so you want to learn about SVT…

welcome to caratland! here are some resources so you, too, can fall in love with these thirteen dumbasses! ♥

(last updated January 2021)

the primer(s)

first of all, in case you are not already a k-pop fan and/or you did not check it out in my guide to BTS: I really recommend checking out this quick k-pop glossary to help with a lot of the terminology that shows up in the primer itself and in the videos/fan content because it takes a while to pick up the lingo!

want to learn about the members? good luck, my love—there are thirteen of them and they are all amazing, to the point that carats constantly joke that we have one bias and twelve bias-wreckers. (no, really. you’re gonna love them all.) this fan-made primer is precious even though it’s now five years old and was clearly made with a lot of love, so it’s a good place to start. reddit has a really awesome and comprehensive primer with a timeline, and kprofiles continues to have excellent information about each member, and they’re really good about updating the photos continuously to reflect the looks for the most-recent comeback.

SVT is notorious for including Korean Sign Language (KSL) in their choreography—here’s an awesome post that illustrates it!

ready to jump into some video recommendations? let’s gooooooo!

top video recs

I ended up following the outline I made for the BTS post, since SEVENTEEN debuted almost as long ago as BTS did, but I’m not going to tie myself to a specific number of links per section because I have admittedly consumed way more Hoshi fancam content than is absolutely necessary and y’all don’t need me to fill the links section with that. (hit me up on Twitter if you’re interested, though.)

recent-ish live performances (in no particular order):

  • Getting Closer + Good to Me + Home – to be perfectly frank, this is on here because the very first image is my bias living up to his tiger name and so I am immensely biased towards this particular performance of Getting Closer (to the point that I have only found him deadlier in this one and that’s because forearms). that said, the other two songs are also good performances and I think that this is a good showing of their range, since the three songs are pretty different from one another.
  • Highlight – okay, I adore this song and I really love the fact that they managed to take a song that was originally for the performance unit (and therefore has extra-intense choreo) and made it something that the entire band was doing because that just shows how good a dancer every member is. very, very impressive! some of the camera angles are super wack but it’s still a fun performance to watch. (want to see just the performance unit’s version? they did it at KCON in 2019 and it’s amazing!)
  • Intro + “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry)” – it was really hard to chose a performance for “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry)” because they’ve done it so many times and I love it so very deeply… but there’s something truly incredible about this intro with Jun playing the piano and my fave Hoshi doing a dance solo and then going into this incredible orchestral version… and I like that you still get the choreography because it really shows just how versatile and talented all of them are.
  • 어쩌나 (Oh My!)” + “박수 (CLAP)” + “숨이 차 (Getting Closer)” at 2019 GDA – some performances can only be described as feral, and this is absolutely one of them. it features the remix version of CLAP again with a live band, which is cool af. (they also did that version in 2017 with Mingyu playing an intro on the electric guitar and I ascended.) it’s also just a great performance on a lot of levels, as award show stages usually are, down to cool little dance solo transitions and some really chaotic energy! (I mean, they go so hard they break the stage, lol.)
  • Fearless – this is one of those one-of-a-kind performances that really takes your breath away. they’ve done this song a few times and it’s been incredible each time, but I think I’m always really drawn to this one because it was the first time they ever did it and no one had any idea what we were about to experience. it’s so special that way. it features callbacks in both lyrics and choreo to “Fear” and “Getting Closer,” two of my faves, and some incredible choreo moments such as a trust fall from Jeonghan into his members’ arms that make this clip unforgettable.
  • 24H at FNS – you get to see the whole choreo AND Wonwoo’s crop top? iconic. unfortunately this was when Seungkwan was out of the lineup for a bit last year due to injury, so there’s only a dozen of them (lol), but it’s still my favorite live performance of this song so far. (the only existing OT13 performance of this song other than the dance practice is the *shudders* Korean version, and, much like with “舞い落ちる花びら (Fallin’ Flower),” it just sounds wrong to hear it in Korean.)
  • Left & Right + HOME;RUN at 2020 MAMA – choosing a favorite performance of HOME;RUN is like choosing a favorite child, lol, and Left & Right isn’t my favorite song in their discography to begin with—but the incredible intro to this particular performance of HOME;RUN just hits different. and then they just absolutely knock the rest of the performance out of the park, if you’ll pardon the pun. 😉

music videos (organized by release date):

  • “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry)” – this video is an absolute classic (and it’s where the GIF up there comes from)! the synchronization is legendary, the choreo is out of this world, the song is a banger… and you’re gonna hear me say that about preeeeetty much every song I include here, but truly SVT are THE KINGS of synchronization.
  • “숨이 차 (Getting Closer)” – Y’ALL. y’all. THE VISUALS. I can’t even actually say anything coherent about this MV other than that, tbh. I love this song, though (we all know I’m an EDM ho), and the choreo is fire, so it was always going to be a win for me… but the visuals. Lord Almighty.
  • “HIT” – if I talk about visuals and choreo and synchronization again, will you fight me? because this. video. has. everything. (just watch an expert freak out about how incredible the visuals and the editing are, okay. it’s awesome.) but it also is a really great track with a killer beat and it’s infectious as hell.
  • 독 : Fear” – this was the first SVT song outside of “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry)” that I ever really got into, and the MV had a lot to do with it. it has everything that SVT usually brings (say it with me if you know it: visuals, choreo, sync), but it also is just a cool af song and concept. and it’s catchy as hell, too. it also gave us some of my favorite performances, fancams, and a life-changing dance practice.
  • “舞い落ちる花びら (Fallin’ Flower)” – I honestly can’t even explain how much I love everything about the concept for this song and this video. the choreo is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen, and the styling for it is truly stunning (and carries over to their performances). I also really love how this song sounds and I love hearing them sing in Japanese! DK’s vocals in this are out of this world. this is one of my top 3 SVT songs and one of my fave songs I discovered last year, for sure.
  • 24H – …yes, we’re doing two Japanese songs in a row, I AM TRUE TO TYPE OKAY, let me live. anyway. the MV for this is cool as hell but also I just love this song and, c’mon. CROP TOP WONWOO is a revelation. Dino’s entire look saying “it’s maknae season.” the themed choreo. my tiger prince’s look. just. what a gift this was. and then the lyrics are just delightful to boot, as Woozi’s always are? I have no choice but to stan.
  • HOME;RUN – there is so much to love about this video, not least of all the track itself. its energy is totally infectious and it’s honestly just so easy to sing along to! but then there’s video itself, with its incredible visuals, fun storyline, and so many nods to old Hollywood films. it was a delightful title track choice, even if I liked other stuff from the EP a lot more, and I really enjoyed seeing all of the performances of it.

interviews/other fun stuff (in no particular order):

  • dancing to “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry)” at 2x speed on Weekly Idol – I talk a lot about them being the kings of synchronization and how impressive they are, especially because there are thirteen of them… but then you see them do this wild choreo at 2x speed and still manage to maintain their synchronization and you understand why people are so impressed by them.
  • Going Seventeen – (this link takes you to the playlists that they’ve posted on their YouTube channel so you can look at every season, since they do a new season every year). look, their show is delightful and hilarious and amazing and it’s worth watching every single episode, not even joking. that said, SVT vs. their staff provided two of the best episodes of GoSe we’ve ever experienced so, if you watch nothing else, you should watch those: part one and part two.
  • “Last Time I…” on Kelly Clarkson’s show – this was genuinely hilarious, not least of all because S. Coups reached over to hug Vernon so he could answer his question, lol. but it’s always delightful to have the fuys interact with questions on their own and just have some time to, like, vibe during a segment. (they also did a really cool version of Left & Right on her show, which I enjoyed even though it’s not a fave song.)
  • “Who’s Who” with BuzzFeed – this one is missing Seungkwan, which is sad, but he does get a shoutout from his members (who miss him so much!) and it’s definitely a great look into how the members perceive themselves and what their dynamic is like. I also just always like these kind of videos, tbh, and it’s nice to see quiet Vernon and sassy Joshua get a chance to shine since they’re the native English speakers. (for a similar fun one, they also played “I Dare You” with Teen Vogue, although that one’s missing S. Coups.)
  • Song Association Game with ELLE – okay, honestly, this is mostly here because everyone sounds so, so, good that I just have to screech about it, haha. but in general this was fun, and I appreciate Seungkwan bringing big choir teacher energy amidst the absolute chaos of the rest of the band. like, I identified so deeply with his energy in this, haha. (they also played the 8-bit melody challenge with Seventeen [the magazine] and it was so, so much fun… and my boy Hoshi sounded amazing because of course he did.)
  • their debut showcase – this was the seventh and last episode of the reality series that followed them on their journey to debut, and it is just so cute to see them as babies… but, also, there were really cool songs in this debut and you get a good feel for some of the things that are already very SVT, like the great synchronization in their choreo, the self-produced music, the strong vocals. (you can catch the first six episodes of the show, Seventeen Project: Debut Big Plan, on their YouTube channel.)

compilation video/channel recommendations (in no particular order):

  • their official channel – like other k-pop artists, they host so much awesome content on their YouTube channel! there’s the usual behind-the-scenes stuff (Inside Seventeen and Hit the Road are both awesome) and dance practices (they call them choreography videos), as well as some of the members’ personal projects, like Dino’s Danceology series and The8’s amazing dance films (here’s the most recent one.)
  • Jeff Avenue – he reacts to a lot of k-pop from a dancer’s perspective, so he’s worth a look just for that, but he also has a whole playlist for SVT and really appreciates their artistry! he loves “舞い落ちる花びら (Fallin’ Flower)” as much as I do, so that’s definitely awesome, but I would also recommend his reactions to “Heaven” (a collaboration with Nu’est W, another Pledis band) and “24H.”
  • Josh Reacts – this is another channel that reacts to a lot of different bands but he has such love for SVT and it’s honestly so wholesome and delightful to watch his videos! I also really appreciate that he’ll take requests from people and will just really interact with the community… it’s really lovely.
  • Deacs – say with me if you know it: Ben’s another multi and we love his SVT content! I actually love all of his content, tbh, but I especially appreciate that he’s got a whole-ass SVT playlist and that he’s really good about keeping his playlists updated for easy navigation.
  • Elliott New Village – I live for Elliott’s dance analyses and his work with SVT are no different! to no one’s surprise, I love his analysis of “舞い落ちる花びら (Fallin’ Flower),” “24H,” and “Getting Closer (숨이 차).” a really cool thing he’s done, though, is try to cover some of the dances himself! I loved seeing him try “HIT,” “울고 싶지 않아 (Don’t Wanna Cry),” and “HOME;RUN.”
  • EmeroyTV – oh, look, it’s me recommending another dance reactor who will appeal to fellow multis because he’s looking at a lot of different groups… let’s all pretend to be shocked, okay? 😂 that said, he does some really incredible analyses and he’s looked at some SVT songs including, you guessed it, “舞い落ちる花びら (Fallin’ Flower),” “HOME;RUN,” and “24H.” I especially appreciate that he’ll do some breakdowns of specific moments to highlight the dynamics of the choreography and that he’ll point out tiny mistakes in blocking because he’s just that detail-oriented… it makes me appreciate every compliment so much more!
  • MBC Debut to OH MY Compilation – I love watching these for every group I enjoy because you really get to see how their style evolves over time and you get to see the guys grow up! in this one, you also get to see what amazing artists SVT are… since they did not consistently have earpieces (due to their company’s financial difficulties) until more than halfway through this compilation and they were still performing their songs with live vocals and doing very well. hella impressive.

the music (playlist)

okay, so here’s the thing: I have a handful of songs by SVT that I absolutely completely love, so I have curated a playlist with those songs that I deeply enjoy. it is best enjoyed on shuffle (yes, despite the chaos), and will be continuously updated moving forward. 🙂

happy listening!

my top SVT songs for your enjoyment~

bonus: concert ranking

after having seen literally every single concert that there is to stream anywhere, here are my top three shows:

3. Ideal Cut: The Final Scene in Seoul – overall, this is a great show to watch if you’ve never seen a SVT concert, as it establishes a baseline and it is just a ton of a fun! as per usual, SVT brings incredible energy, very stable vocals, and amazing choreo. they also just were really adorable with the crowd since it’s a hometown crowd. my only complaint is that there were special stages for this with unreleased songs that were not included in the VLive+ version, which is a damn shame because one of my all-time favorite Hoshi performances (the hot-as-hell “Touch”) is one of those. I also really got to highlights: “Bring It” was seriously incredible, as was “Flower,” and their whole section where they showed some behind-the-scenes footage to the crowd and did some commentary was too adorable for words. (available for purchase on VLive+)

2. Ode to You: Los Angeles – I was thrilled to see this show because it’s the same one that they brought here to the UC in 2019, and I’ve only heard amazing things about it! I was blown away from the very beginning, so it was worth the hype! there honestly was not a moment of this entire concert that I did not enjoy watching, and many that I freaked out over because they were just that good. like, selecting highlights for this was seriously difficult! (and, okay, I have to admit that I am a total sucker for my boy’s dumb and long introduction and the fact that he wore a shirt with a tiger patch on it and a tiger belt buckle at the end. like, Kwon Soonyoung is a dumbass and I love him, okay. that’s just what it is.) highlights: THE OUTFITS, the way they opened with “Getting Closer” was ridiculous (although the LA show did not have S. Coups), the superspy vibes of the first VCR, my man being a ham, THE BAJILLION UNIT STAGES, how moved they were by the crowd singing “Smile Flower” to them, the throwbacks. (available for purchase on VLive+)

1. IN-COMPLETE – so this online concert just took place in January 2021 and was the impetus for me to actually create this guide, which I’ve been thinking about for months… so many of my friends are new to caratland and they were asking for recs, so I figured it would be easiest to just have a one-stop shop. I had anticipated working on this during the show… and then I was pretty much feral the whole time. like, screeching from the first VCR. it was obvious just how much they’d prepared for this show and how badly they had been wanting to perform it, and it was truly an amazing experience to get to see it “live” (I caught the replay but I managed to not have been spoiled at all). highlights: the entire opening sequence (“Bring It” to “My I” to “Flower” to “Fear” to “Fearless” to a VCR to “Fallin’ Flower” [Korean version, unfortunately, but with a stunning orchestral arrangement] to “THANKS”!!!), “Moonwalker” with backup dancers, the unit stages (particularly “Light a Flame,” holy shit), their emotional response to the piped-in fanchant of Us, Again (which I participated in!). (VOD available for purchase hopefully soon!)

interested in diving into more k-pop? feel free to check out my ever-expanding k-pop faves playlist.