Thursday, May 14, 2015

[INTERVIEW] BIGBANG, “Our Favorite Song is ‘the Next Song’”

BIGBANG has come back. As expected, every move of them draws keen attention. They are sweeping No.1 places on charts as expected, and becoming a black hole that absorbs every issue in the music scene, as expected.

BIGBANG who needs no explanation (On contrary, “like BIGBANG” is the best word for explanation of any boy group.) marked the end for the long-time waiting of fans, by releasing “M”, the first album of their third full-length album project “MADE”.

As BIGBANG has come back after three years of absence, the “MADE” project is unprecedentedly bold from the very beginning. “M” that includes “LOSER” and “BAE BAE” was released on May 1 to mark the beginning of the project, and then single album “A”, “D”, and “E” with more than one songs will be released on the 1 of June, July, and August, respectively. Then, eventually, the final album “MADE” will be released on September 1.

Considering the current trend in the music scene where idol groups perform for a new album for about only one month, BIGBANG will give performances for about five months.

T.O.P explained the reason behind such a special promotion plan, saying, “We are performing for Korean fans after a very long time of absence, so we wanted to see fans for longer period of time”. “Some ask if we can perform in Korea enough, because we have a lot of schedules for overseas performances, but we’ll do our best with the plan. Usually, singers perform for a new album for a month or a month and a half at longest, but we thought we should perform for our comeback for an extended period of time, rather than just one month”, added T.O.P.

Plus, the “MADE” project shows BIGBANG’s big ambition for music. In the past, G-DRAGON once expressed his regret for the current situation in the music market, in which songs other than the title track of a new album are not recognized and evaluated properly but just forgotten. That is part of the reason why BIGBANG releases the songs of “MADE” album one by one.

TAEYANG explained, “Even until a month ago, we were thinking about whether we should release a full-length album or a single album. Releasing a full-length album would also be good, but we decided to unveil a single album every month and show music video for every song”. G-DRAGON said, “More than anything, our goal was to promote (the album) better”.

That means BIGBANG is confident in the quality of all the songs of the album, and that is understandable, as it is BIGBANG.

G-DRAGON expressed his confidence in “LOSER” and “BAE BAE”, as well as the singles to be released in the following months, saying, “It is hard to define the color (of our music), but I think we found out something we want to do and show because it is BIGBANG. I feel more comfortable and fun, because I know that. Since “M” is the first single, we didn’t put the strongest songs in it. We just put songs that go well with this season of spring in it. Just as everyone has different feelings even for the same music, every single we release will feel differently. I’m now concentrating on thinking about what kind of performance we will show on the stage, nothing else”.

TAEYANG asked for big expectations for “BIGBANG” music to follow in the months to come, saying, “I think it is right for us to show the music we like now. We’re very satisfied with this album. Every single will have different feel, and the feel will get stronger and more defined album by album”.

One thing interesting is BIGBANG members’ perception of “BIGBANG’s popular appeal”. T.O.P gave a rather vague answer, saying, “Rather than an objective evaluation of a team named BIGBANG about whether it has the popular appeal or not, eventually, BIGBANG can be seen as appealing to the public, as the public like BIGBANG”.

Then, G-DRAGON made it clear, “We are a pop singer, so we sing popular songs, but we were not thinking we should write popular songs. We just wanted to write good songs. I think the timing is good. It is lucky that the song we like coincides with the song the public like”.

Everyone may have different opinions on which came first, whether BIGBANG liked the songs first or the public liked them first, but everyone would agree that “LOSER” and “BAE BAE” are sweeping the current music scene.

In fact, the lyrics of “LOSER” are rather unique, which cannot be usually seen in other singers’ songs. The song is appealing to people in their middle age, going beyond popularity among younger generation where most of fans belong. Middle-aged people praising an idol group’s song is a rare and interesting scene.

G-DRAGON explained the background of the birth of “LOSER”’s lyrics, “What we wanted to say was that not only BIGBANG but also all the famous people who stand under the spotlight in front of the public are just human beings. All these people are the same humans who get their feelings hurt some times and smile some times. It’s just that those people have a different job. We ourselves have given up some things in our lives because our job is singer. I think the lyrics were written based on our own experiences”.

“It could also be heard as a light love song. However, we wanted to give a bigger theme to this song, so we drew a bigger picture. Somebody may not have a friend, and somebody may not have love, you know, everyone lives in a different situation. According to how you accept it, this song could be your story”, added G-DRAGON.

On contrary, “BAE BAE” is a song that expresses more explicit and kitsch feelings about love. G-DRAGON said, “I expressed men’s selfish desire for his girlfriend not to grow old from the age of 25, when a woman is the most beautiful in her entire life”.

Then, he went on to explain the intention of each song, saying, “The age of 25 seems to be the right age for a man and woman to have the most passionate love in their lives. I expressed a situation in which the man and woman promise that their love will never change. Word ‘Chapssalteok’ (sticky rice cake) was picked for the lyrics, in the process of trying words that give funnier and more kitsch feel. At first, I picked the word without thinking seriously, but it went very well with the song’s entire mood. ‘BAE BAE’ is a song that is somewhat experimental, which does not have a defined feel. Rather, I pursued a kind of twisted and bizarre feel”.

As such, BIGBANG can do whatever they want with their music, based on the deep bond between the members who are now like family members.

Such bond between BIGBANG members is all the stronger, as they have been overcoming the difficulties and adversities of live together. TAEYANG boasted his friendship with the other members, saying, “We did anything given to us even though we did not understand that really, to do what we want finally now. We work hard because it is so fun to create music and music videos. Plus, we talk most and laugh most when all the five are together. We are the energy for each other”.

G-DRAGON also highlighted the meaning of the deep bond between the members, “Now we are successful and everything is so good, but each of us went through a lot of difficulties. That is the source of our passion. I myself experienced financial difficulty, and some personal pain and sufferings. As all of us know what difficulty and suffering in life is, we make a lot of efforts together, to maintain our current success as long as possible”.

Then, T.O.P humorously talked about the difficulties BIGBANG went through, “To be honest, each of the members does not have that many friends. The members are the only friends with whom we can share our lives and openly talk about personal things. When I was a trainee, I didn’t have any money so I could not eat the chips I like, and I still like the chips”.

As BIGBANG is enjoying a big popularity not only in Korea but also overseas, we asked BIGBANG a question about where they think the peak of their career is. TAEYANG answered, “Maybe it is right to set the peak (target) to some extent, but that may have come and gone already, or it may have not come yet. I’m curious what kind of meaning it has to set such a target”.

Then, TAEYANG added a very wise answer to the question, “When someone asks which song I like the most among BIGBANG’s songs, I honestly hope it is ‘the next song’. We keep creating songs because we are not 100% content with our songs. Now is the best time for us, the teamwork is good and we are at the optimal age. It is hard to say that now is the peak of our career, but I think we are in a good condition to reach the peak”.

Source: YG Entertainment(DongA)

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