On October 10, 2016, BTS released their 15 track album Wings, which was selected as the Best Kpop Album of 2016 by Billboard. This album has ranked as the highest selling K-pop album on the charts and was also the first to spend over a week on the chart. One great thing with this album was how it had solo tracks to allow each member to showcase their skill on an individual level.
The album begins with “Intro: Boy Meets Evil”, a EDM themed track with trap-inspired rap brought to you by J-Hope. This introduction to the album is far darker than most of the other albums and really sets the mood for the rest of the track list.
Next, there is “Blood Sweat & Tears”, the award winning track that showcases how mature and refined these boys can be. Pairing the song with the video, in which the boys show off their dancing skills while looking poised, and you can really see how much they’ve matured over the years. The light, whispery vocals paired with dance-hall inspired music help to differentiate this from the rest of the Kpop tracks out there today. Really, what’s not to love about this song?
V really brings his game in his track “Stigma”. This track has the same sort of feel you’d expect sitting in a small blues club. With trumpets sounding off in the background and the calm, collected feel the track brings, there’s no doubt that this is a new BTS with a more mature and diverse palette. “First Love” has very little focus on music and more focus on the rap provided by Suga.
Rap Monster opens up the next track with a set of english lyrics in “Reflection”. This piece has such a smooth flow, between the music, the rap, and the transition between languages, it’s not wonder people are such a big fan of Rap Monster. “MAMA” brings a playful touch to the tracklist, with its bunch of sass and a retro beat; J-Hope really owns this piece. “Awake” brings down the funk to a minimal, with classical violins sounding in the background and the tear-jerking vocals, there’s no doubt that Jin put his all into it.
The boys of BTS bring it all in with their ballad-like song “Lost”, with the catchy chorus lines like “Lost My Way”. In complete contract to the previous song “BTS Cypher 4” features some hard-core rap trend, especially when compared to the soft vocals from the previous track. Probably my favorite song on the track list for Wings is “Am I Wrong”. This funky song has a American Southern vibe and definite fun beat. It’s the kind of song that you’d find yourself dancing to without even realizing it. However, it doesn’t stop there as the dance music continues into “21st Century Girls”. Both of these songs could easily be played in a club.
The last tracks of the album “Two! Three! (Still Wishing There Will Be Better Days) (둘! 셋! (그래도 좋은 날이 더 많기를))” and “Interlude: Wings” start to bring the beat back down to earth and out of the dance realm to close the album off.