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A look at the similarities and differences in the global and SK gaming scenes.

Find the perfect Korean cosmetics for Springtime bliss.

UKP magazine



Get the latest from the UK K-pop scene.


Fresh Korean style from head to toe for the new season.

EXCLUSIVE We interview VAV about their latest release.

Adore Bubble Tea? AdoraBubble now open in Dundee!

Cafe Bar 3, Overgate Shopping Centre, DD1 1UF








News Round-up Upcoming Events


Dalshabet Subin Spotlight & Review Your Essential Spring Playlist B.A.P - “Rose” Album Review Fun & Games Quiz - Who is your Spring Boyfriend? CULTURE Easy Spring Vocab Blooming Lovely Time to Visit Put some Spring Foods in your step Spring Students

Design Freya Bigg


Blackpink Spotlight & Review

If you have any comments or suggestions, get in touch at:

Production Team


Jump in, have a read and we hope you enjoy the magazine!

Freya Bigg CEO/Founder

Event Highlights

Block B in London Coverage

fter a short hiatus last winter, we are debuting our first Springtime UKP Magazine. Inside you’ll find the latest news, hot reviews and everything you need for a perfect K-pop style Spring.

Emily Stewart

“One Way Trip” - Film Review

Jakub Wisniewski

4 Dramas/Films for your Spring Viewing


FEATURES Interview with VAV

Amanda Birchall Donna Sheffield Emma Alford

A Look at the S Korean Gaming Scene

Eva Lee

Young Bros Essential K-pop Party Playlist

Holly Smith

Interview with LOVE X STEREO STYLE

Katy Small Kristine Phillips Locke Kaito

Spring Products & Korean Style Trends

Maisie Duff

Spring Looks

Special Thanks

G-Friend - Fingertip - Get The Look

Lore Walsh of BritRok

Nongshim Jjajangmyeon Noodle Review

Love X Stereo A Team Entertainment & VAV



Some of the greatest of the latest news from UKP.


BTS Break into UK iTunes

by Katy Small BTS have yet again taken over the UK iTunes charts! Their newest repackaged album ‘WINGS: You Never Walk Alone.’ has been their most successful yet and has been topping numerous charts all over the world.

R&B Artist Daze films debut MV in London by Maisie Duff In February, R&B artist Daze announced through his Instagram that he was on his way to London! The 24 year old R&B singer/producer made his debut through his mini album ‘Young Love‘ last December, a selfproclaimed ‘Chillout R&B’ album. The album tells a heartfelt story of a relationship from the beginning to the end, and from producing to mixing, Daze made the album completely by himself!

TOP inspired Suicide Squad Joker

This is certainly a recordbreaking album for the boys with the music video for title track ‘Spring Day’ breaking the YouTube record for the most viewed K-Pop music video in just 24 hours!

by Kristine Phillips

NCT 127 do English accents by Kristine Phillips The newest addition to SM’s roster has certainly been reaping success during the award season. For those new to this group, NCT is an acronym for ‘Neo Culture Technology’ and so far, is split into three sub-units which include NCT U, NCT 127 and NCT Dream.

Some of the members of the rookie sub-unit group NCT 127 had been goofing around, as seen in some of the extra footage when the members were on their break whilst filming for their online series NCT LIFE MINI which was in collaboration with Nimble on YouTube.

Eric Nam hangs out with UK actor Tom Hiddleston by Freya Bigg Whilst in Korea to promote his latest movie ‘Kong: Skull Island’, Tom Hiddleston became the latest in a line of British celebs to hang out with Eric Nam. Nicknaming the actor ‘Hiddle’, Eric Nam promised to meet him again.

The film Suicide Squad did divide opinion when it was released last year, however at the prestigious 2017 Academy Awards recently, it was up for a nomination on ‘Best Makeup and Hairstyling’ which it was later revealed to have won the award for that category. It had been revealed through the Instagram post below which was taken at the Hair and Makeup Symposium for the film at the Oscars, that part of the inspiration for the creation of the well-known character within the DC universe, the Joker, had come from none other than BIGBANG’s T.O.P! This is not Tom Hiddleston’s first dalliance with K-pop, having previously met SNSD’s Tiffany for an interview whilst promoting ‘Thor: The Dark World’.



The Co-Ed group has come back with their pre-debut single ‘Don’t recall’ with this being their second track, fans anticipated more from them as Oh Nana became a hit back in 2016. ‘Don’t recall’ give us R&B Vibes with a funky beat flowing really well with the vocals and rap. We hope to see more from them with their official debut soon.

Twice - 20th February

BTS has come back with their repackage album titled ‘You Never Walk Alone’ including 2 news songs, ‘spring day’ and ‘Not Today’. The songs are overflowing with passion and charisma as both have different styles which fans can enjoy. Doing impressively well through the charts in Korea and internationally, we can expect more great music from them.

KARD – 16th February

The maknae of Girls Generation followed the footsteps of Tiffany and Taeyeon by debuting as a solo artist. Her song ‘Don’t say No’ follows an R&B/ soul vibe creating a mysterious apeal, going against her innocent image.

BTS - 13th February

Seohyun- 17th January

Luna f(x) , Hani (EXID) and Solar (Mamamoo) – 19th Jan

AOA - 2nd January

AOA released The trio their first full collaborated album in the with mystic beginning of entertainment to 2017 Angels produce a soul Knock with tracks feel track with ‘Excuse me’ and their ‘Bing Bing’. Both powerful jazz vocals influenced style showcasing their songs with sexy talents. ‘Honey appeal which bee’ makes us matches AOA’s want to dance to style really well. the jazzy beat adding a dynamic touch welcoming one of the first collaborations of the year.

Twice are back again with another catchy song, ‘Knock Knock’ from their latest album TWICEcoaster: Lane 2. The girls are soaring high on the charts and becoming one of the fastest groups to hit 10 million views in 24hours for their music videos.


GFriend - 6th March

The Girls Generation Leader came back with yet another solo release this time a full album anticipated by the fans. Her most recent release ‘Fine’, a slowbeat with soothing vocals matching Taeyeon’s aesthetic very well. The song lyric really hits you in the feels with a broken relationship and a painful memory.

GFriend – 6th March

Block B is back with ‘Yesterday’ a very bright and upbeat song which fits the season of spring perfectly. The song composed by Park Kyung showed a new side of his talents and created a track which matched Block B nicely. The group has just recently wrapped up their world tour achieving massive success from fans all over.

Taeyeon – 28th February

Rock band, Day 6 is back with many releases with their monthly project of quality music and new styles. There new single ‘How can I say’ has rock influences and multiple instruments in the background of the song. They continue to showcase many of their talents through new songs coming soon.

Block B – 6th February

Day 6 – 5th March

NCT Dream - 9th February

Red velvet - 1st February

Red velvet SM experimental greeted us with group NCT has their new track come back with ‘Rookie’ part of another song, this their 4th mini time with NCT album, the track Dream the baby had mixed group out of the 2 reviews but the units. They came album seemed to back with ‘My first expand on and last’ a more different genres mature concept and sounds which compared to many praised. ‘Chewing Gum’ Not to mention in their previous the dance for comeback. this comeback claimed to be their fastest choreography yet.

‘Fingertip’ is a new style of sound for GFriend different from their original cutesy songs as they go for the badass style showing a new image of themselves. The retro vibe really gives of the sexy appeal and showing big moments in their dance routine which GFriend is known for.




THE HANDMAIDEN Glitch Film Festival Glasgow, CCA Theatre April 1st / 4:00pm - 6:45pm


THE HANDMAIDEN: DIRECTORS CUT April 2nd 4:15pm - 7:00pm Glasgow Film Theatre / £9.50





National Maritime Museum April 1st / 10:00am - 5:00pm

Ablemarle Gallery April 1st / 10:00am - 4:00pm


EOM JEONGWON: 1:60 KCCUK April 3rd / 6:00pm - 8:00pm Runs until April 22nd


THE HANDMAIDEN: DIRECTORS CUT Rio Cinema London April 5th / 00:00pm - 00:00pm

8:00pm - 9:45pm Electric Shoreditch London / £8+ 4:00pm - 6:45pm Cube Microplex Bristol / £5 6:00pm - 8:45pm VUE Croydon Grants / £5 6:00pm - 8:45pm VUE Harrow / £5 6:00pm - 8:45pm VUE Shepherd’s Bush / £5 6:00pm - 8:45pm VUE Romford / £5 6:00pm - 8:45pm VUE Wood Green / £5


EMPOWERMENT & INTEGRATION: SUPPORT FOR NORTH KOREAN EXILES New Malden Methodist Church April 5th / 7:00pm - 9:00pm


Birckbeck, University of London April 8th / 2:00pm - 4:00pm






Greenwich University April 8th / 00:00am - 00:00pm








Picture House Central April 10th / 6:30pm - 8:10pm

Kings Place, 90 York Way April 12th / 7:30pm - 9:30pm

TBC April 14th / 11:00pm - 4:00am



AOMG EUROPE: ELO x DJ PUMPKIN LONDON Camden Assembly April 17th / 00:00pm - 00:00pm


SOAS College Buildings, Room 116 April 18th 10am - April 19th 6pm






TBD April 18th / 8:30pm - 11:00pm

KCCUK May 4th / 7:00pm





BKS: AN UPDATE ON THE UK-KOREA RELATIONSHIP SOAS, Khalili Lecture Theatre May 11th / 6:30pm - 8:00pm

Bristol - Colton Hall April 23rd / 7:30pm - 10:00pm / £14.51 Glasgow - O2 ABC April 25th / 7:30pm - 11:00pm / £15.18



KCCUK London - O2 Academy Islington April 26th / 7:30pm - 10:00pm / £17.43 May 11th / 7:00pm



TBC May 12th / 8:00pm




£5 TBC £15


MIN JIN LEE AT ASIA HOUSE Asia House, 63 New Cavendish St May 23rd / 6:00pm - 10:00pm

SEOUL RUSH K-POP PARTY GLASGOW The Classic Grand, Glasgow May 27th / 6:00pm - 10:00pm

The Forge May 22nd / 7:00pm - 9:00pm



KCCUK June 1st / 7:00pm



Wigmore Hall June 4th / 3:00pm - 4:00pm





KCCUK June 8th / 7:00pm



KCCUK june 15th / 7:00pm



MAY 18TH - 20TH

K-Music Showcase: The Barberettes + Sultan of The Disco Earlier this month, it was confirmed that indie artists The Barberettes and Sultan of the Disco are set to be part of the line-up to perform at the K-Music Showcase. The event will be taking place on Monday 22nd May 2017 at The Forge in London and will be running from 7pm to 11pm and tickets are available at £15. Think that they sound familiar? Well, if that’s the case, then that’s because both groups have been featured as artists in various events the UK in the past. For example, The Barberettes performed on the BBC programme ‘The One Show’ in 2015 and they were also headliners for Brighton’s Great Escape Festival in 2016. The trio have been described as a ‘time-traveling girl group’ with their musical style edging towards a 50s/60s vibe.

Upcoming event: The Great Escape Festival 2017 in Brighton

MAY 22ND Whereas with Sultan of the Disco, this group had the opportunity to be featured as performing artists at the festival giant Glastonbury in 2014. This group are known for their vintage sound and their highenergy performances with even BBC reporter Mark Savage was full of praise for the South Korean group, saying that they were one of the best bands that year. No doubt, both groups will put on an unmissable performance!


The long running event, which started off in 2016, marking over a decade of setting up a platform for artists have confirmed that their extensive line-up in the 3 day event will feature homegrown artists like Rag’n’Bone Man and Slaves, but also international artists, such as from South Korea! The artists who will be playing at The Great Escape Festival will be rapper MC Sniper, Sultan of the Disco, Biuret and The Monotones. The group Sultan of the Disco have quite the busy schedule, once they have performed at this event, they’ll be travelling over to London for the K-Showcase 2017 along with the The Barberettes. The festival will be around as mentioned for 3 days, the dates from Thursday 18th to Saturday 20th May and in terms of tickets, if you wanted to make the most of the short trip, you could get the 3 Day Saver Pass for £60.



ELO X DJ Pumkin in London The AOMG artists will be coming over to perform in London and Paris on April 17th and 18th respectively. This will be AOMG’s first European Tour and hopefully more to follow in the future!

Timing for admission will vary depending on which ticket you will have purchased which is scheduled from 6:30pm VIP Gold, 7:00pm - VIP & Early Entry and 7:30pm General Admission.

Here’s all the information that you’ll need: The concert’s venue is Camden Assembly, London. The London concert will take place on Monday 17th April 2017. The doors are set to open at 7:30pm for those with general admission. For those who purchased tickets including the afterparty, that’s set to run from: 10.30pm – 1am (18+)

If haven’t bought any tickets but you’re interested in buying tickets, they went on sale on Monday 6th March at: www.beatcraze-events. and from Ticketweb.

For information on ticket prices, they range from £25 / €30 (General Admission), £35 / €40 (Early Entry), £50 / €55 (VIP which includes Afterparty) and finally £70 / €75 (VIP which includes Meet & Greet and Afterparty).

Please note that tickets are non-refundable. This is a strictly 18+ event and you must have photo ID with you at this event and be ready to present at the door. For any more additional information: www.




ZICO X MISBHV “ can feel the crowd’s anticipation.”


On January 5th, ZICO X MISBHV landed in London! In collaboration with European fashion house MISBHV during the London Men’s Fashion Week, the highly-anticipated event was hosted by KOKO London and Cult of Ya. With guest appearances from DJ Illustrious One, Danny Seth and C-Eazy, general entry was allowed in at around 8pm. Yet it wasn’t until around 9pm that DJ Millic took to the stage hyping up the crowd even more (at some point he ended up jumping around the stage too and splashing water), and around 10pm that Zico started performing. The first song was Tough Cookie, and after the long sets by the guest artists before, the crowd was more than ready. With Zico’s ‘London, are you ready? 1, 2…’ the event officially starts with the crowd erupting into a unified ‘Tough cookie, tough cookie.’ It slows down a little with Well Done but that was short-lived as, after a short ‘Happy New Year everyone!’ from Zico, he soon beckons the crowd with an ‘Are you guys ready?’ as he starts chanting ‘Veni, Vidi, Vici.’ Zico continues to interact with fans in perfect English, ‘Are you guys having fun? Me too!’. ‘I did this song with my friends Crush and Dean,’ and as Zico says that you can feel the crowd’s anticipation. Unfortunately, neither Dean nor Crush were present, ‘so I want you guys to sing their parts’ – and boy, was the crowd ready. Zico holds out his mic and everyone’s voices filled in the gaps of the missing parts for Bermuda Triangle that Zico’s face was positively alight and smiling as he performed.

Zico turns to the crowd and asks ‘you guys heard of Show Me The Money 4?’ teasing them by asking ‘Zico or Mino?’, which soon led to the whole room chanting Zico’s name as Turtle Ship starts playing. ‘I got another one, London, are you with me? Is it true?’ and soon the crowd chants ‘Yes! Okey dokey yo! Say lalalala’ prompting the start of Okey Dokey to the shouts of the crowd. ‘I’m gonna slow it down a little now. Are there any single ladies here tonight? I will give you something romantic.’ I Am You, You Are Me has the crowd waving their hands in the air and singing along with the chorus. Zico smiles and points to the left side ‘Say oh oh oh oh’ and then the right side as Boys and Girls plays. To the crowd’s shout of ‘where you at, where you at, where you at’, Eureka had Zico body-rolling. The set officially ends with ‘Yes Or No’. After a short selfie time with the guest artists and the crowd behind, the afterparty started. Zico’s energy seeped into the crowd and although the mosh-pit was insane, the night was certainly one to remember. It was a shame that the guest artists performed longer than the main act, with Zico’s performance lasting only forty minutes rather than the promised 100 minute set.






s part of their European tour, Block B stopped off in London to perform for British BBC’s thanks to Onion Production and MyMusicTaste! On March 5th, despite the wind and rain, fans had been already lining up for over an hour to get the best view. Although the weather was against them, everyone seemed to be in good spirits and there was a good vibe – even the venue staff were in a good mood! Before the concert had even begun, the fans’ singing along to the music was echoing around the arena, so much so that the music couldn’t be heard over them! As the music turned up, the fans got louder and we knew that any minute now, the boys will come out. But nothing prepared for for the excited screaming when they did. As Block B exploded on the stage, from the very first song, the lights and background projections really stood out as being exceptionally well done, and well planned out. After their opening song, ‘Her’ blasted through the speakers and the fans immediately began singing along. The atmosphere was through the roof by this time, just in time for Block B’s introductions! Each member went through and introduced themselves one by one in perfect English before introducing the next song – Action! A couple of high-tempo songs had passed before the members took a minute to introduce themselves

again and have some fun with the fans. Kyung even attempted a British accent before Zico promised that ‘the stage will be on fire’. Next on the set list was ‘Very Good’ – followed by a very artistic video with obvious influences from the European Renaissance era (1300 – 1700) – very relevant to the continent they’re touring! After a few more songs and a special stage from Bastarz, the members had begun to show more fan service as the show was coming to a close. All members went to each edge of the stage and interacted with fans whilst confetti came pouring out of the stage leaving decorative strings on the audience. Block B were having way too much fun teasing their fans, including throwing water on the front rows! The place was buzzing when they left, and they left with one promise “if you guys are loud enough, we’ll come back for an encore” to which the audience screamed at the top of their lungs. After about ten minutes of chanting, Block B reappeared with the stage setting off some more confetti as the members held out the Union Jack to take a picture with. It’s safe to say that the concert was a huge success – Block B seemed to really enjoy themselves and even said that this is their most responsive show to date! They expressed their wishes to return over and over – definitely a concert to keep an eye out for if they do return.

“They expressed their wishes to return over and over – definitely a concert to keep an eye out for if they do return.”





ROOKIE SPOTLIGHT: BLACKPINK “...they’ve gained a grand total of over 2 million subscribers with just 35 videos so far...”


t’s been an awaited debut from the latest girl group from YG, the line-up includes Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé and Lisa. The latter being one of the first non-Korean artist signed under YG Entertainment. They released two songs back in August with ‘Boombayah’ and ‘Whistle’ as part of ‘Square One’ and later in November they followed up with ‘Playing with Fire’ and ‘Stay’ which was under ‘Square Two’.

It would be an understatement to say that they’ve attracted attention on a worldwide scale, especially with their social media presence. On their official YouTube channel, they’ve gained a grand total of over 2 million subscribers with just 35 videos so far including their live performances, showing how much international support the girls have received in the short span since their debut.

With nearly seven months passed as an active group, they’ve already been dubbed as ‘Rookie Monsters’ with their list of awards continuing to rack up. Back in the Gaon Chart Awards, BLACKPINK won awards for ‘Song of the Year’ in August and November for ‘Whistle’ and ‘Playing with Fire’ respectively, which showcases their rising popularity and recognition despite being a new group to enter the K-pop industry.

BLACKPINK’s MV for ‘BOOMBAYAH’ was the first to pass over 100 million views, which is definitely an impressive feat for any rookie group to achieve. The other MV’s such as ‘Whistle’ and ‘Playing with Fire’ are also very close to hitting the same target, with the combined views of their MV’s coming at over 341 million views! And even with their dance practice videos, they have all passed 20 million views each— even the introductory dance practice video

for ‘BBHMM’ with choreography by Parris Goebel, which was filmed during their trainee days has over 15 million views. Similarly, on their Spotify account, it also looks like their music has proven to a hit with their songs being streamed by millions. From just that, it could be argued that 2016 was a very successful year for BLACKPINK. They have raised the bar for themselves for 2017 and we are very interested to see the kind of concepts they will be working with for their next comebacks. With the anticipation that ‘Square Three’ and ‘Square Four’ will hopefully be released sometime this year, we’re sure that the girls will continue to release good music and their recognition will reach further heights as artists on a worldwide scale.



WHISTLE “Make ‘em whistle like a missile, bomb bomb. Every time I show up, blow up, uh.”



Even with just the opening lines, there’s that trademark style that’s associated with YG. It’s a catchy song and the whistling added into the background really added to the likeability of it. The one thing I do have to say about this group is that because there’s four members, they all bring something unique to the track—even for instance Rosé’s wistful vocals or Lisa’s strong delivery in her raps, it really does well in drawing the listener in. Although ‘Boombayah’ looked like it was more mainstream pop, ‘Whistle’ is the more laid-back track and was received very well in Korea as the song reached over 1 million sales. Which isn’t normally something that happens for a freshly debuted group and while there are arguments that it’s because they come from YGE, that must have been a contributing factor to their success especially being the girl group to follow on from 2NE1, that shouldn’t discredit them from releasing a good music.

There isn’t a set storyline to follow with ‘Whistle’, but there’s definitely more of a focus point in terms of how the girls act in the MV rather than in ‘Boombayah’ which was more dance orientated in comparison. All the BLACKPINK members emit that ‘girl crush’ vibe, their actions give off the impression of being nonchalant yet in the lyrics they’re expressing themselves and their feelings quite confidently. Overall, it’s a very sleek MV to watch with the variety of sceneries that were played out, and it even went on to win ‘Best Music Video’ at MAMA 2016!




al Shabet’s visual and maknae, Subin, dropped her latest singles “Strawberry” and “Circle’s Dream” in February adding to an impressive solo discography list of self-composed tracks. When Subin isn’t promoting herself as a solo singersongwriter, she is a member of Dal Shabet and has been in the group since their debut in 2011. Six years later, 23 year old Subin has also appeared in dramas, her infamous role being in Dream High alongside Miss A’s Suzy, and is currently majoring in Theatre at Konkuk University.

Review – Circle’s Dream: The highlight in this track is Subin’s melodic vocals delicately placed over a soft reggae style track. The acoustic sound is a staple in Subin’s solo work and this track is no exception. Every lyric and every scene compliments each other so perfectly as an overall relaxing MV. The simplicity of the video featuring Subin dressed in white and red is emphasised in every element including the catchy chorus and choreography hand gestures. Perfect! Subin has established a brand for herself with her solo work and her indie-esque, acoustic sound is a refreshing switchup from Dal Shabet’s style. Even though Subin is the maknae in her group, she has developed a mature sound and writing style for her solo stuff. Don’t forget to check out her music on Happyface Entertainment’s official YouTube channel!


“When Subin isn’t promoting herself as a solo singersongwriter, she is a member of Dal Shabet and has been in the group since their debut in 2011.”


Spring Playlist

Cherry Blossom Ending Busker Busker

In 2016, the six sweethearts of Fantiago made their debut with the first of their Season series; “Spring Up” and they certainly defined their boy-next-door image with this title track. The fun rhythmic style and the use of the sampled playground embodies Spring and makes “Hide & Seek” very infectious from the first listen.

Hopefully Sky Jeong Eunji

Hide & Seek ASTRO

April Story April

With a refreshed line up, April made their comeback with this ethereal ballad; telling the story of a one-sided love. In the lyrics, the girls sing of a girl who resides in the Land of Spring who falls in love with a boy from the Land of Ice, who unfortunately is in love with a girl just like him. Although the lyrics are indeed heartbreaking, the song itself is reminiscent of Disney musical numbers, adding a grand orchestra style to their alreadyfairytale image.

At long last, the flowers are blooming and the temperature is rising. It’s time to forget all about the worries of Winter and step into Spring. For South Korea, it is a time to admire the cherry blossoms, enjoy White Day and admire the Lotus Lantern Festival.

Spring Day BTS

Covered by the likes of DAY6, Astro and members of Lovelyz, it wouldn’t be a Spring Playlist without this hit track. For five years running, “Cherry Blossom Ending” has made a reappearance in music charts with the change of season, and with this combo of acoustic guitar and sweet harmonies, its clear to see why this is K-Pop’s “Spring Carol”.

As a dedication to her own father, Apink’s main vocalist made her debut with this charming folk-pop song. With musician Hareen providing instrumental, the track recalls happy memories between a father and his daughter. Eunji’s soft voice blends perfectly with the acoustic guitar and harmonic, providing a sweet ode to Spring that anyone can hum along to. The conclusion to their Wings promotion; BTS has already provided 2017’s spring track for their fans, stepping away from their usual sound to create a poignant ballad with elements of British pop-rock and electronic harmonies. Waving a sentimental goodbye to their youth, “Spring Day” marks the transition from Winter and marks a new beginning as the flowers bloom & more memories are made between the boys and their fans; ARMY.

However, in reality, Spring can also be a time for cramming assignments, constant work and Daylight Savings Time. If you need to inject a little more Spring into your life, look no further than this selection of songs that will help you step out of the cold and embrace the season with open arms.


Love Blossom K.Will

Between two of his biggest hits; “Please Don’t” & “You Don’t Know Love”, you could consider this follow-up to be a hidden gem. K.Will brings a perfect representation with this soulful pop number about the feeling of love in Spring. With a jazz-inspired beat and powerful vocals, “Love Blossom” is a track that certainly stands out from the rest.

Paper Heart lel & Jeongmin

Out of all the side-tracks in the hit “Love & Letter” album, it is the solo track from member, Woozi that stands out. As a refreshing, mid-tempo track, the Vocal Team leader pours his emotions into every second, making it perfect for any Spring memory or even a K-Drama soundtrack.

Simple Woozi of Seventeen

Why is it Spring Again? Yerin, Cao Lu & Kisum If you’re looking for a fun throwback, look no further than the beautiful maknae of Brown Eyed Girls. Although the lyrics are slightly tonguein-cheek with its themes, the bright coloured aesthetic of the music video and the overall pop-infused funk style made this solo track an instant hit back in 2012.

Bloom Gain

Despite releasing his first album in 2012, lel is still unknown as an artist. However, you may already recognise his work with many artists such as 2PM, Huh Gak and Miss A to name a few. For his 2015 project, the indie songwriter released “Paper Heart”, teaming the sweet vocals of Boyfriend member, Jeongmin with an acoustic melody for a relaxing yet bittersweet ballad.

Not everyone loves Spring, and with this collaboration between Gfriend’s Yerin, Fiestar’s Cao Lu and Unpretty Rapstar alum, Kisum, this acoustic tune is counteracted with the three sweethearts complaining about how Spring has come around again and that they feel alone in what is considered in South Korea as a romantic season. If you’re looking for an Anti-Spring track, this could be your new favourite.




B.A.P – Single Album “Rose” 1. DYSTOPIA


The single album opens with a rock track, to help illustrate the anger and frustration. Looking at the title, it describes a fictional place where everything appears to be corrupt, which can take the form of a post-apocalyptic society which has collapsed beyond repair. The lyrics was also interesting to look over, with lines such as “There’s no utopia, that’s just an escape,” there’s no rose-tinted glasses here, almost as if they’ve stopped pretending like everything is okay, to not waste any time on letting corruption take over by standing up and fighting. Also with the line, “Each person’s utopia is different”, while we may aspire to live in a world that’s fair and equal, it’s not possible to adhere to everyone’s needs.

To finish off, the hardened exterior of B.A.P had been cracked with ‘Diamond For Ya’. The intensity of the last two songs had lessened greatly, though their messages still echo on. This is a light-heartened song to listen to, to help raise the mood to close the album off. With the lyrics, “I found you in the light. It’s the reason I found my life again,” it suggests that no matter how challenging life can get sometimes or what is thrown your way, love can help cushion the pain and act as a shield of protection.

2. WAKE ME UP Next up is the main title track, going down a similar path with ‘Dystopia’. Both contain quite heavy meanings, with ‘Wake Me Up’, there’s that urgent plead to their listeners to awaken from the mediocrity, to snap out of just living life for the sake of it. Because time waits for no-one, it’s a precious entity which can either enable productivity or is left to be wasted. But once it’s gone, you can’t get it back. There’s a line in the song, “This is an endless tunnel. In darkness with no light,” which implies that unless people force themselves to realise the true reality, they cannot go forward in the darkness, they’ll only stumble and be left behind. MV?








9 - “Some day, the cold rain will become warm tears.”

1 - “Walking on this path like a picture, We met destiny.”

11 - “You’re only looking ahead as you walk, you’re

2 - “All of these ordinary things, you make special.”

gonna get hurt.”

3 - “No need for that gold key or get lucky.”

12 - “Just breathing alone makes me happy.”

4 - “Take off the mask that covers the passion.”

13 - “Turn on the switch right now, brightly.”

5 - “We are extra, but still part of this world.”

14 - “Love is a special two-dimension.”

6 - “Who can blame my natural fatality?”

15 - “At first, they all say, you can’t trust any guy.”

7 - “Stop pretending you’re innocent like a bear. I know

16 - “Can’t let you go, let’s just hit rewind.”

you’re sly like a fox.”

17 - “Hide everything in your young rashness.”

8 - “Stop acting so tough! You’ll regret it later.”

18 - “I’ll make one movement with my hands to control

10 - “As if you’re my boyfriend, you got mad at me.”

your heart.”



BOYFRIEND QUIZ Spring is the perfect time to fall in love and enjoy everything the season has to offer, but which idol would you fall for? Here you can find out which Kpop sweetheart you most compatible with based on what you like best. Follow our questions and discover who is your Spring Boyfriend! Q1: What is your idea of the perfect first date? A romantic meal for two, or a day out in an Amusement Park? A: Romantic Meal - Go to Q2 B: Amusement Park - Go to Q3

Q2: How would you like your boyfriend to ask you out? A song written for you or a cute confession? A: Personalised Song - Go to Q4 B: Cute Confession - Go to Q5

Q5: What would you buy first? A Couple Ring or a Love Lock at Namsan Tower? A: Ring - You get Sungjong! B: Lock - You get Eunwoo!

Q6: What is your favourite activity to do with your boyfriend? A night playing video games or singing at a Norebang? A: Video Games - You get Jungkook! B: Norebang - You get Daehyun!

Q3: Do you prefer a lot of PDA or tender, private skinship?

Q7: What is your favourite sign of affection? Simply holding hands or a sweet backhug?

A: PDA - Go to Q6 B: Skinship - Go to Q7

A: Backhug - You get Eunwoo! B: Holding hands - You get Sungjong!

Q4: Would you be upset or assertive if someone else was flirting with your boyfriend? A: Upset - You get Daehyun! B: Assertive - You get Jungkook!




You’re best compatible to the “tough guy” Daehyun of B.A.P. Although he may seem like a cold gentleman who prefers his own space; he is actually very sweet in nature when he finally opens up. As main vocalist, you are guaranteed to be serenaded by this playful hunk who loves to express his love to his fans and to you.

You’re best compatible with Infinite’s maknae, Sungjong. Although he is the youngest, don’t expect him to be just coy and cute. Sungjong is just as mature and charming as his fellow members – perhaps even more so. You can always depend on him as a shoulder to cry on and as someone to make everything better with his sharp humour and natural aegyo.



You’re best compatible with BTS’ ‘Golden Maknae’, Jungkook. He is the type of boyfriend who would be a best friend; joking around and being loud with you, and then suddenly reveal his true emotions. Training with BTS, he wears his heart on his sleeve and if something is on his mind, he will say it and he will strive to be the best boyfriend he can be.

You’re best compatible with Eunwoo of rookie group, ASTRO. With his gentle personality and fresh style, he is a true example of a First Love, leaping from the pages of a Manhwa. Eunwoo carries ASTRO’s good boy image, making him the perfect guy to visit family and an overall sweetheart to spend the first days of Spring with.


Easy Spring Vocab 벚꽃 (Beot-kkot) Cherry Blossoms

부활절 (Buh-hwal-jeol) Easter

Cherry Blossoms are indescribably beautiful but you have to be quick to see them bloom! Many people will go to view them in parks or festivals with their loved ones. These Cherry Blossom viewings are called 벚꽃 놀이 (Beot-kkot Nori)

Christianity is now the biggest religion in Korea. You can wish your Korean friends a Happy Easter by saying 부활절 축복 받으세요 (Bu-hwal-jeol Chuk-bok Bad-ue-sae-yo.)

황사 (Hwangsa) Yellow Dust Yellow dust is a harmful air pollutant which often comes to Korea during the spring time. This dust originates in the deserts of China and Mongolia and travels over Asia carrying particles of pollution, oxides and toxic wastes with it. It can be harmful to breathe in so you will be advised to wear a 마스크 (masu-keu) to protect your mouth and nose.

딸기 (Ddalgi) Strawberry Strawberries are in season in spring! Strawberry picking is a very popular and fun spring time activity. 봄소풍 (Bom-su-pong) Spring Picnic Many families will also go on a spring picnic while viewing the cherry blossoms. They will usually prepare a Korean style packed lunch called 도시락 (Dosirak) to eat or order food to be delivered.


춘곤증 (Chun-gon-jeung) Spring fever Do you become more tired as the weather starts to become warmer? In Korean, this is called 춘곤증. It is a natural phenomenon which increases tiredness and fatigue in the spring months. It is thought to be caused by an increase in temperature and sunlight hours. 무궁화 (Mu-gung-hwa) Common Hibiscus This is Korea’s national flower. Korea is compared to this flower in their beautiful and poetic national anthem. 자전거 타기 (Jajun-guh tagi) Cycling Many couples go on a cycling date and will ride a bicycle through a park or alongside the Han River.

무지개 (Mujigae) Rainbow 봄방학 (Bom-bang-hak) Spring Break 봄 (Bom) Spring 토끼 (Tokki) Rabbit 봄비 (Bom-bi) Spring rain 우산 (Usan) Umbrella



Blooming lovely time to visit Spring brings the delicate, pink petaled cherry blossom to Korea - but not for long. Four places to catch it while you can The end of March is an ideal time to visit Korea, as the cold wintery weather finally melts away to make way for thousands upon thousands of stunning cherry blossoms. The cherry blossom bloom starts in the south island of Jeju, and rises up the country over the next ten days. You’ve got to be quick to catch them, as most trees are in full bloom for only a few days, but there’s plenty of local and national festivals going on to make the most of it. Here are four major ones.

Jeju Cherry Blossom Festival (March 31-Apr 9) The first blooms to open in Korea are on Jeju, and they’re some of the largest petals, a variety known as King Cherry. Music, food stalls and a variety of blossom-themed events are held in the area of Jeonnong-ro and the entrance of Jeju National University. There’s even a special lecture held this year about preserving the blooms. The festival is free, and fairly easy to reach from the airport by bus. Visit the official website, for more details in English.

Hwagae Cherry Blossom Festival (April 1-2) This festival is short but especially sweet for those with romance on the brain. There’s a special six kilometer road nicknamed ‘wedding road’ that couples should walk down hand-inhand. If they do, it’s believedhey will grow old together in an everlasting relationship. Aww! The festival is held around a traditional open-air market called Hwagae Market, Gyeongsangnam-do. Check out the website, for more information in English.

Yeongdeungpo Yeoudo Spring Flower Festival (April 1-9) The most famous cherry blossom street in Seoul is here, so be prepared for crowds. There are 1,886 trees in bloom in the area. It’s close to the Hangang river, and the National Assembly Building, and only a short walk from major subway stations, making it easy to find for non-locals. If you can take your eyes off the star attraction, there are also azaleas and forsythias in bloom. The streets are closed to cars and there are also nighttime events when the blooms are lit up. Check the website, for more information in English.

Jinhae Gunhangje Festival (Apr 1-10) Join the two million tourists that head to Gyeongsangnam-do for one of Korea’s major cherry blossom festivals. The trees sweep in beautiful arcs over a river, forming cherry blossom tunnels, just perfect for photos. There’s also a fireworks show and a performance by the Jinhae International Military Band and

Honor Guard. The official website, is in Korean only, but plenty of Englishspeaking bloggers have made the trip and written about it.

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Put some spring foods in your step You can grab rice cakes and bulgogi any time, but Koreans believe eating what’s in season boosts your health and wellbeing. What to eat this springtime? Here’s three seasonal treats to consider.` Eat like the royalty of old, and try some king crab in spring. Their peak season is from February to mid-March. Most of the king crabs sold in Korea are caught off Korea’s east coast, with Yeongdeok crabs thought to be the tastiest, as the crabs there live in cleaner sand than the rest of the coast. Usually the crabs are steamed whole and presented to the table like that; then it’s easier to break it into pieces to eat. Rice is often mixed into the head shell to be eaten with the innards, known as crab butter. Seoul has plenty of crab restaurants, but for the freshest servings head to Uljin and Yeongdeok in Gyeongsangbuk-do.

Ttalgi, strawberries A smaller and tender variety of octopus, Jukkumi is in season for around eight months, but it is most popular to eat in springtime because of its eggs. Jukkumi eggs are a bit like rice in colour, shape and size. Jukkumi are caught on the west coast of Korea, including Seocheon, Taean, and Boryeong in Chungcheongnam-do. There are two main dishes made with Jukkumi, Jukkumi Samgyeopsal Bokkeum and Jukkumi Shabu-shabu. With Jukkumi Samgyeopsal Bokkeum,

There are crab restaurant streets in both places, and Uljin’s are slightly cheaper. There are also crab festivals in both places - visitors can ride in crab fishing boats and take part in a cooking competition as well as taste lots of dishes. Check out the official website for Yeongdeok’s festival held from 31st March,, but note it’s only in Korean.

March and April are strawberry season in Korea, and the sweet red fruit dominates bakery shelves with limited edition desserts, themed festivals and even fancy hotel buffets in springtime. They’re grown in the warmer southern regions like Damyang in Jeollanam-do, Nonsan in Chungcheongnam-do, and Geochang in

the octopus is served with pork, vegetables and rice cakes in a spicy sauce. If you don’t like spice, Jukkumi Shabu-shabu is a better bet, as the broth is usually vegetable-based and very simple. The Jukkumi is thinly sliced before cooking and eaten with noodles. Of course, there’s a few Jukkumi festivals around the west coast too. Muchangpo Mystic Sea Road Jjukkumi and Dodari Festival is a

b Daege, King cra

Gyeongsangnam-do. Nonsan’s strawberry festival allows visitors to pick strawberries, and take part in making jams and cakes. Check the official website,, for more information, but note it’s only in Korean.

Jukkumi, baby octopus

good one, held at the end of March to the beginning of April. Visit the official website, mbeach., but note it’s in Korean only.


SPRING STUDENTS IN WITH THE NEW There’s no spring break for Korean students, as April brings the start of the new academic year, and with it, some unique entrance ceremonies. Springtime is known as a season for new beginnings in Korea - new jobs, new love interests, and yes, even new studies. School and university academic years begin in April, unlike the UK and the US. Schools hold formal entrance ceremonies, and while keeping some traditional elements - a welcoming speech, for example,

some of these ceremonies are now evolving into a more fun day for the newbies. Siheung Elementary school in Seogwipo, Jeju has made the news in recent years for involving ponies in its entrance ceremony. The southern island of Korea is famous for horses, so the school made the entrance day memorable for its eight new elementary students by allowing them to ride up to the gates on ponies. The kids even took a tour around the school on horseback.


A slightly tamer ceremony has become popular since 2013 in Gangwon Province, where more than 50 junior-high and high schools hold book reading ceremonies. Principals read books to the students as part of the ceremony, and all students, parents and teachers present pledge to read more books. New students receive notebooks to track their reading progress, and guidelines on book clubs.

Some schools deliberately make the day a bit more informal to ease new pupil’s nerves. At Solgae Elementary School in Yongin, Gyeonggi-do, all the teachers wear jeans and T-shirts and decorate the school gates with pink balloons. They feed the kids rice cakes and do dances for them in costumes. It’s not just kids who are enjoying unusual entrance ceremonies

either. In Busan, Dongseo University’s chancellor washed the feet of new students at their entrance ceremony, symbolizing his service to his students. Also in Busan, Silla University students write their wishes on paper and attach them to balloons, before releasing them into the air during their entrance ceremony.



ONE WAY TRIP (2016) One Way Trip is a tense drama about four friends who try to take a break from their mundane day-today lives before their friend leaves the next day for the military but their happiness is short lived when they see a woman being beaten brutally by a man outside a car on a lonely dock in the middle of the night. It was released in 2016 after its world premiere at Busan IFF on October 3rd, 2015. It was nominated for three awards and won the “Jury’s Award for Best Feature Film” at the 2016 Hanoi International Film Festival. The four friends are Yong-Bi (Ji Soo), Sang Woo (Suho of EXO), Ji-Gong (Ryoo Joon-Yeol) and Doo-Man (Kim Hee-Chan.) Sang Woo has prepared to leave his life behind and go into the military to relieve the burden of his wellbeing from his only remaining family - his hard working but frail grandmother; his three friends decide they need to have one last night of pure youthful fun before he

leaves. The plot revolves primarily around Yong-Bi, a barely employed young man who has given up on higher education. Yong-Bi helps Ji-Gong escape his overbearing studies-pushing mother for the day and they both head to pull Doo-Man out of his rigorous baseball practice. Once they’re all out of the clutches of their overwhelming adult lives, they pick up Sang Woo and head out. After playing on the beach and heading to a restaurant for fried chicken and drinks they end up on a quiet dock so Doo-Man has a place to throw up after he chugs far too much alcohol for his tiny frame. While they’re there, Ji-Gong spots people having “car sex” and tries to get Yong-Bi to drive his borrowed shabby van closer to watch. They quickly realize that the man in the car is abusing the woman in the car and after pulling her out by her clothing and hair he starts hitting her

relentlessly while she tries to get away. Yong-Bi can’t stand idly by and the four of them end up confronting the man and getting into a fight to help the woman escape. Some of the plot should be left to those of you who want to watch the movie, but to pique your interest – everything said above has happened the previous night. Currently three boys are being held for a crime they have no idea if they committed or not, the woman from the previous night turns out to be, let’s say, well known, and the fourth young man is in intensive surgery. What exactly went down during the fight and what’s going to happen to them? You can buy or rent One Way Trip on iTunes, Google Play, and YouTube. Have you watched One Way Trip? Let us know on our UnitedKpop Facebook page.



4 Dramas and Films for your Spring viewing Unforgettable (Pure Love) (2016)

Genre: Historical, Coming-of-age, Romance Director: Yun Seong-Sik Cast: Do Kyung-soo (It’s Okay, It’s Love), Kim So-hyun, Yeon (Who Are You: School 2015, Page Turner), Jun-seok, Lee Da-wit, Joo Da-young, Park Young-woo, Park Hae-joon, Kim Ji-ho In debuting director Lee Eunhee’s coming-of-age tragic romance, Unforgettable (Hangul: lit. ‘Pure’), we are given a glimpse of the friendship and childhood of five friends through a series of flashbacks and melancholy memories. The story begins when a radio DJ (Park Yong-woo) receives a two-decades old letter that sends his mind racing back to the summer of 1991. And that is where this sad and bittersweet tale about a group of friends in their Goheung Country hometown and their last summer together, really begins.It’s one of those films that will leave you with the warm, fuzzy feeling of nostalgia especially with songs like Kansas’ Dust in the Wind (1977) and Karla Bonoff’s The water is wide (1979) featuring.

Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth (2016) Genre: Historical, Coming-of-age, Romance Director: Yun Seong-Sik Cast: Park Seojoon, Go Ara, Park Hyungsik, Sung Dongil, Choi Minho, Do Jihan, Cho Yoonwoo, Kim Taehyung In this highly anticipated historical drama, Hwarang (literally ‘Flowering Knights’) tells the story of an elite group of male youth during the time of the Kingdom of Silla. Jiso, the Queen Regent, has ruled the Kingdom of Silla since King Boepheung passed away, keeping her young son Sammaekjong hidden outside the capital, Seorabeol. But as the young king comes of age, nobles, citizens and the constantly arguing officials, and Sammaekjong himself grows impatient for her to step down. With corrupt officials eyeing the throne, Jiso fears the consequences of her

surrendering the throne to her son. With that in mind, Jiso creates a new elite, the Hwarang, a group of youths from all across the rigid bone rank system (power factions that determine one’s social standing), binding them to the king and the royal throne. As the new elite of male youths bong and grow, they are unaware that within their ranks is their future king, and Kim Sunwoo, a commoner with a secret even he is not aware of.

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Codename: Jackal Genre: Comedy, Action Director: Jo Hanjoo Cast: Song Jihyo, Kim Jaejoong, Oh Dalsu

Clumsy and off-the-wall hit man Bong Min-jung (Song Jihyo) is hired to kill top Hallyu star Choi Hyun (Kim Jaejoong). The mission starts by abducting the star at Paradise Hotel where Hyun checked in to rest. All chaos ensues when, when Hyun attempts to convince Minjung that he isn’t the ‘top Hallyu star Choi Hyun’ to let him escape through various ridiculous ways, such as singing out of tune to his own songs. Meanwhile, in the same hotel, a group of cops are on a stakeout for serial killer ‘Jackal.’

The Beauty Inside (2015)

Genre: Romance, Comedy, Fantasy Director: Baik (Baek Jong-yeol) Cast: Han Hyo-joo, Park Seo-jun, Lee Dong-hwi, Lee Mi-do, Kim Dae-myung, Koh Ah-sung, Juri Ueno, Lee Jin-wook, Chun Woo-hee, Yoo Yeon-seok, Moon Sook, Kim Hee-won, Do Ji-han, Kim Sang-ho, Lee Beom-soo, Lee Jae-jun, Jo Dal-hwan, Lee Dong-wook, Kim Joohyuk ‘Phew! That’s a lot of cast members.’ I hear you say. And yes, there is a lot and there’s a very good reason for that. The plot is the reason, actually. Woo-jin wakes up in a different body every day, spanning gender, age, and nationality. Sometimes he’s a man, a woman, old, young, sometimes even a foreigner. On the inside, he remains the same, yet outside he is always someone new. So, what happens when he falls for Yi-soo, someone who finds out his secret and loves him anyway? There are many cameos of well-loved Korean actors such as Park Seo-jun (Kill Me, Heal Me), Lee Dong-wook (Scent of a Woman) and Lee Hyunwoo (The Con Artists).




Introducing VAV

Having debuted back in 2015, VAV are not new to the K-pop scene. However, armed with a fresh new track and three talented new members, they are super charging their way through 2017. The boys released their new track ‘Dance With Me’ a little over a month ago on February 17th. In that time they’ve already amassed over 800,000 views, nearing 900K. Not too shabby! Each track since their debut has shown new sides of the members talents, and this is no different. The addition of Ayno, Lou and Ziu only aids their success. Check out our interview with the boys and check out their latest hit, VAV are ones to watch!

1. St. Van

Hi, I am leader of VAV, St. Van and I am the main vocal of the group. Nice to meet you.

2. Ace

Hi, I am vocal and dance representative of VAV, and my name is Ace. Also, I am the NICE BODY of the team, in charge of sexy and mostly take the role as MC.

3. BaRon

Hi. I am BaRon, Mom of the team who also in charge of dance and vocal. I feel so happy to meet you.

4. Jacob

Hi, I am Chinese members of VAV, and my name is Jacob. I am 22 years old, 183cm tall. My hobby is eating.

5. Ayno

Hi, I am Ayno, new members of VAV. My most powerful weapon is my smile so be aware to get attacked by me.

6. Lou

Hi I am new members of VAV, and my name is Lou. I am 22 this year, rapper of the team, having attractive voice, fluent in English and I am the tallest members of the group, with height 187cm.

7. Ziu

Hi, I am Ziu, new member of VAV as well. Please look forwards for my future performance as VAV members and I promise will show you all my talents and charisma. I hope you will like me.


INTERVIEW What is the meaning behind your name VAV? VAV is the short form of Very Awesome V, where the last V can have different kinds of meaning. It’s included Voice, Visual and etc, which means we hope to be the best team ever. Like your fans name ‘Vampz’, your look is very vampiric, are there any other concepts you would like to try in the future? Others than the initial concept that we have tried, we are actually now in the process of finding a concept where it can showcase our members’ talent and charisma more. We are challenging ourselves with all kinds of concept and hope to find our true colors. When you first debuted you released a webtoon, how was it working with Ha Il Kwon? Will there be any future instalments? We really appreciate and want to thank Mr. Ha Il Kwon for creating our Webtoon characters. If there’s a chance, we hope he can create character for our new members as well. Who would you consider to be your musical idols?  Talking about musical idols, I believe most people will say senior Shinhwa. We hope VAV can grow and be like senior Shinhwa, who enjoyed and worked as an idols team for a long time. We were once having the same promotion period as senior BTS, and I was amazed by their stage performance even until now. In the future, we want to work harder and be a successful team, like our seniors BTS.

As well as being member of VAV, do any members have an interest in songwriting, producing or acting? If so, have they been involved with any of VAV’s songs, or will they be in the future? First of all, our leader St. Van or Ayno are both interested in song composing and producing. They are both in the process of learning it now. If there’s a chance, I hope they can insert their own composed song or rap in VAV future album. Lou is majoring in Performing Arts so he is also interested in acting. I hope he can showcase his acting skills as an actor in future too.

“In the future, we want to work harder and be a successful team, like our seniors BTS.”

Name 3 goals for VAV (1) TOP50 in Melon Music Charts (2) VAV Own Concert! (3) VAV Global Tour! f you could perform anywhere, where would it be? Other than the UK, of course! We definitely want to meet all our international fans and perform for them if there’s a chance. No matter it’s in Asia, South America, North America, Europe or any other places! We are ready to run towards you! Finally, please give a message to your fans and UKP readers! Thanks for doing this interview! All fans from United Kpop! VAV will keep showing you different kinds of talent and charisma, thus do remember to keep your eyes on us. Also, don’t forget to listen to our songs ‘VENUS (Dance With Me) and please anticipate for our up-coming album too. We are VAV. Thank You!!

/VAVofficial @VAV_Official





outh Korea is a far cry different from Europe and America when it comes to many things, but there’s one subject that has both some similarities but more so, extreme differences: Gaming. Gaming in America and Europe is recognized as a hobby, and if you’re good enough to play pro, it can be considered a career or lifestyle, but in South Korea, gaming is considered one of the biggest social activities you can partake in. While there is some sort of progaming tournament in most large countries, South Korea regularly televises competitions with millions of viewers, dedicated channels on television, and hefty prizes for the athletes, be it in-game merchandise or large sums of money. The most popular competitive/ social games are MMORPGs, usually developed by someone from South Korea, but games such as League of Legends and StarCraft have been giant successes with South Korean players since the 90s (that is StarCraft; LoL wasn’t released until 2009.) South Korea is an industry leader when it comes to E-Sports and if you check out any group of pro-gaming teams or players, there’s bound to be more than one South Korean team or player. In Western countries any list of progamers could be listed off and the average citizen would have no idea who was being talked about, but in South Korea, many pro-gamers are treated like regular celebrities, and are often seen mingling with famous singers, actors, and performers of all kinds. They’re

regarded as important. In Western countries we often see gaming looked down upon - people who spend their time playing games are seen as pathetic or low-lives, and while South Korea definitely still has some stigma about gaming (particularly if it doesn’t churn any profit), people who succeed in gaming aren’t seen as anything less than someone who succeeds in performance arts. There’s even a segment during some South Korean gaming tournaments that lets the pro-gamers select other celebrities to play along with them for a match.

“...people who succeed in gaming aren’t seen as anything less than someone who succeeds in performance arts...” This creates an economy that thrives on high-end technology and access to games; South Korea has an extremely successful technological market and there are dozens of “PC Bangs”( PC방 or “PC room”) all over the country. Tech companies scout for potential pro-gamers and the country benefits millions of dollars from supporting E-Sports and its participants.

Now, from the negative side effects seen from binge-playing video games, back in 2011, South Korea passed the “Shutdown Law” or “Cinderella Law” in 2011 that forbade gamers under the age of 16 from playing online from 12:00-6:00AM and required that gamers register their social security numbers to ensure that they could be prevented from getting online to play within those hours. This caused problems with kids stealing social security numbers to play, and as we can imagine, it would seriously impinge on young sponsored and nonsponsored aspiring pro-gamers who have scheduled playing regimes that frequently run late. The law was amended in 2014 to allow the parents of young gamers to decide whether or not to apply the Cinderella Law to their children. I personally hope as time goes by, more countries will join in with the same passion as South Korea and push for pro-gaming and E-Sports to be a recognized career and not just a hobby, and even if it is just a hobby, I hope it can be seen as a positive past-time and not a detrimental one. Everything in moderation, right? Gaming has been proven to improve cognitive and even physical abilities. (And as a quick side note: I started gaming at a very young age and playing RPGs with dense dialogue taught me how to read quickly and improved my vocabulary; it also encouraged me to make friends with people who enjoyed gaming and overall made my childhood a happier one.) Gaming, on a professional level or not can enrich people’s lives and bring people together.

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“Gaming has been proven to improve cognitive and even physical abilities.�


Ultimate K-pop Party Playlist


t’s difficult to choose the 10 best party songs, so we chose, alternatively, 20 songs that we’d pick up from different artists. These songs would be the highlight songs at the party from different groups. We’d definitely start up with those songs when we make a playlist for a party. Apart from new releases like Red Velvet’s Rookie and K.A.R.D’s Don’t Recall, we also love to play some old classics like Jay Park’s Joah, Girls’ Generation’s Into The New World and Infinite’s 다시 돌아와. What are some of your favourites?

1. Black Pink - Boombayah

2. B.A.P - That’s My Jam

3. K.A.R.D - Don’t Recall

4. Twice - TT

5. NCT - Fire Truck

6. BTS - Fire

7. BIGBANG - Bang Bang Bang

8. EXO - Lucky One

9. Red Velvet - Rookie

10. Block B - Very Good



11. Jay Park - 우리가 빠지면 파티가 아니지

12. G Dragon - Crooked

13. Mino - Body

14. Zico - Okey Dokey

Young Bros is a party crew founded on 2014. Since then they have been partying across Europe such as Poland, Germany, Czech Republic, France, Portugal, Finland, Russia and United Kingdom. With members who are party planners, DJs, photographers and film makers, Young Bros have also invited special guests to hold unique parties, and give these artists opportunities to have live stages in Europe. Check out their website at:


15. Mobb - Hit me

16. Illionaire - YGGR

17. Keith Ape - It g ma

18. Jimin x Iron - Puss

WANT TO GUEST WRITE? To guest write for UnitedKpop contact Lerah at 19. CL - Hello Bitches

20. Heize x Dean - And July




ormed in 2011, Love X Stereo at first seemed an odd combination. Toby Hwang, a skater punk had been a part of the South Korean music scene since the 90s, Annie Ko however had spent the early years of her adulthood studying astrophysics, music being something she ventured into in her spare time. Their beginnings were filled with big ideas for a somewhat businesslike arrangement for the band, but as the years have passed their journey has become more experimental.

band, we were very much inspired by New Order, Smashing Pumpkins, The Chemical Brothers, The Prodigy, Nine Inch Nails and so on. We’re always super interested in technology - old and new, analog and digital. Especially when it comes to synthesizers, we always love to mix things up. In terms of lyrics, we’re interested in current happenings, relationships, places we travel, movies we watch, life and death, all sorts of things.”

Love X Stereo have no illusions about the Korean indie music scene. Rather than fight the corporate music machine of South Korea, Love X Stereo choose to simply seek out those who appreciate their music, wherever they may be.

Annie and Toby have both been involved in the South Korean music scene since the infancy of the Kpop industry. Kpop can be a bone of contention with many Korean indie artists, as alternate acts live in its shadow, but Love X Stereo have learnt to respect the Hallyu Wave, even though they want to be recognised separate from the genre.

“Hello, UnitedKpop! We’re Love X Stereo from Seoul, Korea. Annie is the lead vocalist and she handles the synths, Toby is our producer and he does guitars and synthesizers. We’re an electro duo. Our music is very various in terms of sound - we’re now in a phase where we’re trying out many different genres with detailed electronic elements. Our music is heavily influenced by the 90s alternative era and the 80s synth pop era. When we started out our

“We’ve learned that nowadays, K-pop is the genre that you just cannot ignore. It broke all the rules in the music industry (worldwide), and it somehow made “Korea” look very hip and cool. Whether you like it or not, the K-pop effect became some sort of a privilege to many Korean indie musicians including ourselves. But there are many other types of music out there in Korea. We’re hoping people don’t just assume that Korea is all

about K-pop. We’re going to try our best to break that stereotype by doing what we’ve been always doing. Making good music.”

“We’re going to try our best to break that stereotype by doing what we’ve always been doing. Making good music.”


“We’re very excited to perform at FOCUS Wales.”

The Kpop effect has allowed them certain successes too. Love X Stereo were one of the indie bands that contributed music to the soundtrack of successful K-drama ‘Cheese in the Trap’. It is this song they’d suggest for a first time listener.

“[We’d suggest] ‘Hide and Seek’. Probably because it’s the most beloved song of ours so far. Honestly, we never thought that song was gonna take off on it’s own like that. Amazing.”

As well as working continuously on new music Love X Stereo will touch down in the UK in May to play a handful of shows.

“We’re very excited to perform at FOCUS Wales. This year Love X Stereo are The festival was gracious embarking on an ambitious enough to invite us. We’re going to have a great time journey. Over twelve months Love X Stereo seek in Wrexham. Also, we’ll be doing a couple of gigs in to release thirty seven London as well. We’ll be songs via their Patreon posting our schedule soon, campaign, the equivalent so keep up with us of at least two full length on our socials. albums. The platform allows fans to help fund this project at many levels. This will be our very first As thanks for their support time performing in UK. We’ve always wanted to the band offer a number perform in Europe, and this of different rewards, that range from early access to will be a great stepping releases to a personal visit stone for us. If you like electro/dance/ from the band. alternative/rock music, that’s us and we’re “It gives our fans extreme gonna rock the stage exclusivity. We think we hard. We’ll be performing became good friends with all of our patrons. We know some new songs as well, Patreon isn’t for everyone. so please be there and have fun with us!” (It’s like a subscription based model.) But if you Love X Stereo will kick become our patron, you’ll off their UK tour by get to experience all of playing the FOCUS Wales these songs and videos Festival in Wrexham on in advance, you’ll get to know all the behind stories Saturday 12th May (Central Station, 8:45PM). They’ll of these songs, and you’ll get to see the process and then journey to London, progress in a very exclusive where they are set to play a handful of shows, way, which can be very meaningful - not only to our including one alongside a UK based band that played patrons, but for ourselves Hongdae’s Zandari as well. It’s an extremely Festa in October. personal approach, and we’re liking it so far.” Keep up to date with Love X Stereo and their UK tour by finding the duo on all /lovexstereo Social Media, Bandcamp and Patreon with the @lovexstereo username ‘lovexstereo’.


Your essential

Spring Products 1

1. Missha - Cherry Blossom Something Body Mist


Immerse yourself in the scent of Cherry blossoms to celebrate the coming of spring. This body spray from Missha has a soft cherry blossom fragrance that lasts for hours. It makes skin soft to the touch and its portable size means you can carry it with you all day long! Available on for £10.12


2. Etude House - Play Color Eyes Juice Bar Palette

3. Holika Holika - Aqua Petit Jelly BB cream

Anyone with an interest in Korean Make-up knows that when it comes to Korean springtime looks, corals and vibrant pinks are a must! This palette by Etude House has you covered. In the Play Color Eyes Juice Bar Palette you’ll find every shadow colour you will need to create your perfect spring look; the colours are simultaneously bright and warm and will remind you of ripe fruits and blooming flowers! They are beautifully pigmented, easy to blend and complement each other very well. Available on for £18.50

This is a light to medium buildable coverage BB Cream with a natural matte finish; it has a jelly-like consistency and an instant cooling effect when applied to the face, making sure to keep you cool! The product comes in two shades – beige & natural and is great for those with paler skin. Holika Holika’s Aqua Petit Jelly BB Cream will keep your skin hydrated whilst being light enough for those warm spring days, these benefits along with its cute floral style packaging makes it easy to see why it is one of Korea’s bestselling BB creams! Available at Jolse Cosmetics for £8.79



4. ELIZAVECCA – Milky Piggy Fizzy Bubble Clay Mask




This extremely entertaining face mask is perfect for sleepovers with your friends. It creates masses of tingling grey bubbles on your face which makes it perfect for taking selfies - your face will end up looking like a cloud! This product is not only hilarious though; it is also very good for your skin. It’s not

5. Tony Moly - Delight Tint The Tony Moly Delight Tony Tint is a clear and moisturizing lip tint scented with fresh, sweet spring fruits. The formula is lightweight and goes on creamy. It gives a sheer pop of colour while making your lips supple and incredibly smooth with its rosehip, jojoba and argon oil ingredients. The tint comes in 3 shades – Cherry Pink, Red & Orange Cha Cha. All colours are bright and vivid and a good coat will last up to 6 hours! The packaging is adorable with a heart shaped lid connected to the doe foot applicator which is perfect for creating the signature Korean gradient lip look. Available on for £4.77

6. The Face Shop - Lovely ME:EX Pastel Cushion Blusher These Lovely ME:EX blushes are cute powder blush compacts that come in 5 different pastel shades ranging from very pale pink to a vibrant peach, all are gorgeous and perfect for spring! Each blush comes encased in its own cute card containers, each with unique designs and a soft powder puff. These blushes are long-lasting, nonchalky and while make your skin appear bright and youthful. They are also infused with sebum controlling ingredients so you won’t get oily under the spring sunlight. Available on for £7.57

heavy or harsh like a lot of masks, instead it is light and suitable for sensitive skin. It’s light but powerful, the Milky Piggy Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask will cleanse, exfoliate and remove the dirt from your pores, leaving your skin cleaner than ever before. Available at TKMaxx for £9.99


7. Tony Moly - I’m Real Facial Mask Sheet Tony Moly’s I’m Real sheet masks are the best sheet masks I have ever tried! These masks are extremely affordable and make a real noticeable difference to skin. There are 11 different masks in this collection and each mask aims to fix a different skin complaint moisturising, brightening, clearing acne etc. My personal favourites are the rice, seaweed and avocado masks but you can be sure you will find one that suits your skin type! The masks are 100% natural and in only 20 minutes, they will change your skincare routine forever. Get all 11 masks on Amazon for £12.60



Do you want to be on trend this spring? There’s no need to spend lots of money buying entire outfits! With these trending Korean accessories you can achieve a look your favourite idol would be proud of.

Pink baseball caps We all know that baseball style hats have been huge in the Korean fashion world for a while now. Years ago the bigger, flashier and the more studs on the snapback the better. Now however, most idols go for a more minimalistic look with block colour caps often featuring a patch applique style design on the front. While these hats come in various styles and colours, one colour seems to be making headway over the rest‌ Pink. Pink is the way forward Ladies and Gentlemen. Bad hair day? Get yourself a pink cap. Want to look cool at the airport? Get yourself a pink cap.

Round Glasses Who knew Harry Potter was a trendsetter? He is not the only one wearing circular frames these days. Lots of KPop idols are wearing these lightweight round glasses as a fashion accessory and not it seems, as a vision aid. This style of glasses frame are actually very cute and can be very flattering to the face! They can make the wearer appear younger and more wide-eyed and are often a main component in pulling an entire outfit together. Get some round framed glasses and rock that nerdy chic look!


Knee High Socks It doesn’t matter what kind of shoes you are wearing if you have on some cool socks, trust me. Knee high socks have been a solid staple in the KPop girl group wardrobe for a while but now, recently, the boys have started to sock it up too. These long striped gym-style socks come in a multitude of different colours so you will always have a pair that will match with your outfit!

Sprouts In spring, many people want to fully immerse themselves in all of the beautiful, blooming nature that surrounds us. The young nature reminds us all that life will always continue and that there are new beginnings happening every day. What better way to celebrate the springtime nature by becoming a sprout yourself.



As the seasons change, it’s the perfect time for some new additions to your wardrobe. The world of K-pop is a great source of fashion inspiration, so let’s take a look at just a few of the trends we’ve noticed over the past few months! PUFFY, SOUVENIR, AND BOMBER JACKETS


Another great item to have for when spring gives us These jackets are pretty much always popular, especially torrential downpours! Knee high boots are cool and practical. They come in a variety of styles; you could go in the K-Pop world. They are also a great item to throw feminine and chic, badass and chunky, high heeled or over any outfit to give you a little bit of an edge (not to flat. Of course, they also go with a variety of outfits – mention, keep you warm!) over jeans, with skirts or shorts. As said, puffy, souvenir and bomber jackets have been popular among K-Pop idols for quite a long time now, but Knee high boots have been worn by many K-Pop ladies lately, including Luna, Hani and Solar in their some recent examples can be seen in BTS’ ‘Not Today’ ‘HONEYBEE’ MV and the members of TWICE in and Seventeen’s BOOM BOOM. ‘KNOCK KNOCK’ There’s a jacket to suit any tastes – plain, metallic, patterned. You can also go for some bold and cool embroidery


CHOKERS Yes, another item that has been fashionable for a long time now – chokers! These simple necklaces made a comeback along with a lot of other 90s fashion items. It tapped into the nostalgia that has been prevalent over the last few years, where people yearn for what they used to know and bond over simpler times, perhaps when they were children or young teens. It seems that chokers are still very popular right now for K-Pop idols, and you will probably see at least one in every music video, especially with girl groups. We can see different versions of choker necklaces in Taeyeon’s ‘I Got Love’ and GFRIEND’s ‘Fingertips’ videos.

BRIGHT AND CONTRASTING COLOUR COMBINATIONS Wearing boldly contrasting colours is usually considered a huge fashion faux-pas, but the brave as ever K-Pop stars make it work in their favour. The key to pulling off this trend is confidence – just pick a couple of block colours and try them out. A good thing about the seasons changing is that it can fill you with the urge to try something daring and new. If all else fails, you could try match some bright colours with blacks, whites or maybe some denim. We can see this style in gugudan’s ‘A Girl Like Me’ and Lovelyz ‘WoW!’ MVs.


Spring Fashion Looks Spring is upon us, which means lighter clothing and bright colours, take a look at the current spring trends which are starting to become fashionable in 2017.

Trench coats

Trench coats are trending again this spring, one of the staple and functional pieces of outerwear for women made from a lightweight material. There is range from neutral to dark shades to choose from matching any outfit for the casual and smart look.

Beige belted trench coat £55 at Topshop

Pink Trench Coat £55 at ASOS

Navy Button neck Trench coat £40 at Newlook


Silky blouses, stripe shirts are really hitting the trend this season, the different colours and embroidery looks elegant and fancy to wear. The effortless top can be worn casually tucked into some jeans or dressed up as some have fancy collars/ ruffles.

Stripe shirt £15.00 at Newlook

Pyjama blouse £28.00 at ASOS

Light blue satin blouse £18.00 at H&M


Off the Shoulder

Popular since last year, the off the shoulder cut tops are back again with a variety of styles with button off the shoulder shirts or cut – out crop tops.

Black off the shoulder £10.00 at H&M

White puff sleeve £29 at Topshop

Light blue Bardot button £26.00 at Riverisland

Graphic slogan shirts

Graphic t-shirts are back bigger and bolder, they are here to stay in 2017 with loads to choose from, with a range of random words and pictures letting the clothes do the talking.

Floral embroidery t-shirt £20 at ASOS

Heart T-shirt £12 at Boohoo

Green West coast slogan sweatshirt £18 at Misguided

Wide leg trousers

This spring screams baggy on the bottom half, stylish yet comfy, the oversized wide leg trousers seem to be a trending piece this year. They come in plain colours with different designs and patterns for that extra quirky look.

Navy Linen Culottes Trousers Nicia Tie Waist Crepe Culottes Black Wide Leg Cropped £25 at ASOS £15 at Boohoo Trousers £30 at ASOS




G-Friend have returned to the scene with a more mature look this time around. ‘Fingertip’ has marked the evolution of G-Friend’s concept style and the girls have hung up their school uniforms in a swap for a sexier image. For this Get The Look, we’ve taken the military look very literal with some tailored pieces and contrasted the smart look with a softer look of lace and blouses. The style in the MV is taken straight from some of the hottest designers this year including Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana, the girls are dressed to the nines in some ready-to-wear pieces from their seasonal collections. Assuming most of us are on a high-street budget, let’s dive right into some treasures found right off the rack! For an almost complete replica of the hot pants/ crop jacket ensemble from the MV, there’s plenty of stores around that are offering jackets in this style in the sale. Luckily for us in the UK, Spring might bring about some cold weather so you can snag a bargain in Fingertip style this season. This velvet military jacket is a perfect buy! If you really want to add a

touch of smart into your wardrobe without adding a new jacket, you can find military style skirts and shorts pretty much anywhere. This skort from MixxMix is a cute style steal without being overly literal with the military vibe. Team it up with some knee high boots or chunky combat boots and you’re sorted! There are some scenes in Fingertip that look like they’ve been taken right out of a fantasy. The butterfly motif is played heavily throughout so we’ve added some sweet, fluttery accessories to that appeal. Betsey Johnson is super hot in fashion lately and you can add a designer touch with this delicate black, butterfly choker. Pair it with a high-street priced butterfly emblazoned bag for a subtle magical flair. Complete this overall look with a lacy, ultra-sweet dress like the one from or dress it up a little with a silk blouse, the bigger the bow, the better! To add a subtle touch of sweet style, try some embroidery! Embroidered items were big last season and still big in Spring this year.


Saskia Black Velvet Military Jacket – £34 Boohoo Button Detail Skort - £40 MixxMix Long Lace Dress – £15 Butterfly Choker - £20 Betsey Johnson Satin Pussybow Shirt - £26 TopShop Gold Trim Knee High Boots - £16 V by Very Butterfly Cross Body Bag – £15 Dorothy Perkins Embroidered Floral Shorts - £30 H&M


PRODUCT REVIEW NONGSHIM ZHA WANG INSTANT JJAJANGMYEON NOODLES Jjajangmyeon (noodles in black bean sauce) is a very popular dish in Korea. Thick noodles are accompanied by chanjang (salty black soy bean paste) and often served with pork and vegetables. I had never tried Jjangjangmyeon before, and I was really excited to try these instant noodles out. After seeing so many people in Korean dramas and television programmes tucking into the dish with gusto and delight, I was sold! I bought a 4 pack of the instant noodles which state that they are made in Korea. This cost me about £10 (including shipping) on Amazon. At roughly £2.50 a pack, this is not the cheapest way. I wager you could get them cheaper in local Asian markets and supermarkets than ordering online (you won’t have to pay the shipping cost!)

Each pack noodles contain 3 smaller packets: vegetable flakes, vegetable oil and sauce mix (powder). The cooking process of these instant noodles is quite standard, and any experienced instant noodle eater will be familiar with it:

INSTRUCTIONS 1. Add the noodles to some boiling water, along with the vegetable flakes. 2. Give it about 3 minutes to cook. As the noodles soften, give them a mix. 3. Drain most of the water, leaving a few tablespoons behind in the saucepan. 4. Add the sauce powder and the oil straight away and stir well until the noodles are completely covered in sauce. 5. Serve right away!


I was a little worried when I poured the contents of the sauce mix into the pan and was greeted by a huge mound of dry powder. But of course, after mixing it thoroughly, the water left behind dissolved all the powder into that typical, dark Jjajangmyeon sauce. The quality of this dish was very good, the noodles stayed firm, and the sauce imparted a lovely savoury flavour. The vegetable flakes left a little to be desired though. The noodles are quite thick, which I really like. If you usually like thinner noodles, this product is not probably for you.

Unfortunately, I don’t know what fresh Jjajangmyeon tastes like, but I suppose it is at least a little better than the instant version. Having said this though, this version is still pretty delicious, and would definitely be improved with the addition of extra vegetables and/or meat of your choice. I think these noodles would be the perfect dish to have on a night in with friends! If you would like to give them a go, I bought them here.

WANT TO GET INVOLVED WITH OUR NEXT E-MAG? We’re looking for enthusiastic writers and designers to join the UKP team. Check out the application page at

OR FANCY WRITING A GUEST ARTICLE? Whether it’s on our website or in the next e-mag, we’re always open for guest articles. Just get in touch with Lerah at to arrange your guest article!

GAMES ANSWERS Did you get them all?

1. Lamp on mirrored on the left 2. Different image in frame 3. Different colour of light 4. Missing ornament 5. Missing candlestick 6. Colour of candles 7. Missing candle 8. Item in middle of ritual 9. Missing candle 10. Lamp turned off W O W M Y S T B E A U Y M S O I W I S H


D O N ’









9 - Downpour – I.O.I 11 - Mysterious – Hello Venus 12 - Beautiful – Goblin OST 13 - Highlight - Seventeen 14 - Wow - Lovelyz 15 - Movie - BTOB 16 - Don’t Recall - KARD 17 - Roar - SF9 18 - Fingertip - GFriend


1 - I Wish – Cosmic Girls 2 - You, who? - Eric Nam & Somi 3 - Knock Knock - Twice 4 - I Got Love - Taeyeon 5 - Not Today - BTS 6 - Bing Bing - AOA 7 - Yesterday– Block B 8 - Hobgoblin - CLC 10 - Rookie – Red Velvet






A D V E R T I S E I N T H E U K P M AG - I N F O @ U N I T E D K P O P. C O M





UKP Magazine Spring 2017  
UKP Magazine Spring 2017