There’s an easy barometer to measure the growing impact of K-pop in Australia: when acclaimed girl group aespa wanted to create some innovative promotion for their new mini album, MY WORLD, they chose Sydney as the place to do it.
All four members – KARINA, GISELLE, WINTER, and NINGNING – could be seen enjoying the iconic cityscape of Sydney’s CBD. As they battled virtual reality elements like floating cupcakes and giant fluffy balls, aespa passed by iconic city spots like Sussex Street and Newtown’s Repressed Records.
The messaging was clear: aespa are ready to take over Australia.
A couple of months after they took to the Sydney streets, the K-pop superstars release the physical version of MY WORLD in Australia this Friday, June 30th.
To celebrate the occasion, a special aespa bubble tea sleeve will be available from the I HEART KPOP café in Ultimo, Sydney. Fans can get their hands on the limited-edition aespa sleeve on Friday, June 30th, and Saturday, July 1st.
In the midst of a busy period for the group – they’re also preparing to embark on their first-ever global tour this year – Rolling Stone AU/NZ caught up with aespa to discuss their Australian fans, MY WORLD, touring plans, and even baby kangaroos.
aespa’s MY WORLD (physical version) is out Friday, June 30th via Warner Records.
Rolling Stone AU/NZ: First of all, what made you choose Sydney for your recent promo?
KARINA: I thought that nature would be the best way to portray our return to the REAL WORLD. When choosing the location, the combination of Australia’s natural scenery and city view seemed like the best way to express the REAL WORLD that we wanted to portray.
K-Pop is quickly growing in popularity in Australia. How did your Australian fans react to the Sydney videos and reels?
GISELLE: I think our Aussie fans enjoyed our Australia vlogs and reels, but personally I hope we can go there for a concert someday. We haven’t had the opportunity to officially meet our fans in Australia, so I hope we’ll have the chance to interact with our Aussie MYs soon!
So when will we see aespa tour in Australia?
WINTER: As GISELLE has mentioned, we’ve never had the chance to visit Australia before, so it is one of the countries we want to visit whenever we have the chance. I can’t wait to meet our Aussie MYs!
You’ve all previously discussed your bucket list for an Australian trip – skydiving and encountering crocodiles were mentioned. What else would you love to do Down Under?
NINGNING: My biggest bucket list item is to see a kangaroo. I hope to meet a baby kangaroo on the street!
Congrats on the release of MY WORLD. How have fans reacted to the mini album so far?
GISELLE: Our fans have waited a long time for our album to come out and I think they enjoyed our new concept of the REAL WORLD. I can tell they loved the songs in this album which made us happy because we love them too!
What main themes did you want to explore in MY WORLD?
WINTER: In this album, we wanted to show various emotions and tones that only aespa can express which showcases a new side of us. But at the same time, we did our best to keep our original colours.
My World fully brought you back into the REAL WORLD. Did you enjoy exploring that territory?
KARINA: It definitely feels more familiar to step back into the REAL WORLD after battling with Black Mamba in KWANGYA. On the musical aspect, I was able to show and add my personal touch as Yu Jimin than KARINA to the songs.
What else do you have planned for the rest of the year? Lots of shows?
NINGNING: We’re very excited as we have our upcoming US tour along with many concerts and opportunities to meet our international MYs! And we’re trying to see when would be the best time to release our next album, so please look forward to it!