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Cultural Mash-Up of the Day: Korean Hip-Hop Produced by Diplo

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M.I.A. producer and Major Lazer member Diplo, in his boundless appreciation for Korean pop, a.k.a. K-pop, produced the song "Knock Out" for Korean rap duo GD and T.O.P, and it sounds exactly like what one would imagine of a Diplo-produced K-pop track.

G-Dragon and T.O.P. are members of the South Korean boy band Big Bang, whose formation was catalogued in the television series Big Bang Documentary. They released their first album as a duo in December of last year. The other singles from the record are additionally "wicked" and "crazy," among them "High High," a slinky electro track, with the predominant aesthetic of the video easily pinned to the word "sequin." The whole enterprise seems transmitted from a world in which Flo Rida actually managed to influence something worthwhile.

"Knock Out" is the latest example of K-pop escaping the sonic trappings of its scene and inviting American producers into the fold, also evidenced by Teddy Riley's recent work with new K-pop girl group Rania. Diplo goes as far as to coin the term "KHall" to evoke the particular stride of the "Knock Out," which contains more dancehall elements than traditional K-pop, and sounds astoundingly like a Major Lazer track merely transposed. "Korean Dancehall," he clarifies. "We just created a new musical genre here. Shit, why not?"

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