K-Pop Meets EDM: The Rise of Korean Trap Music

by ALYSSA PARK, Audrey Magazine

Trap music is a genre that began in the 90s and has since become a recent phenomenon in the American music industry. In particular, Trap music is becoming very popular within dance music culture. Originating in the South, Trap music began by using a lot of low-end 808 bass samples, snares and percussions. Today, the trap music movement has taken that original sound and turned it into “EDM Trap,” which incorporates a mixture of hip-hop, dance music and low frequency dub.

Now when you think about EDM Trap music, you probably wouldn’t think to associate it with K-pop. After all, the K-pop genre is generally more upbeat and catchy. But if you think pretty K-pop boys can’t mix well with grungy EDM Trap, then you may be in for a surprise.

Not only has Korea been embracing this shift in sound, they’ve been experimenting with it and the results are EPIC. So what happens when you take fast upbeat songs and slow them down with a fresh new beat? Let these 5 Korean trap songs show you.

Disclaimer: These songs may contain strong language. Viewer discretion is advised. 


BIGBANG – “Bang Bang Bang”


BIGBANG has always been pioneers in the K-pop world. Constantly giving their audience fresh, new sounds, the group tends to explore different styles of music. Recently, BIGBANG released their new album MADE, and as usual, the songs did not disappoint. With a new trap sound, incorporation of electronics, silky vocals and flawless rapping, the group’s songs have become instant hits. You can’t help but want to dance to the infectious beat and catchy chorus of “Bang Bang Bang.”


CL, the leader of K-pop’s popular girl group 2ne1, has recently been collaborating with household DJs such as Skrillex and Diplo. Known in South Korea as a fierce rapper, CL has added her own personal style on her take on trap music. Interestingly enough, this song was released back in 2014, so like most of her music, she is a trendsetter. With her effortless style of rapping mixed with the song’s low snares, this is one track that will have you bobbing your head all day long.

See Also: 2NE1’s CL to Make U.S. Solo Debut With Support of Scooter Braun

BTS – “Dope”

BTS, also known as the Bangtan Boys, are one of K-pops newer groups. However, their vocal skills and sharp dance moves have made them one of South Korea’s top boy bands. Don’t let the word “boy band” fool you– these guys are fierce, and they’re not your ordinary cutesy boy bands. Appropriately titled “Dope”, the choreography that accompanies this hard-hitting beat is nothing short of jaw dropping.

4MINUTE – “Crazy”

Girl group 4Minute usually takes on a cute, colorful and sexy persona. But when 4Minute debuted their “Crazy” music video, their drastic new bad girl image made their fans go crazy. With a new, confident attitude, these girls have found a way to fuse K-pop vocals and trap music to create an entirely innovative fusion sound that can only be found in Korea.


Keith Ape may not exactly be a part of the K-pop world, but he’s renowned for his rapping and is still a serious contributor to Korean trap. His song “It G Ma” has garnered over 11 million views and an impressive following here in the States. The music video for the song features other pioneering hip hop artists like JayAllDay, Loota, Okasian and Kohh.

See Also


Six Korean Indie Songs That Will Get You in the Mood for Fall

Korea’s Hip-Hop Legend Tiger JK is a Rebel with a Cause


Originally published on Audrey Magazine

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