BTS Deconstructed: Young Forever

The compilation album “Young Forever” contained three original tracks, all of which showed thematic, vocal arrangement and production progress.

The first of the original tracks, “Fire,” is the continuation of what can be dubbed the “Tetralogy of Dope!” The lyrical content is of interest here. It is a reply to the “advice” spoken about in “Baepsae” from “The Most Beautiful Moment in Life Pt. 2.” Instead of capitulating to those who do not wish them to attain their potential, they make the determination to live life the way they want to. The structure and production of the track is of interest as well. After the bridge, the track continues to build and build without reaching a crescendo. Just when you think the crescendo has arrived, the song suddenly drops off as the beat disappears, leaving only Suga’s “I forgive you.”

A total juxtaposition to the previous, “Save Me,” was BTS’ first foray into current pop sounds. Although the track is sonically reminiscent of Jack Ü’s “Where Are Ü,” featuring Justin Bieber,  it retains the hip-hop element integral to the BTS sound. In this track, just like “Butterfly,” from “The Most Beautiful Moment in Life Pt. 2,” the vocal line takes the lead, as the rap line sonically supports them.

The final original track, “Epilogue: Young Forever,” is the end of the “I Need U” trilogy. The construction of the beginning of the song is of note here. It only contains three elements: a clave, a synth and a reverbed kick. RM uses some rhythmic rapping to give a sense of melody, and Suga sings the first half of his verse, rapping the last half. This allows for an easy transition for the steady accelerating drum and J-Hope’s higher paced rap, while the track maintains a constant tempo. There is a small pause in the track as J-Hope continues to build in his delivery before the track sonically explodes, as the instrumentation and vocals blast through the speakers. Another aspect of the song worth mentioning is the tones of V and RM. V’s singing tone in this song is very similar to RM’s rapping tone, allowing for a good interweaving of vocals.

As this trilogy came to an end, it was time for another “final exam.”


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