Concept: Electro-Pop, Cute
Debut: September 5th, 2009
Debut Song(s): “LA chA TA
Status: Indefinite Hiatus (SONG QIAN SAYS SHE’S TOO COOL FOR ALGEBRA)
Agency: SM Entertainment
Role: VIP in Korea, Fake Visual, Fake Young Member, Lead Vocalist
Role: True Visual, True Young Member, Vocalist, Lead Rapper
Left in 2015. Left the mortal plane 2019
Role: Main Vocalist, Lead Dancer
Role: Leader, Main Dancer, VIP in China
Role: Main Rapper, Vocalist
The iconic rain performance of “La chA Ta”. The strange yet still weirdly good-looking fashion of the group. The electropop. The many very experimental tracks. The freaking fire “4 Walls” album. One of the best main vocals (if not THE best) in all of Kpop. Arguably the best B-sides of any groups in all of Kpop. These are the things that probably first comes to mind at the mention of f(x), one of the most distinctively-sounding AND looking girl group that Kpop has ever produced. Red Velvet is perhaps the closest spiritual successor of f(x) (except they’re nowhere as good as f(x)). f(x) debuted with the single “LA chA TA”, released on September 1st, 2009. The group’s broadcast debut was on September 5, 2009, on MBC’s Music Core. It was while promoting for this single that f(x) first came to the forefront of the nation’s consciousness when a video of their performance of “La chA Ta” on KBS went viral. Despite pouring rain, the members performed the song with an energy and blooming genuine smiles, as if they were just a group of girls happy to have realized their dreams. In that moment, they were probably more relatable to the general population than any girl group has ever been. f(x) followed this single with their first physical single, “Chu~♡”, released on November 9th, 2009.
However, despite some early attention, it wasn’t until the group’s first extended play, “Nu ABO”, released on May 4th, 2010, with the lead single “Nu ABO”. The song was a commercial success in Korea and f(x) first number one hit on the Gaon Chart.
Then came 2011 and the start of f(x)’s true rise to the top as one of the biggest girl groups in Korea. First, f(x) released their first full-length studio album “Pinocchio” in April 2011, with the lead single “Pinocchio (Danger)”, which peaked at number one on the Gaon digital single chart, and f(x) went on to sweep 8 show wins with the song (remember, this was at a time when there were only a couple of shows, not 6 shows per week to win like today). Then came their first defining hit. On June 14, “Pinocchio” was repackaged and re-released under the title “Hot Summer”, with the the title track “Hot Summer”. “Hot Summer” peaked at number two on the Gaon digital single chart and became one of the most successful singles of 2011 in South Korea, selling 2,909,384 copies by the end of the year. To this day, “Hot Summer” is still considered an iconic summer song and Kpop song in general.
f(x) followed this with second straight smash-hit with their second EP Electric Shock, released on June 10, 2012, with the title track “Electric Shock”. “Electric Shock” debuted at number 1 on the Gaon Chart and went on to capture 9 show wins, sold more than 2 million digital copies and net for f(x) a ‘Best Dance Performance – Female Group’ award at the 2012 Mnet Asian Music Awards in Hong Kong. In January 2013, Electric shock also captured the ‘Best Dance and Electronic Song’ Award at the 10th Annual Korean Music Awards.
In 2013, f(x) continued their award streak, winning the Digital Bonsang award at both the Golden Disk Awards and Seoul Music Awards and the ‘MBC Music Star Award’ at the Melon Music Awards. On July 29, f(x) released their second full-length album “Pink Tape” with the lead single “Rum Pum Pum Pum”. The album was yet another smash commercial success, this time both in Korea and internationally, peaking at number one on both Billboard’s K-pop Hot 100 and World Albums Charts and the Gaon Albums Chart. The album also saw much critical success, becoming the only Korean album to appear on Fuse’s ’41 Best Albums of 2013′. “Airplane”, a track from the album, was also ranked third on Billboard’s end-of-the-year ’20 Best K-Pop Songs of 2013′.
Starting off 2014, f(x) captured the ‘Group Artist’ award at the 20th Korean Entertainment Arts Awards and their second straight ‘Disk Bonsang’ at the 28th Golden Disk Awards. On July 7th, they released their third studio album, “Red Light”, with the title track of the same name. The song was again well-received both domestically and internationally, though not quite to the extent of their previous two albums. Unfortunately, this year also marked the slow decline of the group as shortly after the album was released, SM Entertainment announced that Sulli was unable to perform with the group for health reasons, and that she would be taking a temporary (eventually permanent) hiatus.
Despite the loss of Sulli, f(x) forged on. On July 22nd, 2015, f(x) released a Japanese physical single album, “Summer Special Pinocchio / Hot Summer”, which debuted at #23 on Oricon’s weekly chart. In August 2015, SM announced that Sulli’s temporary hiatus had turned permanent, with the idol deciding to officially leave the group to focus on acting. The remaining four members continued, releasing their fourth studio album, 4 Walls, in October of that year. The album sold 66,000 copies upon its first week of release and was well received by critics. In fact, “4 Walls” is often regarded by both critics and fans as one of the best K-pop album by any groups in the 2nd gen of Kpop. At the year-end 2015 Mnet Asian Music Awards, f(x) won the ‘Global Fans Choice’ award.
Starting off 2016, f(x) won their third Disk Bonsang award at the 2016 Golden Disk Awards and started their first concert tour, Dimension 4 – Docking Station, in Seoul which continued with six concerts in Japan in February. On January 31,they announced the creation and the name of their official fan club, MeU. On July 22nd, 2016, f(x) released a new single, “All Mine”, made through the SM Station project.The song was accompanied by a music video, directed and edited by Amber. The song would be their last-to-date Korean release. On October 16, the music video for “Electric Shock” surpassed 100 million views on YouTube, making f(x) the third Korean girl group, and sixth Korean group overall to reach this milestone.
From 2016 on, f(x) has been on a hiatus, with the members have embarked on individual music, acting, and modelling careers. On September 1, 2019, however, Amber announced that she had not renewed her contract with SM Entertainment. On September 5, SM Entertainment shared that Luna had also decided not to renew her contract with the company, probably ending the life of the one of most iconic girl group of 2nd gen Kpop.
– Electric Shock: