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10 Korean hip hop songs that are iconic

10 Korean hip hop songs that are iconic

If you’re a rap fan and haven’t had a chance to discover Korean hip hop yet, you’re missing out. Rappers from different categories (underground, indie, idol and label) have brought some songs to the table that are simply iconic. Some of them are even interchangeably part of the aforementioned categories. Killer flow, impeccable diction and takeaway delivery is a recipe for perfection.

Ready to navigate this epic genre? Here is a selection of Korean hip hop songs that are epic.

3RACHA – “Matryoshka”

The fierce sub-group Stray Kids consists of Bang Chan (CB97), Changbin (SPEARB) and Han (J.ONE) and lets their lyrics speak for them. The trio rap about burying all their struggles while bringing their growing success to the fore for all the haters and doubters to see. Referring to the Russian doll, they point out that they bring with them a lot of challenges to constantly improve.

(G)I-DLE Jeon Soyeon feat. BIBI & Lee Young Ji – “Is It A Wrong Number”

Talk about triple threat: Jeon Soyeon, BIBI and Lee Young Ji direct their intimidating skills to deliver this amazing rap. Each female rapper flawlessly puts her jealous opponents in their place to make it clear that they are eternal in the game.

Zico – “Extreme”

Zico is real and raw in this wonderful portrayal of what goes into his pieces as an artist and person. In a well-thought-out lyrical statement, she fully acknowledges herself and parts that may seem extreme to prying eyes.

DOG feat. Jessi – “GANJI”

“GANJI” (or swag) is what happens when two rappers dripping with pride team up. On the one hand, PSY flaunts her idol/rapper/performer with arrogant gratitude and teases Jessi for her lyrical acting. Jumping, sharp Unnie he claps and defends himself as he confidently spits out the bars in Korean and English interchangeably.

Mino feat. BIGBANG’s Taeyang – “Fear”

Who doesn’t recognize this epic live performance? Mino shook both the stage and the audience with this honest and heartbreaking look at how fear affects our lives. As he put it so beautifully, the only way to overcome our fears is to overcome them.


C to L all the way! The best way to pay homage to the one and only CL is to post this song because it simply captures her essence as an artist. From lyrical style to stage presence and adding a performative approach, the rapper knows how to mark her territory and serve us the best bops.


I don’t know about you, but I always feel like “DDAENG!” with every listen. BTS’s rap line has a distinct style separately, but together they serve us harmonies on a plate with a bit of wordplay. This is the case with “DDAENG”, which humiliates anyone who ever guesses BTS’s talent or success.

Dynamic feat duo. EXO’s Chen – “Raging”

There’s nothing like an awakened artist, and Dynamic Duo is definitely on that list! Along with Chen, Choiza and Gaeko, they address people struggling with depression and offer comfort and support through their warm and comforting lyrics.

WIN Team B – “Climax”

How far are you willing to go to make your dreams come true? Yesterday’s WIN Team B is today’s iKON, and they endured like champions. The song deals with failure, motivation and perseverance as catalysts that will lead you to achieve your life goals.

Epik High – “Bleeding”

If you’ve been reading Soompi for a while, you may have noticed that Epik High appears in all of my rap articles. The reason is simple: their music speaks to me every step of the way. From their entire discography, “Bleed” fits here as Tablo and Mithra Jin talk about their musical journey between past and present with the soulful instruments of DJ Tukutz. This narrative holds the essence of Epik High’s career, their relationship with their fans, and their commitment to staying on the hip-hop scene for as long as necessary. This here is the definition of timelessness.

A special nod to:

BewhY – “Scar”

Jay Park – “Up to the Top”

Loco feat. Gray & DJ Pumpkin – “RESPECT”

Simon Dominik – “Simon Dominic”

MFBTY feat. EE, RM BTS, Dino-J – “Buckubuck”

Which iconic Korean hip-hop song is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below!

Esme L. is a Moroccan dreamer, writer and Hallyu enthusiast. She recently published her debut poetry collection Scribbles of an INFJ: A Journey into Healing on Amazon. Say hello to her on Instagram!

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