Perhaps it was my digging into old albums of 1TYM that I was ready for a group like Turbo. Haha! I can’t remember how I found them…but I do know that the first music video I saw was…oh yeah! Now I remember!
So…in early 2006, I saw Super Junior’s prominent dancers Eunhyuk, Shindong, and Donghae appearing on a variety show and they were dancing to an old school Korean song. I really like that song and spent over a year trying to find it. I eventually would. It’s called “Back to Black” by R.EF. But before I could find that song…Youtube showed me another group that was of the same era, that 90s dance music of 1995. Allow me to introduce you to Turbo!
Hahaha! When I first heard Turbo…it was a truly welcomed blast from the past. Debuting in 1995, they really did stake their claim as the kings of Korean dance music, reminiscent of Mortal Kombat’s soundtrack mixed with the top club hits of the 1980s. Honestly, if you’re looking for something different, this group does just the trick.
Funny thing is…I had heard of Turbo before I even knew it. Kim Jong-Kook, the lead singer with the high-pitched electronic voice, is a buff stud I’ve been seeing on Korean variety shows for well over a year, pretty much ever since I got into Kpop. I never knew his name or his significance. And when I heard that Chaeyeon had a crush on him, I was a little jealous, like “f##k dat dude.” Then…I heard him sing.
Turbo started out as a dance duo with Kim-Jong Kook as the singer and Mikey as the rapper. After the second album, apparently Mikey left and was replaced by another rapper named Kim Jung-Nam.
Their third album, “Born Again” sold over 800,000 copies. That’s ridiculous. And here I thought H.O.T was the baddest in the land, Turbo definitely gave them a run for their money and Turbo didn’t even come from one of the top three agencies like SM, DSP, or YG. With sheer talent, vocal ability and catchy melodies that linger long after you hear it, Turbo definitely made history as one of the greatest in Kpop History.
Lol, speaking of giving H.O.T a run for their money…imagine actually being from one of the top three agencies and going toe-to-toe with them in their own genre. Well then, allow me to introduce you to a group called Sechskies.
Debuting just one year after H.O.T, Sechskies first album with the above title song went on to sell over a million albums. And if you’ve been reading my memoir up to this point, you might have noticed my mentioning Sechskies before. But it wasn’t until the Spring of 2008 that I really gave them a shot. I don’t know why. Perhaps the name? But I was so content with H.O.T and Big Bang that I didn’t really go looking for anything else.
So when I found Sechskies and clicked on that “School” music video. I was taken aback. It’s one of the best of the old school kpop songs. I imagine if I was going to school in Korea when this song came out, it would have been the official anthem all year.