These boys made their debut into the music industry in August, 2008. But they were made familiar to the public only last year in November through their song, 'Man Man Ha Ni'. Debuting at the same time as them was popular group 2PM. How did these members feel watching from the side?
1 year and 5 months after their debut, U-Kiss has come back with their 1st full album 'U-Kiss Only One' and they can brush off the sorrow they could not speak of during that period.
Born again with Man Man Ha Ni
There is a huge difference between U-Kiss' popularity before and after the release of 'Man Man Ha Ni'. It's not an exaggeration to compare it to heaven and hell.
U-Kiss has more than one or two bad memories of their days when they were unknown. There were even cases where their name 'U-Kiss' was written wrongly on the door of the waiting room. Also there were emergency situations where only 5 mics were prepared for the then 6 membered group.
On broadcasting programmes, there were times where the producers did not know of U-Kiss' songs and hence left the song names in the cuesheets blank.
The members explained, "after facing such situations, we lost our confidence. Naturally, since we were not on par with the rest of the artistes, when we appeared on music shows, we really disliked going out of our waiting room."
But after they released 'Man Man Ha Ni', which was a big hit, things changed. More people knew of U-Kiss and naturally, their confidence was boosted.
U-Kiss said "we have filmed our first CF after our debut". "Our music video filming set also became bigger" and "we can feel the strength in our manager's voice when he receives a call for a schedule", laughed U-Kiss.
The whirlwind dance becoming popular after the Gangnam (strong man) dance
While their popularity rose, the burden on them (to do well) also increased. Fortunately, the same response they received for 'Man Man Ha Ni' is still around.
Only 3 days after the release of their album, it rose to number 1 on the Hanteo chart, which records the total sale of the albums. Similarly, they have done well on various music video, ringtones and caller ring charts.
The title song of their 1st full album 'Bingeul Bingeul' was produced by Brave Brothers, with whom U-Kiss has worked with since their debut. It is of an electronic hip-hop genre and like 'Man Man Ha Ni', it bears an addictive tune.
They paid attention especially to the dance. After the gangnam dance in 'Man Man Ha Ni' was made popular, many fans were interested in what kind of dance they would see in 'Bingeul Bingeul'. And the dance U-Kiss prepared is the whirlwind dance.
According to the members, "we used ear-mics so that our hands can move freely. The performance also seems more fancy this way. It feels like an upgrade of the 'Gangnam Dance."
The desire for U-Kiss in Asia
The first full album consists of 14 tracks.
Title song 'Bingeul Bingeul' and pre-released song 'Without You' have catchy choruses, together with 'What did you say (Mworago)'. 'Dancing Flow' by popular songwriter cum producer Han Sang Won also shows off U-Kiss' strong image.
Overcoming the sad memories of being unknown, they prepared for the release of their first full album step-by-step, producing a perfect full album.
After their debut, U-Kiss has worked hard to advance into local as well as overseas markets and this time round, they still hold the same goal. They will promote locally till April and have planned to spread out to 8 other countries in Asia for album promotions and concerts, including Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, China and the Philippines.
According to the director, "'Man Man Ha Ni' received a lot of love locally last year and U-Kiss has been receiving lots of love calls from event organizers overseas. They have already secured some hardcore fans and it looks like U-Kiss may be able to hit a big one overseas this year."
U-Kiss' goal for this year is to be first on ranking programs. According to the members, "we have never reached 1st place before. We will use the strength we gained from 'Man Man Ha Ni' as a start to climb to the top."
Credits: Sports.chosun, + ukissme.SG (Translations)
Oh and btw, U-kiss was on the top of Daum's video charts yesterday, and had 2nd and 8th place on sbs's ringtone charts too! Pictures of the charts are here.