High Tension are a duo of electronic musicians from South Korea who have been releasing singles and music videos this year. They like to mix and match ideas from a range of different genres, including progressive house and synth-pop, to create something new and dynamic. We received a request from the members who were looking to spread their music to more people from around the world. What better way to do that than to share with our readers! We hope you enjoy this little introduction to the group and the subsequent interview we had with High Tension. Look out for their new single ‘Infectious’ too.
Thanks to Kyeongwoo for communicating with us – we hope things go well in future!
If you would like to follow High Tension on social media, here are their links:
Please introduce High Tension to our Inspire Me Korea readers – why do you think High Tension is unique?
The music that we make is slightly different from existing K-pop. This is because we are inspired by various music genres including synth-pop, electronica, rock, dubstep and more, trying to re-interpret and reassemble existing genres to create fresh music. We have neither dancers nor use vocals in the same way as K-pop groups, but we do have addictive melodies and sound, which we think is our main characteristic feature. We like to create music that makes our audiences’ heart beat fast.
Let us further explain the reasons why we consider ourselves rare musicians. Kyeongwoo aka TEMPEST, is the vocalist of High Tension but is also our video director! He produced a music video for our 2nd Single [CRAY] as well as the album cover, all by himself. Our producer Yun Gun aka ULTRABANG is also the keyboard player of the team and can even play the guitar! The fact that only 2 members can do everything demonstrates the potential of the team.
Did you design your own logo?
I (Kyeongwoo) am the person who designed High Tension’s Logo. Having said that, honestly, we would like to make a better one by collaborating with a prominent designer once we reach another level in terms of popularity. However, we have formed an attachment to the present logo, so we might keep using it for a while.
What do you like about making music in electronica, electropop and synthpop genres?
The genres that I mentioned earlier make an audience excited but we don’t like to create music with only one genre. Because there is a multitude of similar music out there, we also feel that it is boring to produce music that is stuck within a certain frame. By attempting to mix various genres together, we try to make a colourful and abundant sound. It is a great pleasure for us to be able to create our own sound.
We enjoyed your music video and sound for your single ‘Cray’. We thought it was high energy, reminiscent of early Daft Punk songs like ‘One More Time’. Why did you choose to sing in English for the single?
There are 2 reasons. Firstly, because it is our dream. I am a Korean and I do love Korea, but we have a dream of acquiring a global reputation. Therefore, we would like to write lyrics in a language that a global audience can easily understand and relate to. Secondly, we consider English as having an attractive pronunciation, because we often listen to overseas musicians’ works. In the future, we are going to write lyrics in English as much as possible. But the problem is that my English ability is not that good, so it demands practice and effort (laughs).
How easy was it to write ‘Cray’? And where was the location for shooting the music video?
If you have listened to [CRAY], you will notice that there are just a few lyrics. The other day, we burst into laughter when we saw someone’s comment that said “I’ve never listened to a song with such short lyrics before” on our YouTube channel. Believe it or not, we have always considered how to deliver profound messages using short lyrics. The music video of [CRAY] was filmed in a studio, in Seoul; it provided a rough image and sensuous structures.
You said that you were interested in also writing K-pop, dubstep, rock and progressive house tracks. Do you plan to release something else in these styles this year? What are you working on now?
We are aiming to release our new single [Infectious] during November or December. At the moment, we have finished filming a music video and began editing. As soon as this video work finishes, we are going to release the single. [Infectious] is based on a main loop of retro and disco styles which are mixed with electronica and dubstep sounds. As it is a very addictive song, we are quite sure that those who like exciting songs will definitely love it.
How have you showcased your music in Korea so far? Have you made many local fans?
Unfortunately, we haven’t played any performances yet so it can be said that we are hardly recognised in Korea. Most of our fans are non-Koreans who got to know us via YouTube or Instagram. One day in the future, therefore, if there’s any chance for us, we’d like to perform our own concert in front of them.
What goals and targets do you have for 2019?
Our first aim is to secure a wider fan base through releasing many albums in 2019. After that, we hope to be invited to some festivals abroad and that people who love our songs will really enjoy the music with their entire being. I and ULTRABANG often imagine ourselves performing on the stage and getting excited with the crowd. We strongly believe that our dream will come true one day. Our final goal is to become electrifying musicians making heart-thumping music. In order to achieve this dream, we shall be working hard during 2019.
(Original responses were given in Korean and translated by Inho Kim. Partially edited for clarity)
In-article images and featured image source: © High Tension. 12.11.2018. All rights reserved. Images were provided by the artist for use in this interview. No reproduction without permission.
© Interview with High Tension. 15.12.2018. Translation credit: Inho Kim. Inspire Me Korea.