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[Today’s K-pop] Winner renews contract on 7th anniversary

(Credit: YG Entertainment)
(Credit: YG Entertainment)

The bandmates of Winner all agreed to renew their contracts with label YG Entertainment, the company announced Wednesday.
They signed the contracts together for another five years, before the initial seven-year contract’s expiration and just in time for the seventh anniversary of their debut on Tuesday.
“We really want to tell Inner Circle, who has always been on our side and been there for us, that we respect them,” said the band through the management firm, addressing their official fandom.
“Thanks to you, we of today exist,” the band went on. “And we want to share more memories with you on our journey of music without a final destination.”
Winner debuted in August 2014 through a K-pop TV competition, with its first studio album “2014 S/S.” Since then, all the lead tracks from its albums have topped major music charts in Korea.
Lee Seunghoon and Kim Jinwoo are currently serving their compulsory military duty while Kang Seungyoon and Song Minho are actively pursuing their solo music career.

Pentagon’s younger trio puts out digital single 

(Credit: Cube Entertainment)
(Credit: Cube Entertainment)

Yuto, Kino and Wooseok of Pentagon formed a unit and dropped a digital single named “Cerberus” on Wednesday.
The name comes from a vicious three-headed beast in Greek mythology, also known as the hound of Hades, that guards the gates to the Underworld. It also hints at the ferocious energy from the three youngest members of the band, explained Kino through a statement released by agency Cube Entertainment.
The trio turned into villains in the music video and it will be fun watching their chemistry, said Wooseok. Looking for clues in the ever-changing facial expressions and gestures also is key to enjoying the video, he added.
They had been toying with the idea of forming a subunit for some time and when the opportunity came, they wrote the song while playing together. 
The three recorded whenever they came up with ideas while working on the music, said Yuto. The song highlights the characteristics of each of them as artists rather than leaning for popularity, he mused, asking fans to listen to it casually.

Astro to drop Japanese version of “All Good” 

(Credit: Fantagio Music)
(Credit: Fantagio Music)

Astro is releasing a Japanese version of “All Good” on Aug. 25, its agency Fantagio Music announced Wednesday.
The song is from the band’s second full-length album “All Yours,” and Jinjin co-authored the lyrics and melody. The Japanese version also was chosen as part of the original soundtrack for a television drama series in Japan that started airing in July.
The second LP came out in April and topped Oricon’s weekly albums chart, a first for the six-member group. According to the most recent tally that became available Wednesday, Astro’s newest album, its eighth EP “Switch On” that was unveiled on Aug. 2, is No. 1 on Oricon’s international albums chart. The EP also ranked No. 2 on Oricon’s weekly albums chart and topped Tower Records’ album chart.
The band wrapped up promoting the EP, winning four trophies for lead track “After Midnight” on TV music shows.

BTS’ Suga replaces record with solo mixtape 

(Credit: Big Hit Music)
(Credit: Big Hit Music)

Suga of BTS had replaced his record on Spotify with his second mixtape, “D-2,” as of Wednesday.
The mixtape, released under his solo stage name Agust D in 2020, surpassed 380 million streams on the platform, replacing his own record as the most streamed album by a K-pop solo musician. Lead track “Daechwita” had garnered over 125 million streams as of August.
“D-2” swept across iTunes top albums chart in 80 regions when it came out in May 2020 and the lead track topped iTunes top songs chart in 50 regions. On Billboard, the mixtape and main track entered the Billboard 200 and Hot 100, respectively, a first for a K-pop solo act. All 10 tracks from the album hogged the No. 1 to 10 spots on its world digital song sales chart.
In the meantime, he surprised fans with a new collaboration last week: his own arrangement of “Over the Horizon,” the official ringtone of Samsung’s Galaxy phones.

By Hwang You-mee