Image from HYBE Labels

Ever since ENHYPEN debuted with their first official EP ‘Border: Day One’, in November of last year, several expectations were already on the group’s young shoulders, having been formed as part of the reality show I-LAND, which aired in the summer of 2020.

Their debut track ‘Given-Taken’ was a hit, and an unexpectedly introspective one, as the seven-member band questioned and grappled with the concept of success “given or taken” with the kind of insight that only comes from training in considerable part in the public eye. …

Image from EDAM Entertainment

The past year has seen K-Pop take on rather retrospective genres, what with the explosive success of BTS’ retro-funk ‘Dynamite’, to the impassioned disco-synths of GFRIEND’s latest album ‘Walpurgis Night’, to SEVENTEEN’s swing and jazz-tinted ‘Semicolon’ EP.

In essence, this retrospective view is the main driving force behind most of LILAC, as IU draws on the retro and dance-pop synths of her previous pop offerings, particularly from Palette and Chat-shire, and fuses and elevates the sonic direction from both albums into an album that’s filled with some of her best artistic instincts.

Title track “LILAC” is wistful and nostalgic, yet…

Image from

On Sunday evening, March 14th, the world’s biggest and most renowned musicians gathered again (albeit virtually) to celebrate the Grammy Awards, what’s long been heralded as “music’s biggest night.”

But the Grammys have only held their long-standing claim to relevance and prestige for one reason: they are literally the only existing award board there is of that particular genre — its closest peers are the Billboard Music Awards, which account for sales, as well as other awards such as the People’ s Choice Awards or the American Music Awards, which account for fan votes.

This is, once again, an institutional…

This evening I looked closely at

the girl who was not me

and found the same handwriting on her love-note

and the same metaphor you used on my birthday.

This evening I sat in my room with a pen in my hand again,

and pretended everything is as good as it was when I was younger,

and my heart was a glass always half-full

love and ambition and hope mixed in somewhere

in all the muscle and tissue.

But not everything is wiser in retrospect,

and I am older now, but my fingers still burn with all this,

and on…

And I curve into you,

my body fitting into your bones like

rhymes to a poem

My love is a shapeshifter

in that I will never know its true form

It is this peace in my chest,

golden, glowing,

sure as your breath that fills the room

steady as the rise and fall of your chest

It is this current in my veins,

roaring, ferocious,

one sight of your collarbone

and I am breathless.

Originally published on

When I was a child, I screamed-sang along to some of Taylor Swift’s earliest, most recognizable hits a la “Love Story” and “You Belong With Me”, earnest and sure that I would one day experience the same kind of fairytale romance and happy ending. I was a good girl through and through, after all, and good girls always won in the end, whether it was the success story, the prince charming, or the last word.

And then I grew older, and Swift’s music matured. Throughout Speak Now and Red, Swift’s understanding of relationships matured, her lyricism growing darker and more…

I want to be surrounded by music and art and passion and creativity! I have been cooped up in this house for so long it feels less a home than, well, a prison. Everyday has been the same repetitive cycle of waking in the same bed, breathing in the same air, and sitting at the same desk, across the same mother that it feels almost like a post-apocalyptic simulation of sorts — the kind of stories I used to enjoy when I was in college.

I read an article last week from the New Yorker, that said there was no…

everyday I lose parts of myself
and there is still no victory music for surviving
the war in my ribcage or the
hurricane in my bones

these funerals are more of the quiet kind,
there are no words spoken, no wailing

and the angel that lived somewhere in my body
grows smaller by the day
more transparent in the sunlight.

i miss your face,
as well as mine,
and my fire-alarm heart.

adulthood has never been one to wrap
its arms around me in grace.
i am stumbling, awkward
eyes too wide and heart too
eager to please.

there was a fire in this heart,
once upon a time,
but the stories have come and
and i am afraid they have taken away some
part of me i cannot recall,
some organ i never had a name for.

Originally published on

Image from Pledis Entertainment

For a K-Pop band with thirteen — thirteen — total members, SEVENTEEN may seem like an intimidating bunch, but they make sure to never fall short of expectations.

Boasting an eclectic mix of several sounds, encompassing polished pop, R&B, hip-hop and quite literally almost everything in between — the band even subdivide themselves into separate subgroups: there is the vocal unit comprising of vocalists Woozi, Jeonghan, Joshua, DK, and Seungkwan; the hip-hop unit of rappers S.Coups, …

Photo by Aaron Burden via Unsplash

Ours was a somehow kind of love,

Not the kind in raging tides or

wild breathless heartbeats,

but the kind with commas,

and too many question marks.

The kind that writes with

a nearly-out-of-ink pen,

disappearing and then reappearing again.

From 2016

Audrey Rawnie

culture/media/music writer wannabe type (she/her)

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