Of all the top ten lists I’ll write, Infinite’s will always be the hardest. It’s a real challenge to rank what I consider to be the strongest singles run in all of kpop. Infinite have a sound that is tailor-made to match my taste, and even the singles that didn’t make my list (it was especially hard to let you go, Bad and Dilemma) are outstanding. But, what we have here is ten (well… okay… eleven) tracks that are nothing short of perfection.
10. Come Back Again / She’s Back (2010)
Since they’re my bias group, I think I can fudge the rules this one time and have a tie at number ten. There was no way I could leave out either of the group’s debut-year releases. Come Back Again sounds like nothing else in their discography — all chugging guitars and MJ-inspired dance breaks. Meanwhile, She’s Back is pure, bombastic summer fun with a chorus to die for. It was also their first single with longtime collaborators Sweetune.
9. BTD (Before The Dawn) (2011)
The earliest example of what would become one of their trademarks: that dramatic, string-laden build. The “scorpion dance” stands as their first iconic moment, but it’s all about the opening synth siren call.
8. Destiny (2013)
Their first work with producer Rphabet, and the injection of new energy is felt in every beat of this edgy, aggressively performed dance track.
7. Last Romeo (2014)
In many ways, a distillation of all of their sounds up to this point, but given a more organic, live band touch that adds unexpected heft to the soaring chorus.
6. Nothing’s Over (2011)
An underrated entry in their discography, Nothing’s Over is one of the most melodic songs they’ve ever put their name to. It’s almost impossible to listen to it without a smile on your face, or to come away without that hook rattling around in your brain.
5. Man In Love (2013)
The group at their brightest and most upbeat. It’s a propulsive, wall-of-sound aural assault with squealing guitars and one hell of a build as the track reaches its climax.
4. Be Mine (2011)
The song that officially broke them into the stratosphere, and their most iconic moment to date. This is Sweetune production at its most distilled, propelling that synth-heavy, 80’s inspired chorus to legendary status.
3. Paradise (2011)
In a career of ridiculously catchy choruses, this could be their catchiest. The Bee Gees-esque falsetto hook is a stunner, and takes advantage of their incredible, layered vocals. It’s an enormous song, and one of the most instantly addictive in all of kpop.
2. Back (2014)
From its inventive song structure and powerful, orchestral production to the iconic music video, Back is an incredible piece of work. Never had Infinite’s music sounded so cinematic before, transforming from plaintive balladry to thundering blasts of anthemic electronic dance. The outright best kpop song of 2014.
1. The Chaser (2012)
Not only the very first Infinite song I ever heard, but also my favorite kpop song of all time. I wrote about it in detail earlier under my Legendary Songs feature. Even after four years, I’m still invigorated with The Chaser‘s amazing, dramatic build, powerful vocal arrangement and unrelenting, dense production. They perform the hell out of it live, which only adds to how incredibly epic the track is.
On a geekier, more personal note, The Chaser was released on my birthday. Some things are just meant to be!