Male K-pop idol groups to watch in early 2012

SNSD sang about “bringing the boys out” towards the end of 2011 and guess what? Lo and behold, there will be a slew of fresh male idol groups that will be making their debuts in early 2012.

TS Entertainment’s B.A.P [비에이피], the acronym stands for Best, Absolute and Perfect.
Expected debut date: Jan 26th, 2012
Follow their debut if: you are into K-pop groups with a strong hip hop flair like Big Bang.

Are they hard-hitting enough for you?

Leading the pack is Bang Yong Guk, who was initially featured as a rapper in “Going Crazy” (by fellow labelmate, Secret’s Song Ji-eun) and soon followed up with his own solo, “I Remember” (which featured B2st’s Yoseob).

Subsequently, Zelo (Choi Joon Hong) and Bang Yong Guk formed a sub-unit and released “Never Give Up”. In fact, the duo were in Malaysia on Jan 14 and held a pretty impressive showcase. Following that, the talented Kim Hi Chan was unveiled as the third member of the sub-unit. Hi Chan is currently an MC for MTV The Show!

The three remaining members, namely, Jung Dae Hyun, Yu Young Jae and Moon Jong Up were then revealed through their group’s on-going pre-debut reality show, “Ta-dah! It’s B.A.P”

Pledis Entertainment’s NU’EST; NU (New), E (Establish), S (Style), and (T) Tempo.
Expected debut date: First quarter of 2012.
Follow their debut if: you are into cute, trendy and fun-loving K-pop groups like B1A4.

Also referred to as Pledis Boys, rumoured members were featured in the 2012 Happy Pledis–Love Letter MV, alongside label mates After School and Son Dambi for the company’s family album, 2011 Happy Pledis.

Clockwise from top-left: JR, BaekHo , MinHyun, Ren and Aaron.

It is said that the group’s concept will be akin to that of After School where senior members will “graduate” from the group and newbies will be “enrolled” from time-to-time.

So far, 5 trainees have been confirmed as members of NU’EST and they are leader JR, ulzzang MinHyun, vocalist Aaron and the 2 latest additions, Baekho and Ren. More members will be introduced to the public as the group’s debut approaches.

CUBE Entertainment‘s Cube Boys (?)
Expected debut date: late-Jan or Feb 2012
Follow their debut if: you enjoy well-rounded and lovable K-pop groups like B2st.

With B2st surging to the top of the new generation’s favourite K-pop idol group list, CUBE is looking to repeat its winning formula with an odd-numbered group.

Temporarily and affectionately referred to as the Cube Boys, 5 of its 7 members are currently on a sitcom, “I Live in Cheongdam Dong”. They play idol trainees living in bad conditions. It’s not just acting though as the boys get to showcase their talent by singing “I’m Hungry” in acapella and dancing to songs aired on the radio throughout their appearances.

There is yet any word on the boys’ debut concept but the rumoured 5 members revealed are Eun Kwang, Hyun Shik, Il Hoon, Min Woo and Sung Jae.

SM Entertainment’s EXO: Short for exoplanets (planets existing outside the solar system) to mean that the boys will have impressive, out-of-this-world skills.
Expected debut date: Not until SM Entertainment is done releasing their teasers.
Follow their debut if: you like dub-step and enjoy what SM artistes bring to the table

EXO will promote as 2 separate units, EXO-K (Korean) and EXO-M (Mandarin) by releasing the same single on the same day, albeit in different languages to cater to their respective target audience.

There has already been 10 teasers on the group, with only half of its members revealed. Despite an unconfirmed debut date, the group already has a pretty strong following and is making headlines in Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong and China. You’ve just for to give it to SM Entertainment for its brilliant marketing strategies (check out all the Youtube videos of the group!).

A different kind of teaser; EXO’s Lu Han, Se Hun and Kai together with SHINee’s Tae Min for the latest W Magazine photo shoot of SM Entertainment’s fashionistas.

The rest of the members are expected to be unveiled “soon”— on SM Entertainment’s terms — that is. EXO (so far) comprises of Kai, Lu Han, Tao, Chen, SeHun and Lay/Yi Xing.

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