Here are 8 K-pop songs that will whet your appetite, starting from breakfast and all the way till dessert:
8. Crush’s “Cereal” Ft. Zico — Breakfast Is Served
Crush makes our hearts flutter with his pickup line: “The wifi on my body wants to connect with you tonight.” In “Cereal,” Crush becomes attracted to a girl and wants to spend time with her over “cereal, a special morning with you.” The K-pop song has a smooth R&B groove; Crush’s vocals are soothing. Combined with Zico’s rap style, the duo mixes their distinctive styles really well. Zico’s interpolations of the words “yummy yummy yummy” is so addictive; and, they hit the high notes effortlessly.
The music video is set in a well-lighted futuristic modern building, which makes Crush’s electric blue buzzcut strikingly stand out. Crush literally holds the “spotlight” as the backup dancers at his side have invisible bodies, and their clothes dance as Crush sings, “She’s real.” My takeaway from the K-pop song was Crush’s advice on how to get closer to the person you like:
Don’t just ask for her number. Ask her for her “serial” number.
7. BTS’ “Coffee” — The Best Break-Up Food
BTS singing through the menu at Starbucks is something you never knew you needed. “Coffee” is about a man who fondly reminisces about his lover and their shared memories which were as sweet as a “caramel macchiato,” but he notes that their love ultimately waned into a “bitter americano.”
It’s a very heartfelt, melodious K-pop song; and I thought RM’s rap made it even better. I loved it when Jungkook and Jimin sang the chorus, “Baby baby, you’re a caramel macchiato.” With this song, BTS makes coffee a better break-up food than chocolate ice cream.
6. Eddy Kim And Solar’s “Coffee & Tea” — A K-drama Within A K-pop Song
“More sugar and cream” to get you through the afternoon. The music video of “Coffee & Tea” portrays Eddy Kim as a barista at a cozy café who serves smiley-face coffees and pastries. He helps his customers overcome the burdens of their busy lives and recognize happiness in the present moment. The K-pop music video also portrays a cute love story. Eddy Kim serves coffee and cake to the girl to whom he is attracted and becomes nervous about whether she will accept his feelings. “Coffee and Tea” represents the nascent couple’s different tastes but similar interests at the same time.
I thought Eddy Kim and Solar’s sweet voices complemented each other so well and made the love song more romantic. I also found the music video aesthetically pleasing as its theme utilized pastel colors, light tones, and playful animations.
5. UNIT G’s “Cherry On Top” — Pretty In Pink
“Cherry On Top” is a feminine and delicate song, but it also shows a flirtatious side to UNIT G. They made the dance look effortless, despite how painful it is to perform in twelve-centimeter heels. I thought the vocals were spectacular in their performance as they were even stable when the team members laid down.
What I love about K-pop music videos is that each scene draws from an eye-catching color palette. The color pop and tones in the music video of “Cherry On Top” is stunning — I liked the magenta hues with neon pink lighting and the classic black, white, red color pattern. I personally thought the K-pop song suited Euijin and Haein Laboum the most; Lee Borim’s mid-performance leg hold was iconic.
4. Woodie Gochild’s “Cotton Candy” Ft. Hwasa — Woodie’s Guide For How To Look Cool
When in doubt about what to wear for your date, stick to the basics: a beret, safety glasses, yellow tee, and black trousers. Woodie Gochild rocks his bold fashion choices throughout the music video. “Cotton Candy” is a funky hip hop song about Woodie confidently trying to appeal to his date who appears to be a sophisticated femme fatale.
I enjoyed the details in the background, from the walls of pink flowers to the ball pit of inflated blue heart-shaped balloons. I also thought the yellow industrial tones of the beginning scene — the break dancing on the dance floor and Woodie’s freestyle dance — make the music video interesting. The incorporation of hip hop in K-pop songs makes the genre more entertaining.
3. Orange Caramel’s “Catallena” — As Weird As It Gets In K-pop Songs
“Catallena” is the epitome of how weird K-pop can get, considering it gives off Lady Gaga’s iconic meat dress vibes. Orange Caramel takes the nightmare “I have nothing to wear” last resort and translates that to bright-colored funky dotted eyelashes, polka dot bodysuits, and ostentatious hair accessories. Orange Caramel dressed as mermaids with extravagant jewelry and their hair blowing in the wind was perhaps the most normal-seeming scene.
The music video shows Orange Caramel as beautiful mermaids who peel back the plastic wrap from the package trays they lie in. After dancing on gigantic sushi plates, Orange Caramel transforms into — yes — mermaid sushi (if that’s even considered a food). Lizzy bear-hugs a clump of rice and becomes shrimp sushi and Nana, wearing a fishbone hairpiece, dips her finger in soy sauce.
The song has wacky tunes, a catchy hook, and its theme is unconventional; not to mention, each scene of the music video would probably make a good meme. I thought the music video was a critique of overfishing and animal cruelty to satisfy the human diet, given that the mermaids are packaged, put on sale, and cut into pieces of sushi, and the end of the music video shows them tearing up. Surprisingly, though, the K-pop song is about being attracted to a girl crush, rather than being jealous of her capabilities.
2. AKMU’s “Is It Ramen?” — Those Relatable Mornings
“Is It Ramen?” is about those relatable, unproductive, groggy mornings when you get up at around noon and immediately search for food. I personally like how AKMU provides a unique style to YG’s distinctive powerful and edgy concepts. “Is It Ramen?” uses the guitar and has a laid-back feel to it. Besides Lee Su-Hyun’s amazing triplet note rap, my favorite line is: “But my reflection in the TV keeps getting obese.”
While AKMU doesn’t have a set dance for the K-pop song, they showed their remarkable ability to be in sync even in spontaneous random play dances on their Weekly Idol appearance.
1. Red Velvet’s “Ice Cream Cake” — The Most Iconic Of K-pop Songs About Food
Red Velvet takes “I scream. You scream. We all scream for ice cream” and make it addicting. It’s not a good idea to watch the music video while on a diet because it immediately kicks off with a chocolate cake with cream, pink frosting, and gold-dusted raspberries. The music video is set among a gas station and motel as well as a desert near Palmdale, CA. Red Velvet makes a sofa in the middle of nowhere and an enormous pink, glow-in-the-dark ball bouncing down the highway seem completely normal. In my favorite scene, Joy pushes Yeri in a shopping cart, who wears a glow-in-the-dark white fur coat at sunset.
This catchy song is characterized as the K-pop group’s “red” side since the electropop tones are more upbeat and quirky. I thought this was one of the most iconic K-pop songs about food.
See J-Hope from BTS perform a cover dance of the K-pop song “Ice Cream Cake.”
These K-pop songs will leave you kick-starting your day with morning caffeine and cereal and binging on ice cream cake desserts with cherries on top. Once you finish gobbling these sweet snacks, they will make your mouth water for mermaid sushi and get you craving ramen the next morning.