Hello there! So I’ve decided to start tier rank some Kpop songs released in January. I figured this is a fun way to recap the month. With that being said let’s get started.
There are six categories:
- SOTY 🤩 – This is a song I believe is a contender for Song Of The Year.
- Love It 😍 – This is a song that I can NEVER skip. Every time the song shows up on my playlist I gotta play it.
- Enjoy It 😌 – This is a song that I really enjoy but I’ll play it depending on my mood.
- It’ll Take Time 😕 – This is a song that I need to listen to it a couple more times or wait a few months and revisit it. I have hope that I’ll like it eventually, but I need time.
- Meh / Indifferent 😐 – This is a song that I don’t feel anything for. It’s not bad but not good for me.
- Skip It – This is a song that was not meant for me. I can’t help but skip it completely if it ever shows up on a playlist.
Love It 😍
On January 2nd, NewJeans released their song “OMG”. It wasn’t until recently I started listening to NewJeans. I have to say “OMG” is definitely worth listening to. There’s so much hype behind this song (it’s been charting really well) and I can honestly say this song is worth all the success. The song sounds fresh, it’s catchy, and I can’t help but repeat the lyrics “Oh my oh my God, 예상했어 나, I was really hoping that he will come through.” I haven’t seen any of their music videos yet. I might do a mini series on them and watch their MVs for the first time. But until then I’ll just enjoy listening to “OMG”.
Love It 😍
Also on January 2nd, GOT7’s Yugyeom released his song “Ponytail”. This was a pleasant surprise for the month. The song “Ponytail” features rapper Sik-K. The song has an addicting rhythm and Yugyeom’s smooth vocals is sweet in the ears. I can’t help but keep this song playing every time it shows up on my playlist. I’ll admit, I definitely played this song more than most songs this month.
Enjoy It 😌
January 4th, the duo from Astro – Moonbin & Sanha released their song “Madness”. It’s dark with a smooth base throughout the song. I enjoyed this comeback, the music video, choreography, vocals, and the charisma both guys have. The overall direction of this comeback was great.
Meh / Indifferent 😐
On January 5th, H1-KEY released their song “Rose Blossom”. I’ve noticed this song has been getting lots of attention. I checked out the song and music video. The vocals and lyrics in this song are amazing. However, the music itself didn’t impress me. Despite my love for the powerful meaning and the vocals, I had a hard time remembering what the song sounded like after I listened to it. I wish they chose a different genre to deliver this song. Regardless of how I feel, I still recommend every one should check it out.
Enjoy It 😌
January 9th, the powerhouse group MONSTA X released “Beautiful Liar”. It has everything I love about this group: powerful vocals, strong rap verses, unapologetic swagger. Even though I enjoyed “Beautiful Liar”, I listened to their b-sides a bit more. “Daydream” and “Crescendo” are my jams (they’re in the ‘love it’ category for me). But overall I thought this comeback was really solid for them.
Enjoy It 😌
On the same day, January 9th, SF9 released “Puzzle”. This is another song with a smooth baseline. The chorus is catchy with the verse: “Troublin’ troublin’ troublin’ ahh, 당황한 표정에 Mumblin’ ahh, 내 맘은 다시 또 Rumblin’ ahh, you’re in trouble.” The choreography is just as catchy too. I’ve always said this, SF9 is a very sexy group. Sexy in the sense of how they carry themselves. Their charisma, gentlemen looks, King’s Men type of vibe – that type of sexy and I love it. Even though “Puzzle” is a fun song, their b-side tracks are my favorite: “New World” and “Fighter”. I’ve replayed those b-sides more than a lot of other b-sides on January. I think they’re title track worthy, please check them out.
Enjoy It 😌
January 13th, Taeyang released the song “Vibe”. This was the comeback I was looking forward to the most. Taeyang is my BIGBANG bias, it has been several years since his last solo comeback. When he released “Vibe” which features Jimin from BTS, I really enjoyed it. I think the collaboration with Taeyang and Jimin was unexpected but perfect. It’s one of the best collabs of 2023 in my opinion. But throughout the rest of January and February the song lost its shine for me. I only play it when I’m in the mood for it. I hope Taeyang will release more music throughout the year, I definitely missed his amazing vocals. I would also like to see more BIGBANG + BTS collaborations in the future too.
Enjoy It 😌
On the same day January 13th, GOT7’s Jinyoung released “Cotton Candy”. The song is sweet and soft. It’s like candy to the ears. Jinyoung’s vocals are so smooth. “Cotton Candy” is the type of song I’ll play in the car, windows rolled down and just enjoy the moment. I also have to mention his b-side track “Sleep Well”, this song is like a hug. It’s so beautiful and sincere.
Love It 😍
On January 16th, SM’s Avengers girl group GOT the beat, released their song “Stamp On It”. I was skeptical about this song, since their previous song “Step Back” was kinda iffy for me. But after I saw their performance in the SMTOWN concert I really loved it. I think the genre change in the song really worked out well (this is a risk and more times than not, genre change in a song doesn’t work for me). The vocals are really solid in this song. “Stamp On It” is empowering and it’s definitely in my workout playlist. Also shout out to their b-side track “Goddess Level”.
It’ll Take Time 😕
January 20th, TWICE released their song “Moonlight Sunrise”. This is a pre-release track for their upcoming comeback (in March). Just like most of TWICE’s songs, “Moonlight Sunrise” didn’t stick with me after the first listen. I went back and listened to the song a few more times and it’s still not my favorite. The vocals are good but the overall song isn’t memorable to me. But I’m certain within a few months I’ll love this song. With almost every TWICE song it takes a while for it to really grow on me. I still can’t believe I didn’t enjoy “Fancy” the first time it was released. Now I consider “Fancy” one of the greatest songs ever. Anyway I have hope for “Moonlight Sunrise”. But at the moment it’s not for me.
Enjoy It 😌
On January 25th, Yesung released his song “Small Things”. Out of all the comebacks in January, Yesung’s concept was my favorite. Everything about it represents who Yesung is. The song “Small Things” is soft and very chill. It’s the type of song I’ll play if I need to relax. His b-sides “Like Us”, “4 Seasons”, Mermaid”, and “Together” deserve a listen. I highly recommend checking out his album. There’s sincerity and emotion in each of his songs. I can’t help but feel a certain type of emotion that I can’t explain when I listen to his music. Perhaps it’s nostalgia, that’s what I feel when I listen to “Small Things”.
Love It 😍
January 27th, TXT (Tomorrow X Together) released their song “Sugar Rush Ride”. That song is definitely a ride. The structure is interesting – the song has soft moments and energetic moments. I think the members vocals are fantastic. The part that sticks out to me is when the chorus drops and there’s a whistle and the members sing “Gimme gimme more, gimme gimme more”. Then the song quickly picks up and I can’t help but sing “Sugar rush-ush, sugar rush-ush-ahhhh.” The song is about temptation and it’s quite dark. The music video is a masterful piece of storytelling. The story TXT has is intricate and I always look forward to the next installment of it. Also shout out to their b-side tracks, “Tinnitus (Wanna be a rock) and “Farewell, Neverland”.
January 30th, NCT 127 released “Ay-Yo”. I was rooting for NCT 127 but I was disappointed with this song. It was unmemorable and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t remember what the song sounded like after I finished listening to it. I’ve been a fan of NCT for a while but I didn’t like the direction of this song. It felt anticlimactic. The rap verses are great and the vocals are wonderful – but the song itself was not it for me. But just because this song isn’t my favorite doesn’t mean it’s not your favorite. I still recommend anyone reading this to check out the song. I know lots of people really enjoyed it.
Music is very subjective. If I loved or disliked a song that is my personal opinion. I recommend you check out all the songs I listed on this post. Everyone has a different music taste and that’s great, cause there’s definitely a song out there for everyone.
How would you rate the songs released in January?
I made a playlist for all my favorite KPOP songs released in 2023. You can check it out here.