TWICE’s Nayeon unveils playful music video teaser for ‘POP!’

TWICE’s Nayeon has released the music video teaser for her upcoming debut solo single, ‘POP!’

In the playful new visual, Nayeon is seen browsing through a book at a cafe, before performing in front of a swimming pool with synchronized swimmers and jetting away. “Pop! Pop! Pop! / I want you,” Nayeon croons in the background before the teaser ends.

‘POP!’ is the title track of the K-pop idol’s debut solo mini-album ‘IM NAYEON’. Prior to this teaser, the idol had also previewed the track through a short snippet posted to TWICE’s TikTok account, as well as in an album sneak peek on YouTube.

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The seven-track ‘IM NAYEON’ will feature JYP Entertainment labelmate Felix of Stray Kids on the song ‘No Problem’, while rapper Wonstein will appear on ‘Love Countdown’. Other tracks on ‘IM NAYEON’ include ‘Candyfloss’, ‘Happy Birthday To You’ and ‘노을만 예쁘다’ (loosely translates to ‘Only The Sunset is Pretty’).

Meanwhile, American singer-songwriter Destiny Rogers, who previously helped pen ‘Moonlight’ from TWICE’s 2021 album ‘Formula of Love: O+T=<3’, is a composer on the song ‘All Or Nothing’, which will feature lyrics by Nayeon.

‘IM NAYEON’ will notably mark the first time that a member from the girl group TWICE is officially going solo, although several members have contributed songs to the soundtracks of K-dramas in recent years.

TWICE’s last release as a group was their November 2021 full-length album ‘Formula Of Love: O+T=<3’, led by the title track ‘Scientist’. The digital edition of ‘Formula Of Love: O+T=<3’ also included the girl group’s English-language single ‘The Feels’.

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SEVENTEEN’s Jeonghan undergoes surgery, but will still join the boyband on tour

SEVENTEEN member Jeonghan recently underwent elbow surgery, according to his agency Pledis Entertainment.

The entertainment company shared a statement today (June 17) on Twitter, sharing that Jeonghan underwent surgery on his right elbow on June 15 as a result of worsened damage to “his lateral epicondylitis and tendon”. It also noted that the singer had already been seeking “conservative treatment such as receiving injections” to the outer tendon of his elbow prior to the surgery.

“The operation was successful, and the artist has been recuperating after being discharged as of Thursday the 16th,” Pledis Entertainment added. “Jeonghan will be wearing a cast for the time being, as well as a brace in order to protect the treated area, and to aid in a faster recovery.”

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The company also noted that Jeonghan is “highly determined to attend all of the group’s prearranged engagements”. However, due to the surgery and recovery process, the extent of his participation in SEVENTEEN’s scheduled activities will be “adjusted depending on the circumstances […] as per recommended by the medical staff”.

This means that while the K-pop idol will still join the rest of SEVENTEEN during the duration of their forthcoming ‘Be The Sun’ world tour, his arm will have to remain in his cast and brace in order to reduce any unnecessary strain on his injury.

The ‘Be The Sun’ world tour is set to begin with a two-night residency in Seoul’s Gocheok Sky Dome next weekend on June 25 and 26. SEVENTEEN will later bring the tour to North America in August, with stops in 12 cities across the US and Canada currently planned.

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Kep1er usher in the summer with music video teaser for ‘Up!’

Kep1er have release a music video teaser their forthcoming single ‘Up!’.

In the clip, the members of the K-pop girl group huddle together for a self-timer photo against the backdrop of a elaborate, brightly coloured set made to recall a beach house. Later, montages of Kep1er enjoying the summer with cocktails by the pool and popsicles, as well as goofy photobooth moments flash by.

‘Up!’ is set to be the title track off Kep1er’s sophomore mini-album, ‘Doublast’. Both the track and the record are due out on June 20 at 6pm KST.

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‘Doublast’ is set to be Kep1er’s first release of 2022, and the much-anticipated follow-up to their debut mini-album ‘First Impact’. That release had sold almost 400,000 copies in South Korea, according to the Gaon Music Chart, and featured the single ‘Wa Da Da’.

The girl group were first announced to be returning with music shortly after they concluded their run as contestants on Queendom season two, the Mnet reality TV series which the girl group had competed in against other female K-pop acts such as HyolynVIVIZWJSNBrave Girls and LOONA.

As part of the voting process to determine the final Queendom 2 winner, the contestants had released new original songs in advance in order for the steams to be counted towards the contestants’ final scores. Kep1er’s release was the song ‘The Girls (Can’t Turn Me Down)’, which helped them come in fifth place on the show.

Earlier this year, in an interview with NMEthe girl group spoke about how they are determined to become “the best girl group” of the next generation. The girl group also looked back on the bumpy journey to their debut and discuss their love for BLACKPINKIU and Girls’ Generation.

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J-Hope will be the first BTS member to release new music, says HYBE

BTS member J-Hope is set to be the first member of the boyband to release new music, according to Big Hit Music.

A day after the septet announced their temporary hiatus from group activities, a representative from Big Hit Music confirmed that the group will be releasing new solo material and collaborations during their break from group engagements.

Of the members, J-Hope is slated to be the first to release new solo music, with a full-length solo album reportedly in the works, per Billboard. Further details on the rapper’s forthcoming release are expected to be released in the coming weeks.

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“[The hiatus] will be a time for each of the members to grow with their diverse activities, and we anticipate that this will foster BTS into a long-running team,” the representative told South Korean media outlets, as translated by Soompi. “The label will actively support this.”

In a recent interview with Weverse Magazine, J-Hope opened up about the group’s state of mind while preparing for their Grammys 2022 performance in April. “The other members were on the brink of mental exhaustion at that point, to be honest,” J-Hope said of their preparations.

“It was a lot of pressure, psychologically speaking, as we were now at the Grammys and doing a performance similar to one we did shortly after we debuted. The idea behind the performance was for us to say, ‘Let’s do this for them again. We can pull that kind of performance off at the Grammys. We’re BTS!’”

BTS recently released ‘Proof’, a 48-track compilation album that traces the septet’s storied career thus far through a combination of previous releases and new tracks that “reflect the thoughts and ideas of the members on the past, present, and future of BTS”.

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News of BTS’ temporary break causes HYBE stock to fall over 28 per cent

HYBE, the label behind K-pop supergroup BTS, has seen their stock price plummet after the K-pop boyband announced they would be going on a temporary break.

The South Korean entertainment agency’s shares dropped as much as 28 per cent within the first hour of trading today (June 15), one day after BTS said they would be focusing on their solo careers. According to a report by Billboard, HYBE’s shares had fallen as far as ₩140 thousand per share after opening at ₩168 thousand.

The company is currently headed for its lowest close on record since it went public in 2020, wiping out as much as $1.7million in market value as of writing.

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In light of uncertainties regarding the septet’s future, even prior to their recent announcement, HYBE has seen its stock go down by nearly 60 per cent this year so far, per The Straits Times. This means that the company has given up nearly all of its gains since its debut on the stock market.

Lee Hye-in, an analyst at Yuanta Securities Korea Co., told Bloomberg that the company is facing possible sharp downgrades to its profit and revenue estimates for this year and the next. Should HYBE confirm that BTS will not be resuming live performances for the year, the company’s revenue could be down by 25 per cent lower than previously estimated. Its profit, meanwhile, may be cut by as much as 33 per cent.

Lee Ki-hun, an analyst for Hana Financial Investment, said separately to Korea JoongAng Daily that the group’s announcement is “an indirect way of expressing [the need to] join the military”. BTS’ need to enter South Korean mandatory military service has been up in the air, with politicians in the country not able to see eye-to-eye on whether the septet should service.

“The 2022 earnings can be partly offset as there is a possibility the members may release at least one solo album this year if they join the army in 2023,” Lee added, per Korea JoongAng Daily.

Earlier this year, South Korea’s Culture, Sports and Tourism Minister Hwang Hee called for BTS‘ exemption from the nation’s mandatory military service. He had proposed in a press briefing that globally recognised male pop-culture artists should be allowed to substitute their compulsory two-year conscription for alternative programmes.

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