In recent generations of K-pop, many artists have begun to favor aggressive, hard-hitting beat drops and instrumentals to match the intensity and power of their dances.
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Although some listeners frown upon this style of music, calling it too “loud” or comparing it to “construction noise,” it is clear how well-loved this genre of music has become. Without further ado, here are some of the best K-pop songs that unapologetically embrace the title of noise music.
1. EVERGLOW – “DUN DUN”
Kicking us off is EVERGLOW’s “DUN DUN,” one of the group’s most audacious and successful singles to date. Making bold, menacing EDM their niche from the get-go, EVERGLOW delivers an intense, mind-blowing experience with every listen of this song and every dynamic drop, punctuated by the members’ anthemic shouts.
2. KARD – “Bomb Bomb”
KARD is known for their discography of club-ready hits, and 2019’s “Bomb Bomb” is no different. However, this track dips into an experimental, scratchy instrumental that borders on grating, but it still makes for an infectiously energetic track that packs an undeniable punch.
3. ATEEZ – “Guerrilla”
In their latest title track, ATEEZ seems to have mustered up every ounce of power and attitude in their bodies, combining it all into the banger that is “Guerrilla.” Probably the most aggressive of K-pop releases in recent memory, this song perfectly fuses its choppy synths with a soaring rock-heavy guitar instrumental, even sprinkling a couple screamo moments for good measure. With “Guerrilla,” ATEEZ proves that their boisterous, wild energy remains unmatched.
4. aespa – “Savage”
Among all of aespa’s innovative, experimental tracks, last year’s “Savage” is one of the most iconic with its clanging industrial sound and video game inspired blips painting a vibrant cyberpunk soundscape befitting their unique concept. While she doesn’t have the flashiest of lines, rapper and vocalist Karina takes this track to the next level with her dark tone and addictive vocal fry, which feel right at home in “Savage.”
5. GOT7 – “Hard Carry”
Can you believe it’s been six years since GOT7 blew our minds with “Hard Carry”? This powerful EDM and trap-influenced dance track is still one of the boyband’s most memorable songs to date, signaling their shift into a heavier sound with its thrilling, heart-racing instrumental drop. And, like its title suggests, it really does go hard.
6. CLC – “HELICOPTER”
While CLC is deeply missed, the third-generation girl group made sure to go out with a bang through the edgy trap and heavy EDM-infused “HELICOPTER” as their final single. Loaded with explosive instrumentation and a powerful, stomping rhythm, this track brought out the very best of CLC’s fearless, confident attitude.
7. Stray Kids – “Thunderous”
“The Thunderous ones have arrived,” Stray Kids declares in this intense brush off to their haters. The group has been unapologetically bold from the very beginning of their career, choosing to commit to their hard-hitting sound despite divisive attitudes about their music. Its instrumental chorus is unlike any other, perfectly emulating the stomach-dropping feeling of going down a steep rollercoaster. Plus, what better way to end off this list than with the kings of noise music themselves?