[Throwback Thursday] A Look Back at Epik High’s 11 Years Since Debut



Members: Tablo, Mithra Jin, DJ Tukutz
Year of Debut: 2003
Official Soompi Thread

The Rundown:

For this week’s edition of Soompi’s Throwback Thursday, we take a look back at the amazing accomplishments of the hip-hop trio “Epik High.” Recently, they released their highly anticipated 8th studio album “Shoebox” in October, and have been sweeping the music charts.

Formed in 2001, rappers Tablo, Mithra Jin and DJ Tukutz came together and released their debut album “Map of the Human Soul” in 2003 under Woollim Entertainment. (For more info on the members, you can read a short bio in the Epik High forum topic).

As hip-hop was not yet popular in Korea, they group was not really known in their early years. Epik High’s third album “Swan Songs” in 2005 was originally intended to be their final album due to their previous albums not being too popular. Instead, their promoted tracks from “Swan Songs,” “Fly” and “Paris,” became huge mainstream hits for the group. This led Epik High to win “Best Hip-Hop Artist” at the Golden Disk Awards, KBS Music Awards, and the Mnet Asian Music Awards in 2005.


“Swan Songs” album – October 5, 2005.

Their fourth album “Remapping the Human Soul” (2007) contained popular hits such as “Fan” and “Love Love Love.” “Pieces, Part One” (2008)  contained the fan favorite track “One.” Epik High also released their first mini album “Lovescream” in 2008.

In 2009 they left Woollim Entertainment to start their own record label “Map The Soul” and released a special album. At the time, it was unheard of for even mainstream K-Pop artists to have a US tour, but Epik High managed to do it with their own label.

epikhigh-us tour 2009

Poster for Epik High’s 2009 US Tour

Despite DJ Tukutz performing his mandatory military service in from October 2009 to August 2011, and Mithra Jin from August 2010 to May 2012, the group continued to release new music.

Tablo surprised many  in 2011 with the announcement that he signed with YG Entertainment and would release a solo album. While fans were worried about the future of Epik High, it was finally revealed in September 2012 that both DJ Tukutz and Mithta Jin would join YG and that they would end their three year hiatus as a group with a new album. Their seventh studio album “99” had the title track “Up” and featured the vocals of 2NE1‘s  Park Bom.

Epik High Vol. 7 – 99 (Oct. 23, 2012)

In 2013, they celebrated their 10th anniversary since debut and released the song “420.”

Outside of music, many fans have gotten to know Tablo and his daughter Haru more personally though the program “Superman Returns.

Finally, this year, Epik High released their eighth album “Shoebox” featuring the title tracks “Happen Ending” and “Spoiler,” and have been on top of the K-Pop charts the past few weeks.

Congratulations to Epik High, going on stronger than ever, after 11 years!