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[Herald Interview] Rocket Punch celebrates first anniversary with ‘Juicy’

Rocket Punch (Woollim Entertainment)
Rocket Punch (Woollim Entertainment)
Rookie girl group Rocket Punch had a very busy year. Since debuting August last year, the band already released three mini-albums. 

The latest one titled “Blue Punch” was released Tuesday, three days before their first anniversary. Following “Pink Punch” and “Red Punch,” this album centers on the theme of summer and consists of six tracks with “Juicy” as the lead track. 

“Our debut song ‘Bim Bam Bum’ was also an energetic track, but this one especially exudes summer vibes. Recording it was really fun,” said member Juri in a yellow summer dress during an interview with The Korea Herald. 

“We paid attention to a lot of the details while recording. I personally focused on giving out a cool vibe with my vocals to take away the heat of the summer,” said member Suyun. To amplify the effect, she bleached her hair for the first time and dyed it in grayish purple. “Her first idol hair,” added Juri. 

With “Juicy,” the band had an opportunity to reunite with composer and producer Iggy Yongbae whom they worked with on their debut album. 

“We were so happy to see him again and work with him in a much more relaxed manner than a year ago,” said leader Yeonhee. 

Among the many changes that the group had gone through since debut, their more laid-back attitude was the biggest improvement they said they noticed in themselves, attesting to their growth and journey of becoming a seasoned act. 

“When we first made our rounds at broadcast music shows, we didn’t even know when to bow or introduce ourselves and we were acting all clumsy. But now just by looking at each other in the eye, we know what others are thinking and learned how to handle things on our own,” said Yeonhee. 

“It’s such a nice feeling to recognize faces too. People recognize us and we also recognize some staff members whose faces we had seen before.” 

In terms of their proudest moments from the past year, member Dahyun chose their debut showcase while Yeonhee picked their first fan meeting. Juri said when their fandom’s name was decided. 

“When we heard our fandom’s official name – Ketchy – we were actually in Tokyo. But the fandom name culture is something we don’t have in Japan, and it felt very special and cute,” said Juri who previously was a member of J-pop group AKB48. 

As a goal for their second year, and many more to come, the sextet didn’t want anything grandiose -- though a No. 1 spot in music shows would be nice, they said laughingly. 

“I remember how we all used to say our role model was Girls’ Generation when we debuted. But these days, I see them as a group we look up to rather than a group we want to become,” said Yeonhee.

“We’re very proud of the group that we had evolved to become. I would say our new role model is actually Rocket Punch ourselves. Our wish is to keep being Rocket Punch.” 

By Kwon Yae-rim (