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The Top Three K-Pop Songs of March 2022

Monthly Round-UpAt the end of each month, I look back at my three favorite title tracks by K-pop artists. I take my own ratings into account, but there’s a bit of wiggle room as certain songs tend to grow or fade.


March 2022 Overall Thoughts

I’m eager to write a super effusive, super excited monthly round-up. Unfortunately, we’re not quite there yet. After a slow February, March moved in with a slew of new releases from big names. You’d think this would result in a competitive top three. But, I struggled to fill the spaces. In fact, I haven’t yet heard a 2022 song that competes with my year-end top ten of 2021.

It doesn’t help that last year opened so strongly. By this time in 2021, we’d heard Beautiful Beautiful, Burn It, Take Me Home, Killa, Prism, Moon Rider, Breathe, Reach Out Your Hands, Born To Be Wild, What Type Of X, and I Really Want You… with libidO and Atlantis just around the corner. That’s six-tenths of my top ten right there! The first three months of 2022 remind me much more of 2020… except we had ATEEZ’s Answer and Dreamcatcher’s Scream back then.

This is me getting inside my head, which isn’t particularly helpful. But, I’m eager for a song or two to break through and reinvigorate my excitement. It’s not like K-pop has been awful over the past few weeks. It’s just that nothing really sticks out. It feels like everyone in the industry is chasing each other’s tails. Because of this, we end up with a muddled mess of sound-alike tracks. I tend to reference past K-pop eras quite frequently, but I don’t want the industry to go back and recreate its history. Trends change, and that’s a good thing. I’m just eager to hear the very best version of these current trends. It all feels very cut-and-paste at the moment.

This month delivered a few notable debuts and plenty of comebacks from established artists. Tempest’s song grew on me a lot and TAN’s track was much stronger than anticipated. And despite only releasing one song, the yet-to-debut YOUNITE have definitely captured my attention.

Established artists mostly underwhelmed — at least where title tracks were concerned. Fortunately, Brave Girls and Oh My Girl released two of the strongest albums we’ve heard in awhile. In fact, I think 2022’s girl group releases have been more consistently solid than the boys so far. We’ll see if that holds up as the year goes on.

For now, I consider my top three choices to be solid. None will threaten my year-end top ten (at least, I hope not!), but I listened to each quite frequently this month. March has been about as predictable as the rest of 2022. Apart from the top spot, I would never have imagined this top three at the beginning of the month.

J-pop releases weren’t as prolific as K-pop this March, but they gave us higher highs. It was a close race for my top pick, with Snow Man and Johnny’s West very competitive. And hey, INI finally released a decent song! So, all is not lost.

Come on April… I’m counting on you to deliver. I’m getting a little worried.

Month Cumulative Rating: 7.7

(compiled by averaging the scores of every K-pop review from this month)


J-Pop Highlights

INI – We Are (review)

Johnny’s West – Shirankedo (review)

KAT-TUN – Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet (video)

Nogizaka46 – Actually… (review)

Sakurakaza46 – Samidare Yo (review)

SixTONES – Fashion (review)

Snow Man – Brother Beat (review)

TVXQ – Epitaph (For The Future) (review)


TOP J-POP SONG OF THE MONTH

Miyavi – Strike It Out (review)


K-POP

Honorable Mentions

Cherry Bullet – Love In Space (review)

Kihyun – Voyager (review)

Oh My Girl – Real Love (review)

Red Velvet – Feel My Rhythm (review)

Stray Kids – Maniac (review)

TAN – Du Du Du (review)

Tempest – Bad News (review)

VERIVERY – ‘O’ (review)

WEi – Too Bad (review)

Xia Junsu – Hana (review)


TOP THREE SONGS

3. YOUNITE – Everybody (ft. DJ Juice) (review)

2. CRAVITY – Adrenaline (review)

1. Brave Girls – Thank You (review)


Top Three K-Pop Songs Of February 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of January 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of December 2021

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of November 2021

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of October 2021

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of September 2021

2010-2020 Archive Here

39 thoughts on “The Top Three K-Pop Songs of March 2022

  1. I have in some order:

    Kang Daniel ft Miyavi “Hush Hush”, OST, Korean version. (The Japanese version came out some months ago.)

    TAN Du Du Du – a really good (Re)debut! The sung harmonized DU DU DU is an awesome hook.

    Mic SWG ft Do Han Se! and people named YongYong and Goopy: “ERASE” ‘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VX2lbWw7-4 Who is this McSwig guy? He does these mixtape-style songs with lots of indie artists we love. This song sounds perfect for their age, how to be young and bright and fresh without sounding like kids trained and shoved into kpop cliches. McSwig, you are now on my radar. Here is an earlier released version of just vocal lines, which is interesting to hear how the vocals get polished with harmonies added on. ‘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6262oSa0J9A To see how the vocal sound is done, here is a good short youtuber on how to craft harmonies in a program like Melodyne ‘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lrxJ1mv7sBA

    Stray Kids and NCT Dream have both grown on me. Earlier this week I was in a parking lot waiting on something. A car pulled up and parked a few spots away, and that car was That Car. That Car was playing Maniac and the rest of the Stray Kids album on at least 12, it was way louder than 11, and way way louder than 10. And with Maniac resonating through That Car, some empty spaces, and my car, it sounds =GREAT!= So I bought the songs, and yes they all sound great in the car, even when set on merely measly 8 or 9.

    Happy clappy cornball song of the month: “One Step” by Sweet Sorrow and Sunnie. Since I award 1 bonus point for every key change, this song scores an outstanding 11 points from me. ‘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=15riHCY095k (1:18 up; 2:10 up again; 2:29 up again again)

    Liked by 3 people

    • Skz maniac also grew on me – the ping is irritating, though. Muddy water is a nice bside.

      Tomboy also grew on me and I liked the dream album too.

      Like

      • Ping! ….. Ping ping!
        I shout ping, ping ping at odd times during the song, just because. Then add my own all sorts of adlibs diddly diddly bop pow pow pow whoooooooooip.

        Liked by 1 person

        • WordPress has decided to hate me so I can’t like comments, so just assume I liked all of the above. I’m that car with the volume at 11. PING PING! CHIRP CHIRP CHIRP BUZZZZZZZ! Also, I missed the MIC SWG release even though I watched a bts clip that I assume was posted on the Victon channel ages ago, so thanks for the link!

          Liked by 3 people

  2. My mishmash of general K-music and J-pop, title tracks and b-sides
    1. Deadbuttons – F*ckers are Everywhere
    2. TANg – Du Du Du Du Du Du du du du du du
    3. Brave Mature Young Ladies Who Inspire Us All – Thank You For Not Breaking Up
    4. Cavity – Pow! Pow! Pow! Pow!
    5. Da-iCEman Cometh- Nobody Like U
    6. NINE.i the Observer – Daze Days
    7. TwoVXQ! – That Angel/Devil War Thing
    8. Haechan and the M0rKjunnies – say It’s Yours or otherwise Jaemin will try to eat it
    9. Kings Republic – that ascending thing cause i can’t spell the other word today
    10. TEM-pests – Bad News

    Liked by 2 people

    • It may be April Fool’s day, but I looked it up and the band and song Dead Buttons “Fckers are everywhere” is totally legit, and totally the best band and song title anywhere everywhere.

      OK, to be sure, they sound like a reincarnation of, say, The Clash, but its fckin awesome. And I was number 430 to watch the official video, so in a few years I can say I knew them when for realz, even if this only time I listen to it.

      ‘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQ2XdiSNoZ8

      Liked by 1 person

  3. actual top song of the year:
    1. Strike It Out – Miyavi & Take It Easy – Wu Jiacheng (tie)

    my top 3:
    1. Cravity – Adrenaline
    2. Brave Girls – Thank You
    3. Love In Space – Cherry Bullet

    honorable mentions of course:
    *Bad News – Tempest
    *Red Velvet – Feel My Rhythm
    *Oh My Girl – Real Love
    *Kihyun – Voyager

    Liked by 1 person

  4. First three months of 2020 also had that rant you did because of how mad TBZ REVEAL and CRAVITY DEBUT made you let’s not start rewriting history Nick

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, I think I’ve firmly moved him out of the “k-pop” realm at this point. I’ll have to feature it on my next global round-up. It’s good! And the video is ever better.

      Like

  5. My top three would be
    1. Brave Girls- Thank you
    2. Tempest- Bad News (My favorite debut in awhile. Bright and colorful, but still feeling new and refreshing. I love.)
    3. TAN- Du Du Du (The opening caught me attention right away. And the rap sections sold me.)

    Honorable mention would be stray kids- Maniac.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh and another Honorable mention for ‘O’ by Verivery. I really liked this R&B sound for them. I will always miss their earlier bright sounds, but I prefer this to GBTB…shouty chorus. So shouty. Shudders.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I tried to think about what had come out this month and drew kind of a blank…but Younha’s new song Event Horizon showed up on my recommended two days late and I was suddenly reminded of how much I liked her End Theory album last year. So there’s that. You can always trust Younha to sing the hell out of a nice rock ballad. Unpopular opinion perhaps but some egregious rap verses aside I really liked Tomboy. Purple Kiss’ title track was also a miss for me, but it was a really strong album, and Hate me, Hurt me, Love me and Cursor have both seen some play from me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. There were quite many stuff I loved this month! In no particular order :

    1. Chebul Love in Space
    2. Tempest Bad News
    3. Tan Du Du Du
    4. SKZ Maniac
    5. Wei Too Bad
    5. Cravity Adrenaline (definitely one of the top ones)
    6. Verivery O
    7. Kingdom Ascension

    I’m surprised to see Cravity actually made your top 3! 🙂 A pleasant surprise though! I’ve yet to hear Younite’s track but they seem like a good group! And Brave Girls had always belonged to the “appreciate but not enjoy” category for me 😅 with Chi Mat Baram being the only exception maybe. Mostly I find the songs itself forgettable.

    Honestly Love in Space was the only gg song that struck me this month! Feel my Rhythm was nice but I don’t remember the song too well, just that RV was amazing.And Oh My Girl… I like their old sound more and don’t really vibe with their recent songs.

    If I’m being honest, the best song of this month for me was in Japanese – TVXQ’s Epitaph! ❤ I’ve listened to this like crazy over the last few weeks and I’m still not over it! And on the note of it should be used for an anime I think it really fits the vibe of a recently finished one – Moriarty the Patriot, lol.

    My most listened to song of this month is Epitaph. And other than that it’s a couple of old songs I discovered from your site (thanks!) – SNSD Paparazzi and After School Because of You. I’m low-key obsessed with Because of you and on discovering that it too is a Brave Brother’s production with the start of the chorus sounding so similar to DKB’s All In… I realized maybe I do like the Brave Brothers sound 😂 I just need to find something that clicks! 🙂

    March was more stacked than February and there were two good debuts as well! And April seems interesting – DC, Ghost9 and JustB too I think – groups I’m really looking forward to!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Really happy to see Cravity’s Adrenaline on there! They seem so delightful and I’ve wanted to like them for forever (first put off by the terrible Cavity + Depravity moniker, then lackluster title tracks) but Adrenaline has made me consider them in a whole new light. The Adrenaline song and MV feel like an updated Adore U/Aju Nice, I would love to see them continue on the Freshteen track.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hey all, I’ve been busy with other stuff but man, this month was GRIM in the k-pop world. I made it through all of the songs covered here, barely, except for YOUNITE because I couldn’t find them on Apple Music, although I did find a pretty good EP from March 1st called “fluffy” from a Japanese rock group named UNiTE. Nick’s review makes me think I should give finding YOUNITE another try in a day or two,.

    Speaking of Japanese releases not covered here, I actually really liked CIX’s Japanese EP “Pinky Swear”. They’re firmly in “undistinguished bunch of boy bands without good rappers” but “Bad Dream” was a huge standout for me so I gave this a listen, and it’s definitely worth checking out!

    My top track for the month also wasn’t covered here, but her last release was, so I’m going to assume it was missed or Nick skipped it because of time: Younha’s “Event Horizon”. I really like all four of the new songs on the repackage, especially “c/2022YH” even if the name looks like a password. “End Theory” was one of my top ten albums of last year but it could have used more rock, and here we go! More rock! I love the twangy guitar in “Event Horizon”. My only real complaint with it and “c/2022YH” are that they both seem to end really abruptly. The end of “Event Horizon” actually works in the MV but sounds odd without the accompanying visual. I’m not sure anything will grow to a five star but it’s possible.

    In alphabetical order by group, my other four star titles:

    “Love in Space” Cherry Bullet – I’d call this “Pirate”’s cuter little sister even if sonically they’re not necessarily all that similar other than being dance tracks. It’s fun, it’s uptempo, it’s not too obnoxious, it sounds like the same song all the way through. I actually quite like the fast talk singing style as they use it here. I haven’t been watching music shows recently but caught a couple stages of this and enjoyed them.

    “Adrenaline” CRAVITY – I re-listened to all the titles I still had sitting in my “to rate or dump” playlist and when this came up my husband protested that “shot shot shot” is already taken. I didn’t mention that “love shot” was actually a really popular song not overly long ago. That’s kind of how I feel about this song. I really like it, but I’ve heard it before.

    “MANIAC” Stray Kids – SKZ get a big bias boost, what can I say. I love the pre chorus (chirp chirp chirp BUZZZZZZ) and the chorus, agree that the raps are on the weak side, but all in all it reminds me of my favorite 2021 SKZ release, “Christmas Evel”. The stages have been fun, the guys look great, and I’ll be diving into the trying to get tickets before the scalpers pool when tour tickets go on sale.

    “Epitaph ~for the future~ “TVXQ – Per Nick’s review, this reminded me a lot of Maniac, and having recently replayed that for my spouse and mother, I agree that it’s absolutely top tier 2022. I just skimmed my playlists and currently the only song I’d definitely rank higher is “Pirate” (and “The Real” if it counts), with second place being a scrum between “Devil” and “Maniac”. I don’t like this as much as Changmin’s solos but it’s still a cut above.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Top 5 is something like the following (no particular order):

    Brave Girls – Thank You
    Cherry Bullet – Love in Space
    Red Velvet – Feel My Rhythm
    Stray Kids – Maniac
    Tempest – Bad News

    Feel My Rhythm and Maniac both grew on me. On the other hand, I mentioned that surprisingly I was somewhat ok with Glitch Mode back on release day; just a few days later, I can’t stand it anymore ahahah, its regressed to being just as annoying as Hot Sauce (minus that cool rock guitar dance break).

    Album-wise, all 3 of the other B-sides on Thank You have been getting just as much, if not more in the case of Can I Love You, playtime as the title. I also found CheBul and RV’s minis pretty consistent too. SKZ’s mini has grown on me after I stopped thinking about it all that much. I’ve been pretty busy the last weeks, but I’m excited to check out Oh My Girl’s album when I get the time, based on what everyone else has been saying about it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, uh and not March 2022 in the slightest, but Queendom 2’s opening performances has re-introduced Secret and Save Me, Save You to my recent on repeat list, they’re just too good 😭 WJSN killed it with their intro performance.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Like many others, I found things a bit dull, but this actually was the first month of 2022 where I liked a majority of the major group releases.

    I keep a running tally of things that could go on a year-end list, and of the non-nugu stuff, Adora’s most recent release still tops it. I recommend you check it out! Somehow I think its dreaminess will be more to your taste than Make U Dance was.

    Like

  12. Pingback: The Top Three K-Pop Songs of March 2022 | Beatsway

  13. For me
    1. skz – maniac
    2. Brave Girls – thank u
    3. Tan – Du du du
    4. Jackson – Blow

    Honestly i liked rv’s feel my rhythm too, but it was too busy imo.

    Skz are my ults, the reason i didnt give up on kpop tbh, i was so tired by everything in kpop before i heard their music. Being in kpop for 10+ years and such. And this time also i love their whole album. I am addicted to the Maniac chorus, and I.N’s part is cute and fresh.

    Brave Girl’s thank u is just the happy go lucky song i want to listen to every morning on my way to work.

    Tan’s single popped up to me while watching music shows and i love it, the melodies are solid, i might follow them.

    Jackson… Just… U dont need my words to know that this release Blown everyone away.

    Like

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