Release Date: Apr 12, 2019
Record label: Bighit
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Korean Pop, Asian Pop
Launching a new era, K-pop powerhouse BTS unveiled the first installment of a series, Map of the Soul: Persona, in 2019. Streamlined for the mainstream and instantly accessible, the effort focused mainly on vibrant pop with bursts of rap and some R&B throwbacks, allowing each member a moment to highlight his individual style. Leader RM kicks off the seven-song set with a ferocious solo turn on the spiritual sequel to 2014's "Intro: Skool Luv Affair," "Persona." Referencing Carl Jung's ideas of self and a bevy of Psych 101 topics for fans to pore over, the hungry rapper spits "Who the hell am I?" while delving into the struggle between the darkness within and a manicured outer image.
Eight months on from their last album, the Bangtan Boys explore the idea of artist versus idol, roping in a couple of high-profile cameos - from Halsey to Ed Sheeran - to craft a record that sees them continuing to raise the bar In the eight months since BTS last released an album - the 26-song 'Love Yourself: Answer', which collated tracks from the rest of the 'Love Yourself' trilogy with added new cuts - a lot has happened for the Korean pop wonders. They've dominated the Grammys just by presenting an award and looking like they were having the time of their lives in the crowd, put out their first fully English track in Steve Aoki collaboration 'Waste It On Me', and claimed a ton of the top prizes at Korea's biggest award ceremonies. There's also the small matter of an upcoming stadium tour that includes two quickly sold-out dates at London's iconic Wembley Stadium.
T he arrival of K-pop band BTS's latest mini-album comes heralded not merely by eye-watering statistics - according to a press release it has "surpassed 3m pre-orders globally", an incredible figure in the current climate - but fan-produced crib notes as well. "Ask any fan of the Korean septet and they'll probably tell you how they've spent the weeks leading up to Map of the Soul: Persona's release brushing up on the psychological theories of Carl Jung," offered a recent feature on the MTV website. As preparations for your favourite boyband's latest release go, it certainly beats camping outside a record shop while bellowing their hits to keep your spirits up.