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Guckkasten(Ha Hyun-Woo) from acrofan.jpg
Background information
Also known asThe C.O.M.
OriginSeoul, South Korea
Years active2003 (2003)–present
LabelsRuby Salon/Mirrorball
Interpark INT/Windmill
MembersHa Hyun-woo
Jeon Kyu-ho
Lee Jung-gil
Kim Ki-bum
Past membersKim Jin-eok
Korean name
Revised RomanizationGukkaseuten

Guckkasten (Korean: 국카스텐) is a South Korean indie rock band. Formed in 2003 under the name The C.O.M. (더 컴), the original lineup consisted of vocalist Ha Hyun-woo, guitarist Jeon Kyu-ho, drummer Lee Jung-gil, and bassist Kim Jin-eok. Due to conscription, The C.O.M. disbanded. In 2007, they regrouped with Kim Ki-bum as bassist under the name Guckkasten, which is the German word for Zograscope. The band intends to make music with psychedelic images hidden under analogous art.


In 2000, Ha Hyun-woo and Lee Jung-gil met while attending the same university.[1] The following year, Jeon Kyu-ho, who earned a crane operation license at the time,[2] was found through the internet.[1] The band was founded in the Hongdae area of Seoul with the name The C.O.M., an acronym for Compass of Music, in 2003.[3] Due to their conscription, the band was dismantled.[1]

In 2007, the three members regrouped under the name Guckkasten in the Gangwon-do Province, with the addition of Kim Ki-bum.[1] The name "Guckkasten" is derived from the German language, which translates to "Chinese-style kaleidoscope".[2] The band chose the name because they wanted to "show off a never-ending, fire-work like image of the passion of the young and the mirage of life".[2] Initially, Guckkasten attempted to create an independent record label themselves. After negotiations, they were signed a three-year recording contract with Yedang Entertainment.[4] In 2008, the band earned the Hello Rookie of June award by the Educational Broadcasting System (EBS) Space Sympathy.[5]

Guckkasten released their self-titled debut studio album on February 4, 2009. They held their first solo concert on February 21, 2009, in Seoul, South Korea, at Hongik University's V-Hall.[2] Throughout that year, the band performed at several music festivals, including the Summer Rock Festival in Shanghai, China,[6] the Pentaport Rock Festival, and Jisan Valley Rock Festival in July.[7]

The band was selected by the Korea Creative Content Agency (KCCA) to usher in Korean culture into Japan. The hard disk drive where original album was saved had been lost by the band, which required them to re-record the album. As a result, Guckkasten lost all their money, which left them "speechless for about three seconds when we got the bill".[7] Guckkasten won Rookie of the Year and Best Rock Song for "Mirror" at the seventh annual Korean Music Awards in 2010.[8] In March 2010, Guckkasten performed a "special stage" at Mnet's music chart television program M! Countdown with girl group Kara.[9]

In 2011, Guckkasten performed at their first major music hall concert. The event, which seats 2,000 people, sold out tickets in ten days.[10] They were also a feature on hip hop duo's Leessang's album Asura Balbalta.[11]

Musical style and artistry[edit]

Guckkasten's music has been classified as psychedelic rock,[10] a genre that is underrepresented in South Korea.[4] Due to their experimental nature, Guckkasten has expressed they can not define the sound of their music.[4] The band has stated that their guitar riffs tend to be "on the heavy side".[7]

The band's intent is to create music with psychedelic images hidden under analogous art.[6][12] The band members cite different musicians as their favorites: Ha Hyun-woo chose Gotan Project and Arcade Fire; Jeon Kyu-ho chose Steve Vai and Joe Satriani; Lee Jung-kil admires Metallica's drummer Lars Ulrich; Kim Ki-bum chose Red Hot Chili Peppers's bassist Flea.[7]

Guckkasten has been described as having developed a unique sound and that the band strives for "musical perfection".[13] Jeong Ho-jae, a writer for News Donga, felt that Guckkasten created "explosive and creative" music.[2] Vocalist Ha Hyun-woo's singing technique has also been described to be "explosive".[13] Their self-titled debut album received critical acclaim[5] and was credited for the development and rapid growth of Korean indie music.[2]


At their 2011 Guckkasten Visual Art Concert, the band employed three-dimensional effects, which displayed different items on the screens behind them for each individual track they performed.[14] They aimed to combine their "intense" rock music with a visual exhibition.[15]


Current members
Former members
  • Kim Jin-eok (김진억) – bass guitar


Studio albums[edit]

Title Album details Track listing
  • Released: February 4, 2009
  • Label: Ruby Salon Records
  • Format: CD
  • Notes: Before regular album
Track listing
  1. "Mirror" (거울; Geoul)
  2. "Violet Wand"
  3. "Rafflesia"
  4. "Vitriol"
  5. "Faust"
  6. "Gavial"
  7. "Mandrake"
  8. "Tail" (꼬리; Kkori)
  9. "Toddle"
  10. "Limbo"
  11. "Maze" (미로; Miro)
  12. "Sink Hole"
  • Released: April 20, 2010
  • Label: Mirrorball Music
  • Format: CD
  • Notes: Re-recording
Track listing
  1. "Mirror" (거울; Geoul)
  2. "Violet Wand"
  3. "Maze" (미로; Miro)
  4. "Faust"
  5. "Rafflesia"
  6. "Vitriol"
  7. "Gavial"
  8. "Limbo"
  9. "Mandrake"
  10. "Sink Hole"
  11. "Tail" (꼬리; Kkori)
  12. "Toddle"
  13. "Tail (Acoustic)" (꼬리; Kkori)
  • Released: November 26, 2014
  • Label: Interpark INT
  • Format: CD
Track listing
  1. "Transform" (변신; Byeonsin)
  2. "Rumor" (소문; Somun)
  3. "Snake" (뱀; Baem)
  4. "Feather" (깃털; Gisteol)
  5. "FRAME"
  6. "Cannula" (카눌라; Kanulla)
  7. "Oedipus" (오이디푸스; Oidipuseu)
  8. "Montage" (Re-recorded)
  9. "Fuego" (푸에고; Puego) (Re-recorded)
  10. "Barb" (미늘; Mineul)
  11. "Small Hostage" (작은인질; Jageuninjil)
  12. "Infection" (감염; Gamyeom) (Re-mastered)
  13. "Juggling" (저글링; Jeogeulling)
  14. "Scratch" (스크래치; Seukeulaechi)
  15. "LOST"


Title Album details Track listing
  • Released: December 7, 2010
  • Label: Mirrorball Music
  • Format: CD
Track listing
  1. "Red Field" (붉은 밭; Bulgeun Bat)
  2. "Manicure" (매니큐어; Maenikyueo)
  3. "Red Field (Acoustic version)" (붉은 밭; Bulgeun Bat)
  4. "Manicure (Electronic version)" (매니큐어; Maenikyueo)
  5. "Tagträume"
  • Released: November 15, 2017
  • Label: Interpark INT
  • Format: CD
Track listing
  1. "STRANGER" (이방인; Ibangin)
  2. "Flare"
  3. "Compass" (나침반; Nachimban)
  4. "STRANGER" (이방인; Ibangin) (Electronic Ver. X Mold)
  5. "Canular" (Piano Version)
  6. "STRANGER" (이방인; Ibangin) (Instrumental)
  7. "Flare" (Instrumental)


Title Album details Track listing Album
Track listing
  1. "Mirror" (거울; Geoul)
  2. "Faust"
Track listing
  1. "Montage" (몽타주)


Year Nominee / work Award Result
2003 The C.O.M. Samzi Sound Festival for Hidden Whiz Award Won[6]
2007 Guckkasten Won[3]
2008 EBS Space Sympathy for Hello Rookie of June Won[3]
Samzi Sound Festival Murim Whiz Award Won[12]
EBS Space Sympathy Grand Award for Hello Rookie of the Year Won[3]
2010 7th Korean Music Awards for Rookie of the Year Won[3]
Mirror (거울; Geoul) 7th Korean Music Awards for Best Rock Song Award Won[3]
2016 Ha Hyun-woo (King of Mask Singer) 43rd Korean Broadcasting Grand Prize for Musician Category Won[16]
16th MBC Entertainment Awards for Special Award Won[17]
2016 Ha Hyun-woo Korea Brand Of The Year Award Won
8th Melon Music Awards Rock Category Won[18]
2020 Guckkasten Brand Customer Loyalty Awards for Rock band Won[19]


  1. ^ a b c d 만화경에서 튀어나온 록 밴드 (in Korean). Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation. December 15, 2008. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Jeong Ho-jae (February 9, 2009). 인디밴드의 고수 국카스텐 (in Korean). News Donga. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Archived copy" 국카스텐 (in Korean). Nate. Archived from the original on January 29, 2013. Retrieved October 8, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b c Im Jin-hwan (December 8, 2011). "국카스텐 '인디음악의 배신자 NO! 실험음악은 계속됩니다'" (in Korean). Sports Donga. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  5. ^ a b Lee Ji-yeong (November 15, 2010). 인천부평아트센터, 자력갱생 프로젝트 콘서트 개최 (in Korean). Kihoilbo. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  6. ^ a b c "국카스텐 (Guckkasten)" (in Korean). Busan International Rock Festival. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  7. ^ a b c d "[Interview] Indie Band Guckkasten". Asia E. August 18, 2010. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  8. ^ Lee Hyun-woo (March 30, 2010). "국카스텐 "우리는 진짜로 짱이다" 수상소감 눈길[한국대중음악시상식]". Maeil Business Newspaper (in Korean). Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  9. ^ Lee Eon-hyeok (March 11, 2012). '루팡' 섹시 카리스마 카라 선보일 록버전 '성인식' 어떨까? (in Korean). Newsen. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  10. ^ a b Lee Joon-bae (May 23, 2011). 인디밴드 공연 역사 새로쓰는 '국카스텐' (in Korean). Kyeongin. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  11. ^ Kang Hyo-seon (August 25, 2011). 리쌍 7집 '아수라발발타' 공개 동시에 10위권 차트 올킬 '대박' (in Korean). Kyeongin. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  12. ^ a b 국카스텐 (in Korean). Daum Communications. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  13. ^ a b Jung Ye-min (January 20, 2011). "국카스텐 하현우, 난장 MC 데뷔". Korea Economic Daily (in Korean). Hankyung. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  14. ^ Yu Jun-ki (December 9, 2011). 밴드 국카스텐, 세계적인 비쥬얼 아티스트 룸펜스와 손잡다 (in Korean). JK Stars. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  15. ^ "Archived copy" 색다른 충격! 록밴드 국카스텐 단독 콘서트 (in Korean). Diodeo. December 13, 2011. Archived from the original on January 21, 2013. Retrieved October 8, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ Hwang So-young (September 2, 2016). "'43th 한국방송대상' 알권리 충족 SBS 대상…황정음·하현우 개인상[종합]". Ilgan Sports (in Korean). Retrieved July 24, 2017.
  17. ^ Jang Ah-reum (December 29, 2016). "[2016 MBC 연예대상]하현우 "故 신해철에 특별상 영광 돌릴 것"". News1 Korea (in Korean). Retrieved July 24, 2017.
  18. ^ Lee-Sang Won. "[2016 Winner from 2016 MelOn Music Awards"".
  19. ^ "BRAND CUSTOMER LOYALTY AWARD 2020 브랜드 고객충성도 1위 브랜드". BCLI. April 27, 2020.

External links[edit]