BTS: Map Of The Soul: 7 Album Review

The BTS brand is stronger than ever as the seven Bangtan boys provide their immense fanbase with a soundtrack that doubled as a collaborative EP, amazing merch, and a mobile game. Their 2020 album, Map of the Soul:7 was a global hit that sold more than 2 million copies in South Korea within the first 2 hours of its release.

BTS has done an amazing job in maintaining their superstar status around the world--all 20 titles of the album ended up with a place in the top 20 of the iTunes top chart. Primal and taut, MOTS:7 is a homage to their own work and struggles. As the group celebrated their seventh year as a band, each of the singers and rappers got a chance to make their work stand out on a solo and collective basis.

The beginning

The album starts off with renowned hits from its predecessor, MOTS: Persona, including a collaboration with Ed Sheeran and Halsey. One of the best parts of these older songs is an underrated number by RM called "Intro: Persona," which is full of echoing background and scratchy riffs. The guitar transports the song's listeners back to an era of retro music as the leader of the group admonishes his haters in both English and Korean.

The middle

Suga raps about fears and paranoia in his introspective "Interlude: Shadow," after which the group gives a superb collaborative performance in "Louder Than Bombs"--the song was co-written by J-Hope, RM, and Suga along with Troye Sivan. The hypnotic precision is the perfect offset for Jungkook's beautiful falsetto right before Suga's droll rapping begins.

The song is followed by more solos by Jin, V, and Jimin, where they sing about their fans, challenging times in their lives, and love in general. Jimin and V also chronicle their beautiful friendship in "Friends," where a pair of K-pop stars sing along with a gospel choir.

The end

The album has many different tracks that have a stadium-ready kind of quality that sounds like an anthem. Their lead single appears twice in the album, with Sia joining the mix in the closing-track remix. "ON" pays homage to the group's career while exhorting fans worldwide.

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