YG's next big thing: Baby Monster members unveiled
South Korea's YG Entertainment is gearing up to debut its first new girl group in seven years, Baby Monster, and has unveiled the last member of the seven-piece band this week.
Just like the label's previous hit group Blackpink, Baby Monster is a multinational group. There are three Koreans, two hailing from Thailand and two from Japan.
Since the band was first announced on Jan. 1, YG has disclosed information about the new group in gradual stages. Here, we take a deeper look into Baby Monster to get an idea of what we can expect from YG.
Haram (15, Korea)
First to be announced was Haram, a 15-year-old South Korean member. She is known to have begun her training at YG in 2017.
On Jan. 12, YG unveiled a black-and-white video of Haram singing Mario's "Let Me Love You" in her own style. Here, her vocal prowess truly shines as she soulfully sings along with the piano tunes.
Her wide vocal range is especially notable, and the agency said Haram showed "the essence of a YG vocalist" through her live performance. After the video’s release, fans described her voice as a mix of Blackpink's Rose and Jisoo.
Ahyeon (15, Korea)
One of the most anticipated members of the septet, Ahyeon was the second to be unveiled. The 15-year-old Korean is known to have joined YG in February 2018 through an audition.
She has been striving to become a K-pop artist for quite a long time now. She is known to have been accepted to JYP Entertainment in 2017 when she was only 11 years old. In the same year, she also passed the first audition for YG Entertainment.
Touted as an "all-rounder" by YG and the fans, Ahyeon shows exceptional strengths in rapping, singing and dancing. In a video released by YG, she sings Saweetie & Galxara's "Sway With Me," dancing and singing to the fast tempo track while exuding an aura of confidence. Her powerful vocals match her bold gestures and assertive rapping, proving that she is indeed the "all-rounder." Fans expect Ahyeon to be like Jennie of Blackpink.
Chiquita (13, Thailand)
Chiquita is one of Baby Monster's Thai members. Born in 2009, The 13-year-old is the youngest member of not only Baby Monster, but among all female K-pop musicians to have debuted.
On Jan. 24, YG released a video of Chiquita performing JJ Lin's "Bedroom (feat. Anne-Marie)." She catches listeners’ ears with her deep, soulful voice, expressing the subtle emotions felt after a painful heartbreak. Despite her young age, Chiquita shows mastery over her own voice, using different vocal registers and techniques effortlessly onstage.
Asa (16, Japan)
Asa is the first Japanese member unveiled from YG.
Born in 2006, Asa was introduced through a performance video of Joyner Lucas' "Look Alive (Remix)." In the video, Asa sings in a uniquely deep and husky voice. She can sing in a magnificent falsetto while also exuding a hip-hop vibe -- the essence of any YG group.
Much about Asa still remains under wraps, but fans have high expectations for the member as she also showed potential as a powerful dancer through Baby Monster's dance performance video.
Rora (14, Korea)
Rora is the youngest Korean member. Born in 2008, Rora is actually an experienced K-pop musician. Rora was previously part of a local kids’ idol group called U.sso Girl, which girl group NewJeans' Hyein was also a part of.
In her performance video of Kiana Lede's "Forfeit (feat. Lucky Daye)," Rora boasts a low-toned, mature voice that touches deep into the listener's heart. The slow beat of the melody brought the spotlight more onto the eloquence of her voice as she grooved through the song.
Pharita (17, Thailand)
The 17-year-old Thai native is fluent in both Thai and English, having attended an international school from a young age in Thailand, according to YG. After years of studying, she can also communicate in Korean as well.
In her performance video, Pharita rolls out her live version of Sam Fischer and Demi Lovato's "What Other People Say." Her clear, ethereal voice was simple yet mesmerizing. Many fans have commented that her singing style is reminiscent of other YG Entertainment female singers.
Ruka (20, Japan)
The eldest member of the group, Ruka, is a 20-year-old hailing from Japan.
Ruka has been a YG trainee the longest among the seven members, according to the label. She is fluent in Japanese and Korean and has shown talent in rap-making in both languages. She is also known to have experience as a kid idol in her home country.
The final member to be unveiled by YG, Ruka's presence stood out among all the others. On stage, her swag-filled performance demonstrated immense dominance and charisma. She delivered the lyrics immaculately, performing the raps as if they were her own.