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From 'Lo Siento' to 'One More Time,' Super Junior rides high on Latin pop

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Published : Oct 9, 2018 - 16:22 / Updated : Oct 9, 2018 - 16:22

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Many believe that Super Junior’s heyday coincided with its viral single “Sorry Sorry” in 2009, but the group, one of K-pop’s most prominent performers, is recently experiencing a career renaissance, riding on the wave of Latin pop.

Its latest single “One More Time,” the lead track off the group’s new Latin-tinged album of the same title, landed atop iTunes charts in 26 countries following its release Monday.

The song is the ultimate tribute to Latin pop, with its incorporation of reggae sound, guitar riffs and the groovy vocals of rising Mexican group REIK. The five-track album even features a remake of Luis Miguel’s “Ahora Te Puedes Marchar,” sung entirely in Spanish by Super Junior members.


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While many of Super Junior’s previous works have focused on propulsive dance beats and electro vibes -- take “Mr. Simple,” “Spy” and “Black Suit” for examples -- the group’s recent shift to east-meets-west projects does not come as a surprise.

With the rise of “Despacito” and other Spanish-language music making a splash in the global mainstream, the K-pop industry has also witnessed one of its most monumental shifts in the Latin world.

In 2017, co-ed group KARD brought some fresh air into the scene with Latin pop-inspired “Hola Hola” and SF9 with “O Sole Mio.” This year, acts like Mamamoo and NU’EST W were also in the limelight with the release of Latin-tinged “Egoistic” and “Dejavu,” respectively.

And Super Junior is one of those acts drawing inspiration from the Latin market.


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In April, the band dropped the single “Lo Siento,” a collaboration with Leslie Grace and Play-n-Skillz. The trilingual track that features Korean, Spanish and English, became the first-ever K-pop song to appear on a Latin Billboard chart when it debuted at No. 13 on the Latin Digital Song Sales chart. Super Junior had previously borrowed some Latin elements in its past hits like “Mamacita” and “Shirt,” but “Lo Siento” was its first song to fully embrace the theme.

With “Lo Siento” being the most expansive crossover with the Latin world that K-pop has seen so far, Super Junior’s Leeteuk had commented on the song during an interview with Billboard, “Because it’s something new, there may have been some things that weren’t perfect.” ”But as we try new things, we feel, as a group, that we’ll continue to grow and become a lot stronger,” he added.


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Super Junior held a showcase concert for the new EP “One More Time” in Macau on Monday,

(lotus@heraldcorp.com)

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