2012 was a huge year for YG Entertainment, lead by Psy, their popularity has truly gone global. With their growing influence, two of their top acts held their first World Tours.
The ladies of 2NE1 embarked on their ‘New Evolution World Tour‘ back on July 28th in Seoul. They then proceeded to visit the United States (Newark & Los Angeles), Japan (Osaka, Nagoya, Yokohama, Saitama), Taiwan (Taipei), and finally Singapore.
Big Bang also held the first global tour of their own and it was on an even larger scale. Korean conglomerate Samsung signed on to officially sponsor the tour, endorsing their Galaxy line of phones as it was named the ‘Alive Galaxy Tour‘. They also formed a partnership with Live Nation. The tour kicked off in Seoul back in March, they initially planned only 25 shows but due to the high demand, the tour actually amounted to 48 shows in 13 different countries. After the Seoul concert they concentrated on Asia visiting Japan (Nagoya, Yokohama, Osaka, Saitama, Fukuoka, Tokyo), China (Shanghai, Guangzhou, Beijing, Hong Kong), Singapore, Thailand (Bangkok), Indonesia (Jakarta), Taiwan (Taipei), Philippines (Manila), and Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur). They also visited Europe, North America, and South America with stops in England (London), the United States (Anaheim, Newark), and Peru (Lima). Big Bang will have 2 more concerts in Osaka and then finally wrap up their epic tour in Seoul from January 25 to January 27.
The New York Times took notice and selected both of their concerts in Newark’s Prudential Center for their ‘Best Concerts of 2012‘ list.
A concert is always more than just a rendering of songs. It’s a musical revamp, a real-time test, a spectacle, a pop-up community, perhaps a dance party or an incipient riot — and, even in the YouTube era, an ephemeral, site-specific experience. Here the pop and jazz critics of The New York Times recall some of their favorite live events of 2012, in order of importance.
2NE1 Aug. 17, and BIGBANG Nov. 8, both at Prudential Center, Newark. This was the year K-pop arrived — not in the form of “Gangnam Style,” which was everywhere and yet completely evanescent — but in these arena shows, which were full of thousands of young, paying fans eager to see the girls of 2NE1 and the boys of BigBang, groups with zero American hits between them, but rabid American followings all the same.