Over the last decade, BTS have created a wealth of record-breaking, chart-topping bangers, and songs beloved by their fandom, ARMY. But, with a back catalogue bursting with tracks, there’s always going to be some that don’t get the recognition they deserve. Here are our picks for BTS’ 10 most underrated songs.
‘Love Maze’ (‘Love Yourself: Tear’)
On the ‘Love Yourself’ series, BTS largely examined themes of self-acceptance and, as the title suggested, learning to love who you are. But they also turned their lens to relationships with other people, too, as the slinky, smooth ‘Love Maze’ does. Acknowledging love’s complexities, they refuse to be beaten by them, offering instead: “Take my hand, don’t let go / Lie in this maze.”
‘Fly To My Room’ (‘BE’)
On ‘BE’, BTS aimed to provide some escape and distraction from, and comfort during, the pandemic. ‘Fly To My Room’ turned the isolating nature of that period, where you could only see your friends and family through Zoom and FaceTime, into a steady bop, Suga, Jimin, J-Hope and V going on a virtual journey anywhere and “outta my blues”.
‘Could You Turn Off Your Cell Phone’ (‘Dark&Wild’)
If you’ve ever complained about your mates spending more time looking at their phones than interacting with you, BTS have a song for you. “Could you turn off your cell phone? / Everyone says it’s smart / But we’re all getting dumber,” they lament. “Look at my face and give me a mention / I don’t need a like.”
‘The Truth Untold’ (‘Love Yourself: Answer’)
You’d never guess this song was produced by Steve Aoki just from listening to it. Instead of taking the form of a pumping EDM banger, it’s a tender, heartfelt ballad and one of BTS’ most beautiful songs. Sung by the vocal line of Jin, Jimin, V, and Jungkook, it’s also a stunning example of just how spine-tingling and emotional the group’s voices can be.
‘Hold Me Tight’ (‘The Most Beautiful Moment In Life’)
Throughout their 10 years together so far, BTS have become experts at writing about love from all angles. ‘Hold Me Tight’ tackles the desperation that comes with a relationship that’s dying, the feeling of clinging on as hard as you can palpable in its exquisite songwriting.
‘Respect’ (‘Map Of The Soul: 7’)
RM and Suga go back and forth with each other on the word “respect” on this bright, fun retro-tinged track, discussing how empty the term has become from overuse. Instead of taking the subject too seriously, though, the pair inject plenty of humour into the song, particularly in the call-and-response part of Suga’s verse, where he asks RM: “What is ‘respect’? / I don’t know, that’s why I’m asking, you rascal.”
‘Where You From’ (‘Skool Luv Affair’)
BTS have always maintained a strong connection with their roots, no matter how huge they’ve gotten around the world. On ‘Where You From’, they highlight their own origins as they address a new crush, delivering their lines in satoori – or the dialects from the members’ home regions.
Love isn’t the only thing BTS sing and rap about, but life and the trials that come throughout it too. ‘Lost’ captures the feeling of not knowing what direction to turn next, faced with numerous potential paths but unsure which is the right one to head down.
‘A Supplementary Story: You Never Walk Alone’ (‘You Never Walk Alone’)
If there’s one thing BTS are going to do in their music, it’s make sure you never feel alone. The closing track of ‘You Never Walk Alone’ is case in point, the seven-piece offering solidarity throughout over a minimal, bubbling instrumental.
‘Paldogangsan’ dates back to before BTS had even debuted, with a version of it released in 2011. But in 2013, it got an official release, the rap line’s (RM, Suga, and J-hope) lively hip-hop track showcasing to the world Korean dialects while spreading a message of peace.
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