BTS’ groundbreaking ‘Map of the Soul: 7’ highlights group’s musical experience

February 26, 2020

The biggest boyband in the music industry, BTS, made a comeback on Friday, Feb. 21 with their new album “Map of the Soul: 7.” On the album, the band reflects on their experience over the past seven years since debuting as a musical act. The lyrics also encompass Swedish psychologist Carl Jung’s examination of one’s persona and journey to discover who they are.

The album repackages songs from their previous album “Map of the Soul: Persona” as well as 15 brand new tracks. According to all 20 songs were in the U.S. iTunes Top 20 Chart and the album has been dubbed the second biggest debut of all-time, only beaten by Adele.

Before the “Map of the Soul: 7” was officially released, the band made history for being the first musical act to drop a preview for a song on TikTok. The 30 second clip of “ON” raised so much excitement that fans ended up crashing the app. Fans have also created their own dance routines and posted them online using the hashtag #onchallenge.

The song also has another version on the album that features the singer and songwriter Sia.  However, this version left some fans wanting more. Sia is an amazing artist with beautiful vocals but she was only featured on the track for two verses of the chorus. Other collaborations, such as their latest with Halsey on their last title track “Boy With Luv,” was heavily promoted. This collaboration was a complete surprise, only being recognized after its release.

Instead of dropping a music video for the lead single, the band released a “Kinetic Manifesto Film: Come Prima.” Although the video features a large dance number with the band singing and dancing, it is not technically a music video. Like with their latest single “Black Swan,” which is also on the new album, the performance video features the dance group The Lab and the offical music video for the song will drop this Friday.

“ON” instantly excites listeners with inspiring lyrics about not backing down from pain.  It is a reflection on the band’s experiences since their debut.  The song begins slowly, with a single organ playing, before a sick beat drops. The song is definitely one of their best lead singles to date. The song title is the reflection of their popular song “N.O,” in which the band discusses the pressure society puts on young children to succeed and encourages listeners to put their dreams first. A recurring theme amongst BTS’ discography is to dissect society and urge their fans to pursue what makes them happy, which is clearly shown in this song.

Later in the album, “Filter,” Jimin’s solo, features a Latin-influenced beat and light vocals. The song uses Jung’s perception of the persona while Jimin shares how he changes how he presents himself for whoever is listening.

Not many artists can start off a song with a gunshot and turn it into a hit, but that’s exactly what BTS does with “UGH!” The song resembles the group’s past cyphers, which are full of hard beats and angry lyrics. In this song, like in the cyphers and their incredibly popular song “ddaeng,” the rappers criticize society and vocalize their frustrations with the world. However, this song also states that anger is an important emotion and it deserves to be understood.

“Outro: Ego” has become a fan favorite due to it’s upbeat lyrics and danceable rhythm. The song follows Jung’s analysis of the Ego.  J-Hope brings his usually charismatic energy to deliver a song that is both reflective and sentimental.

The “Love Yourself” concept throughout the past two albums has been pushed aside to usher in a new era of confronting oneself and realizing who you are.

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