It was a busy three months for South Korea: steps towards reunification, the PyeongChang Olympics, the continued rise of the #MeToo movement. On top of that, we saw the passing of gayageum legend Hwang Byungki and K-pop star Seo Minwoo, and a posthumous album release from Jonghyun. Further into the world of K-pop: Momoland saved their career with "Bboom Bboom," LOONA finished their 18-month pre-debut cycle, and TVXQ finally returned. None of those artists appear in the following list, however. It's a testament to the amount of great music happening elsewhere in the country.
So why a list focused on Korean music? Scenes outside of K-pop are thriving more than ever (see: Tobias Burgers's coverage on the burgeoning dance music scene for Resident Advisor), and it's as good a time as any to provide a recap of the country's highlights. But even then, such a list begs the question, "What is Korean music?" To keep the definition as broad as possible, this quarterly feature will include artists—Korean or not—who are contributing to the country's various music scenes and Korean artists based elsewhere in the world. All genres are fair game. Everything below is listed in chronological order.