Can BTS World turn a bald man into a BTS stan?

Blood Sweat & Tears

Okay, I would like to begin by saying I really don’t know what this music video is about. There’s a lot of cinematic wide shots and imagery, and I just have no idea what they’re getting at. Maybe the lyrics would clear things up, but ain’t nobody got time for that…

I really like the beat, and of course, the beautiful boys have very pretty voices. I actually did look up the romanised lyrics, just to make clear that the “Wonhae manhi manhi manhi manhi” bit is very catchy.

Overall, I don’t hate it, but it isn’t exactly going into my Spotify playlist any time soon. 3/5

Cypher Pt. 3: Killer

My weakness is actually a catchy beat, and I love the simple instruments used in this beat. It doesn’t feel over-produced, it feels lo-fi, catchy, and energetic. This is pretty great.

And, damn, I’ve gotta give it to the boys again. When the track first started I was like; “hmm, are the pretty boys gonna pull this off?” And frankly, some of the flows were hard. I have no idea whether there’s some Korean wordplay I’m missing out on, but the flows did flow, and what more can you ask for?

This is considerably better than the rap disstracks that YouTubers come out with, which is, frankly, what I expected. Good stuff lads. 4/5

Boy in Luv

This one is a lot to take in at once. First off, that music video. They look like private school kids, but they’re dancing around like, a ghetto school, and the fact is that they would get eaten alive looking like that in a public school. When not being vaguely homoerotic, they’re engaging in light sexual harassment, which is, y’know, a thing that happens.

So, the trick to K-pop and J-pop bands making it internationally is a catchy hook. International listeners aren’t likely to understand the lyrics, but that doesn’t matter if it’s catchy. BTS clearly understand this well, and seem to have tracks purpose-designed for this. So it has catchy moments, blended with a bit of rapping and more in-your-face vocal tracks.

However, damn, the production is thick, and it just feels generic, honestly. Couple that with a bad video and I’m out. 2/5

Run

Luckily the music video here is more what I would expect from BTS. It’s cute boys being cute and getting into light mischief. Good stuff, and I like the shots of them running. Oh, the bit in the car tunnel though, those drivers would knock them all clean out, no doubt. Road rage runs high.

This is one of the poppiest tracks so far, but that “Run, run, run” chorus is undeniable. It also proves that they know when they need to have a catchy hook, and they do it.

This is pure, old school, cheesy pop, and it doesn’t pretend to be anything else. 3/5

Dope

This one is a bit mixed. At first, I really liked the beat and the vocal flows, but it started to grind pretty fast. By the end, I was just glad it was over.

I don’t know what happened over the course of this song. I really did start out by liking it, but as it went on I just kept finding it more tedious. The boys clearly have talent, but it’s just all packaged so… predictably.

I suppose this is the problem with pop music as a whole. It is by-the-numbers, predictable, and follows a set formula. Unfortunately, I’ve had too much of that formula for today, and now, I’m done listening to BTS. 2/5

Result

Am I a BTS stan now? No. No I am not. The boys have talent and produce their music well, but I don’t want to listen to any of it anymore, thanks.

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