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Ready for BIGBANG?

The K-pop group BIGBANG is composed of G-Dragon, T.O.P., Taeyang, Daesung and Seungri. They will perform at the SM Mall of Asia Arena on Oct. 24.

This five-man K-Pop group has been living up to its name  and how! With a big bang, indeed!

Ready for BIGBANG (yes, the name is one word, spelled in all capital letters)?

Described by a recent Time article as one of the top three Korean pop groups (including 2NE1 to which belongs Sandara Park, Miss Krung-Krung herself who made a name here by winning an ABS-CBN talent search before going back to Seoul and jumpstarting a singing career), the quintet stars in BIGBANG Alive Galaxy Tour 2012 on Oct. 24 at the SM Mall Of Asia Arena, presented by Ovation Productions. The group’s Manila debut is part of its first-ever world tour in support of its new mini-album Alive, covering 25 cities in 16 countries in five continents.

As the Time story pointed out, BIGBANG and the other K-Pop artists profit from the increasing popularity of Korean companies, led by Hyundai and Samsung, around the world. Let’s admit it: The Koreans are lording it over and, with its distinct music, the K-Pop has caught the fancy of people of all nationalities, including Filipinos whose fascination with Koreanovela is boundless.  

Formed by G-Dragon, T.O.P., Taeyang, Seungri and Daesung in 2006, BIGBANG became an overnight sensation when its hit song Lies, the title single of its 2007 first mini-album Always, was released as lead single and stayed at No. 1 on the Korean charts for a record-shattering seven consecutive weeks. Its follow-up releases Hot Issue and Stand Up reinforced the band’s chart standings, spawning more hits such as Last Farewell and Haru Haru.

Its star continued to shine with a string of critical and commercial successes, starting with its debut single BIGBANG which sold nearly 40,000 copies; while its debut album Since 2007 registered sales of 48,000 by the end of February, 2007.

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Its first mini-album Always (2007), aside from becoming a big commercial success with sales of 87,000 copies, received numerous awards and citations, including Best Male Group Award and Song of the Year Award from the 2007 Mnet Asian Music Awards and the Artist of the Year Award from the 17th Seoul Music Awards.

From 2009 to 2010, BIGBANG ventured overseas to Japan, where it was hailed as “the Korean group that Japanese fans wish to see the most.” It also became the first foreign act to be awarded Best Newcomer by the Japan Cable Broadcasting Station and Best New Artist at MTV Japan.

While Time also described BIGBANG as one of the “most promising South Korean acts to venture into Japan,” the Korea Times called the group as “the icons of Korean pop [music].” It’s also considered a “revolutionary group of Korean music wave” because of its unique urban-originated music and fashion style as well as the active involvement of its members  notably G-Dragon  in composing and producing its own music.

In November last year, BIGBANG, representing the Asia-Pacific region, was proclaimed as the inaugural Best Worldwide Act winner at the 2011 MTV Europe Music Awards. Last February, BIGBANG’s fifth mini-album Alive was released to a rousing reception by the music industry: its music video received two million views on YouTube within 24 hours, all six tracks from the album reached the Top 10 in two weeks, and charted at No. 5 on US iTunes Top Albums and No. 3 on Canadian iTunes, surpassing the previous record for a Korean album set by the group’s other album, Tonight.

The launch coincided with the group’s annual concert, Big Show 2012, staged last March at the Seoul Olympic Park Stadium to a sold-out audience of 40,000 fans. The event also marked the successful kick off of its current first-ever world tour.

Now, do you still wonder why the group is named BIGBANG?

(Tickets to BIGBANG Alive Galaxy Tour 2012, produced by Ovation Productions, are priced at P13,200, P10,560, P7,920, P6,870, P3,700 and P1,060, available at all SM Tickets outlets nationwide. Tickets may also be purchased online through www.smtickets.com. For more information, call 470-2222 or visit www.mallof asia-arena.com.)

(E-mail reactions at entphilstar@yahoo.com. You may also send your questions to askrickylo@gmail.com. For more updates, photos and videos visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on www.twitter/therealrickylo.)

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