Stories behind Big Bang's huge success in 2015


In 2015, BIGBANG made a comeback after a three-year hiatus. Through its “MADE” project, the group released “LOSER,” “BAE BAE,” “BANG BANG BANG,” “'WE LIKE 2 PARTY,” “IF YOU,” “SOBER,” “ZUTTER” and “LET'S NOT FALL IN LOVE” from May to August. Well, no doubt, the group has achieved a huge success with the songs. By the way, there are some stories behind it. (Check out my interview with Big Bang)


It's very unusual that a k-pop idol group releases new songs every month. However, BIGBANG and Yang Hyun Suk were so confident in the “MADE” project because they have invested a great deal of time and efforts in it, while BIGBANG is the most popular k-pop boy group who has a quality of music that is difficult to come across these days. Through the project, Yang Hyun Suk wanted to make 2015 a "year of Big Bang." And it seemed things went according to his expectations when BIGBANG released “LOSER” and “BAE BAE” on May 1. The songs have swept various music charts, and the BIGBANG syndrome has started.


However, SM entertainment, the fiercest rival of YG, didn't take it lying down. Let's see when SM artists released their new albums in 2015.

BoA - Kiss My Lips 2015.05.12
SHINee - Odd 2015.05.18
EXO - Love me right 2015.06.03
Super Junior- DEVIL 2015.07.16
TVXQ - Rise as god 2015.07.20
SHINee - Married to the music 2015.08.03

SM tried to keep BIGBANG from being the sole lead in the world of k-pop. Especially, EXO went head to head with the 5-member group by releasing its new song just 2 days after “BANG BANG BANG” and “WE LIKE 2 PARTY” were released. It's hard to say who was the winner, but it's true that EXO won more No.1 trophies of k-pop chart shows, which means SM has accomplished the intended goal.


And when YG announced that BIGBANG will release its new songs every month, small k-pop agencies began to air grievances. They blamed YG, saying, "If BIGBANG releases new songs every month, people will not listen to songs of small k-pop agencies’s singers. It's the high-handedness of big corporation."

Do you know what happened next? As BIGBANG said that it will release new songs on the first day of every month, singers of small agencies advanced or pushed back their comeback dates to avoid competition with BIGBANG. One of the singers told me, "At first, I wanted to release my album in the fourth week of June. However, I was told that there were too many girl groups who were planning to release their new songs in the fourth week of June. Actually, the girl groups had no choice but to make a comeback around the same time because they had to avoid competition with BIGBANG. Eventually, I had to advance my comeback date too to avoid competition with the girl groups. I even couldn't imagine that I would be influenced by BIGBANG because I’m not an idol singer.“


Well, another story behind BIGBANG’s huge success in 2015 is that the boy group used a two-track strategy at the time. You know, BIGBANG released a total of 4 single albums, “M,” “A,” “D,” and “E,” and each album had 2 tracks. By the way, “LOSER,” which was included in “M” was a sentimental song, while “BAE BAE” was an experimental song which contains both sensuous trap beat and catchy pop melody. And “BANG BANG BANG,” which was included in “A” was a dance music with strong beats, while “WE LIKE 2 PARTY” was a very bright music. The same applies to “IF YOU” and “SOBER” of “D” and “ZUTTER” and “LET'S NOT FALL IN LOVE” of “E.” All the two songs which were included in one album contrast strikingly. Well, it was a calculated strategy. By using this kind of strategy, BIGBANG could kill two birds with one stone. First, BIGBANG could show off its outstanding musicality by singing a variety of kinds of music perfectly. Second, they could succeed in satisfying every music fan’s taste because all the genres of music were included in their album.