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My pick!: Top Jpop songs of 2009 (Favorites edition)
Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I won't lie - I'm the worst Jpop fan this year. Hence this year, this top whatever list is really really hard to compile. To compensate, I've decided to take out all the songs from my favorite artists so that you get better recommendations instead of a really biased list.

(Honestly though, it was because all the following 15 songs made it to my top 30 list, which made it look really lame. I like my lists professional, not just a favoritism game.)

My favorite artists if you didn't know by now are AAA (surprise surprise you haters, I still love them, get off my case already), Hirai Ken (I want to have his babies and drink his bathwater) and the "newcomer" Big Bang (TAEYANG TAEYANG TAEYANG). Hence this list has only songs from these artists. Next week's list will be the actual top Jpop songs list, without any of these artists.

I think I just confused myself.

Anyways, that is not to say these songs are not good, because they are. They're so good that they got into a list of their own. So go listen.

Number 15: AAA - HORIZON

It's a typical AAA feel-good song - memorable melody, uncomplicated vocals, bubbly and happy. Yet there's an element of strange to it that makes it different from other Jpop songs. Or other AAA songs that is. It kind of feels like a nice day out shopping with a few friends - just some lighthearted fun.

Number 14: Big Bang - My Heaven

Part of the reason why this song didn't rank higher is because it came out in Korean before, so it's not exactly the freshest of songs. And even when it came out in Korean, it took me quite a while to get used to it. It's a ballad for sure, but it is very different from the typical Jpop ballad. It's kind of like if you took a ballad and smashed it hard against a dance track and throw in some club beats just for the heck of it. The chorus is really really good though so the song as a whole came out pretty well. It's kind of hard to explain to just listen to it and you'd probably know what I mean.

Number 13: AAA - Wonderful Girls

This was what I wrote when I first reviewed this song:

One of the first impressions I got from this song is that it is very SMAP-esque. SMAP could have been singing this 5 or 6 years ago when they were younger. Relatively safe pop stuff. The kind that the audience claps along to somewhere in the middle of the concert.

And I stand by this still. Being safe is a good thing sometimes, this might be one of the sometimes.

Number 12: Big Bang - Emotion

Cool, chill music for those days when you don't want too much going on. It's strangely sexy to me - a song I can see myself having hot sex too. But that's just me.

Number 11: Big Bang - Follow Me

This song is incredibly catchy. The lyrics are simple and repeated constantly and when you add that to a strong beat you have a party pleaser. Shout along to it, dance the night away with it and you'd be better for it. Do not overuse it though, the repetitiveness of the song is a double-edged sword - it might get boring after a while.

Number 10: Saihuun (AAA) - Break Your name

This was the song that I thought would bring AAA back to being awesome. The preview was very well done, and the choreography was amazing. But it fell slightly short of that expectation in the end. It's still a very decent dance-pop track though, very similar to many other AAA dance tracks so AAA fans will definitely enjoy this one.

Number 9: Hirai Ken - Furusa Saiida

When you first hear this track, you will think I have gone out of my mind for putting this song in this list. But trust me, give it a few tries before judging it. I don't know what it is really, perhaps the bellydancing ethnic cracktasticness of it all is what makes it so epic to me. Curious yet? GO LISTEN. I can guarantee the chorus will be stuck in your head for a long time to come, whether you like it or not.

Number 8: AAA - Jamboree!!

BRIGHT AND HAPPY! YAY! And we all know AAA does happy well. They have freaking sparkles coming out of their asses or something. This is downright sugary pop so you can be assured that you'll feel happier after listening to this (or irritated greatly, if you're not into this kind of thing). It's one of the safer AAA songs to be honest, but it holds its own.

Number 7: AAA - Summer Revolution

The girl's one-third of the triple-A side triple A single (HAHA I am so funny) Break Down. I've been told it sounds like TRF but to me it sounds like GIRL NEXT DOOR done right. Very electronic stuff without too much vocoded vocals. Power pop if you may, this song has the girls in their element and is one of the best (if not the best) girls-only song AAA has ever come out with.

Number 6: Big Bang - Top of the World

Another strong Big Bang club-ish song, the oddly emotional chorus is what makes the song. And whoever sang "it's getting hot" made me very hot. Yum. Made up of mostly electronic beats and very little of anything else, Big Bang's vocals are surprisingly not altered too much so it's a good show of their vocal prowess as well. It's not overly upbeat or depressing so it's the perfect song to chill to without getting your mood down.

Number 5: Big Bang - Bringing You Love

Electronically altered voices and beats give this midtempo number a distinct Big Bang feel to it.

Number 4: Big Bang - Koe wo Kikasete

It's smooth, has lots of buildup to an epic chorus. It's the perfect winter song - sentimental, sad, ballady, emotional and all sorts of lovey-dovey things. It's bittersweet and like the perfect romance that wasn't meant to be. Go listen and feel like you're in love. With 5 impossibly good-looking guys.

Number 3: Big Bang - Ora Yeah!

I think I fell in love with this song right from the start - T.O.P's quirky rap paved the way for a really fun song. Usual Big Bang stuff to be expected - catchy beat, repetitive simple easy-to-follow lyrics, lots of spunk and attitude. Overall awesomeness.

Number 2: Hirai Ken - Boku wa Kimi ni Koi wo Suru

The meaning of this song is essentially "I will fall in love with you". Can you see why I love this yet?

This is such an epic song because it is so impossibly dramatic and sad - like all good Hirai Ken ballads are. The PV for this song had him shouting and singing from a mountaintop, that should give you an idea of how dramatic this song is.

But really, when it comes down to it, the song is simple and sweet and yet so heartbreakingly sad. It talks of a really selfless love so yeah, don't blame me for being such a mushy pile of goo when talking about this song.

Search for the translation of this song on Youtube. Then you will know what the hell I'm blabbering about.

Number 1: Big Bang - GARA GARA GO!!

I've yet to meet anyone who hates this song. You may not like it at first, but trust me, you WILL fall deeply in love with it. A little electronica, a little house, a little dance, a little techno, a little pop and out comes one very epic song. The beat is brisk and very rapid, perfect if you need some cheering up without having to resort to the ghey of bubblegum pop. Classic Big Bang shoutouts like "oh eh oh!" and "B-I-G to the BANG" adds so much fun to an otherwise very macho-sexy song.

I can't rave enough about this song, you'd just have to take my word for it and just go listen to this.

To make your life easier, I've uploaded all 15 songs on this list to Mediafire for you guys to download (they're all tagged properly already, since I'm anal like that). This also means that I really hope you guys will take the time and effort to go through each song and let me know whether you agree with me on this selection or not!

Click here to download!

Leave me comments on what you think of the songs. I'm terrible with song reviewing so it'd be great to hear some fresh (and non-overused vocabulary) opinions! :D

Next week, we begin the real Jpop songs countdown! :D Any guesses yet?


And also...


You guys are crazy and I love you all. :D

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