I’m unleashing my playlist on the world!
Decided to share my affection for one of the boygroups that has impressed me recently (given that I’ve sworn off listening to rookies, they still somehow managed to worm their way into my playlist) and it’s none other than Bangtan. Suga and J-hope are rappers that I like for their style and flow, not to mention Suga is great lyrically as well.
Grouping the tracks:
For the uninitiated, Cyphers are when rappers rap in an unbroken circle, each picking up from where the other left off. It’s most exciting done freestyle, but BTS records good cyphers because of their strong rap-line.
If I had to pick one, I’d probably choose Cyper Pt. 2: Triptych as my favourite, but the other two come in a close second. Their cyphers are slightly aggressive and all revolve around the theme of underground vs idol rappers but if that’s what they’re into, why not? Plenty of good wordplay, good rhymes, strong lines. I especially love Suga in Triptych where his slight slur sounds especially attractive. Ah, when do I ever NOT love this man?
The original reason why I fell for BTS was because they rapped about something other than love. Their origins came from a very focused, strong hiphop niche and they did it so well. The three above tracks have strong raps, impressive dance and great lyrics. At that time they really gave life to the issues that youths faced (face) and I wish they’d continue to do so. Just do songs about anything other than love, not that it’s bad, but it’s something that would make them stand out. I still listen to these two tracks a lot, and wish they’d make more like this.
The staple of any idol group – energizing songs. I’d go as far as to say this is what makes or breaks the group. These are the ones that I’ve liked for the beat, or sometimes the lyrics as in the case of Dope, which just.. stood out. 쩔어 is a mild Korean cuss, and I am still shocked that they forced BTS to change War of Hormones but let Dope pass all of the broadcast reviews. Somewhat absurd, no?
The songs that make my heart flutter. Lyrics are a bit overly focused on sex but interspersed between these sexually suggestive lyrics are small, sweet focused lines that make my heart sing. In Just One Day, Suga raps “I wanna be locked in you and swim in you, I want to know you more, you’re an unknown forest and I’m an explorer.” like it’s a new revelation, and in Miss Right, RapMon raps, “You’re like a forest, shining inside the city.” Fresh lines indeed. Plus the vocal line really gets to show off here – Taehyung’s voice makes me swoon because it’s so deep and rumbly, and Jimin/Jungkook are sweet and charming. D’aw.
Something that distinguishes BTS from other groups – they have satoori raps. Which are the bomb. Not many groups have members hailing from different provinces – Jungkookie is from Busan and Min Suga is from Daegu, Hobi is from Gwangju, etc. The song is, as far as I can discern, rapped in mostly Gyeongsang and Jeolla dialect. Only RapMon is a Seoulite. And so here we go, an inkling of what Korean dialects sound like – wonderful stuff. I personally want to learn Daegu dialect now, hahaha.
So.. I Need U was the song that sealed the BTS deal for me. I feel the heartache every time I listen to it, especially the Picnic version. RapMon’s rap really stands out in this one. Suga’s strong rap stands out in Let Me Know, a song he wrote himself (and something I feel was inspired by a real-life incident cough). Moving Out shouldn’t be heartbreaking but it still shatters me inside, and RapMon mentions a fight he had with Suga which curiously no interviewer has asked about so far. I guess it’s the sense of not wanting to leave a place even though you know it’s for something better that strikes me.
All in all, I think BTS is way above average in terms of song quality. They need to stop producing songs like War of Hormone and Danger for mass appeal and go back to their hiphop roots.. please? 😦