On September 18th, BTS released their fifth mini album, Love Yourself: Her. On the same day, the septet released their title track off the album, titled “DNA,” which is a pulse-pounding EDM track, a different sound for Korea’s hottest group.
Love Yourself: Her went to number 1 on iTunes in over 70 countries and debuted at number 7 on Billboard 200 chart, which earns the group’s first top 10 album entry. In its first week, “DNA” debuted at number 85 on Billboard Hot 100 chart, and risen to number 67 in its second week. The music video received over 20 million views in 24 hours, the fastest views for a K-pop group. Currently, the video has over 78 million views and counting.
Love Yourself showcases the theme of love and a new sound from BTS, sounds that listeners are not used to hearing from them. Though they did take a new direction as a group, the tracks still incorporate the group’s style.
“Serendipity” is the first track off the album, which is a solo sung by member Jimin. The production on the track is mellow and soothing, which flows well with Jimin’s light and serene vocals. The comeback trailer released prior to the comeback, brings the song to life with bright and warm colors.
“DNA” is a fun and energetic EDM-inspired track, which is a departure from BTS’s previous title tracks. The members talk about a love that was meant to be for each other and it wasn’t just a coincidence. The vocals and rap verses are well balanced. The consistent whistling keeps the song on a good flow, while the pulse-pounding and powerful chorus remains the highlight of the track.
The music video is quite different from their previous videos. This one in particular is bright, fun, and colorful. The choreography was the big highlight of the video, since it is more challenging than their previous ones. They even involve hints of DNA within choreography: when they’re pointing at their wrists and towards the middle of the song, where they interlock arms to form something similar to a double helix.
BEST OF ME:
“Best of Me” is a dance track produced with one of the members of The Chainsmokers. The song itself has a Western sound, a simple sound that could be heard on Top 40 radio stations. This track isn’t my favorite off the album, though the vocals make the song a little better. It takes a couple of listens to get used to it. It’s an okay track, but it’s not their best B-side.
This song features the vocal line, which consists of Jin, Jimin, V, and Jungkook. Here, we have the boys discussing how a girl’s smile is dangerous or how it makes them weak. The song has hints of R&B and the vocals are balanced. It’s a very cute song and there is one line in the chorus that stands out, has a cute pun: “That dimple is illegal, no it’s dangerous, oh yes so I call you illegirl.”
Now, “Pied Piper” has to be one of the standout tracks on this album. “Pied Piper” has a distinct 70s-esque disco sound. The chorus is the highlight of the song, that has a sweet groove. The usage of the talk box effect was intriguing, and I think it’s one of those sounds that BTS should try to explore for future songs.
“MIC Drop” is another standout track and reminds me of old school BTS. It’s a heavy hip hop track that has grit and style. The chorus brings out an extra punch to the song. The live performance of “MIC Drop” makes the song 10 times better than it already is, making it the most memorable track off the album.
“Go Go” is another standout track that I loved right off the bat. I love the usage of the flute throughout and it really felt like a BTS song. It’s a carefree song, which has a nice message about having no worries, live life to the fullest, despite not having much. The performance for the song is really cute and cheeky. Just like “MIC Drop,” the live performance makes the song 10 times better.
“Her” is one of those songs that has a chill vibe to it. “Her” which features only Suga, Rap Monster and J-Hope, has an 90s hip hop sound, where each rapper talks about their own struggle with love. It’s a simple song to end the album, but I was left wanting a little more from this song.
As a whole, Love Yourself: Her is a cohesive album that explores sounds that is new to BTS. It’s always good for artists to try new things, to see what works and what doesn’t. Honestly, this album took a couple of listens to fully enjoy it as a whole. Is it their best album? No, not exactly. There could have been some better moments, but they didn’t make a bad record, and I’m happy with all the success that they’re getting. I just hope in the future, BTS can create a self-composed album by themselves, because I feel like they have the ability to do it.
What are thoughts on Love Yourself: Her? Which song is your favorite off the album? Let me know in the comments section.