Learn More About the Subunits That Are Popular Worldwide
Some K-Pop groups have subunits, and they are now very popular in the K-Pop world. Subunits are formed from several members of the same group, the purpose of forming the subunits is to give a different concept from the usual, try different color in music, or give opportunities to members who have the same interests and talents.
In the K-Pop industry, there are so many subunits but among them, one is more popular than the others, that is the subunit GD&TOP from BIGBANG. They were formed in 2010. Their album GD&TOP sold over 130,000 copies in one week with the title tracks “Oh Yeah” and “High High” selling over a million each. The subunit reunited for BIGBANG’s comeback in 2015 with the single “Zutter,” which again sold over a million copies.
But besides them, there are still many popular subunits from other boy groups. So, stay tuned!
Super Junior D&E (슈퍼주니어-동해&은혁)
Super Junior D&E is also known as D&E or SJ-D&E. Super Junior D&E is the fifth official subunit of the South Korean boy group Super Junior. This duo is composed of two members of Super Junior, that is Donghae and Eunhyuk, the rapper and dancer of the group. They are formed by SM Entertainment and debuted on December 16th, 2011, with their digital single titled “Oppa, Oppa – 떴다 오빠.” They made their debuted stage on December 16th, 2011, in KBS’ Music Bank.
Although they released the song on December 16th, 2011, the MV just came out on December 21st, 2011. It is directed by Shindong (another Super Junior member) and starring Amber from f(x), Peter and Youngsky from One Way, and Sungmin and Shindong are also featured in the music video.
They also released a Japanese version of “Oppa, Oppa” on April 4th, 2012. And successfully peaked at #2 on the Oricon single daily and weekly charts, and #1 on the Tower Records single chart.
On February 26th, 2014, they released their first full-length Japanese album Ride Me. They released a short version of the “Motorcycle” promotional video (PV) on February 2nd. The song became the main theme of the Japanese TV show, Sukkiri.
And after D&E 1st Japan Tour, they released their 3rd Japanese single titled “Skeleton” on August 6th, 2014.
On March 6th, 2015, D&E released their first Extended Play, The Beat Goes On. They also held their comeback showcase one day before the release of the song. Donghae participated in this album’s production with producers The Underdogs, Hitchhiker, NoizeBank, and more.
And they made their comeback performance on Music Bank with the songs “Growing Pains” and “The Beat Goes On” and kept promotions going on Music Core, Inkigayo, and M! Countdown.
On March 24th, 2015, this duo released a special edition album for The Beat Goes On. Including the seven tracks in the original album, “Oppa, Oppa,” “1+1=LOVE,” “Still You,” “Motorcycle,” “Love That I Need,” and “I Wanna Dance” from its previous digital singles and Korean versions of Japanese songs for a total of 13 tracks in the special edition album.
On April 1st, 2015, their first Japanese Extended Play titled Present, which contained a total of eight songs including “Saturday Night” was released. They also held their second Japan tour Super Junior D&E The 2nd Japan Tour “Present” from April 3rd to April 23rd in four cities: Saitama, Osaka, Nagoya, and Fukuoka with 10 performances. The concerts concluded gathering more than 100,000 fans.
On September 30th, 2015, they released their fourth Japanese single titled “Let’s Get It On.”
After they released their fourth Japanese single, Eunhyuk and Donghae enlisted for their mandatory military service on October 13th, 2015, and October 15th, 2015, respectively.
They were discharged from their mandatory military service on July 12th and July 14th, respectively.
The duo will be releasing one Japanese song every month starting November 2017 leading to the release of their full album sometime in 2018. On November 29th, they released the first Japanese single of the series, titled “Here We Are.”
One month later, on December 26th, D&E released the second Japanese single titled “You don’t go.”
On January 31st, 2018, they released their third Japanese monthly single titled “If You,” written and composed by Donghae.
On February 28th, 2018, their fourth Japanese monthly single, “Circus,” was released with the concept film where Donghae and Eunhyuk downsized into video game characters, playing a “Circus” chase game.
On March 28th, 2018, their fifth Japanese monthly single, titled “Lose It” was out. On April 2nd, 2018, the full version of the music video was then released.
On April 25th, 2018, their sixth Japanese monthly single “Can I Stay…” was released.
On May 31st, 2018, the seventh Japanese monthly single “Hot Babe” was released.
In June 2018, D&E announced the release of their second full-length Japanese album titled STYLE, on August 8th, 2018, which contains every monthly song that had been released and also new songs, including the lead single “Sunrise” and “Polygraph.”
D&E released their second Korean Extended Play titled ‘Bout You with the lead single of the same title.
On April 14th, 2019, D&E’s comeback with the title track “Danger” took place. It’s a mixture of trap hip-hop and electronic music, paired with a dynamic and eye-catching performance. Donghae also participated in composing and writing the lyrics for the track.
D&E plan to treat their fans to the full MV for another track from the mini-album titled “Gloomy,” before the full album is released. “Gloomy,” composed by Donghae, is an emotional R&B trap genre.
According to Label SJ, D&E’s upcoming 3rd mini-album Danger contains a total of 7 tracks including a title track of the same title, plus the Korean versions of D&E’s popular Japanese singles “Sunrise” and “If You.”
Super Junior K.R.Y
After we meet Super Junior D&E, let’s meet their oldest brother Super Junior K.R.Y. This subunit is the first one from Super Junior. Formed in 2006, it consists of the vocal line from Super Junior: Yesung, Ryeowook, and Kyuhyun.
In 2006, they released two original soundtracks titled “The Night Chicago Died” and “The One I Love – 한 사람만을” for the tvN drama titled Hyena.
And on November 5th, 2006, they debuted on the music program Music Bank performing “The One I Love.” Since then, they have released several original soundtracks for Korean television dramas.
In 2006 they released another original soundtrack for Snow Flower with the title “Stop Walking By.”
In 2007 they released a soundtrack for Billie Jean, Look at Me with the title “Just You.”
In 2009 they made the song titled “Dreaming Hero” for the drama Partner.
In 2011, they presented the theme song of Superstar K3 with the title “Fly.” The song is written by producer Park Keun-tae.
In 2012, they filled the drama To the Beautiful You with the song titled “Sky.” The lyrics are written by Lee Sang-yeol and Park Geun-cheol.
The same year, they also made a song titled “Loving You” for another 2012 South Korean romantic comedy television series.
On May 6th, 2013, one of the members, Yesung, enlisted for his mandatory military service. It made Super Junior K.R.Y go on hiatus from their activities.
Yesung completed his mandatory military service on May 4th, 2015. In June 2015, the trio announced the release of their second Japanese single titled “Join Hands” on August 5th, 2015.
Ryeowook enlisted for his military service on October 11th, 2016, and Kyuhyun enlisted for his military service on May 24th, 2017. This subunit must temporarily halt their activities.
But Ryewook just finished his military service on July 10th, 2018, and Kyuhyun on May 7th, 2019. So, let’s wait for their comeback.
Still, at the same agency, there are Exo-CBX (Chen-Baek-Xi) from SM Entertainment. They are the first official subunit of the South Korean-Chinese boy group EXO who formed in 2016, the group is composed of three EXO vocalists: Chen, Baekhyun, and Xiumin.
On July 29th, 2016, Chen, Baekhyun, and Xiumin appeared in a video titled “Reservoir Idols” during EXO’s concert tour Exo Planet 3 – The Exo’rdium.
On August 23rd, 2016, they released an original soundtrack titled “For You” for the SBS television drama series Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo.
On October 31st, 2016, EXO-CBX released their debut extended play Hey Mama!, which consists of five tracks with a variety of genres including electronic dance, R&B ballad, and retro pop.
|3.||“Rhythm After Summer”||
|5.||“Cherish”||David Anthony Eames||David Anthony Eames|
And in November 2016, EXO-CBX recorded a remake of the original soundtrack “Crush U” for the game “Blade & Soul.” The Music Video was released on December 25th.
They released their debut Japanese extended play Girls on May 24th, 2017, with the title track “Ka-Ching!” It was officially released by Avex Trax.
And also “Ka-Ching!” was re-released as a b-side track in EXO-CBX’s first Japanese studio album Magic on May 9th, 2018. “Ka-ching!” is a catchy pop-tune song that blends elements of jazz with electronica, resulting in an eclectic tune that’s as energetic as it is quirky.
|5.||“Shake” (Xiumin solo)||Junji Ishiwatari||
|6.||“Off the Wall”||Amon Hayashi (Digz Inc.)||
|7.||“Ringa Ringa Ring” (Baekhyun solo)||Junji Ishiwatari||
|9.||“Watch Out” (Chen solo)||MEG.ME||
|11.||“In This World”||
On April 10th, 2018, EXO-CBX released a single titled “Blooming Day,” distributed by IRIVER as the title track of their second Korean mini-album Blooming Days.
“Blooming Day” is described as a light and chic dance-pop track where the members’ sweet vocal colors will be showcased. The lyrics talk about a sweet confession to a woman with heart fluttering emotions like spring.
The choreography was made by Alexander Chung and Kasper, who previously choreographed EXO’s “Ko Ko Bop” and other songs for the group.
|1.||“Monday Blues”||Hwang Yoo-bin||
|2.||“Blooming Day” (花요일; Hwayoil)||Hwang Yoo-bin||
|3.||“Sweet Dreams!” (내일 만나; Naeil Manna; lit. Wednesday’s Meeting)||
|7.||“Lazy” (휴일; Hyuil, lit. Sunday)||Park Sung-hee (Jam Factory)||
And these are their soundtrack appearances
|“It’s Running Time”||2017||—||Running Man Animation OST|
|“Cry”||—||Final Life: Even if You Disappear Tomorrow OST
|“Someone Like You”||2018||88||
|“Be My Love”||2019||TBA||Love Playlist Season 4 OST|