How's the song?
BTS caught my attention with their debut song "No More Dream" and then they continued to be awesome in their second song "Bulletproof pt. 2". Now with the release of this song, I think that it is safe to say that they are my favorite rookies of the year. I think they are a lot like BAP because they haven't really taken a break since they debuted and now they are filming a variety show which is hilarious.
I have mixed feelings about the message of the song. I know that in schools in Korea, you are suppose to do school and that is it. It is hard, but if you don't do well, your whole life is ruined because one grade directly leads to the next and one bad grade will end you. In this sense I can see what BTS is saying with the whole school isn't everything, I do what I want mentality, but school isn't a bad thing. I think I am just biased because the American school system is so different from the Korean one. On the flip side though, I like that they are saying to live your own dream and not someone else's.
This year there seems to be a lot of songs that promote individuality and dreams from the guys - Jae Joong's "Mine", GD's "Coup D'Etat" and BTS's "No More Dream" and now this one; while the girls have given us songs about not needing men and being okay with who you are - Sunny Hill's "Darling of all Hearts" Miss A's "I Don't Need a Man" and Glam's "I Like That". Even though I don't understand what is being said in these lyrics without subs, it is nice to know that there is a good message behind it because even if I can't understand it, I can remember the theme that they are putting across.
The music of the song had a heavy string accompaniment which was awesome! In the beginning the music was haunting sounding as the boys stared blankly off into space but was also used to show power during the rest of the song. I also liked that while the strings were a big part of the song, they had a simple part to play that consisted of two scales, I think, don't let me down music skills!
Something that I have wondered about since BTS's debut is what other types of music they will put out in the future. This is a talented group of boys so seeing them branch out could be fun. With branching out though, there is always the possibility that they will do a cutey boy song which is one of those things that can either be really funny, or really awkward.
How's the video?
I am such a huge fan of anything dystopian and I'm not sure where that love came from. I loved reading 1984 and Fahrenheit 451 in high school and I am always down for something post-apocalyptic. Don't ask me why, I just think that it is fascinating. I think that another reason for this love is because I like stories about the underdog beating the system or just surviving where no one else does. I also like/don't like seeing the comparisons that can be drawn from our own society and seeing how far or close we are to falling in on ourselves.
In this video, school is portrayed as that dystopian tightly reigned society and I can see that comparison made to school, especially Korean school as I have already said. All the boys look absolutely dead in a sterile room in boring outfits with scary red math equations that I could never hope to solve.
As they are all sitting there, Jung Gook begins to move around and begins the rebellion that we see next. I am probably reading too much into this, but as an English major it happens sometimes, but I really like that Jung Gook is the one that moves first. He is the youngest (16 years old, what the heck) and maybe he has been in the system the shortest amount of time so he was still able to retain that piece of himself that made him him.
At this point all of the boys fight against their oppressors and are able to escape their classroom and they end up in a lit up stair case flanked by violin and cello playing women. All we need is Frankie Avalon singing "Beauty School Dropout" and some Pink Ladies and this scene will be complete.
Overall, of the three videos that BTS has put out, I think that this one is my favorite. I felt that in their debut song they were trying really hard to be "cool" and "gangster" and yes that is their concept, but this video felt more natural. I hope that these boys can keep making good songs and videos and they don't go away for a while because I will definitely be here to listen to what they are putting out.
How's the styling?
Oh my gosh, Rap Monster has eyes! He looks a lot younger and nonthreatening without his glasses too. I think that everyone who is a part of ARMY (their fanclub) thought that those things had been surgically attached to his face.
The concept color for this video was white and I liked all the different textures that were used in the outfits because all white costumes on an all white background could be terribly boring if not done in an interesting way. Everyone had this very cool gangster feel with their white clothes and gold accents, but there was one persons styling that caught my attention and that is Suga the gangster ahjumma.
Seriously, what is up with your hair? And that vest makes me think that you are going to go find some rich handsome chaebol's son and try to ruin his relationship with his poor girlfriend.
Is the dance super amazing?
BTS has stayed pretty consistent with their strong dance routines. All the moves are powerful looking and the members are all pretty coordinated while doing it. I'm not sure if they have a really good main dancer in their group, but as a whole, they all seem pretty talented and they don't do simple moves all the time. They also seem to like to throw each other up into the air and have Jimin do spinning kicks. That might get old after a while though, so we'll see what else they bring to the table in the future.
The dance was also able to add another element of the rebellion theme that had been played with throughout the whole video. With this last dance segment, the story that was being told at the beginning is given a part two where the boys have to once again fight for their freedom. The riot team members from the beginning of the video came back for their revenge and BTS had to fight them off.
Unfortunately all the members with the exception of Jimin are taken down and the whole riot team then turn their attention on him.
Fortunately for BTS, the riot team wasn't that smart and used imaginary handcuffs on the boys and then turned their back them, dummies. This gave the other members of BTS the chance to once again rally for freedom.
Which member owned it?
Something that I like about BTS is that even though they are predominately a hip hop/rap group, their singers are not left out. The members that sing are all very talented and they have pretty equal parts. They also mesh the singing and the rapping well so it isn't jarring or make you wonder why there is a random rap breakdown or vocal run somewhere.
The parts in the songs are all fairly even and I didn't feel like I was getting bombarded with one member the whole video. I hope that they keep this up because while it is fun to see someone that you like getting a lot of camera time, there are other people in the group who deserve face time as well.
Did the English make your ears bleed?
The English in the song was pronounced well and it was also used well. I think that Rap Monster may produce and/or write the songs that BTS performs and he speaks fluent English so it is nice to see that he is using that language talent.
The only thing that I can say is that the word "roll" has been ruined for me thanks to EXO. Because of Korean pronunciation the word "roll" and "roar" sound similar so while I knew that they were saying roll, it made me think of buffaloes. That being said, do you think that BTS roll like buffaloes?
What else is happening?
KK "Be Boys..." Wow this guy can rap fast. That is really the only good things about this cheap video though, and anytime I hear anything about Wassup, I die a little inside.
Demion "Ask Her Out" - debut song, This song is kind of generic sounding and probably I won't even remember it after the video finishes. Hopefully these boys can comeback with something stronger.
Kye Bum Zu "Something Special" - This song was upbeat and fun which was matched by the video. To make this even better, the male lead was PO of Block B and he's adorable. He was totally just being himself here and I loved it.
Piggy Dolls "Butterflies" It's too bad that the original trio are no longer because they had a very unique sound and these girls just sound like any other girl group.
Crayon Pop "Dancing Queen 2.0" - I'm going to be honest, Crayon Pop doesn't do it for me, but Autumn loves them and I can see why. They are quirky and fun and that is good to see in a K-pop work dominated by sexy female idols. Keep doing what you're doing Crayon Pop.
Song Ji Eun "Hope Torture"
Young Jun "Driving Road"
Jung Joo Young "Spotless Mind" - debut song, This song sounds like it was pulled straight from some rock opera and it was kind of cool. It wasn't totally my cup of tea, but it is always nice to get a new sound coming from K-pop
FLASHE "Oh Ye Yo" - There's nothing really special about this song. The video is cute, but the song is a little flat sounding and not memorable.
Tiny-G "Miss You" - This song is too repetitive sounding for me, but I do like that the girls of Tiny-G are a little fuller looking than some other female idols. Maybe it's because they are more compact.
Block B "Very Good" - *sobbing* I'm just so happy!