(News Focus) TWICE, T-ara to ignite late spring idol music war

A teaser image for South Korean idol group TWICE’s upcoming fourth EP album “Signal.” (Yonhap)

By Chang Dong-woo

SEOUL, May 5 (Yonhap) — K-pop idol fans have been showered with superfluous releases from big-time to fast-rising rookie idol groups so far this year — and it won’t be different any time soon.

The highly competitive idol segment is about to see fireworks again as a new batch of idol groups are getting set to fire up the late spring-early summer music charts, with the seemingly indestructible TWICE at the forefront.

Nine-member group TWICE will release its fourth EP album titled “Signal” on May 15, which will include the title song of the same name.

JYP Entertainment recently released teaser publicity materials of the group members dressed in preppy clothing that looks like school uniforms.

An undated file photo of former Fin.K.L member Lee Hyo-ri. (Yonhap)

TWICE has stormed the K-pop scene since its debut about a year and a half ago. Starting with its debut track “OOH-AHH,” the group has had four consecutive No. 1 songs — others being “Cheer Up,” “TT” and its most recent one “Knock Knock” released just two months ago.

The group later plans to drop a Japanese debut album titled “#TWICE” on June 28.

T-ara, with past hits including “Bo Peep Bo Peep,” “Roly Poly” and “Lovey Dovey,” will come out with its last album in its entirety on June 1, though two members — Soyeon and Boram — will leave the team after its promotional activities.

MBK Entertainment, the group’s agency, initially announced a May 17 release but postponed the date citing production issues.

This undated file photo shows K-pop group Sistar. (Yonhap)

Lee Hyo-ri, ex-leader of disbanded girl group Fin.K.L, is largely expected to release a new album in June and make a comeback into the music business in four years.

The former sexy dance icon — who had resettled in Jeju Island to live in relative seclusion after marrying guitarist Lee Sang-soon in 2013 — signed with Kiwi Media Group late last year and has been busy producing her new album.

Fast-rising idol act Lovelyz has dropped a new song “Now, We” this week, included in a repackaged album of “R U Ready,” the group’s second full-length album released in February.

“Now, We,” a fast-beat, electronic dance track, was written and produced by composer Yoon Sang and his song-writing team 1Peace.

Sistar, nicknamed “summer queen” for its strength in the season, will release a new album in early June. The group is now working on the new album with the production team Black Eyed Pilseung, according to sources.

The new album will be the group’s first work since its last EP “Insane Love” came out about a year ago. Sistar previously collaborated with Black Eyed Pilseung for its hit numbers “Touch My Body” and “I Like That.”

In this file photo, South Korean boy group VIXX poses for a photo during the 30th Golden Disk Awards in Seoul on Jan. 21, 2016. (Yonhap)

Moving onto male stars, boy group VIXX has released its comeback schedule with its fourth EP album “Do Won Kyung,” which refers to the ancient Chinese city of Shangdu, better known as Xanadu in the West.

The group will drop the album on May 15, and before that will hold a fifth anniversary concert for three days from May 12.

Yong Jun-hyung, member of boy band Highlight, has also released a new EP album “Wonder If” on Tuesday. Female rapper Heize featured her voice Yong’s first solo release since April of last year. Boy band Seventeen is also reportedly busy producing a new album to release it no later than June.



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