From viral challenge to global sensation, J-pop duo Yoasobi lands in Korea

J-pop duo band Yoasobi performs at the Korea University's Hwajeong Gymnasium in Seongbuk District, Seoul, Dec. 17. Courtesy of LIVET

For those familiar with the K-pop scene, one might immediately recognize the melodies of the Japanese song “Idol.” Featured in the anime “Oshi no Ko,” the song gained popularity through viral challenge videos featuring numerous K-pop stars.However, “Idol” is more than just a Korean sensation; it has achieved global success, and become part of J-pop history. The music video reached 100 million views in just 35 days after its release, setting a new J-pop milestone by shaving off 27 days from the previous record. It also maintained the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Japan chart for nine consecutive weeks.The creators behind this phenomenon are J-pop duo Yoasobi, comprising vocalist Ikura and composer Ayase.Responding to their popularity in Korea, Yoasobi held their first official concert at Korea University’s Hwajeong Gymnasium, Seongbuk District, eastern Seoul, last weekend. The two-day concert sold out within a minute after ticket sales began, attracting a total of 8,500 attendees.Following the successful concert, Yoasobi held a press conference on the following Monday at CGV Cinelibrary in Jung District, central Seoul, to express the duo’s sentiments over the event.

Composer Ayase shared his amazement at the Korean fans’ enthusiasm.”The audience sang along from the very beginning to the last song. This is a rare occurrence during our performances in Japan, so it was undoubtedly an unforgettable experience,” Ayase said.Vocalist Ikura, equally impressed, said, “I was deeply moved and nervous at the same time. Their passionate singing along to our Japanese lyrics was so inspiring, prompting me to reciprocate that energy and deliver the best possible performance.”Despite their rising popularity in Korea, Yoasobi remained humble about their success.”It’s challenging to pinpoint the exact reason for our popularity,” the female vocalist said. “I believe we still have a long journey ahead of us. I’ve consistently expressed my admiration for Korean artists and K-pop idols on social media, and I think that’s why our Korean fans are familiar with us.””From our perspective, the fact that top-tier idols performed to our song was particularly gratifying. I appreciate that our music transcended language and barriers,” she added.Ayase also shared his perspective, saying, “From a compositional standpoint, I felt my emotions were effectively conveyed not only 토토사이트 towards K-pop stars but also Korean listeners. “

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