A.C.E On Bringing Traditional Korean Culture To A Modern K-Pop Album: ‘We’re Really Proud’

9/10/2020 3:35:00 AM

A.C.E's Jun, Donghun, Byeongkwan, Wow and Chan unravel the different layers of new album 'HJZM : The Butterfly Phantasy' and 'Goblin (Favorite Boys),' the meanings behind different Korean cultural elements and why they say their relationship with their fans, Choice, has 'become different.'

While Butterfly Phantasy has already delivered the band’s best first-week album sales and local award-show nominations, the rising quintet has done something more important by commanding the competitive K-pop spotlight and deliver something that is both artistically personal and universally compelling—a stark difference from last year when local media deemed them"just glad" for any attention.North Korean refugee Kim Seo-yun and her South Korean husband Lee Jeong-sup watch their wedding photos at their house in Seoul, South Korea Thursday, July 23, 2020.Billboard last Wednesday (Sept.synths on “Criminal” create a moody, hypnotizing atmosphere to fit Taemin’s dance with the Devil: the elegant offender in the lyrics is none other than himself.

The members themselves speak with pride not only in the physical transformations they made despite coronavirus concerns (the group’s English speaker Byeongkwan cheekily mentions “a lot more of our muscles” in the album artwork), but also excitedly of their creative team who came up with the traditional-meets-modern looks and of one another (Byeongkwan also can’t help but excitedly interrupt to help hype up members Jun and Chan when they’re explaining their underwater photoshoot that collectively wowed the K-pop fandom).Read on for more from Jun, Donghun, Byeongkwan, Wow and Chan unraveling the different layers of their new album, the meanings behind different Korean cultural elements and why they say their relationship with their fans—known affectionately as Choice—has “become different.Arriving from a nominally socialist, extremely repressive society, these women often struggle to adjust to fast-paced, capitalistic lives in South Korea.” Jeff Benjamin: Congratulations on this new comeback! I've been so excited for this album and this feels like a really big moment.85% of the poll with their sleek scenic visual that showed the boys defying gravity at different spots they individually jetted off to with the South Korean car manufacturer's new electric vehicle brand IONIQ.What’s been going through your minds during this release? Byeongkwan: Because of our pandemic situation, we’re not able to go anywhere except to our practice room, our house or the gym.Many want to marry South Korean men, who they think will help them better adjust to new lives in South Korea.Because this concept required us to work out our bodies—you might have seen a lot more of our muscles and our bodies in the initial pictures—we were focusing on our vocals, dance practicing, as well as working out.” Act 1 of the project dropped on September 7th, while Act 2 ’s release date has yet to be announced.

We’re really nervous because it's been almost ten months since our previous comeback, but excited to show our performance to our fans, Choice.(AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon) SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — On their second date last year, feeling a little drunk at a seaside restaurant, Kim Seo-yun let slip a revelation to her South Korean love interest: She had fled North Korea a decade ago, something that sometimes made her feel ashamed in a country where North Korean defectors can face discrimination.Since we put so much effort and time into preparing, we have to win.We feel that pressure.Lee proposed in March and in June they got married at a Seoul hotel.Chan: We want to show a different concept and choreographies every album.We have been preparing for this album from May until now and, this time, we’re really ready to show what we’ve prepared.ADVERTISEMENT “In South Korea, my husband is my everything.Advertisement inspiring both younger and older idols alike who consider him iconic.

We want to meet the fans face-to-face, of course, but we feel lots of pressure because fans waited for us so long and we want to make it deserving of waiting.Jeff Benjamin: “Favorite Boys” is really powerful and impressive as a lead single.He told me that he would play the role of not only my husband but also my parents,” Kim, 33, said.Why was it the right song to choose as your single for this big comeback? Byeongkwan: Actually, there were two songs that were competing between being chosen for the title track [single].There was “Baby Tonight,” which fits more of a sexy and dreamy concept and we loved it, while “Favorite Boys” was more powerful and up-tempo.” It’s an increasingly common scenario.But after a long discussion, we felt like “Favorite Boys" suits us more.Before Act 1 , he released “2 Kids,” a prologue single meant to introduce this new era.

A.While there are no official numbers on how many North Korean defectors have married South Korean men, a 2019 government-funded survey of 3,000 North Koreans living in the South suggested that 43% of married women were living with South Korean husbands, up from 19% in 2011.C.E is known for their really strong choreography and strong beats whereas “Baby Tonight” is more easy-listening.They also face widespread discrimination, bias and loneliness.“Favorite Boys” more so shows A.C.“I feel like my marriage is letting me acclimate to this society more deeply without too much hard work,” Hwang Yoo-jung, 37, said about her 2018 union with a South Korean man.” With titles such as “Strangers” and “Clockwork,” the keywords Taemin chose allude to themes of love, loss, and longing.

E really does: strong sound and dance.Jeff Benjamin: I've been so impressed by the visuals you've shown in your teaser photos and videos, I love the historical and traditional Korean elements in them.“I get a big sense of achievement from paring these couples because I also came here alone and know (the suffering) of other refugees,” said Kim Hae-rin, who runs a match-making agency in Seoul.Can you explain some of the different visual aspects? Jun: Since the title song’s title is “Goblin” in Korean, we had to really go with strong colors rather than something like pastels.It’s very vivid.” Many women who flee North Korea turn to matchmaking agencies, often run by fellow defectors, to find South Korean husbands.Byeongkwan: Do you know Korean traditional wrestling ssireum ? In Korean fairy tales, traditional goblins like to wrestle with humans.When reflecting on his debut with SHINee in an interview with Sellev, Taemin admitted that his voice wasn’t even featured on their title track, “Replay.

Using that, our choreographer found a way for us to use traditional Korean wrestling in our choreography.No such matchmaking services exclusively cater to male defectors, who often marry other North Koreans or live alone.That’s a really exciting thing.I think every culture has a different concept of goblins, but in Korean they don’t have horns, they’re not a monster figure, a Korean goblin is more human.“When I talked with her, I felt we could develop a special relationship,” said Lee, 32, who works for a food company.They’re fine to be around and hang out with humans, it’s more friendly.We bring that idea out on stage.I told her I’d be fine as long as she didn’t have a previous marriage, a secret baby or a criminal record.“To always keep his head up and always move forward.

Chan: And for people from western countries, it might be hard to figure out what’s unique about Korean traditional elements when it comes to fashion.You might tend to think about Chinese or Japanese outfits when thinking about Asia.They are, after all, attempting to bridge a 75-year-old division of the Korean Peninsula.But we wanted to make the accessories, the details, all the extra elements to be authentically Korean among Asian traditional elements.In the music video, that's seen with jade rings, ornaments and the hair bands with our hanbok [a robe-like, full-skirted clothing most common during Korea's long-standing Chosun dynasty] outfits.Hwang said that she feels “really, really happy” when her husband Seo Min-seok, 39, takes her to a gathering of his friends and their wives, where she faces many questions about North Korea.Jeff Benjamin: Yes! The fashion is really cool, I feel like you did a mix of traditional and modern when you wear the hanbok over your streetwear.

I haven't seen that before.Husbands sometime tease their wives with North Korea-themed jokes.Byeongkwan : It’s really unique! Our stylist team is very open-minded, they try very hard and think a lot.You know we've tried a lot of fashions since the “Cactus” era, we’ve worn hot pants, crop tops, short shorts…all the credit goes to the stylist team and the staff first.She said he still likes hanging around with her North Korean defector friends, who he says are more forthright about their feelings than South Koreans.They work very hard to bring the concepts and we’ve been in very long discussions for what to bring for this comeback so we're really proud of the stylist team.But we’re in the K-pop scene, we can’t go with only a traditional look, it’s got to be modern.Ahn Kyung-su, a researcher with a private institute studying health issues in the North, said some of the North Korean defectors he’s interviewed told him that their South Korean husbands looked down on them and abused them.

And we ended up somewhere in between and think we found some really good points between the two.It came out really nice and we’re happy.Kim Seo-yun said she misses her parents and younger sister in North Korea and hopes to reunite with them one day.Donghun: It’s also not easy to dance in hanbok, but at the same time we want to show the unique movements in these traditional outfits.A.When her mother called her in March, Kim told of her upcoming marriage, saying that she would marry “a tall guy who cares for me a lot.C.

E,"Favorite Boys" video behind-the-scenes exclusive Courtesy of Beat Interactive A.Lee said he didn’t really understand what his future mother-in-law was saying because of her strong North Korean accent.C.E 'HJZM : The Butterfly Phantasy' album teaser photo Courtesy of Beat Interactive Jeff Benjamin: An element that really caught my eye—and I think all of the K-pop community’s eye—was the underwater teaser photos with Jun and Chan.“Now, my husband is filling my heart.Was it really taken underwater? Chan:.

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North-South Korean couples try to bridge 75-year divisionUnification by marriage: Thousands of North Koreans, mostly women, have fled to the South in the past 20 years. Arriving from a repressive society, the women often struggle to adjust to fast-paced lives and face widespread discrimination and loneliness. good story NK dictatorship, women most affected.

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