The Top Three K-Pop Songs of July 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.

July 2022 Overall Thoughts

Counting up all of July’s releases, I’m not sure we’ve ever had a month this packed. What a far cry from last year, where July was all but barren! Yet again, the month lacked any clear “SOTY” candidates, but it was more consistently solid than most of 2022 has been. Lots of great b-sides, a few great singles and — like I said — a ton of new stuff to listen to.

Moving into August, I still haven’t heard a clear “song of summer” for 2022 — at least when it comes to K-pop. These tracks usually emerge in June, sometimes in July, and rarely in August. We’ll have to see how things shape up over the next few weeks. Many idol acts released summer-themed material this month, but we definitely haven’t had a Chi Mat Ba Ram, Count 1, 2 or Wave (to name a few recent “song of summer” tracks).

Instead, we got a handful of strong albums. 2022’s most frustrating musical trends persisted, but July offered a decently diverse scope of idol music. You had to dig a bit to find most of the best material, which makes me want to hop on an airplane and join whatever K-pop A&R team would take me. Please, agencies… give us more variety in your title tracks!

My top two songs of the month were quite easy to choose, but once again I struggled with the third place. A number of tracks were neck-and-neck for this spot: KB’s Be Free, NewJeans’ Attention, Super Junior’s Mango. ATEEZ may even sneak in there depending on how Guerrilla ages. Third place still feels like a contested spot, but I decided to go with the song that felt a little more intimate and idiosyncratic (and probably needs the promo).

J-pop also had a fruitful month. Many of my favorite acts made their return, but the top spot went to a track with a June digital release and an upcoming August physical release. I’ll split the difference and drop it into July (mostly because I didn’t review it until this month!). Wherever you put it, it’s an excellent song.

Looking ahead to August, I predict my month is going to be dominated by two favorite “g” groups: Golden Child and Girls’ Generation. We also have an epic girl group battle on our hands with the promised return of BLACKPINK, Twice and IVE alongside the debut of NewJeans. Whatever happens, I hope the upcoming weeks deliver “top ten of the year”-worthy material. My personal countdown needs it, and the industry could do with the kick of energy a killer comeback can deliver.

Month Cumulative Rating: 7.9

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

J-Pop Highlights

Ayumi Hamasaki – Summer Again (video)

KinKi Kids – Amazing Love (video)

Kis-My-Ft2 – Two As One (review)

Naniwa Danshi – Diamond Smile (review)

Omega X – Stand Up! (review)

Perfume – Spinning World (video)

Snow Man – Orange Kiss (review)

Twice – Celebrate (review)


Ado – New Genesis (review)


Honorable Mentions

aespa – Girls (review)

ATEEZ – Guerrilla (review)

Billlie – Patbingsu (review)

Chungha – Sparkling (review)

ENHYPEN – Future Perfect (Pass the MIC) / ParadoXXX Invasion (review / review)

H1-KEY – Run (review)

ITZY – Sneakers (review)

Loco & Hwasa – Somebody! (review)

MCND – #Mood (review)

NewJeans – Attention / Hype Boy (review / review)

Nicole – YOU.F.O (review)

P1Harmony – Doom Du Doom (review)

SF9 – Scream (review)

Super Junior – Mango (review)

TO1 – Drummin’ (review)

UiU – Starlit (review)

VIVIZ – Loveade (review)

Winner – I Love U (video)

This Month’s Risers and Fallers


3. KB (OnlyOneOf) – Be Free (review)

2. WJSN – Last Sequence (review)

1. CSR – Pop? Pop! (review)

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of June 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of May 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of April 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of March 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of February 2022

Top Three K-Pop Songs Of January 2022

2010-2020 Archive Here


44 thoughts on “The Top Three K-Pop Songs of July 2022

  1. So far January was my top month of the year with almost every song hitting it up right there for me and after 6 months here comes the second half of the year with July to rival it! 😀 This month overall scores the highest for me with January!

    I loved tons of songs, so splitting them into tiers based on how I feel :

    Tier 1 :

    MCND #Mood
    H1-Key Run
    Seventeen _World
    P1Harmony Doom Du Doom
    Blitzers Hit the Bass
    Xdinary Heroes Test Me
    Ateez Guerrilla

    Tier 2

    Aespa Girls (I’m so happy I finally have an Aespa song again on a monthly list after a whole year lmao 😭)

    Enhypen Future Perfect
    Chungha Sparkling
    Sf9 Scream
    Itzy Sneakers
    WJSN Last Sequence
    StayC Beautiful Monster

    Tier 3
    NewJeans Attention (It didn’t click at first but it did grow on me because that chorus gives me such strong vibes of the chorus of Cravity’s Veni Vedi Vici and I think THAT is something thats’s my style :D)

    Apink Chobom Copycat
    ILY Que Sera Sera
    IRRIS Wanna Know


    Honourable B-side Mentions : Blitzers Slide and Hapoom, P1Harmony Yes Man and Swagger

    Notable B-sides I would take an MV/Performance any day :

    H1-Key Heart Light
    Xdinary Heroes Strawberry Cake

    Ateez The Whole Damn Album 💀 (I cannot believe I’m saying this because the one thing where I always take points off for Ateez is bsides. They might give some of the most memorable titles for me but compared to other groups I ult, their album doesn’t do much but this time they have bowled me over and I hope this new phase is gonna give us more powerful and strong bsides like this! ❤)

    So, for me this was a super strong month with definitely “two or three” more SOTY contenders finally to add to my other contenders which are mostly from the January gang 😉 For next month – the Girl’s Generation cb definitely excites me and I’m very curious about what Ive’s gonna do as well because both their previous songs have become sure growers and this third cb will seal the deal for me lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. For me, though packed with more releases rated 8.5 or more, the ones I consider to be standouts, July has been quite weak, as well as the entire 2022 (except for January and February). The only thing I wanna see so much is the FUCKING MUSICAL DIVERSITY. DEAR AGENCIES, JUST WHY DO Y’ALL KEEP IGNORING US, HUH?! And that’s one of the reasons why we still haven’t heard that real summer bop like Chi Mat Ba Ram or Wave. Instead, it was all eclipsed by this terrible noise music trend which doesn’t even feel like a trend but just the unstoppable reminiscence of what has already become dated, grating and deeply uninteresting…

    So far, my July biggest standouts are:

    1. KB – Be Free (9.25/10)
    2. Super Junior – Mango (9/10)
    3. SF9 – Scream, Chung Ha – Sparkling (8.75/10)
    4. H1-Key – Run, NewJeans – Attention, Purple Kiss – Nerdy, Xdinary Heroes – Test Me (8.5/10)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There was quite a lot to love this month thankfully! Last Sequence and Be Free are my 1 and 2 respectively and funnily enough, Starlit would actually round out my top 3 lol. It sounds undeniably nugu, but I just think it slaps regardless and takes me back to an era of Kpop that I hold dear ❤️

    And yes, Ado appreciation on TheBiasList! I’ve also been blasting New Genesis like no tomorrow and I can’t wait to see how the rest of the album will turn out (the Hiroyuki Sawano track especially 👀).

    Liked by 1 person

  4. KB’s Be Free and ATEEZ’s Guerrilla has far eclipsed any song for me this month. I’m extremely excited for Golden Child’s comeback this coming month, but I’ll try to tone down my expectations.

    Liked by 2 people

        • Your self-censoring here is killing me 😂

          But seriously, every song these producers have worked on is a boooorrrriiiing b-side. I just can’t picture what a GC title track from them would sound like.

          Part of me assumes the song must be fantastic because why else would Woollim go with such an under-known team rather than the established producers on the rest of the album? But, then I remember that this is K-pop in 2022 and we can’t have nice things…


  5. I have in some order:
    Super Junior “Mango”
    H1-Key “Run” & “Heart Light”
    Purple Kiss “Nerdy”
    Ateez “Guerilla” & “Cyberpunk”
    SF9 “Scream”

    And on top for me is:
    Ahn Ye Eun “Rat-volution”
    As a year of the rat person, I approve this message. Darling daughter is also year of the rat.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I do a mix of titles and b-sides, in no particular order.
    Ateez – Guerilla
    Omega X – Stand up!
    Zico – Freak
    Vampires who work as bodyguards – Blind Love
    Kareki – Natsume
    Purple Kiss – Nerdy
    TO1 – Sugar Shock
    Graffiti – ATBO
    Yoojung – Begin
    KB – Be Free

    Liked by 2 people

  7. The last week and a half I’ve just been really into kpop. Like morese than I’ve been in like 7-8 months. And a large part of that was all the great releases towards the end of the month. My no.1 for this month was clear but the competition for the other spots was stiff.

    1. KB – Be Free (SOTYYYYY)
    2. NewJeans – Attention
    3. Chungha – Sparkling

    HM to Purple Kiss – Nerdy, WJSN – Last Sequence, NewJeans – Hypeboy, CSR – Pop! Pop?

    Liked by 3 people

  8. My July was pretty much owned by the Madison Rose album Technicolor which you recommended on Twitter. Tis indeed an album of mega bops. My favorite is dancing till we die.
    My favorite Korean release of the month was WJSN’s Last Sequence.

    Also, just stumbled upon a new upbeat OST from Victon’s Kang Seung Sik called What If. It is actually for a variety dating show called exchange2 but the song itself it quite funky and i’ve been really enjoying that as well. So, if you are a Victon fan or just down for a fun upbeat OST I would recommend it.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Mine would be:

    Last Sequence- WJSN
    California Dream- Chungha (I heard it before it was released and I was obsessed with it since)
    Love Love Love- Viviz
    Guerilla- Ateez (I was iffy about the chorus when the preview was released but it really grew on me)

    Honorable Mentions:
    Done- WJSN
    Scream- SF9 (basically the whole album)
    Heart Light- H1-Key
    Doom Du Doom and Swagger- P1harmony
    Sparkling and Love Me Out Loud- Chungha

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I don’t really make a difference between Korean and Japanese releases:

    1. TWICE – Celebrate
    2. Chung Ha – Sparkling
    3. KB – Be Free
    4. NewJeans – Attention
    5. UiU – Starlit

    Honorable mention: CSR – Pop? Pop!

    B-sides I love:

    TWICE: TICK TOCK, Flow Like Waves, Bitter Sweet, Sandcastle and That’s All I’m Saying

    WJSN: Done
    Chung Ha: California Dream, Love Me Out Loud and Good Night My Princess
    ITZY: Free Fall, What I Want, Domino
    H1-Key: Catch ‘n’ Release
    CSR: Euratcha!
    VIVIZ: Love Love Love
    Hyolyn: Over You, Ah Yeah

    I’m a GG stan so I just don’t really listen to the boys. Maybe I should start 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I noticed you mentioned Perfume btw. I like them a lot. They have many wonderful songs and their shows are impressive.


  11. July wasn’t the strongest month in history, but it was loaded with good-to-very good stuff that I had a hard enough time choosing a top 3. My top pick is pretty comfortably on top, though, and a pleasant surprise from an artist I have not paid enough attention to. My picks:

    3. ATEEZ – Guerrilla
    2. CSR – Pop? Pop!
    1. KB – Be Free

    Honorable mentions: too many for me to list, but Chungha – Sparkling almost made this list. WJSN – Last Sequence was pretty close too.

    [It kinda kills me that CSR made it on the strength of their GFriend-core but not the actual group of GFriend members. Loveade is good but the production especially on the vocals frustrates me, ah well, I do like it enough though. Overall, not too bad a month.]


  12. As always, great picks! By the way, since there is no Open Discussion this week, I will post my thoughts here.

    My song of the summer so far is this month’s “Chiki Chiki Ban Ban” by Queendom. Retro and Chique, the song is genuinely a blast. The MV is oversaturated, but the song, sung by a special unit of members from GENIC, lol, and FAKY, is something I know many readers here will enjoy.

    Kenzie gave an interview with Rolling Stone, and it is earnestly interesting. Her thoughts on Song Camps are intriguing, from their initial usefulness to their current overuse by SM.



  13. What is this? I actually made it through all of the titles Nick covered this month (except NewJeans because I’m waiting for them to drop on Apple Music)?! Amazing! I playlisted 33 titles and a third of them were four or five stars. I haven’t had very many five star songs this year – Fearless, Good Boy Gone Bad, ROCKY (Boxers Ver.), That That, and Love In Space have been it since February (I still have a bunch unrated from last month but am not holding my breath) – but this month be free was an immediate five star, #MOOD has become a go-to blast-in-the-car track (right after That That), and I could see a few others growing on me.

    Five stars:
    be free – KB
    #MOOD – MCND

    Four stars:
    Girls – aespa
    Guerrilla – ATEEZ
    Sparkling – Chung Ha
    RUN – H1-KEY
    Undo – HEIZE
    Doom Du Doom – P1Harmony
    Nerdy – PURPLE KISS
    Mango, Don’t Wait – SUPER JUNIOR
    Drummin’ – TO1
    Last Sequence – WSJN
    Test Me – Xdinary Heroes


  14. It’s weird that everyone forgot about Beautiful Monster, because that one was probably one of the MVPs of this month, up there with Guerilla/Cyberpunk and Girls for me. The chorus gets better with every listen.


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  16. For me:

    1. Mango – Super Junior (9.5/10)
    2. Girls – aespa (9/10)
    3. Run – H1-KEY (8.75/10)

    Overall, I would say this month was a whole lot better than the previous ones. In June, I didn’t get a single song hit a 9 haha. Hopefully this trend continues!


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  18. Kpop revitalized for me this month!

    1. Purplekiss – Nerdy
    2. CSR – Pop Pop
    3. Chungha – Sparkling

    Honb mentions: Aespa – Girls, Stayc – Beautiful Monster, ILY:1 – Que Sera Sera, and Billlie – Patbingsu

    Sorry guy groups


  19. In general I liked what I’ve heard this month but so far my July standouts are:

    1. CSR – Pop? Pop!
    2. Billlie – Patbingsu
    3. NewJeans – Attention / Hype Boy
    4. ILY:1 – Que Sera Sera
    5. Nicole – YOU.F.O
    ► Remakes: Jeong Yu Jin (The Ark) ft. Sujin – Summer Days + Weekly – Love
    ► For campaigns: X4 – Present + Blackpink – Ready for love

    1. SF9 – Driver
    2. OnlyOneOf – Desert (Art Pop Remix)
    3. CSR – Euratcha (but it can be the whole EP)
    4. Purple Kiss – Can’t stop dreamin’

    *I’ve listened almost nothing of Jpop, but my favorite was “Zombie” from Fave1 (ex 100%)


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  28. My July highlights were as follows!
    -Nerdy by Purple Kiss, thematic sequel to the sheer fun of Zombie and darker sound of Memem, I loved the strings in the dance break! Sad Jieun left the group but glad she’s focusing on her health as that’s always more important
    -Nabillera by Hyuna, honestly I don’t think I would have liked this if it was anyone else. But it’s Hyuna, and I love her campiness and exaggerated vocals and ability to sound like an entire girl group in one song, and Nabillera was a really fun song that completely won me over. (The background ‘slayyy’ in the chorus is so funny, Susan Sontag could never.)
    -Beautiful Monster by STAYC, this filled me with some indescrible stab of emotion I will never feel again when I heard this. It isn’t my favourite STAYC song (I am a So Bad and Young Luv fan til I die) but it felt perfect for their take on a summer sound and they all sound so good
    -Sparkling by Chungha, returning to what she does BEST (with the exception of Stay Tonight, song of the year every year) slightly tropical summery dance bops! This felt like classic Chungha and the rest of the album was amazing too.
    -Loveade by Viviz, I liked this a lot even if I wish it was pitched down a little or had a richer instrumental. I think it’s a very solid summer song and really cements them as Viviz with a new distinct sound of their own instead of Gfriend 2.0. Also Love Love Love was SUCH a good bside!
    -Heartburn by Sunmi, this really feels like the sunburnt orange afternoon prequel to pporippippam. It’s a cool sound for her to explore and the choreography was really beautiful, it grew on me a lot as a chill vibey song and suits Sunmi heaps


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