Thursday, March 22, 2018

RuPaul's Drag Race Season 10 Pre-Season Predictions

Somehow, a year has already passed since the last time RuPaul's Drag Race graced us with a fresh bunch of queens, so I'm back here again to give my pre-season thoughts on this new cast for Season 10! Last season, I predicted the boot order and listed the queens in the order I thought they would be eliminated, but I'm shaking things up this time around. For this list, I'm going to be listing them in alphabetical order, discussing my general thoughts and opinions on each. For each queen, I'm going to list whether I think they're an early boot, middle of the pack, or going deep. In some instances, I'll modify these slightly (aka an "early-middle boot" but I'll explain my reasoning each time). At the end, I'll conclude by listing both my favorite and my winner pick. Because I think they're going to slightly differ. I'll also do a quick lil list predicting the boot order bc why not? and I'll also rank them from least favorite to favorite. IDK, I guess I just want to have more things to be wrong about.

Also, a general note: if there are spoilers out about the season, I'm unaware of them. I glanced around reddit for about 5 seconds before deciding that I wanted to go into the season without being spoiled. So if the entire season has been spoiled a la All Stars 2, I have no idea. I'm going based off the Facebook live, the meet the queens videos, and any other random videos I've watched while putting this together.

Without any further ado, ON TO THE QUEENS!


Two past Drag Race queens immediately came to mind as I began watching more of Aquaria's meet the queens content, as I'm sure they did for you-- Violet and Aja. For me, Aquaria is the personality of Violet mashed up with the fashion sense and Insta following of Aja (on her first season). Personally, I'd be begging for the exact opposite-- a queen with Violet's fashion sense and Aja's personality. But that's just me, and now I'm off track. Anyway, Aquaria has a large following on social media, and I find her to be one of the two queens who is the most prevalent in the promos (probably due to said following). However, unlike that second queen (we'll get there), I don't think Aquaria will live up to the hype. I think we're looking at an Aja S9 trajectory at best. Upon just seeing her looks, I was impressed, but when I watched the videos, I was super underwhelmed. Aquaria just seemed very unimpressive, and to me came off as a look queen that will last for a while... but not too long. 

Prediction: Early-middle boot 

Asia O'Hara

Whatever Drag Race employee made Asia wear that wig needs to be reprimanded immediately, because I know she did not choose that for herself. Anyway, Asia was the exact opposite of Aquaria for me. On first glance, I was not impressed. That hair is horrible, and the bodysuit didn't do much for me. But then, I watched her videos and I changed my tune real quickly. Asia has really impressed me. I'm not usually a huge pageant girl fan, but Asia seems to be able to do it all. She makes pretty much all of her outfits, which gives her major props in my book. She also came off as very well-spoken and she definitely is one of the more mature queens who knows who she is. Typically, when queens describe themselves as chameleons, I roll my eyes. But I believe Asia when she says it. I'm all-in on Asia, and I'm really excited to see what this pageant girl can bring to the show.

Prediction: Going Deep

Blair St. Clair

I went back and forth several times on Blair. At first, I wasn't a fan. The 50s/60s housewife aesthetic isn't my thing. But then, when listening to her, I found her endearing and was excited about a Broadway ingenue. But, once again, I did a 180 and have found myself a bit skeptical as to her ability to do well on the show. I like her. In the videos I saw, especially her confessionals, she was adorable. But I just don't think that she has the chops to make it far. I could easily see her skating by the first couple challenges being safe and/or because she can perform, and then promptly getting axed in the 4th or 5th week. A bit of me hopes that she ends up proving me wrong, but I would be surprised if she made it past episode 5.

Prediction: Early-middle boot

Dusty Ray Bottoms

I'm throwing any potential sense of objectivity to the wind with this prediction. I have no freakin' clue how well I think Dusty will do, but I want her to make it all the way to the finale and win because a punk girl who's also very Broadway?!?! SIGN ME UP. I've fallen head over heels for Dusty and I cannot wait to see her on this season. Ever since S8, my pre-season favorite has won, so... watch out for my girl Dusty (I probably just Jinkxed myself. Yikes).I love her makeup and those splotches on her face, and I love her witchy aesthetic, and she seems like a lot of fun and just... ugh I love her. She's speaking right to my soul with punk, witchy, and Broadway. Gimme gimme gimme. She also said that she sews, so she definitely gets points there. Also, this look in the picture was made by Mondo Guerra, AKA one of my favorite people to ever be on Project Runway (the two of them seem to be friends, bc he's shouted her out more than once on his Insta). Also, Sasha said she was a big fan. I'm 100% sold on Dusty. I was listening to a cast assessment on my favorite Drag Race podcast (RHAP) and they didn't seem to like her, but I juuuuust don't get it. I love her. I'm all in.

Prediction: Going Deep

Eureka O'Hara

If you saw last year's predictions (you definitely didn't, but that's alright), I predicted a 5th place finish from Eureka. While she went out much earlier than that due to her injury, I think that she was on a trajectory to absolutely kill a large chunk of the season, and I think she definitely could've made it all the way to 5th. And I feel kinda the same way about her this season! I quickly fell in love with Eureka last season, and I'm so excited to see her on the new season. My one hope is that she doesn't do hair loaves all season long. Hopefully, she switches things up and tries different things. She's said that she thinks she's found herself and her true drag aesthetic in the year between seasons filming, so I'm hoping that means that she has improved beyond where she was in season 9. Either way, I think we'll be seeing quite a bit of Eureka this season. 

Prediction:  Going Deep

Kalorie Karbdashian-Williams

Do you want to know what my biggest drag name pet peeve is? Naming yourself after a celebrity or brand (I'm looking at you, Mariah Balenciaga). Honestly, the second I heard Kalorie's name, I knew that this was not my queen. Look, I don't want to sit here and bash her, but I really found myself getting sleepy while watching her videos. I didn't think she was very interesting or compelling, and I found myself getting pretty bored. To her credit, I love that she embraces everything that "a big girl shouldn't be," and she does know how to sew. I feel like the entire fandom is pretty underwhelmed by her so far and thinks she'll be out early, but it's always possible that she'll be solid enough to make it to the middle of the pack. Because at the end of the day, a boring personality doesn't always show through when walking on a runway or performing. That said, I definitely think that there's no way she wins, and more likely than not, she's not going to be around too long.

Prediction: Early boot. (First boot potential)

Kameron Michaels

Kameron is one who's really interesting to me. I immediately loved her vibe. In all of her videos and interviews, she came off as very chill and easygoing, and that's always something I enjoy. She has a really unique perspective that I've never seen on the show before-- she's super buff. Like... that's kinda her thing-- she has muscles and she embraces it. From what she said, it sounds like people criticize her for it, but I'm intrigued to see how the other S10 queens react. One of the words she threw out about her aesthetic was grunge, and that immediately piqued my interest, because I'm a big fan of grunge. All that said, I have a sinking suspicion that she's not going to kill it. I see her going out somewhere in the middle, probably right after those early-middle boots. IDK why I get that vibe, but that's just where I think I see her falling. Maybe it's because she comes off largely as a "look" queen above anything else, even if it is a different take on it that we haven't seen before on the show. I would be thrilled if she got further, because I really like her personality and aesthetic, but I'm not confident about that possibility.

Prediction: Middle of the pack

Mayhem Miller

This is one of those moments where my bias kicks in and I have to try really hard not to let it overpower everything else. From what I've seen of Mayhem, gurl is just not my type of queen. Everything I've seen so far from her screams old-school dancing pageant queen who lip syncs the house down. It's a casting type that I personally get sick of. I'm very strongly biased toward quirky, weird, artsy, and comedy queens, and pageant queens tend to bore me. Also, I know this is a comparison that has already been said many times and criticized many times, but the girl looks like Kennedy from certain angles. I'm not saying she's a Kennedy reboot, but it's hard to not see that immediate connection. Anyway, back on track, Mayhem does seem like a lot of fun. Her personality seems very upbeat and positive, and I do find myself enjoying what I've seen of her personality. Mayhem seems to be very well known by the other queens, and it seems like a lot of people are impressed by her, so despite my own biases, I can see her doing pretty well. I'm hesitant to say that she's going deep, but I could certainly see her still being around when the group is narrowed down to 7.

Prediction: Late-middle of the pack (6th/7th place)

Miz Cracker

I was extremely hesitant about Miz Cracker. Miz Cracker is the second queen I feel has been the most prominent in the promos. And when a queen is super prominent, I immediately get worried about how well they'll do. Plus, she knows a ton of NYC queens and is the drag daughter of one Bob the Drag Queen. I feel like she's coming in with all these accolades already, and that almost feels like a setup for a quick and surprising elimination. But, as I mentioned earlier, I think that of the two most prominent queens, Aquaria is the one who's more likely to get that story arc. Despite the fact that I went into Cracker's meet the queens videos knowing about her accolades and being worried that would somehow lead to an ironic twist of fate where she's out early, I found myself being charmed by her. Miz Cracker. is. smart. She's knowledgeable. Several queens mentioned being old school and new school, but Cracker made very specific references that I really appreciated. Also, in her interview with Sasha, she referenced the Feminine Mystique. I mean. Knowing all of her connections, I had high expectations of her, and I think that pre-season, she's meeting it. Like I said, I was very hesitant to love her, but I just really couldn't help but appreciate her. I can't wait to see what she brings. 

Prediction: Going deep

Monet X Change

This is another queen where I've essentially thrown objectivity to the wind. I love Monet X Change. I love her personality, she's well-spoken, she's really funny, and not only is she friends with Bob the Drag Queen, but could also pass as his twin out of drag. Just throw a pair of Harry Potter glasses onto Bob and you might not be able to tell the difference. They have the same New York accent, seemingly similar senses of humor, and they're both bald. Bob comparisons aside, though, I just found myself really loving Monet. Apart from being funny, she doesn't really fall into typical "types" that I immediately gravitate toward, but I found myself gravitating toward her nonetheless. I'm not totally sure of the general fandom opinion on her, but the people on the RHAP Drag Race podcast really liked her, so that makes me feel like I'm not alone there. Hopefully, my lack of objectivity with Monet doesn't come back to bite me, but in general, I feel really optimistic about her potential on this season. (Also she's an operatically trained vocalist and I AM GAGGING. SOLD. I LOVE HER)

Prediction: Going deep

Monique Heart

If you've been reading this post thinking "wow, she seems to think everyone is going to do well," prepare yourself. Because this post is about to go real downhill. Real fast. Starting here, with Monique Heart. I did not get good vibes from her at all. Not in the "she's going to be the villain" way, but in the "I think she's going to annoy me" way and the "I don't think she's going to last very long" way. I just reeeeeally don't have high hopes for Monique. Maybe she'll prove me wrong, but she screams early boot to me. I just really can't see a scenario where we've made it to the midpoint of the season and Monique is still around. She seems messy and she seems loud, so hopefully we get some laughs along the way, but I honestly wouldn't be surprised if she was a first boot. Also, maybe I'm reading into the edit a bit too much, but when I watched the first 15 minutes of the first episode, her entrance received that "shade" music that often accompanies someone doing something poorly and foreshadows their demise. The last person that happened to was Jaymes Mansfield, and we all know how that ended.

Prediction: Early boot (first boot potential)

Vanessa Mateo

And here we have another instance in which I'm unable to be objective, but like... in the opposite way. Vanessa grated on my last nerve in everything I saw her in. This is another "type" of queen who just isn't my thing, but while I'm able to recognize that Mayhem has some strong potential, I can't see the same in Vanessa. Vanessa, to me, falls squarely in line with queens like Gia Gunn & Kimora Black before her. She gives great looks, gets shaded for asking dumb questions, and is promptly eliminated in the first few episodes. And, for good measure, she probably lands in the bottom 2 on the first challenge, wins the lip sync, and then gets eliminated episode 2. We've seen so many queens follow that same trajectory at the beginning of the season, and I think that's where Vanessa is going to fall this season. I really can't see a situation for her where she gets any further than episode 5, and that's being generous. 

Prediction: Early boot

The Vixen

I want so badly to believe in The Vixen, but I just don't. First of all, based on the pictures alone when they were first released, The Vixen was the one I kept forgetting existed. To me, she didn't stand out in the promo shots whatsoever. Then, when the video content started being released, I continued to be underwhelmed. I liked the look that she wore when talking to Sasha, but that was the extent of the impression she left. But then, I watched her upon her entrance in the beginning of the season premiere. She talked about protesting and making a statement with her drag and how artsy her drag is, and I wanted so badly to love her. And I might find myself really loving watching her. But after everything else I've seen, I don't have confidence that she'll make much of an impact on the season. Also, the show threw the shade music at her when she entered the workroom. Not a good sign. I've got her making it to about episode 5, but that might be me being a bit too optimistic.

Prediction: Early-middle boot

Yuhua Hamasaki

I feel like a broken record, but Yuhua was another queen that I wanted really badly to fall in love with, but I've gone back and forth on her so many times. Her interview with Sasha was so. freaking. awkward. She was completely tone-deaf. AKA, she didn't realize that her sense of humor was NOT coming off well. She kept trying to be funny, but it fell flat. There are a couple queens in this cast where I worry that they could say something that would potentially be off-putting and offensive, and Yuhua is right at the top of that list (the other queen is Cracker, BTW). She doesn't seem to have a great filter, and while that isn't necessarily something that impedes you from winning Drag Race, it is something that can turn RuPaul against you if you try to be funny and offend her instead. Some people said she seems like Gia Gunn mixed with Bianca Del Rio, and while the Gia comparison is lost on me apart from them both being Asian (please tell me that's not the reason for the comparison??), I can definitely see the Bianca comparison. Hopefully, Yuhua doesn't offend anyone, and hopefully she's actually funny, because she seems to be friendly with the other New York queens in the premiere, and I want to like her and want her to do well. Keeping my fingers crossed with this one, thus concluding the cast list!

Prediction: Middle of the pack

Winner Picks & Rankings

Winner Prediction: Asia O'Hara
(AKA the person I think has the best shot at winning)

Asia just seems to be incredibly well-rounded and good at everything. I'm not sure if I can peg one thing that I think she's going to be best at, but never underestimate the power of being versatile and being able to be decently good at everything, even if you aren't amazing in one certain field. Our S9 winner, Sasha Velour, didn't necessarily have one type of challenge that seemed tailor-made for her, but she was able to do well at all of them, even if she didn't win a ton of challenges. That said, I can see Asia absolutely killing this season, and I can't wait to see it happen. 

Predicted boot order
(AKA the order I think they'll get eliminated in)
(I moved this around about an hour after initially posting, so if you remember seeing something different, that's why. I started feeling less and less confident in Kalorie, so I moved her down to the bottom)

14. Kalorie Karbdashian-Williams
13. Monique Heart
12. Vanessa Mateo
11. Blair St. Clair
10. The Vixen
9. Aquaria
8. Kameron Michaels
7. Yuhua Hamasaki
6. Mayhem Miller
5. Eureka O'Hara
4. Miz Cracker
3. Dusty Ray Bottoms
2. Monet X Change
1. Asia O'Hara

Personal Winner: Dusty Ray Bottoms
(AKA the queen I would most like to see win)

To be fair, my heart is currently being torn in 4 directions right now, because while my thoughts are a little scattered on the cast overall, my top 4 are veeeeery definitive and are the same across my predicted boot order and my favorite queens. So there are 3 other queens begging me to pick them here, but Dusty's pulling at me just slightly harder. She hits so many of the bullet points of things I immediately gravitate toward in a queen, and that has just immediately completely endeared her to me. Plus, at this point, given how down my podcast was on her, I want to see her prove them wrong. I just hope she goes out there and kills it, because I have high hopes for her.

Favorite Ranking
(AKA least fave to most fave. Or, I guess, my ideal boot order.)

14. Kalorie Karbdashian-Williams
13. Monique Heart
12. Vanessa Mateo
11. Aquaria
10. Mayhem Miller
9. Blair St. Clair
8. The Vixen
7. Kameron Michaels
6. Yuhua Hamasaki
5. Eureka O'Hara
4.  Asia O'Hara
3. Miz Cracker
2. Monet X Change
1. Dusty Ray Bottoms

So, that's it for my Pre-Season Drag Race Season 10 Predictions! For some reason, I'm feeling overly-confident with my predictions, so feel free to laugh at me if Dusty or Asia get eliminated tonight on the season premiere. I'm super, super excited to see these queens in action & I can't believe we've already made it to another new season of Drag Race!! Hopefully these predictions pan out well, but if not, oh well-- I'm excited either way. 

Check out my links below!

Monday, March 5, 2018

Over-Analyzing My Most-Played KPop Songs

Is this post even necessary? Probably not. The video probably did all of the talking for itself. But here I am, discusssing said video in more detail. Why? Because I'm an over-analytical nerd HEYOOOOO.

Anyway, basically I noticed certain patterns emerging while I was going through the songs, and found that in many cases, play counts were weird, and I was surprised by some of the things that I discovered while going through. So I decided to write up a (hopefully brief) post about some of those discrepancies and why I think they exist. The video related to this post will be embedded below, and that will be followed by the few points I wrote about said video. 

OK, so the first thing I noticed was that across the board, play counts were oddly low. Now, I know, I know, first instinct is to point out that I'm a bit biased here and my memory is more likely to be incorrect than the play count, data, right? And if it were just a bit off, I would agree with you. And if my iTunes didn't have a history of messing up play counts, I would agree with you. There was literally a point in time where it got so messed up that it believed that Hard Carry & Just Right by Got7 had been played 700 & 600 times respectively. This was approximately 3 months after downloading those two songs. While it might have been technically possible that I'd listened to those songs 1300 times over ~90 days, I knew it was neither practical, nor accurate. So like... there's a history of it being weird here. 

There were certain songs that I know for a fact I had on a constant loop for at least 2 weeks that somehow had a play count of about 20. I have my earbuds in most of the day, every day. 20 times over 14 days is not a constant loop. So... how could they be that low? My theory is that something about the way that I listen to songs throws off their algorithm. This sounds a bit loopy, but hear me out. I'm well aware that a "play" is when the song ends. So, often, when there's a single song that's been stuck in my head, I'll let it finish and move on to the next one, and then I'll go back and play it again. I have a theory that no matter how many times I do this in a single sitting, it still counts as only one single play. I'm not sure this is accurate, but that's the working theory.

I also think it gets a bit wonky in the syncing of my iTunes library. My iTunes is super annoying and every time I sync, it messes up my playlists and the songs on my phone. So I try to sync as little as possible. Usually, that's when I need to add a song to my phone that's not on iTunes. When that happens, I sync for just long enough to get said song onto my phone, and then I unplug so there's minimal damage to my playlists/downloads. I have a feeling this messes with the syncing of my play counts. But TBH I have no idea. Either way, I'm 99.9% confident that although they might be close and might be correct relative to each other, 0% of the songs in my iTunes display the correct, accurate play count. Further, I think all of the actual play counts are higher than what my phone tells me they are.

Further emphasizing my first point, there were some songs that were just dead. obviously. wrong. Generally, I gave the system the benefit of the doubt. If it seemed "close enough," I just went with it. There were only two songs where I said "nope. NO WAY." and adjusted the play count by guesstimating the correct play count. Those two songs were Congratulations by Day6 and Cheer Up by Twice. Each has its own story, so I'll address them individually.

When I first got into Day6, I originally downloaded and binge-listened to the original version of Congratulations. I later switched over to mostly the "final version", mostly because I prefer listening to it with the current members. So, when I saw the final version high up on the list, I wasn't surprised. But... where was the original? If anything, I listened to that one more. The original, my friends, claimed to have been played a grand total of 6 times. I call BS. There's literally no way. I listened to it more than 6 times a day, so how did this happen? TBH, no idea. Probably the syncing thing. Or the re-play thing. IDK. But I guesstimated the play count based on other songs that were in that playlist, and added it to the final version's count, which bumped it into the top 10.

With Cheer Up, the count was hilariously at 13. That's a healthy amount, right? Wrong. It was one of the first KPop songs that I listened to. And by one of the first, I mean like... one of the first 10. Like... super early. I listened to this song on constant repeat during the entire time that I was first getting into Infinite. I listened to it so many times that I got sick of it. So, like with Congratulations, I guesstimated the actual count based on songs on the playlist with it. I think this one was more accurate, though, because the other song in question is one I've barely listened to since having that playlist on constant repeat. So, if anything, 54 plays is probably a bit low. 

Moving on, apart from the two songs on the list that I thought were majorly messed up, there were also a few songs that just seemed a bit off. Moreso than the rest of them, because like I said-- they all seemed off. After determining the top 50, I scrolled through my songs, just kinda perusing for songs that I thought should've been on the list. Basically I was checking them to see if the play count was super off like Congratulations, or if it was just actually lower than expected. In this process, there weren't too many songs that stood out, further solidifying to me that though some counts were super off, most of them were at least correct in relation to each other.

That said, there were a few that seemed off, namely: Her by Block B (22, despite the fact that I listened to it as much, if not more than Growl-- #28 on the list), Wolf Baby by TRCNG (4?? Despite the fact that I listened to it non-stop in Jan), and the entirety of The Day mini album by Day6. All of the songs hovered around 10-12 plays, which is just ridiculous given how high the play counts are for the rest of Day6's discography and given the fact that I listen to all of their songs pretty evenly. 

My last two points have to do with how long many of these songs have been on my iTunes. In many ways, I was surprised by the number of Infinite songs that ended up on the list, and in many ways, I wasn't. Admittedly, over the last few months, I haven't listened to Infinite as much as some of my other favorite groups. But apparently, the first few months made up for that lack of listening. Infinite was the first KPop group that I got into, and I downloaded literally all of their music (at the time) before moving on to any other groups (save a few random songs here & there). Therefore, for the first 2 or so months of listening to KPop, pretty much all I listened to... was Infinite. Therefore, Infinite's music had almost no competition, and I was listening to their music almost exclusively. Whereas now, when I download new music, it not only has to compete against all the other songs I already love, but also the other new stuff I'm currently downloading.

I'm not saying this really to downplay my love of Infinite, but rather to explain to myself how on earth some songs that I haven't listened to consistently in months wound up on the list. You might notice that the entirety of Infinite's Reality mini album was on the list, and that wasn't something I was expecting. Bad? Definitely-- it's my most-played song. Moonlight? Yep-- it's my favorite album track! Between Me and You? Yeah, but a bit iffy. The other three were big surprises. I knew there was a period of time where I listened to that mini on a constant loop, but I guess I didn't realize quite how much. Also, I thought I listened to the Infinite Only mini approximately the same number of times as the Reality mini, but I guess not lol. Anyway, constant Kpop listening + only stanning Infinite = high play count for Infinite.

And finally, I want to kinda reflect on some of the newer songs that have found their way into the top 50. Granted, there aren't really any brand new songs over the past month or so on the list, but there are some that have found their way onto there in the past 4ish months, and some that are older but have only been in my iTunes for a couple months. There are only a few of these songs, so I'll list all of them for you.
#8: Clap by Seventeen (65 plays)
#18: Pouring by Day6 (47 plays)
#22: Dramarama by Monsta X (43 plays)
#47: Healing by Seventeen (30 plays)
#48: Hooked by JJ Project (30 plays)

In the case of the first 3 songs on that list, they're new releases from November. In the case of the last 2, they're songs I downloaded in December. I also wanted to include I Need Somebody by Day6 but apparently that was released at the end of September??? WHAT?? How has it been that long? Whoa. Anyway, as I survey this 5-song list, it's admittedly a group of songs that I absolutely love. Clap, though only 4 months old, has firmly solidified itself as one of my all-time favorite KPop songs, so I would've been shocked to see it not in the top 10. Dramarama has also become a major standout for me. Both of these songs are the songs that convinced me to stan their respective groups. The other 3 are all songs that immediately grabbed me on first listen. Give Hooked and Healing 2 more months and I think they'll be up near the top of the list, because I fell in love with them the second I heard them. As for Pouring, I've come to love it so much that I already need to re-do my Day6 Album Track Rankings to move Pouring higher, although it was already at #5. That said, I wasn't expecting it to be as high as it ended up being.

Anyway, these songs prove that at the very least, I'm aware of which songs are standouts that are getting the most play. There are plenty of songs I've listened to on a constant repeat over the past few months (see: Stuck on Repeat videos) that I knew probably wouldn't end up on this list, because I didn't listen to them quite enough. But if you'd had me predict the list, I know I would've named 4/5, and I likely still would've named Pouring as well. So, these are the songs to look out for. These are the ones that I think will keep climbing and climbing until they're near the top. 

So, that's it for this post, which ended up being longer than I thought (per usual). I'm planning on doing another video like this sometime in the future, because I think it would be cool to see how this list changes over time, but it'll be quite a while since this list of play counts was almost a year in the making. We'll see, though. Maybe I'll do another in 6 months, maybe a year. Who knows?

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Thursday, March 1, 2018

Stuck on Repeat: February 2018

It's that time of the month again, everyone-- time to share the songs that I've had on constant repeat all month long. To be perfectly honest, most of these are actually the songs that I've had on repeat for the last 2 weeks. For the first couple weeks of the month, I was actually listening to audiobooks and podcasts most of the time, so I wasn't listening to anything too consistently, or at least nothing that I was keeping track of. That said, when I actually went to make this list, I found myself having to try really hard to cut the list down to the requisite 10-15 songs. In the end, I wound up with 15 songs. So I've definitely more than made up for my first couple weeks of the month. 

As with last month, I've now started sharing these in video form as well (embedded above), and therefore I'm going to be talking about them in the order that they were placed in the video, for all of you following along as you go. I think there's a bit more variance than usual on this list, due to the vast amount of new releases, but as always, there are many repeat groups. Much shock, very surprise. Without any further ado, let's jump into the list!

If We Meet Again by Day6

I guess I'm just not as in-the-loop as I thought I was when it comes to my favorite groups, because this is the second time that one of my ult groups has dropped a song that I just 100% was not expecting. I knew they were having their Japanese debut in March (March 14, I believe), and then suddenly, out of nowhere, this amazing song was just dropped in our laps. I was freaking out and dying internally. They've said that they wanted to do more music along the lines of I Wait & How Can I Say, so I've just been waiting for them to release a song like this, and finally they did! It's just this huge burst of energy, and I love every second of it. We also finally get the return of Brian's rapping. Admittedly, it's not my favorite of his raps, solely because it's not as rhythmically challenging/intricate, but he delivers it flawlessly and overall this song is just pretty much exactly what I've been dying to hear from Day6 for quite a while now.

Voodoo Doll by VIXX

VIXX is one of those groups that I keep telling myself I need to listen to more. They're exactly right up my alley. I love horror movies, and generally just anything creepy, so VIXX's dark concepts have always really spoken to me. Their music videos are actually stunning. Voodoo Doll was one of the first music videos I saw by them, and I was immediately in love. That was when I first started getting into KPop, and for one reason or another, i just didn't end up listening to more of their music. Honestly, I have no idea why. But finally, over the past few months, I've found my way back to them. They'll be popping up several times on this list, but this is the one I've listened to the most in the past month.

Crush by Golden Child

Golden Child is another group where I've had a resurgence of interest over the past few months. I really enjoyed both their debut song and the mini album, so when I discovered that they were having their first comeback, I was definitely excited. And it did not disappoint. Another song from the mini will pop up later on this list, but this is probably the one I've listened to most. As a huge fan of pop punk music, I'm loving these rock-inspired songs that have been popping up as B-side tracks. Crush just gives me major early/mid 2000s pop rock vibes and I'm obsessed.

Bboom Bboom by Momoland

I've made it no secret that Got7's Jinyoung is my ult KPop bias, and given the number of times that I've listened to this song recently, I've started wondering if I'm actually turning into the man himself. I can't remember where I first heard Bboom Bboom (it was either watching Music Core's live stream, or from a KPop quiz video) but I was hooked almost immediately. It's such a catchy song all throughout, and it just gets stuck in your head and refuses to go away. It's one of those rare songs where every second of the song is mega catchy, and I love that about it. And it's also just a lot of fun to watch Jinyoung dorking out over his love of the song as well. I didn't even realize he enjoyed it until well after I was obsessed, and that just made me love it even more.

Hyde by VIXX

Just can't control... just can't control... just can't control the fact that this song keeps getting stuck in my head. Oof that was super cheesy, but oh well. Anyway, on top of VIXX's awesome dark themes, Hyde is just reeeeally catchy. I honestly don't know what else to say, because I feel like I said a lot of it when talking about Voodoo Doll. But seriously, the "just can't control" part has been stuck in my head basically 24/7 recently.

Platonic Love by Snuper

One of my favorite trends in KPop is music that's reminiscent of the 80s. TBH, it's not really even a trend rather than a general group concept. The other notable group that has had a similar concept is none other than Infinite, AKA one of my ult bias groups. Their nod to the 80s was certainly more subtle than Platonic Love's overt references to Take On Me by Aha, but one need look no further than Infinite's The Chaser to recognize the group's 80s inspiration. Anyway, back to Snuper. This song is all neon colors and bright synths. It legitimately could've been made in the 80s if not for the fact that I'm pretty sure none of the members were even born yet. Either way, this song exudes fun and is inherently catchy and singable. Another undeniable earworm.

Thanks by Seventeen

I love Seventeen a whole lot. Their title tracks alone are enough to cement them as a KPop powerhouse, and their B-side tracks are nothing to sniff at either. That said, I've admitted many, many, many times that I prefer more hype songs to slower songs. So, admittedly, it took me a second to warm up to Thanks. Don't get me wrong, on first listen, I liked it. I just wasn't totally sold. My favorite Seventeen songs are Clap and Very Nice-- two high-energy, powerhouse songs. And while Thanks is an amazing track in its own right, that's definitely not its MO. So I had to take a moment and adjust my expectations before finally returning to the song and falling in love with it. TBH, the best part of the song for me is the build-up of tension in the pre-chorus, followed by the stunning release when they sing "gomeopda." It's just really beautiful.

Fighter by Monsta X

Monsta X's Hero was one of the songs that introduced me to KPop and really made me fall in love with the genre. And then, in November, they released Dramarama. AKA now one of my all-time favorite KPop songs. And that's when I finally decided to stan. I've always really liked the members, but ever since Dramarama was released, I've begun to fall in love with them both musically and personality-wise. Anyway, I've been working my way through their discography, and Fighter is one that I've found myself really latching onto. I'd say that Monsta X was my most listened-to artist in February, but this was the only song of theirs that I listened to enough to make the list. Fighter is just such an epic song, and those are the types of songs that I really gravitate toward. The strings are especially fantastic. 

On and On by VIXX

First off, I really like the accompanying music video to this song. It's still got their dark, creepy vibe, but it's also a bit sci-fi. Real cool. I also find it interesting that if you weren't to watch the music video, it wouldn't be immediately obvious that this is one of their dark-themed concepts. Like, combined with the MV, it fits perfectly. But it also stands on its own apart from that. Not that their other songs don't stand on their own... IDK I just think it's interesting that the song can take on a different tone when listened to with and without the MV. Honestly, their music is just completely rocking my entire life right now.

Beautiful by Pentagon

Of all 15 songs on this list, the majority of them are songs that either I discovered in Feb or were released in the past month or so. Beautiful is one of the notable exceptions to that. Essentially, I was working on my ranking of Pentagon songs throughout the first 2/3 of February, and that really helped me to re-discover my love of this song. There were a lot of songs that were mega-obvious for that list, but past that, I was listening to Pentagon's discography on a constant loop, trying to figure out which songs needed to fill out the list. I very, very quickly realized that I loved Beautiful a lot more than I'd initially realized. I say this approximately every 5 seconds, but slower songs and ballads are either not my thing or something I have to warm up to. And in this instance, it really took me a while to recognize the beauty of Beautiful. Honestly, I'm tempted to move it up even higher on my list than it already is. Not way higher, but a couple slots at least. It really stole my heart in a way I hadn't expected.

It's U by Golden Child

Honestly, this song had me the second the chorus started. I'm convinced that it's impossible to resist the catchiness of this chorus. It's just purely fun, catchy pop music. This song was created to get stuck in your head, and that's exactly what it does. It's bubblegum. It's cute. And it's really well done. This is just pure pop fun. It's so great. I don't even know what else to say about the song except that I dare you to listen to the chorus and not enjoy it and not get it stuck in your head. Good luck! ;D

Love Scenario by iKON

Not even kidding, I have my music on shuffle right now and this song came on just as I was about to start talking about it. Fate! Haha anyway, this song was simultaneously one that I immediately loved and one that had to grow on me. Admittedly, I'm not the biggest iKON fan. Sure, I love hype tracks, but I think it's pretty obvious that Bling Bling isn't a song that really fits within my typical genre preferences. So, when I first started listening to it, I was really excited. It's really laid back and chill, and I loved it. And then... the chorus threw me for a loop. I think I was just expecting more. A drop. Something. And the chorus of this song just simply doesn't do that. It retains its laid back vibe throughout the whole song. But, once I adjusted my expectations, I fell in love. The overall vibe of this song is just really awesome, and the music is really cool.

Fantasy by VIXX

This is a song that I really already loved coming into the month, but given my VIXX kick that I've been on lately, and given that this is probably my favorite VIXX song (don't quote me on that), this naturally got a ton of play throughout the month. Although it's a darker concept than most KPop groups typically have going on at any given time, the song that this actually makes me think of is another song on this list-- and not a VIXX one. Fantasy makes me think of Fighter by Monsta X. Obviously, the songs don't sound alike, but they do exude the same overall vibe. Very strong, very epic. That's the vibe I get from both of them. They're just super powerful and epic songs. Fantasy is just one I've loved for quite a while and will continue loving for a long time to come.

Run to You by Seventeen

Honestly, I don't have too much to say about Run to You, except something I've already mentioned and obsessed over earlier in this video. Please, keep up this trend of idol groups releasing a rock-inspired B-Side. Look, it might not be for everyone. But I'm loving this trend. Infinite did it, Golden Child did it, and now Seventeen did it too. I'm sure there are more, but those are just the groups I stan. 

Bad Boy by Red Velvet

This is another song that I had to warm up to a bit. I really like Red Velvet. They're probably my favorite girl group. Admittedly, though, I tend to gravitate toward their "red" material over their "velvet" and I feel like Bad Boy is more of a mix of the two. TBH, it really didn't take me very long to warm up to it-- I basically listened to it, was a bit meh, and returned a few days later and really enjoyed it. It was as simple as that. Overall, I really like them, and this song has been stuck in my head for weeks now.

OK, on to the predictions. Last month, I mentioned that a group's supermegaweirdos were working their way into my heart and that I planned to listen to their music more. I can check that off the list, because that group is Monsta X, and I've definitely found myself listening to their music quite a bit over the past month. I still want to get more into them, because I feel like I'm still just grazing the surface, but overall, I've definitely been listening to them more. I predicted that I would be listening to more Seventeen and EXO, and I'd say that's like a half check. I definitely listened to more Seventeen, obviously, even though I didn't listen to them this month on the constant loop that I did last month. As for EXO, TBH they just got overshadowed by VIXX. Which has happened to them a lot. EXO is one of the first KPop groups I listened to, and I've said over and over again that I need to listen to more of their music. And it never happens. Some shinier toy pops up for me to love. I think that eventually I'll get around to them, but for some reason it still hasn't happened. I definitely listened quite a bit to some of their songs that I already love (namely Growl) and watched a lot of live stages and "unhelpful guide" videos, but they're still just on the bubble of becoming a group I stan. I also mentioned finishing my rankings of Got7's and Pentagon's songs, and those happened, meaning that Pentagon ended up on the list!

Moving forward to next month, I can already name two songs that will definitely be on that list. I won't yet, but I'll just remind you that Sunggyu and SF9 both had comebacks in the last couple days of the month, and therefore I didn't listen to them all throughout February... but I'll definitely be listening to them in March. Additionally, Got7 is having a comeback on the 12th, so that's obviously going to be on a constant loop. I believe Day6's Japanese debut is confirmed for the 14th, so I'll definitely be listening to that. Apart from that, I'm going to guess I'll be listening to quite a bit of Golden Child and VIXX. Mostly VIXX. I already have all of Golden Child's music and have been listening to it a lot, but there's still so much more VIXX to love, and I think that's what I'll be doing over the next month. That said, I also think I'm going to be listening to a lot of podcasts, so we'll see how much music I actually listen to.

Anyway, that's it for this post. I always ramble way too much at the end of these. Let me know which KPop songs (or just any songs in general tbh) you've been listening to on a constant loop!

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