Band of the Week 11 - Manju Pocket
I had my first experience watching a live performance of Manju Pocket, the multi-talented acoustic pop/rock/soul trio out of Seoul, Korea, at Auteur in October, and was most struck by their unique and entertaining chemistry on stage, as well as their versatile and catchy song-writing. Manju's vocals ring beautifully over the carefully crafted melodies and rhythms of the band, and it's impossible for the listener to not start toe-tapping and singing along.
That's what I had to say about these amazing people back in November of 2014, and I couldn't agree with myself more today! Before we get deeper into the band, take a minute to watch this intro bit we put together:
All the single albums, all the single albums...
In addition to a full length and 2 EPs, Manju Pocket is all about releasing fantastic singles of their latest songs, and sometimes performing them in a...closet. Check out their Facebook page for more on that.
Here is their discography with mini-reviews and links to listen and buy:
Night Cat (2013) - Single
Nothing short of stunning. An emotional duet of songs for the lonely.
Thought it was Spring (2013) - Single
A soft and sweet piano song with touches of strings about the quick passing of spring.
Take Out (2013) - Single
Ranked #1 on Bugs Korea, the chorus here aches with all the longing of the beautiful lyrics.
Gimme Money (2013) - EP
Lots of fun throughout, with one of my favorites again at track 2, Gimme Money, with a different kind of message. I love the powerfulness of the vocals along with the jazzy feel to much of the EP.
Night Walk (2015) - LP
A delicious mix of jazzy blues, pop soul, beautiful composition and catchy choruses, this album is a light rock delight! Manju's vocals shine throughout with her natural trills filling out the special guest vocalists that appear in a number of tracks. Be sure to check out track 2, Would You Drink?, which is what we used for the video above! This album was preceded by 4 critically acclaimed singles, including one of my all-time favorite softer rock songs in Korean indie, During Sleep. Check out my interview with them to hear about the cheeky story behind it!
Walk with You (2015) - Single
A truly adorable song for lovers, with "I Love You" in Korean featured 24 times!
Outside Earth (2016) - EP
A wonderful mixture of styles highlight this EP, complete with a guest rapper and guitarist, this record is fun, fabulous and funky! I can't get enough of track 2, Men are so Weird. The virsatility of the band is highlighted by Manju's incredible vocals throughout!
Abnormal (2016) - Single
Bright and truly uplifting with fantastic composition as always.
Suyeon (2017) - LP
A brand-spanking new LP (with 21 tracks!) from the trio, and first album with their new keyboardist, Pyeonggang. A gorgeous concept album telling the story of a young woman living in Korea. The record is filled with bright, jazzy tracks with humor and blues sprinkled throughout the pop-soul music. Check out Fondant and Hi, I'm Suyeon to get a taste of this gem.
If you don't speak Korean, and what a copy, contact us and we'll make it happen!
Head to BandCamp to listen and buy all of their tracks and help support this lovely trio!
There is nothing like connecting with a band performing live on stage, and as it was my first introduction to Manju Pocket, they forever have a place in my heart. If you are ever lucky enough to be near a show of theirs, grab a friend and reconnect through their lovely performances. Emotional music, quirky styles and plenty of smiles and laughter, every show is a beautiful start or end to any night.
Here's what to expect at a Manju Pocket live performance:
-Manju will approach the stage and audience with joyful sweetness and then open up her vocals with stunning emotional power.
-The songwriting and instrumental talent will capture your heart.
-Whether you understand a word they say or not, you will laugh with joy!
Check out this performance from Sofar Sounds in Seoul. Incidentally, if you don't know Sofar Sounds, contact us NOW to learn all about this incredible project!
Thanks for reading! We'll leave you today with the best part, the songs!
Here's our 5 not-to-miss Manju Pocket tracks, with some onomatopoeia on why:
"During Sleep" - urgh!
"Would You Drink?" - woohoo!
"Night Cat" - awww~
"Gimme Money" - ching ching!
"From 12th Floor to 13th Floor" - boom!
"Good Bye Good Night" - clap!
My favorite part of BOTW, here is our latest lyric video, for one of my personal favorites, During Sleep!
Check out their pages, including their website, to learn more, or drop us a line and ask us anything you want!
Keep RoKing my friends!