRIBE. All of whom are signed under the same agency, LDH INC. best known for representing EXILE one of Japan’s most successful boy bands. “Hot Shot” is GENERATIONS fifth single and one of the best songs that they have put out thus far. It’s a cool dance-pop hybrid that taps into old school boy band mode while still keeping up with the trends of modern music.


3. Tomomi Itano – “1%”

Formerly of super idol group AKB48, Tomomi Itano has more then proven that she can hold her own. 1% is her sixth and her final single before officially leaving AKB48. This song is everything you could want in a pop song and more. Good music, catchy harmonies and an interesting vocal arrangement, all wrapped up in a nice dance-pop bow. It’s not everyday that you get a singer that sounds bored on a song and have it actually work in your favor.


4. f(x) – “Rum Pum Pum Pum”

f(x) is one of the best girl groups on the Korean pop music scene. “Rum Pum Pum Pum” is the lead single off of the groups second full-length album and features musical influences from various genres like hip hop and pop. The song also incudes drum line style percussion breakdowns and sitar influenced guitar playing. Not only is the song really good but the video is also something to check out. Those girls stomp the yard better then a certain 2007 movie bomb.


5. Jay Chou – “I’m Not Worthy”

Most people might remember actor Jay Chou as Kato from the 2011 film “The Green Hornet.” However, what most people might not know is that he is also renowned Taiwanese singer-composer. “I’m Not Worthy” is just one of his many hits. The song is a contemporary R&B; slow jam complete with smooth vocals and soul influenced instrumentation. Plus, the music video is more of a short film then a typical video, which makes for an interesting and entertaining experience.