Monday, November 19, 2012

Live Music in Seoul - Hongdae, Club FF (11/17/2012)

On Saturday this weekend I went to my first gig in Korea, it was at Club FF in Hongdae and there were five bands for 15,000 won.

Unfortunately I live in Suwon which is a couple of hours travel from Hongdae in Seoul, I had to use public transport to get back and there are limitations on the services which run that late at night.  I found out that there is the 3007 red bus that leaves from Gangnam at about 1am and that seemed to be the last one. The other option is to stay until morning when the services start up again but I didn't really want to do that.  In order to get over to Gangnam from Hongdae I had to leave the club about 12am  - this meant that I missed the last two acts. I got a taxi from Hongdae to Gangnam, this is much more expensive at night as they charge a 10% surcharge so I think it ended up costing about 16,000 won.

So I ended up seeing 'The Lads', 'Bye Bye Badman', '18Gram' and 'Magna Fall', I did get to see one song from 'Copy Machine' before I had to leave but I missed the rest of their set and that of the 'Rock Tigers'.  It was just starting to get good too, so was a bit of a drag but I will know for next time and maybe arrange to stay the night in Seoul to make it a easier.

All in all it was a good night, I'm glad I finally made it to a show, hopefully it will be the first of many.  The bands I saw were pretty good, mainly with rock type sounds. 'Copy Machine' is more Ska so I was looking forward to seeing them, they had a really good energy from the little bit that I saw. I think my favourite was '18Gram' which played some good sounding rock music, they had a really cool, lively sound. 'Bye Bye Badman' and 'The Lads' were OK but I thought that for the former the music was a bit loud over the vocals, they are a big band with five members so it's a big sound. The one I liked least was the only English band and that was 'Magna Fall', they are Irish and American, I think, although they did have a Korean friend playing with them as an extra guitar, not sure if that's a permanent change to the line up or not.  They were not bad or anything, I just thought they were an average pub type rock band.

I would have liked to see the 'Rock Tigers', it was the one that I missed entirely, they play a rockabilly type music and I have heard that their live shows are really good.  While it's not my usual kind of music I have seen a few of their videos on YouTube and thought they had a good sound and looked like a fun group. I hope I can see them in the future sometime.


  1. Hi! Can I ask how can I get more information of which bands are playing in which pubs etc?

  2. Hi Maruko, there is a great facebook page called 'Korean Punk & Hardcore' where you can find some of the shows and also you can find events on under the same name - they are your best bets.

  3. Hi!! Thanks for your reply!! I really like Korean music scene in Hongdae and have been trying to find the name of a street duo I heard in Seoul.. I hope I can find them soon :(