Rainbow have been around for seven years, outlasting quite a few girl groups of their era. Yet somehow, they’ve never been able to break into the a-list. Seen by some as the mini-Kara, it would have been interesting to see what they may have become if they had continued to work with a+ producers like Sweetune and Daishi Dance. At just eleven title tracks, their entire singles’ run nearly fits on this list, leaving out just a single Japanese track. Most importantly, their music is pop with a capital “P!”
10. Gonna Gonna Go! (2012)
The group’s first original j-pop release, Gonna Gonna Go ups the cuteness level but doesn’t feel as effortlessly cool as their best work.
9. Gossip Girl (2009)
Offering a chirpy, beat-driven melody over a heavy dose of electronic fizzle and vocoder, Gossip Girl stands as an ear-catching debut, if not totally representative of what their sound would become.
8. Tell Me Tell Me (2013)
Taking a turn towards a girlier pop sound, Tell Me Tell Me remains incredibly catchy, though perhaps not as refined as many of the tracks that had come before it.
7. Sunshine (2013)
The stronger of their two 2013 title tracks, Sunshine floats along a glorious symphonic pop stomp that tempers some of its more saccharine moments.
6. Black Swan (2015)
Moving to a sleeker, darker pop-dance sound after an extended hiatus, Black Swan’s icy electro-funk chorus reinvented the group in sexy, slinky fashion.
5. A (2010)
Their first single to be produced by Sweetune, A positions a very Kara-esque hook over swirling dance pop production and touches of surf guitar.
4. To Me (2011)
The girls found a match made in heaven working with Japanese DJ Daishi Dance. He imbues To Me with an absolutely euphoric club edge.
3. Mach (2010)
Another Sweetune-produced track, Mach edges out A by being more musically experimental. The touches of rock guitar and brass perfectly compliment the song’s cavalcade of hooks.
2. Whoo (2016)
A brilliant encapsulation of Rainbow’s most successful sounds, tethered to an 80’s-inspired power pop production that feels effortless and gloriously alive. Once the hand claps come in, resistance is futile.
1. Sweet Dream (2011)
It’s been five years, but the girls have yet to find a chorus as spectacularly big as Sweet Dream’s. Producer Daishi Dance imbues the track with a Haru Haru-style melancholic piano line, which gives the song a gorgeous dual-personality, causing that central refrain to gain more power each time it crashes in.