Psy goes back to basics

South Korean rapper Psy has gone back to basics with his eighth full-length album called 4x2=8. VIDEO: REUTERS
South Korean rapper Psy.
South Korean rapper Psy.

SEOUL • South Korean rapper Psy has hopped back onto an old hobby horse.

He is returning to basics with his eighth full-length album, paying greater attention to his home fans while doing what he loves most - "going crazy" on stage.

The Gangnam Style star said he had moved on from the success of the 2012 smash hit that sent him riding to the top of music charts worldwide.

"Gangnam Style gave me fame while, as a creator, some rough times, but I'm not one to linger in the past and make two, three, four versions of (Gangnam Style) because I'm hung up on its fame," said Psy.

His voice hoarse from performing for days on end at universities, Psy, or Park Jae Sang, said he had forgotten his roots with the popularity of Gangnam Style, which holds the world record for most watched video with 2.8 billion views on YouTube as of Monday.

The 39-year-old has more than 10 million subscribers on his official YouTube channel, a record for a non-group individual in Asia.

"It was like an addiction," said Psy. "Like when you throw a party, it takes some time for that excitement to die down after it's over.

"Now I'm back to my normal life."

So, where are Psy's roots? Performing on stage, he said.

All his appearances are linked to the latest album, 4x2=8, with singles I LUV IT and New Face carrying that message.

Psy, who made his debut in 2001, wants to stay on stage for as long as he can, but he hopes to retire just before people start telling him he is washed up.

"I think the pain from being called that would be far greater than not being able to be on stage," he said.

Asked if fame had deprived him of his privacy, he laughed and said no.

"Without my sunglasses and hair gel, I obtain freedom," he said.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 24, 2017, with the headline 'Psy goes back to basics'. Print Edition | Subscribe