Our picks for the top 11 idol rappers in K-Pop.
At first, we planned on creating two separate lists; one for females and one for males. After compiling all our favorites though, we realized that we barely had enough females and males to create two separate lists (which is actually quite sad), and so our resolution was to just combine the two genders. As a disclaimer though, we want to clarify: this is solely concerning idol rappers. We’re not gonna get all deep into k-rappers and Korean hip-hop. Our list only contains idols that are either in idol groups now, or were in the past.
11. MBLAQ’s Mir
A big problem with Mir is that most of MBLAQ’s songs don’t really do him justice. Though we really liked his rap in “Cry”, that was about the only time he’s had a decent rap in MBLAQ. For a better example of his skill, watch the above video. Mir guest appears in Kan Mi Youn’s “Going Crazy” at 2:50, rapping what is personally our favorite rap of his. We really liked how much personality Mir added to the rap. His rapping is unique, and doesn’t really focus heavily on either speed or flow, but retains a moderate combination of both.
10. Super Junior’s Eunhyuk
Eunhyuk and Mir are very much on the same boat. The only difference is that Eunhyuk has been given a few more times to show off his skill than Mir, particularly when he raps in some of K.R.Y.’s songs. The main point in his rapping is his speed; in terms of rhythm, Eunhyuk doesn’t excel, but he is a lot more bearable than most idol rappers. Eunhyuk has no swag though. So while he’s capable, his lack of swag pretty much prevents him from being a legitimate rapper.
9. B.A.P’s Zelo
Here is our take on Zelo: He’s definitely being largely overrated. And as adorable as he is, it’s pretty much fact that he is not as amazing as so many crazy fans are making him out to be. However, this does not take away from the fact that he is indeed talented. Zelo’s the youngest person on this list, and we really can’t wait to see how great of a performer he’ll be in a few years, seeing as he already has impressive charisma and potential.
8. Beast’s Junhyung
Junhyung is a favorite of ours, and we’re not even sure why to be honest. His rapping is good, but hardly impressive enough to ever make it into most people’s top 3. In our eyes, the poor boy is kind of stuck: He’s neither great enough to land himself as one of the few best, but he’s definitely better than most. Junhyung can rap (and that alone is a feat). He knows what he’s doing, how to present/express himself and look cool while he’s doing it. Junhyung’s rap in “Fiction” was honey to our ears; there may be better examples of his rapping out there on youtube, but we’re biased for “Fiction”.
7. 2ne1’s CL
CL is good. Similar to Zelo though, we will admit her fans overrate her just a bit (she is hardly the best rapper in the world), but underneath that lies great talent. Talent aside though, we’d like to point out: She may not be the fastest, she may not have the best sense of rhythm, and her rapping may as well not even be good- all is masked by her fierceness and undeniable charisma and attitude. She has stage presence and this fact alone allows her to hold her ground and put on a fabulous show., mostly because true swagger is something we see most idol “rappers” lack.
6. B.A.P’s Young Guk
Bang Young Guk seems more of a talker rather than a rapper. His rapping doesn’t have the typical attributes of “fast, rhythmic speaking”, but instead it almost seems as if he’s angrily explaining himself. He does well with emotion (though the only emotion we’ve ever really seen him attempt to express is anger/”charisma”) and, as seen in the song above, he does well with carrying out a song on his own.
5. Block B’s Zico
Let’s get this straight once and for all: Zico is an amazing rapper, and one of the only people in K-Pop that truly deserves the title of being “underrated”. We hate that word, simply because it is so overused. Stans will always complain about their favorite idols being “underrated”, and it just bugs the crap out of us. So all we ask is for you to hear us out as we say this: Block B’s Zico is deserving of so much more. This boy is so talented, so talented. We have him listed as #5 for this list, but we’re 100% sure that in the future, Zico will just blow all “K-Pop Idol Rappers” lists out of the water. To just list a few of this boy’s specialties, Zico maintains some of the most impressive speed rapping in K-Pop, all the while never losing his sense of rhythm. We can pick out a few things he needs to work on, such as breathing (but honestly, with how fast that boy is going, we totally understand his shortness of breath) and presentation (we do agree Zico has natural swag, but sometimes he forces himself way too much), but overall, Zico’s incredible.
4. Big Bang’s G-Dragon
It’s no secret G-Dragon is overrated. And this is coming from fans of his. True, he’s good at what he does; GD’s made some pretty amazing compositions in the past, and his rapping is pleasant but VIPs constantly praise him to the high heavens and this can get overtly annoying. Overratedness aside though, we’re sure most people will agree that G-Dragon is one of the better rappers in K-Pop. He’s amazing, but his fans need to calm down. G-Dragon’s rapping is so twangy and we love it. His unique high-pitched voice allows for hilarious vocalizations in his raps, and his supposed swag gives him plenty of attitude to work with.
3. Brown Eyed Girls’ Miryo
There is no doubt about it; Miryo is fantastic. The above actually doesn’t do this girl’s talent justice, but seeing as we were gonna be gushing about her anyways, we thought this’d be a great time to do some promoting for her. Miryo is everything: this girl’s rapping is quirky, very fast when she needs it to be, and carries a good sense of rhythm. Miryo has enough spunk and talent that we honestly believe she’s capable of rolling with the bad boys of Korean Hip Hop. She’d definitely put up a good fight.
2. Big Bang’s T.O.P.
T.O.P. and G-Dragon are usually paired up against each other, and with good reason. They’re Big Bang’s two rappers, and the two present such different but very complementary) styles. Typically a Big Bang will go as follows: GD takes care of the speed, and T.O.P. focuses more on the
talking rhythm. But while that’s the route most Big Bang/GTOP songs go, T.O.P. is actually capable of much more. The above video isn’t an official song, but rather a collection of raps that do a good job of showcasing T.O.P.’s versatility as a rapper.
Tablo is not a rapper; this man is a poet. His take on rapping is extremely emotional; he transfers emotions into his performances so effortlessly and effectively. What this man has been through is awe-inspiring, and we take most of his songs as stories he is sharing with his fans. amazingly. story telling. Speed, rhythm and swag aside, Tablo’s mere emotional impact makes him a one-of-a-kind artist.