Saturday, November 3, 2018

I will always appreciate these "behind the scenes" album reviews from RM. BTS are taking a much-deserved mini break right now — having just returned to Seoul from the European leg of their tour — but I'm sure that despite getting a little bit more free time to themselves, they're still busy with schedules for their upcoming release of their Japanese single album, preparing for the Japanese leg of the Love Yourself tour in a couple weeks (where, for the first time ever, they're playing all domes — that's 50,000+ people per concert, in comparison to the 15,000 to 20,000 arenas that they played in North America and Europe), end-of-the-year award shows and performances, photoshoots and music videos for upcoming releases, filming footage for BTS Episodes and Bangtan Bombs and possibly new episodes for Run BTS!, and working on new music for their next album (I always thought it was the norm for artists to release albums every two to three years, as that's what is common for Western music, but BTS continually creates new music all year round because they do two comebacks a year, which really requires an intense work ethic). Basically, activities that they couldn't do while they were on tour overseas.

Despite all that, though, RM still takes the time out of his day to talk about BTS albums and the stories, inspirations, or production work behind each track. In this case, for his latest playlist, mono. (I actually didn't really understand why he called it a "playlist" instead of a "mixtape" this time around, and then he explained how we live in a streaming age now where access to music is instant, so it wasn't really appropriate to call these solo projects "mixtapes" anymore.) It's pretty crazy that he had been working on mono. for over two years, just saving these tracks that he worked so hard on and hold so much meaning and emotional attachment to him, to release to the public for free even though he could have released them on BTS albums. I think this is really a testament to his artist integrity. Because of mono., RM has become the highest-charting Korean solo act on the Billboard 200 and #1 on Billboard's Emerging Artists Chart, and it is so, so, so well-deserved.
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