10 Old-School K-Pop Bands To Make You Remember Why You Fell In Love With K-Pop
Before there was SNSD, 2NE1, Big Bang, Super Junior and Wonder Girls, there was S.E.S., g.o.d., H.O.T., Fin.K.L. and 1TYM. Familiar with these names? You must be an O.G. K-pop fan.
Today, the manufactured genre has flooded the global consciousness (perhaps you've heard of a little video called "Gangnam Style?"), but the roots were planted more than 15 years back, when the first crop of fresh-faced boy and girl bands stepped onto the stage in Seoul and captured the hearts (and charged up the hormones) of a teenage generation. The was no autotune, no off-the-wall costumes and dizzying special effects--just catchy tunes, fun dance moves and surprising talent.
This Saturday, K-pop super-convention KCON comes to the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Irvine. Before you get a glimpse of how far K-Pop has come, take a look back at where it started by remembering these 10 old-school bands.
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Considered by many as the original Korean idols, H.O.T. (which stands for High-Five of Teenagers) connected with the nation's youth with songs about society and teen angst. The five boys--Moon Hee Jun, Jang Woo Hyuk, Tony An, Kangta and Lee Jae Won--debuted in 1996 and nearly every album they released sold over a million copies. They broke up in 2001.
Debuting in 1997, the three-member group was considered the female version of H.O.T. While their image shifted from cutesy to edgy, the trio--Sea, Eugene and Shoo (S.E.S.)--always attracted legions of fans who loved their ethereal songs and sweet voices. The group released several successful albums before disbanding in 2002.