Why You Should Listen to BTS

The popular Korean boy band has been making headlines all around the world. Recently, BTS appeared on Jimmy Fallon, which is certainly an enormous testament to their growing status in America. Fallon and BTS competed in a fun rendition of the Fortnite dance challenge, which you can find a link to here (check out the video if you haven't already seen it yet). Of course, if you aren't familiar with the band at all, I certainly hope to help feed your curiosity. The band consists of leader and main rapper RM (Rap Monster), lead dancer and rapper J-Hope, lead rapper Suga, main vocalist Jungkook, vocalist V, lead vocalist Jimin and vocalist/visual Jin. Each member brings a compelling element to the group and somehow manages to uniquely stand out from one another. They are known for their highly choreographed dancing and stylized music videos. However, if you still aren't sold, then check out a sampling of some of their most popular songs below!

 

"No More Dream" (2013)

The evolution of BTS, both as individuals and as a group, is an amazing journey to behold. "No More Dream" is one of their earliest releases. The video opens with an introduction of all the members, which is probably a perfect start for a new listener. The song itself is heavier on the rap element, obviously influenced by the hip-hop genre, although featuring predominant vocalist Jungkook in several verses. The accompanying music video is perfect because it shows an entirely different side to BTS that takes on a sinister and more dangerous tone: adorned in all black and complete with an edgier attitude. The choreography itself adds to this darker side, complete with some incredibly elaborate sequences both inside and outside the warehouse that provides the setting for the video.

Best Line: "Become the subject of your own life, away from suppression."

 

"Blood, Sweat, and Tears" (2016)

"Blood, Sweat, and Tears" is a perfect example to showcase the band's amazing talent and abilities. It also features a stand-out performance from member Jimin who takes center stage, quite literally, by featuring as the dominant vocalist and dancer. The song has a softer tone than "No More Dream," but still highlights all the features that are most common to BTS: rich vocals, memorable rap lines, and an amazing beat drop. The music video is full of religious symbolism and complex visuals, finding the members inside a gorgeous mansion. In many of their music videos, Jin often stands out as a pivotal character and this is certainly the case here, just take the video's final moments as a testament to that.

Best Line: "Kiss me; it doesn't matter/ If it hurts, make it tighter"

 

"Spring Day" (2017)

A sweet, nostalgic song that speaks to missing the people you love the most. The music video for the song is the epitome of innocence, showing the band members doing nothing more than hanging out together. Encompassing multiple settings, but always coming back to the recurring motif of the train, the video takes us on an emotional rollercoaster. The harmonizing vocals at the end reflect the band members' group mentality as they come together. In a video that talks about missing someone you love, it's nice that you can still have people to count on, as demonstrated by the band's closeness in the video.

Best Line: "How much do I have to long for you like snow piles up on the ground?"

 

"Fake Love" (2018)

An upbeat hit that starts out fast and stays that way throughout. It's far more energized than "Spring Day," and the music video features some of the group's more elaborate choreography. The song also incorporates a greater mixture of English and Korean, especially in the chorus lines. It certainly attests to the group's international appeal that they are reaching out to an even bigger audience. The music video also features one of the best visuals: that of J-Hope lying on a huge pile of snicker candy bars, a playful inclusion that shows us another dynamic of their personalities. 

Best Line: "For you, I could pretend like I was happy when I was sad"

 

"Idol" (2018)

This is the band's most recent release which came out on August 24 of this year. There are two versions of the song, including one with Nicki Minaj. A collaboration with an English artist of Minaj's caliber is another example of their crossover appeal. This song is a fun addition to the band's repertoire, playfully referencing pop culture icons, including Bugs Bunny. The song has a wonderful mixture of English and Korean lyrics, including the choral line "You can't stop me lovin' myself." The song's universal message of loving yourself can resonate beyond language and cultural barriers. Finally, the song inspired the widely popular internet "idol challenge" which produced some very entertaining recreations. For a music video that holds the new record for the best 24-hour debut, surpassing Taylor Swift's "Look What You Made Me Do," with a number of 45 million views, it's hard to deny the world-wide appeal of BTS.

Best Line: "No matter what you call me/ I don't care/ I'm proud of it"

 

BTS is taking over the music world, and their insane talent is certainly something to watch out for, as big things are in store for the band. This is merely a brief sampling of all that the group has to offer, and you can stream more music on Spotify or check out their music on YouTube. Also, check out their insanely funny visits on both Ellen and James Corden's Late Late Show. 

Which BTS song is your favorite?