K-Rookies is a competition created by KOCCA–-the Korean state sponsored Korea Creative Culture Agency. The 2015 edition was the 4th in the order, granting 6 bands promotional support for the rest of the year. The final auditions took place at the Olympic Park Muse Live café on July 31st with 12 bands competing for the honor. KOCCA’s Indie Coaster blog has photos from the event.
The winners of 2015 were Dead Buttons, Boys In The Kitchen, Billy Carter, The Stray, A-Fuzz, and NP Union. Also competing in the final were acoustic emo band we hate jh and pop duo Long:D who both made the top 12 also in 2014, female-fronted alternative rock bandDiealright, ballad/rock act Geurigoneo aka Andrew Band, female-fronted rock’n’roll band Wasted Johnny’s, and synth pop band Echo And The Machine.
All-female jazz and funk band A-FUZZ released first mini album Fading Light in March 2015. A month later the quartet was named Hello Rookie of May 2015 with guitarist Jinny Kim receiving particular praise from the judges.
Starting out as an acoustic duo, Billy Carter put out the unofficial EP Crossroad in 2013. Since then the girls have recruited a male drummer and adopted a stronger blues rock sound, releasing the first, self-titled official EP in June.
Boys In The Kitchen
Garage rock’n’roll band Boys In The Kitchen formed in 2011 but waited till late 2014 before releasing the first, self-titled EP. EP lead track “Bivo” was nominated for Best Modern Rock song at the Korean Music Awards 2015. The four member band was named Hello Rookie of June 2015. In July Boys In The Kitchen released digital single 919.
While starting out as a three-piece in 2012, Dead Buttons transformed into a guitar-drums rock’n’roll duo during the summer of 2013. Debut EP Whoever You Are was released in February 2014 after which the band spent a week touring England. The duo returned to Europe in 2015 playing events both in the UK and Italy. Dead Buttons won Hello Rookie of July 2014.
Brass hip-hop band NP Union formed in 2013. The 9 members strong band has drummers, trumpeters, trombonists, a saxophone player, a sousaphone player and an MC. Debut single Raw Pow Pow was released in December 2014.
Pop-rock band The Stray began to form in 2010 with demos recorded since 2013. Now a five-member band, the members strive to fuse soul and R&B with rock. The first couple of singles were released in 2014 on Pastel Music with first EP Fever following in March 2015.