Thursday, February 1, 2018

Stuck on Repeat: January 2018

Per usual, I'm back once again to list the songs that I've had on constant repeat throughout the month. However, we're changing it up just slightly this time, because I've stopped limiting myself to only 10 songs. That said, I'm also not letting myself go crazy either. The monthly lists are now going to be called "Stuck on Repeat" (after the widget I keep on the left side of my blog with my mostly-current playlist), and they'll vary between 10-15 songs per month. This month, there are 13.

Also, I've started doing these in video form as well, and instead of grouping up the groups, I'm going to be listing the songs in the same order as they appear in the video so that if anyone wants to see my thought process as they watch, they can go in video order.

And, as per usual, there are a lot of repeat groups. I've basically been listening to the same 2 groups all month, so... sorrynotsorry. Anyway, on to the list!

Tell Me- Infinite

I mean, this was a given, right? One of my ult bias groups finally had their first comeback in over a year, so obviously their new title track is going to be played on an endless loop. It's very different for them, and while I don't want this to be a sound that they stick with (it's much more trendy than they typically are), I really enjoy them dabbling into it. It's a really fun song, and whoa this is Dongwoo's era boy is killing it. Also the choreo is super cool, but like... that's a given with Infinite.

I Hate- Infinite

Wow it's only a month into 2018 and already the best song of the year has been released?? Like... it's amazing??? How could any other song ever top it???? But seriously though, I was in love the second I heard the teaser, and as soon as the album was released (but not on iTunes yet bc iTunes hates us all) it was the first album track I looked up and WOW IT'S SO GOOD. I mean, I'm super biased because I absolutely love rock music and pop music with rock influences. The chorus is so hype. And honestly Dongwoo's rap in the verse is lowkey the best part of the song. Ugh it's seriously so good.

Healing- Seventeen

And the award for my most-played song of the month goes tooooooooo......... HEALING! (Imeanobviously) Anyway, I didn't start getting into Seventeen's album tracks until December and even then, I was mostly listening to Teen, Age. Right at the end of 2017, I started listening to the Love & Letter Repackage and this song immediately stood out to me. Like the perfection that is Infinite's discography, it's got a really cool synth-y 80s influence. It's seriously such a bop. The chorus is so much fun. Honestly, I'm just mad I didn't discover this song until too late to put it in my video of favorite KPop songs pre-2017.

Rocket- Seventeen

If you haven't noticed yet, I've had Seventeen's Teen, Age album on a constant repeat. Literally any song on that album could've made it onto this list, but I stuck with my favorites because there are like 15 or something songs on it. Anyway, apart from Clap & Change Up (seen on last month's post... I think??? They've both appeared on these lists at some point), this is probably my favorite song on the album... but don't quote me. I just loved this the first second I listened to it. It's such a bop. Build a rocket with meeeeeeeeeee.

Crazy Sexy Cool- Astro

When this was first released a few months back, I gave it a listen and liked it, but never went back and listened again or downloaded it and then when I was looking for new music, I thought about this song and re-listened to it and it got stuck in my head and hasn't left since. It's not exactly what you'd call a "chill" song, but it's just kinda sweet and bubblegum-y and just... really nice. IDK how else to describe it. I should be able to, since I have a degree in music but IDK my brain isn't working. Anyway, it's just real nice.

Pray- Infinite

Of all the songs on Top Seed, this is the one that sounds the most like classic Infinite (In fact, it was originally recorded by the group back in the day). Also, it's produced by SWEETUNE, who basically created Infinite's sound early in their career. The strings are so fantastic. They kill me every time. IDK what it is about the song, but it just... sounds very different from any other KPop songs I've heard. It's actually a pretty epic song, TBH. Just... Infinite is amazing.

Lilili Yabbay- Seventeen

Not only is this song fantastic, but the MV is also so great, because it's literally just them and their choreo and it's so beautiful??? Like ugh I can't deal with how perfect this is. Honestly, just stop reading my rambling and watch the stupid perfect video.

Wind- Infinite

This is the other song on Top Seed that, for me, is the most classic Infinite. It's got a bit of that synth-y 80s vibe to it that I love so much, and Namu's voice just sounds so beautiful on the chorus... like his soaring vocals??? I can't deal with it. Just... perfection. 

Wolf Baby- TRCNG

This is the first song by TRCNG that I'd ever heard, and I really need to check out more after hearing this, because it's so cool. The darker, paranormal theme to the music video carries over to the song itself, which is something that I really love. The chorus just feels very typical of Halloween in the best way possible. It's fantastic and vaguely creepy and just... so good.

Flower- Seventeen

Honestly, the first thing that grabbed me about it is just that really cool beat? The rhythm is super cool and just the fact that it starts the entire song just makes it all the more dynamic. I think it's also super interesting that the chorus isn't exactly dynamic? Like it's really cool and I like it, but the verses are more complex and the chorus is a bit more laid back? IDK it's just really cool.

Hooked- JJ Project

I mentioned that Healing was probably my most-played song of the month, but honestly, I think it's tied with Hooked. Right at the end of December, I was watching a Got7 video, and this song came on in the background and I was like what is this Got7 song with this cool rock influence??? I LOVE IT??? and after some googling and digging, I realized that it was actually a JJP song, and I've literally listened to it every single day since then. Honestly how the heck did these two not absolutely explode when this is one of the songs they released? The verses are so interesting because there are so many sections of it and the verse is also multi-sectional & honestly every single second of this song is something that I genuinely jam out to. It's quickly become possibly one of my all-time favorite KPop songs. Like... not exaggerating in the slightest. It's so freaking good.

TGIF- Infinite [Dongwoo Solo]

Three Infinite members got solos on Top Seed (still salty they didn't all get solos), and Dongwoo's is easily my favorite. I took a little while to warm up to it, but I really love his sing-rapping and even though the entire song is a bop, it's definitely super chill. The "my honey relax" in the 2nd verse (and tbh the entire 2nd verse) absolutely kills me. Honestly, I just love that Dongwoo spends the whole song alternating between rapping, sing-rapping, and singing. Like... it just makes it sound super cool and not everyone can pull off sing-rapping (my boy Brian is the best at it tho, NGL) but Dongwoo makes it super cool.

Trauma- Seventeen

On paper, Seventeen's HipHop unit should probably be my least favorite solely because in terms of KPop sub-genres, hip hop isn't my fave. But I love all of their songs. And SCoups. IDK what else to say. I've already talked this entire album into the ground. Seventeen is fantastic, and this song is fantastic. FIN.

Last month I made a few pretty tentative predictions, the most prevalent of which was the thought that I'd probably be listening to a lot of Seventeen and that Healing would be on the January list. CHECK AND CHECK. Oof, so much Seventeen on this list. Sorrynotsorry. Also that I'd be listening to the Infinite comeback a lot, which is also definitely true. Anyway, I threw out a list of groups I've been meaning to get into more (basically just a bunch of groups that are hovering right outside my actual bias list. And even though none of them have songs on this list, one of them has definitely worked their way into my heart solely via the supermegaweirdo members, so I'm planning on downloading more of their music and listening to them more and wouldn't be surprised if they were on next month's list. IDK, they're one of those groups where I'm freaking obsessed with the members, but their music isn't quite as much my style as groups like Day6 or Seventeen or something. But we'll see. Like I said, I love them. 

So, predictions for next month before wrapping up: more Seventeen. I need to listen to their mini albums as much as I've been listening to their full albums. Also, I still need to listen to more EXO. I listened to them a bit in January, but not as much as I meant to. I also plan on listening to a lot of Got7 because I'm in the final stages of ranking their album tracks (I know, it takes forever-- they're all so good???). I'm also doing a ranking of Pentagon songs, so I'll be listening to them quite a bit too. And like, I'm literally always listening to Day6. They might not be on this list, but I listen to them literally every day.

Anyway, that's it for this post. I always ramble way too much at the end of these. Let me know which KPop songs (or just any songs in general tbh) you've been listening to on a constant loop!

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

On Growing Up and Moving On (in the most petty way possible)

The following is largely a stream-of-consciousness discussion/ramble of an overly-introspective, arbitrarily-analytical human. If you're looking for a definitive point, there's not much to be had here, so read at your own risk. You've been warned.

Also, I wrote pretty much all of this back in October, so some of the details are a little wonky. I want to leave the "essay" untouched, so I'll just add in a little editing note when a detail needs to be updated.


The other day, I found myself going about my usual life (I really don't even know what I was doing at the time), and out of the blue, I had a revelation so surprising that I ended up sitting in complete shock, contemplating the thought that had just crossed my mind. It probably shouldn't have been as ground-breaking and life-changing of a revelation as it was, and you'll probably laugh at me when you hear what it was, but it honestly gave me pause and really changed my perspective on a lot of things. Ready to hear it?

"I don't think McFly is my favorite band anymore... and they haven't been for a while."

I know. I know. Trust me, I know. It's the most inconsequential, petty thought-- not even a definitive statement-- and yet... I legitimately felt dizzy when I came to that realization. 

I feel like a bit of backstory is necessary here, before continuing. I've touted McFly as my favorite band since my sophomore year of high school (8 years ago). That's the entirety of my adult existence, and a pretty significant portion of my teenage years as well. And I'm not one of those people who casually has a favorite band. McFly was my baby. I was that person who was annoying about their favorite band, to the point that my high school boyfriend refused to listen to them, even in my car, which was a very contentious point to 16-year-old Kristen. Even when I got to college, I was known as the McFly girl. All the people I hung out with in the common room knew how much I loved McFly, and there was even a guy who flat out hated me because of how obsessed I was with the band. (In hindsight, I'm sure I was annoyingly vocal about McFly but I still can't understand the overt hatred)

Furthermore, I've also long-touted Tom Fletcher as my #1 celebrity crush. He checks all the boxes of things I love. He's smart. He's a total geek- super into things like Harry Potter, Star Wars, etc. He's a total sweetheart with a healthy dose of sarcasm. Plus, he's a fantastic musician. He's got a beautiful voice, he's a great songwriter, and he plays a couple handfuls of instruments. When he proposed to his now-wife, I was devastated. When his wedding speech went viral, I gave everyone I knew a big "I told you so" as they said how adorable it was. I don't even like kids and I found myself extremely excited for him both times he and Giovanna had a kid.

So, I say all of this to say that this was not just a band to me. In many ways, it's been a huge part of my identity for the past 7 years. My go-to username on websites is literally KristenMcFly (I learned early on that the username was never already taken, and it's just so short and simple that I ran with it). Their faces are all over my bedroom wall at my parents' house, and are staring at me right now from the wall next to my bed in my own apartment. They've left a huge stamp on my life.

Back to the realization, which like I said, was pretty mind-blowing to me. It wasn't even an "oh that can't be true" type thing. I had the thought and immediately realized that I'd practically been lying to myself for quite a while, trying to convince myself that they're still my favorite band. It's been so long since my metaphorical "favorite band" baton has been passed that I didn't recognize the signs staring me in the face.

And the signs have been there. For a long time. I don't quite know how long, and I can't peg for you exactly when things started to change, but I'd say that it's been at least 2 years since I could legitimately consider McFly my favorite band. And what exactly are these telltale signs? I think the first was that I started considering 2 bands my "favorite band." For the longest time, All Time Low was a solid #2. And then, eventually, I started referring to All Time Low as "my favorite band" and considering the pair a tie. Looking back, even then I knew that I listened to, obsessed over, and fangirled over All Time Low much more than I did McFly. I just didn't want to admit it to myself.

Another sign that should've been blatantly obvious? I don't keep up with any of the members. At all. I follow them on social media, but anymore I find myself just scrolling past their posts. Including Tom. He has an entire YouTube channel, which I'm probably still subscribed to, and I don't think I've watched a single one of his videos since like... 2014. Even though he still technically checks all the boxes and is a total sweetheart... I'm not even sure I'd call him one of my celebrity crushes anymore at all. He's certainly still a person/musician I thoroughly respect, but he definitely doesn't tug at my heartstrings in the same way anymore.

And the most obvious sign? I legitimately can't remember the last time I listened to one of their songs. For a while, I've been fully aware that I really haven't been listening to them much. If you're not up-to-date, I've really gotten into KPop over the past 5ish months (note: now ~8/9 months), so pretty much all of my other music has been put on the back burner. But that's a conversation for another day. Either way, even before then, I usually didn't find myself really listening to McFly on a regular basis. I kept telling myself that I just wasn't in the mood for it, that I still loved it, and that if I were to turn it on again I'd still totally jam. And those are all probably true. But how long do I have to be "not in the mood" for a band before it's not considered a short-term thought anymore?

To be perfectly honest, I don't think McFly themselves have really done themselves any favors in this department either. Their last new full-CD release as McFly was in November 2010. AKA 7 years ago, not long after they became my favorite band. They released a Greatest Hits CD in 2012 and a CD as McBusted (McFly + Busted) in late 2014 (a very different sound from solo McFly), but no new studio album as McFly. They've been teasing McFly's 6th album for at least 3 or 4 years at this point, and I've pretty much given up that it'll happen. Most recently, they said they would be recording in January 2017. It's October now and I still haven't heard anything about it. Granted, I don't monitor their social media that closely, but I do still follow them so I would've seen something. But all that said, it doesn't change the fact that I'm still not listening to their older material either. Even when they released the McBusted CD, I didn't listen to that nearly as aggressively as I have with their other music. I'm not sure whether that can be chalked up to it being "McBusted" vs "McFly" but either way, the devotion still wasn't there.

So, I've reached the point where I feel like I have to admit that McFly isn't my favorite band anymore, and like I said, they haven't really been my favorite band for quite a while. But how exactly does this relate to growing up and moving on, as the title mentions? Allow me to enlighten you.

I tend to think of myself as pretty self aware, as I'm sure most of us do. I acknowledge the fact that I've changed a lot since high school, and I think I know myself pretty well as a person. I'm able to look back on the person I was in High School and (while I obviously can't recognize every single change) see so many ways in which I've changed-- I'm basically a totally different person than the 17 year old girl who walked across a stage and got handed her High School diploma. And yet, in the years since then, I've continued to stubbornly hold on to so many of the things I loved back then... just because? Essentially, I easily admit to my changes as a human, but I have difficulty recognizing and accepting my changes in taste, which just seems entirely backward. But here we are.

I'm this way with almost everything I love, though. I take a while to accept that a new show/movie I've watched is worthy of being an all-time favorite, and the same goes for everything else, from YouTubers I watch, to things I like to wear, and even to foods I eat. Seriously, as a kid I ordered chicken tenders at every American restaurant my family went to, and it took a solid 3 years of ordering burgers at every American restaurant I went to before I realized that burgers were my new favorite food. Seriously, I recognize changes in even my literal taste slowly.

I once read a psychological study (might've been pseudo-psychology. I can't remember if it was a legit study or just some silly article online) that said that for most people, the musical taste they develop in their teens will last for the rest of their life. So, I always assumed that my shift in musical taste from the music my parents liked to pop punk/alternative music at age 13 to be the definitive shift in my musical taste that would probably last my entire life. It sounds weirdly definitive, but it's always made some kind of twisted sense to me. So, yet another thing re-enforcing my difficulty accepting my change in taste.

So, once again, we're back to the thought that somehow it's easy (at least, for me) to accept that I've grown up in the past 5 years. I've matured and changed as a human. And yet I take forever to admit to myself that the things I love change right alongside me. I think a large part of it is simply that it's easy to pretend that changes in taste are temporary. I've been telling myself for a really long time that I'm just simply not in the mood for McFly right now, thus convincing myself that they're still #1 despite the fact that I can't even remember the last time I sat down and listened to one of their songs all the way through.

I think another important factor is that I tend to define myself by the things that I love more than by who I am as a person. This might seem weird to some, but I think it makes a lot of sense. Think about the people you follow on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc. Chances are, your personalities don't necessarily line up. But maybe you follow them because you have the same aesthetic, like the same books, or like the same music. Naturally, we group together with people with similar interests, so... it only makes sense to largely define yourself by what you like. It's like high school-- the goth kids aren't necessarily considered "weird" by popular kids because of their personalities, but because of the way they look an the music they're into.

Because of this, I could change significantly personality-wise and it'd have an incredibly small effect on my life in general, and yet some change in the things I like/dislike is enough to make huge waves.

Back to the topic of growing up and moving on, just as I've grown up and moved on from the person I was 7 years ago, I think it's finally time to admit to my change in likes and dislikes that has come alongside it. McFly... is not my favorite band. I'm honestly not even sure if I have a favorite band right now, given that I've recently gotten into KPop and have been listening to that almost exclusively instead of the music I listened to before getting into KPop. I'll keep All Time Low in that slot for the time being, but we'll see what happens (I now have a definitive favorite band. Scroll through my posts and it'll become obvious pretty quickly. *hint: it's definitely NOT Day6. Nope. Definitely not. Not at all.*). I still, of course, do still consider myself a McFly fan. Like I said, if I were to turn on their music right now, I would still really enjoy it. I just don't love them like I used to.

And for some sort of flimsy point to this rambly post? I guess my point is that if you truly want to know who you are as a person, you have to assess both your personality itself, as well as the things you truly love and care about. The personality is of course important to understanding who you are, but if you're like me and define yourself largely by the things you love, it's just as important to actually understand what those things are. But then again, I'm also just trying to make up some arbitrary point so that this post has some semblance of a purpose to it instead of just a stream-of-consciousness thought-dump of stuff that's been on my mind.

So, that's about all I had for this post. Like I said several times, I'm not really sure there's actually a point here, but it's something I've been thinking about quite a bit lately. Typically when I do one of these more thoughtful posts, I tend to try to at least have some sort of cohesive point, but I was fairly certain that wouldn't be happening with this one lol. Let me know if you'd like to see more of these rambly posts in the future. I can't guarantee that they'll happen, since it's kinda dictated by whatever random stuff pops up in my head, but I might end up sharing these thoughts more often. Who knows?

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Monday, January 8, 2018

Ranking BTS's Title Tracks/ Singles

Here I am again, ranking the title tracks by another KPop group! I should probably slow down on these, because I'm running out of groups that I can actually do this with-- many of my favorite groups are new enough that they don't have a ton of title tracks to rank, and I don't stan a ton of groups yet. But, I guess I'll just slow down when I'm forced to. Today, I'm going to be ranking the title tracks by the KPop group that has recently been taking the United States by storm...

I also did a video ranking my top 10, so if you want to see this in video form, that video is embedded below!

BTS is a group that I've been listening to for quite a while now. I think that for a lot of people, they're the group that got them into KPop, but that's not the case for me. They were probably the third group where I actively began to seek out their music and learn the members (after Infinite & Got7) and they were the 4th that I began stanning (after the aforementioned 2 & Day6). I don't want to get into the reasons why I stan them, but in general, I really like the members as well as their music-- especially the title tracks. 

As always with these rankings, I want to give my little disclaimer before jumping into the list. This ranking is based solely on my personal opinion, not on how much the fandom likes it or on general popularity. You might not personally agree with where I've placed a song, and that's alright-- we can agree to disagree. I respect your opinion, and I ask that you do the same thing for me by not getting mad at me in the comments if we disagree. In general, I like all of BTS's songs. If I didn't like BTS, I wouldn't be doing this ranking. Aight, let's jump into the list.

20) N.O

When I first started making this list, I didn't expect N.O to be all the way at the bottom. It's never been my favorite BTS song, but I certainly didn't expect it in last place. But, when listening to all of them in the quick succession that I do when making these lists, every single other song had a little something that propelled it slightly higher than N.O. A slightly catchier chorus, a slightly more interesting verse, etc. Personally, it just doesn't grab me as much as any of the others do.

19) Miss Right

I really love the chorus of Miss Right. It's so soft and cute. I know the song came under some criticism for its lyrics at the same time as Converse High and War of Hormone, but from the translations I've seen, I don't see anything misogynistic and I'm usually rather quick to yell sexism. Unrealistic body standards? A bit. Too much body-praising for my liking? Absolutely. In my interpretation, the narrator of the song is speaking to & praising his girlfriend, not talking about women in general. So, while the lyrics aren't my personal favorite, I don't find them problematic. A bit too much rambling there, but in general the lyrics aren't necessarily my fave, and I don't love the music quite enough to get it higher on the list. 

18) Epilogue: Young Forever

This is the first time I've said this in this post, and about the thousandth time I've said this on my blog, but I tend to naturally gravitate toward and prefer more hype, up-tempo songs over slower songs. Per usual, I like the chorus. I really enjoy J-Hope's rap right before the chorus and the brief silence before the chorus. And in general, I really enjoy the overall vibe of the song. And the lyrics are great as well. Obviously, I enjoy the song. I just prefer their more hype songs. 

17) Attack on Bangtan

I don't have too much to say about Attack on Bangtan. It's super hype, super in-your-face, and it's just a lot of fun. The chorus is great-- total jam song. The real distinguishing factor for me is just that this era of BTS's music isn't my favorite. I still like it, but just not as much as music from their later eras.

16) We Are Bulletproof Pt 2

Still not my favorite BTS era, but I prefer the music of We Are Bulletproof, and I like the lyrics more. I struggle with these first couple title tracks, because I really enjoy the lyrics-- they're not about love and relationships, they talk about how hard they work to achieve their dreams. It's a breath of fresh air. But like I said, this era isn't my fave musically, so it winds up here.

15) I Need U

IMO, we've reached the second tier of BTS songs. From here on out, these are the songs (aside from the newest releases) that I was the most aware of when getting into KPop. It took me months to realize that some of the songs lower on this list even existed. But these 15, these are the ones I saw and heard over and over and over, and therefore were the ones I most grew to love. That said, I'm pretty sure that placing I Need U at 15 is mega controversial. I'm not super aware of the fandom's general ranking of songs, but a reviewer I follow ranked it as the #1 BTS title track. The chorus is certainly one of their most iconic, and I like the rap verses (mainly RM's), but it just hasn't ever grabbed me the same way the songs higher have. Possibly because it's one of their more musically chill songs. 

14) Save Me

Yep, I'm predictable. It's not as hype, it's more chill, and therefore I simply just prefer other songs. Save Me and I Need U are mostly tied for me, and I prefer the chorus of I Need U. But I love the synths in the background of Save Me, as well as how soft the vocals are. Oddly, it's softer and more chill than I Need U, but I prefer it because of that. IDK, I'm weird. 

13) DNA

This was my first comeback as an ARMY and I had super mixed feelings about DNA upon first listen. I'd already fallen in love with the whistle motive, and across the board I really enjoyed the song, but I was surprised at how poppy it was for them. Out of all of their title tracks, it's probably one that's gotten the most replay for me since it's pretty new. Definitely a song I really enjoy, just not quite up to the level of my all-time favorites. 

12) Just One Day

Despite my general apathy toward slower songs, what I really love about Just One Day is how soft the chorus is. Generally, slower songs aren't quite as catchy, and that's probably why I enjoy them slightly less, but the chorus of Just One Day gets stuck in your head super quickly. The verses lose me just a tiny bit because despite the softness of the rapping, it seems to not quite fit the way I would like to. IDK what I would do to change that, though. We're at the point where it's just little tiny things that make me like a song less than the ones above it. 

11) Run

Run was one of the later BTS title tracks that I listened to, after already falling in love with most of the songs higher on this list. And that's likely the only reason that it falls just outside of the top 10. I love the rap verses a lot-- the rhythm paired with the rhythm of the music is really great. And I love the choreo in the chorus, and obviously the chorus is great as well. It's just a really fun song. 

10) Spring Day

Not even kidding, I could watch RM's opening verse in the MV on a constant loop and never get sick of it. The boy looks freakin' gorgeous and his voice is perfection. Spring Day is just beautiful. I love the way Tae's voice sounds on it as well, especially in the bridge ("You know it all, you're my best friend"-- gives me chills). It's by far my favorite of their slower, more emotional songs.

9) Mic Drop

IDK the general fandom sentiment, but for me, the original version of Mic Drop will always be my favorite. I like the Steve Aoki remix alright, but the one feat. Desiigner isn't my fave. So I guess technically despite the fact that I have the Steve Aoki remix embedded here, I'm putting the original version of Mic Drop in this slot. Anyway, I don't even know what to say about this song. The whole thing absolutely destroys me. Especially RM's verse. 

8) Fire

Of all of BTS's title tracks, Fire is probably the one that I would deem the most in-your-face. I mean, the chorus is literally the group yelling FIRE and bow wow wow haha. There's not too much I can say about it. It's a super fun, hype song and it's one that may not be the most musically interesting song in the world but it's really fun to just absolutely blast and jam out to.

7) No More Dream

I'm honestly surprised that I love this one as much as I do-- it's a fantastic song, but it's not the type of song that I gravitate toward. It's probably the most hip-hop skewed title track they've released, and yet I absolutely love it. RM's repetitive "Hey what's your dream" is a motive that I really enjoy, and I'm a big fan of the chorus as well. Plus the lyrics are some of my favorites-- I'm a sucker for songs that urge you to pursue your dreams. 

6) Dope

This was one of the first songs that got me interested in BTS. At the time, I think it was the most viewed of their music videos, so I decided to listen to that one when checking them out, and I really liked it. This was, of course, before I thought to turn on subtitles, so I didn't know that it also had fantastic lyrics accompanying it (probably my favorite BTS lyrics???). Anyway, I'm a big fan of brass instruments in pop music, so those synths mimicking brass instruments are the highlight of the song for me. The chorus is really fantastic, and the rap verses are really well done. It's pretty dope. 

5) War of Hormone

This song. I was extremely conflicted on where to put it on this list. Listening to it without knowing the meaning of the lyrics, it was my favorite BTS song. Hands down. It's honestly not even close. The prominent guitar and drums, the brass instruments... it's exactly what I love, and Tae's gravelly voice is pure perfection with it. But the lyrics... they're so problematic. If you haven't gone and read through them, please do. Plain and simple, the lyrics objectify women, from over-sexualization to calling women a present. They're not the most overtly horrible lyrics I've ever heard in my life, but they do make me uncomfortable, and they are sexist. So, given my opinion on the lyrics, how on earth could I have it this high on the list? Because I'm weak. Plain and simple. Because I don't speak Korean and can easily listen to the song and not think about the meaning behind the sounds I hear their mouths making. It's a lame excuse, and I should probably put it down at the very bottom of this list, but the music is so fantastic that I couldn't bring myself to do so. 

(Note: The members have admitted to some of their past lyrics being problematic, so if you're rushing to defend them, please don't, because they have already recognized their missteps and are taking steps to correct those mistakes going forward. I'm not here to call BTS sexist, I'm just saying that the lyrics of this particular song are. I really respect them for their ability to admit to their mistakes and try not make them again in the future.)

4) Not Today

If Fire is their most bombastic song, Not Today is their most epic. The music video is epic, the choreo is epic, the lyrics are epic, the music is epic, everything is epic. The theme and lyrics are fantastic, and (something that's not super common for me), my favorite part of the song is probably the rap sections. Suga & RM's opening verse is probably my favorite part of the song, TBH. It just gets everything off to an awesome start. When I think about it, what's really cool about Not Today is that when I really think about what I love about the song... the music is almost an afterthought. The vocalists and the rappers are the focal point here, and they carry the song much, much more than the music does. That's super cool.

3) Danger

Ironically, I love Danger for the exact opposite reason I love Not Today. WoH was the first BTS song I ever really loved, but Danger was the first one that made me want to listen to more of their songs. Essentially, WoH was the introduction to BTS, and Danger was what sent me falling straight into the fandom. TBH, I just really, really enjoy the influences in their 2014 title tracks. It's by far my favorite BTS sound-- not only does it have the rock sound and electric guitar, but it often includes nods to 90s hip hop, which wasn't something I realized I loved until hearing it used in BTS's music (seriously, some of these songs give me major flashbacks to playing Tony Hawk games when I was younger. Their 2014 title tracks really make me think of the mix of punk rock and hip hop in the Tony Hawk soundtrack). Anyway, Danger is just such a cool song, from the opening beat boxing, to the rap verses, to the melody in the chorus. It was my favorite BTS song for quite a while as I was first listening to their music.

2) Boy in Luv

I feel like everything I need to say about Boy in Luv has already been said about Danger haha. The mix of rock and hip hop influences is my favorite BTS sound, and it's just so fantastic in Boy in Luv. That said, by far my favorite part of this song is Tae's part. His voice just fits so perfectly with this sound, and the fact that (after a brief intro) Tae's gravelly voice is what starts the song is just really fantastic. The first time I heard Boy in Luv, I loved it and it skyrocketed up my favorites list.

1) Blood Sweat & Tears

Well... I'm sure no one was expecting this, right...? Lol yep, I'm basic. Probably somewhere in the neighborhood of 90% of ARMY name Blood Sweat & Tears as their favorite BTS song, but it's just so good. (that's probably an extreme exaggeration, but like... everyone loves this song.) Anyway, I find it impossible to talk about this song independent of its MV because IT. IS. A. FREAKING. MASTERPIECE. Everything about both the song and the MV is just beautiful. Jimin's voice at the beginning is basically magical. Also the "accidental" jacket thing. Honestly, I should just stop while I'm ahead because I'm about to describe everything in both the song and MV that I love and that's everything. So like... it's beautiful. Everything is beautiful. The end.

So, that's it for my BTS title track rankings. Like I said at the beginning, this is just my personal opinion, so please don't get angry at me in the comments if we disagree. 😊 But! please do let me know your favorite BTS title track down in the comments-- I'm always curious to see which ones are the ones most people love. 

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