[News] K-Pop’s Biggest Boy Band BTS: ‘We Write About Things People Don’t Want to Say’ | RollingstoneIndia [170614]

K-Pop’s Biggest Boy Band BTS: ‘We Write About Things People Don’t Want to Say’

Rap Monster, leader of the South Korean boy group, discusses their intense lyricism, addressing taboo topics, fan theories and Daler Mehndi

If you’re a millennial with an Internet connection, chances are, you have seen the letters ‘BTS’ flood your social media timeline at least once in the last few months. Tidbits of information about the Bangtan Boys (also called Beyond the Scene and labeled as “South Korea’s biggest boy group” by publications) make numerous rounds on the Internet everyday—articles from prestigious publications gush about numerous accolades (their recent Billboard Top Social Artist victory over pop giants Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez is a common favorite) and the awe around the seven-member group’s Herculean social media power often precedes their music itself.

After six months of trying to score a conversation with the group that Time magazine declared as one of the most influential artists on social media, it’s a little surreal to receive a confirmation. When the day arrived for the conversation with Kim Namjoon aka Rap Monster, the main rapper and leader of BTS, it went from dreamlike to nerve-wracking. However when we finally do connect via Skype, he takes the lead and breaks the ice immediately, asking how I’m doing and, “What time is it there?” It is 6:33 pm in Mumbai to Seoul’s 10 pm and just like that, talking to him is the easiest thing in the world.

A lot of the time BTS’ seven members– Rap Monster, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V and Jungkook– serve as the gateway for most people discovering the glittering world of K-pop. They are the biggest hook in the recent fad of reaction videos on YouTube and while many fans feel it’s just a way for YouTubers to glom off the group’s fame, it’s also the number one method to blow “Gangnam Style”-influenced stereotypes right out of the water; the power-packed, gleaming music video for their 2015 single “Dope” or 2016’s baroque-infused “Blood, Sweat and Tears” are prime examples of South Korea’s commitment to stellar music production, after all. However, as Rap Monster explains, becoming a bridge between cultures is not a simple task. “We never expected that, you know,” he says, adding that while it’s an honor, it’s a lot of responsibility for a group who are all still in their early twenties. “If we are the first ones to be introduced to people in the West and India and Europe, it makes us think, ‘Okay we should be greater’.” With the influence the group has on the global music scene currently and as representatives of their country, the pressure is immense. “We feel the weight. It’s quite heavy.”

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[News] How boy group BTS defied the odds to break K-Pop’s borders | Dazed [170711]

How boy group BTS defied the odds to break K-Pop’s borders

In just four short years the seven-piece band have amassed an obsessive fanbase, derailed Korea’s ‘Big 3’ record labels and become the country’s most prominent act to break the west

Since their legions of fans, known most simply as A.R.M.Y. (‘Adorable Representative M.C. for Youth’), propelled them to snatch Best Social Act from under the nose of Justin Bieber at the Billboard Awards in May, the seven members of South Korean group BTS – rappers Rap Monster, J-Hope, and Suga; vocalists Jimin, Jin, Jungkook, and V – have been covered slavishly by publications from Vogue to AllureForbes to People, making them easily the most prominent Korean act in the west since PSY broke through way back in the wilderness of 2012 with “Gangnam Style”.

They may still be regarded as an overnight phenomenon by an American media awed by the group’s social media muscle power, but even the tiniest peek behind the glittery curtain shows how ferociously BTS have dedicated themselves to nurturing a long-term symbiotic relationship between the group and their fandom. Those seven immensely likeable and robust personalities have been constantly channeled for over four years into a social media omnipresence via Twitter, a series of mini-shows (such as American HustleBon VoyageRun BTS!, and BTS GAYO) broadcast on a variety of online platforms, and hundreds of the behind-the-scenes YouTube videos known as Bangtan Bombs that capture the mundane side of stardom – endless dressing rooms, hotels, and travelling – and the mischief they make during that time.

It’s been an emotional journey during which they’ve created their own little online universe that’s a haven for the members and fans, dense with in-jokes and catchphrases (as well as a few trials and tribulations), a secret language that fans slowly pick up on the deeper they go into it. This intimacy has forged an unbreakable connection between BTS and A.R.M.Y. and translated into a steamroller of support that flattens other fandoms – but also prompted other groups to up their social game, from groups like Astro adopting BTS’s selfie-heavy approach to new boy group WannaOne aping the @BTS_twt Twitter account with @WannaOne_twt.

Of course, none of this would command people’s attention if it weren’t for BTS’s stellar creative output, which is just as personal as their off-stage presence. Their self-penned lyrics can be frank and raw, while their music both experiments with and merges genres from hip hop to rock, EDM to future bass, and the accompanying videos contain rich storytelling around social realism, which have helped establish a new standard for K-Pop visuals.

Everything about BTS’s immense impact is felt more keenly simply because they were never expected to succeed at all, let alone challenge K-Pop’s status quo, where groups from the big entertainment companies rule the roost and those from smaller companies, like BTS, fill in the gaps. Even up until as recently as last year, BTS were viewed by the industry as underdogs and outliers, something they appeared to embrace and make part of their identity – even if only to loudly smash that status against the platinum records they’re chalking up.

With 16 video singles to date, BTS’s catalogue is overflowing with memorable work that’s set them apart from their contemporaries. Here, we look at five major milestone videos that helped define the group’s singular, unstoppable rise to pop royalty.

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[News] BTS, Unveiled New Symbol·Logo “It Will Be A New Identity” [170705]

[OSEN=Reporter Jeong Jeewon] The group BTS has suddenly unveiled a new BI (Brand Identity).

Through its official fancafe, social media channels, and homepage, BTS revealed a surprise motion graphic video of BTS and its fanclub A.R.M.Y’s revised BI.

The video starts with the copy ‘SEE YOU THERE’, and a small ray of light appears in the centre of the screen, followed by the silhouette of a door. The door opens slowly, and the light passes through the door, with the new signature of BTS and A.R.M.Y appearing on both sides. It ends with leader Rap Monster’s narration of ‘Beyond The Scene, BTS’. Continue reading “[News] BTS, Unveiled New Symbol·Logo “It Will Be A New Identity” [170705]”

[News] Rap Monster of Breakout K-Pop Band BTS on Fans, Fame and Viral Popularity | Time Magazine [170629]

BTS may be the biggest musical act you’ve never heard of — unless you’re already one of the Korean pop group’s millions-strong fanbase. The seven-member boy band, Bangtan Sonyeondan (or BTS for short), is know for their catchy pop-rap, sharp music video choreography and candid social media presence. They’ve recently leveraged their popularity into blockbuster stadium tours and Billboard’s prize for Top Social Artists of the year, as well as nabbing a spot on TIME’s list of 25 Most Influential People on the Internet.

It’s not hard to see why: a live video of two members applying face masks roped in half a million concurrent viewers. Their backstage selfies regularly rack up half a million likes. A red carpet appearance can kick off a global Twitter trend. But how did they get here?

“We’re just a normal group of boys from humble backgrounds who had a lot of passion and a dream to be famous,” says singer and songwriter Kim Nam-joon, who goes by the moniker Rap Monster and, as the only English-speaking member of the group, often represents BTS in interviews. Currently on tour in Japan, Rap Monster took the time to explain BTS’ rise and how the group feeds its hungry fanbase. Continue reading “[News] Rap Monster of Breakout K-Pop Band BTS on Fans, Fame and Viral Popularity | Time Magazine [170629]”

[News] K-Pop Group BTS Reveals Its Biggest Beauty Secrets for Glowing Skin | Allure [170622]

Last month, BTS, a K-Pop group from Seoul, cemented itself in American pop culture by winning the Top Social Artist Award at the Billboard Music Awards. The second the boy band hit the magenta red carpet, thousands were exposed to the wonders of K-Pop. Since then, people have been quick to call BTS, which is short for Bangtan Sonyeondan (or Bulletproof Boy Scouts in English), the One Direction of South Korea. However, that’s just an easy way to give them some context. In reality, BTS is actually completely different. Why? The seven-piece group’s performances are complete with flawless choreography, expert rapping, high-fashion looks, and insanely catchy vocals. Oh yeah, and they look damn good while doing so. Continue reading “[News] K-Pop Group BTS Reveals Its Biggest Beauty Secrets for Glowing Skin | Allure [170622]”

[News] Jang Moon Bok Of Produce101Season2 Talks About Longtime Friendship With BTS’s V [170621]

“Produce 101 Season 2” contestant Jang Moon Bok recently shared some insights into his musical inspirations as well as his friendship with BTS member V.

In an interview that took place on June 19, Jang Moon Bok said, “I first became interested in music because of rap, but I also thought about performing as an idol. I really liked BIGBANG and Highlight. I fostered my dream while listening to their music.” Continue reading “[News] Jang Moon Bok Of Produce101Season2 Talks About Longtime Friendship With BTS’s V [170621]”