Map of the Soul cements BTS atop K-pop


provided by BigHit Entertainment

With the growing Korean Pop, BTS responded with their new album Map Of The Soul: Persona. Wingspan's Kanz Bitar gives her thoughts on their new album debut.

Kanz Bitar, Guest Contributor

Within the past few years, Korean pop has become tremendously successful and with that, the rise of BTS has only grown. It’s been seven months since they ended their Love Yourself trilogy and with it, they were able to achieve their goals of fame in America by performing at the Billboard Music Awards and attending the GRAMMYs. Now they are back with a new album trilogy, starting with Map Of The Soul: Persona featuring seven songs, including two of collaborations with Halsey and Ed Sheeran.

The album title, Map Of The Soul: Persona is the same as a well-known book about psychologist Carl Jung’s principles of individuation. There are many references to the book in the album music video trailer, “Persona” which is a solo track by leader RM.

Like many BTS albums, Map Of The Soul: Persona contains a variety of genres like hip-hop, EDM, ballads, pop, etc. The title track, “Boy With Luv” featuring Halsey, has a soft EDM pop sound. The song came with a music video, which reached 74.6 million views within the first 24 hours of its release, making it the most viewed music video in a day. It’s very colorful and trendy, it has a lot of different charming visuals that fans have never seen from BTS before. It’s powerful and catchy and the addition of Halsey gave it an interesting sound. With this song being the title track, BTS made their Saturday Night Live debut on April 13th with performing it live.

It wouldn’t be a BTS album without an emotional element and “Mikrokosmos” is the perfect song. Even without reading the lyrics, the sound of their emotion shows through. The melody, the sound, the vocals are all combined together so nicely that it makes you feel happy.

“Make It Right”, which was co-written by Ed Sheeran has a very westernized sound. It was very clear that this was written by an English artist which gave the album a sound that BTS doesn’t have in their albums very often.

One thing BTS is known for is pleasing their fans, also known as A.R.M.Y. In every album, there is always one song dedicated to the fans and in this album, the song is “HOME”. In this song, they describe their fans as a refuge place. It’s where they can isolate themselves from their fame and connect with their fans. This song also repeats a line from their 2013 debut song, “No More Dream” with the line, “The big house, big cars, big rings we dreamed about / Even if I get everything I wanted / I’m still lonely with this unfamiliar feeling of someone who had everything come true.”

“Jamais Vu” is a pretty ballad sung by only three of the members. This song is basically the opposite of deja vu, it’s about the loss of memory. Having something that’s so familiar and suddenly having it forgotten.

Going back to their previous album “Dionysus” is a reference to “Idol”. They point out again the struggles they have from being Korean idols. “Born as a k-pop idol, reborn as an artist” Suga raps. They’re trying to get away from the standards of what an idol is supposed to be like, and this song is a representation of that.

With this album, BTS will likely continue to break records. It has a story, a message and a variety of sounds that will fit many peoples’ taste.