The sophomore Korean studio album Wings from BTS – also known as Bangtan Boys – pretty much solidified its status as a major contender for the gritty boy band crown (temporarily left vacant by Bigbang).
Not long after the record’s release late last year, this rookie act is back to take another stab at the big boy’s game with You Never Walk Alone, a repackaged version of BTS’ previous full-length album.
The decision behind this whopping 18-track collection can be accredited to commercial purposes, which of course, it is. Nothing says instant money to music labels than throwing in a couple new songs (in this case, four) and release it as a new full-length album.
But You Never Walk Alone does have its merits too. For the uninitiated, the album is a fantastic introduction to the group. The infectious EDM sounds (Blood Sweat & Tears), jazzy swing (Mama) and smashing rap verses (BTS Cypher 4) all prop up the group as K-pop phenoms to look out for.
It helps that each of the seven members of BTS has a solo album, too, which is a relatively unheard of move in K-pop. This allows for each member’s individuality to shine through.
Spring Day, one quarter of the new offerings, sees the boys baring their soul, shedding light on a more sentimental side of the group. It’s the most vulnerable cut on the album – a given, considering how the song deals with losing someone.
Elsewhere, the remaining new numbers don’t really justify the repackaging of an entire album. But in the world of K-pop, hardcore fans might beg to differ.
You Never Walk Alone
Big Hit Entertainment