2013: Japan & Korea’s All Kills
If you’re bored of the mainstream but not so keen on Korean’s usually depressing and unplugged indie sounds, then perhaps some bingsu pop is in order. The best tracks from this budding new genre include the cute and lofi Blueberry Muffin Recipe by Rururu, the goofy Ice Cream by Garina Project, the twee wonder of Welcome to this Wonderful Mart by MyuMyu, and the ethereal Sing by Ookoorookoo.
You know where to go to hear those tracks out with words from yours truly, and enjoy the video for Sing below as a bingsu taster.
This year’s best Korean indie, though, came in at the eleventh hour, with the release in November of Glen Check’s new album, Youth. Glen Check are a duo who make a kind of Cut Copy/Justice/Rapture fusion, and Youth was the album you secretly hoped Daft Punk would actually make. Too summery for winter, but sure to find its time in the light next year, check out my favorite track from the album, Summer Hearts.
Hot on their heels, despite not releasing any albums in 2013, were Humming Urban Stereo, who put out a lot of one-off releases, including remixes and productions, the latter including the frenetically aloof Maem Maem by Bebop [MV]. Their best achievement would have to be a toss-up between Let’s Stay Together  or the below song, Rollercoaster, which rips up your stereos with giddy and lovedrunk electro.
2013 also saw k-pop and k-indie come a little closer together with collaborations between the likes of 10cm and girl group Orange Caramel , along with a marked increase of girls with guitars such as AOA Black, the spin-off band for idol group AOA, plus solo act Yoari, who I wrote about back in January . Her track Do You Like It? was a sadly underrated bit of rock pop shreddage.
Let’s have a look over to Japan & Taiwan now!