As musicians, perhaps the biggest strength of BTS is the variety their discography offers. In terms of genre and subject matter, the group’s songs cover a base larger than many established artists. One of the interesting aspects of this huge body of work is how BTS are able to bring a song together with polar opposite vibes in their tunes and lyrics.
Here are the 5 BTS songs that will give you a whiplash when you read their lyrics:
1. Go Go
The peppy and fun tune of “Go Go” makes it a perfect pick-me-up song for anyone. That is until you understand the lyrics. “Leave me be even if I overspend,/ even if I cancel my installment savings tomorrow morning like a crazy guy/ WOO there’s no tomorrow/My future has already been put in pledge” – the song basically describes the financial despair this generation lives in.
There is no tomorrow, you buy your present by keeping your future as collateral. A student goes to school for a better future and then spends the future repaying their student debt. The song captures this grim reality and somehow manages to make it a BOP you can floss dance to.
2. House Of Cards
The sensual melody, slow dramatic instrumental, and deep vocals on this song are very convincing to make you believe that it is a sexy song. But once again, the lyrics will pull your mind in a completely different direction.
“We won’t work in the end/ Even so, I keep hoping/ As long as I’m with you in the end as well, I’m okay“- these lyrics indicate a toxic relationship that is like a house of cards, destined to fall apart in the end. But despite knowing this truth, the people in the relationship hold on because letting go is scarier, even if it means that nobody survives in the end.
3. Pied Piper
There is probably some heavenly joy BTS get from making a song sound extremely sexy and then etching it with completely unassuming lyrics. “Pied Piper” sounds like what being serenaded by seven extremely good-looking men must feel like. But one peep at the lyrics and you realize they are asking you to go back to studying-
“Stop, now stop watching and study for your test
Your parents and boss hate me
Video clips, pictures, tweets
V app, Bon Voyage
I know, you can’t help what you like
But stop, interpret the music video later”
BRB, feeling extremely called out.
4. Silver Spoon/ Baepsae
This track might as well become a hip-thrusting anthem for the fandom, and BTS are to blame for this! But amidst all the aggressive splits J-Hope breaks into while performing the song, there is some powerful lyricism hiding in between.
“Change the rules change change
The storks want to maintain
But I can’t let them have it BANG BANG
This is not normal”
The song uses the analogy of short-legged crow-tits versus long-legged storks to paint the grim reality of an unequal society. The stork, born with the advantage of long legs, progresses farther than a crow-tit and wants to keep it that way. But every once in a while, the underdog crow-tit rebels to reverse the structure.
On the surface, this is a fun song using the motif of the popular Japanese animated superhero Anpanman. Nobody can blame you if you throw it back a little on the dance floor to its tunes because it’s that catchy. But trust and believe once you understand the lyrical theme, there is no going back.
Jimin explained the song’s theme very precisely in an interview, saying, “Anpanman is the weakest hero in the world. He doesn’t have any supernatural power, but he’s a hero who tears off himself to give food to someone who’s hungry. We put our hearts in the song that we want to give our fans hope and energy, solely with our music and performances.”
When you pair this explanation with these lyrics-
“All I can give you is Anpan
And a word ‘you’ve worked hard,’
But I’ll fly to you right away if you call me
Please call me”
it is impossible not to feel incredibly emotional as an ARMY.
BTS really took the “open for surprise” concept to another level with these songs.