Perfect Album Series: Dark and Wild by BTS

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To kick off the Perfect Album series, I want to talk about my favorite album of all time: Dark and Wild. This was well before the dynamic Love Yourself and the magnificently emotional The Most Beautiful Moment in Life trilogy. No, this was BTS in its angsty school boy prime. To say that this album is a masterpiece is honestly an understatement. If you took a poll on Twitter right now, I guarantee most OG ARMYs would agree that Dark and Wild is The album.

The Composition

The album starts off with an intro from our favorite leader, RM. And it’s auditory journey. The song begins with strings that sound straight out of a movie but it darkens. Namjoon’s rap rises in desperation and as it does, the energy of the song shifts. It ends on this angry note and it sets up the rest of the album for the expedition you’re about to embark on.

The rest of the album works its way through the downfalls of young love. While Skool Luv Affair was a celebration of the brighter, lighter parts of young love, this explores ever tumultuous heartbreak teenagers go through. It had one of the most emotional songs BTS had put out until that point, Let Me Know, and each track was tinged with that darkness, that–for lack of a better word–sexiness.

The Highlights

Obviously every song on this album is amazing, that’s the whole point of the Perfect Album. But there are some tracks that truly solidify it as a Perfect Album for me.

For starters, there’s the intro. I’ve already talked about it a little bit but What Am I To You? has one of the most unbelievable musical transitions I’ve ever heard in my life. It tells a story and sets a stage. All in all, an incredible start to an incredible album.

Then there’s Rain, which is one of my personal favorites. I once jokingly told my best friend that I felt like Rain should play as you enter the Museum of Modern Art because it’s that beautiful.

And of course anyone in their right mind would love Cypher Pt. 3 and Look Here, but can we talk for a second about 24/7=Heaven? Or Embarrassed? I can’t hear either of those songs without getting a huge smile plastered onto my face.

I think what really make the album though are the transitional pieces. The intro, the interlude, and the outro are all so well-suited to their position in the album and they do such a monumental job in grounding the listener in the world of the album. They’re such little things, but they do so much for the cohesion of all the songs.

Final Thoughts

I will talk about Dark and Wild morning, noon, and night. With the addition of Wings and The Most Beautiful Moment in Life trilogy and Love Yourself, it can be easy to forget the older BTS works, but Dark and Wild was such a significant moment in BTS history. It was an era where BTS was still finding themselves musically and in the world and they leaned into that uncertainty and that struggle and made something beautiful with it.

Tell me, what did you all think about Dark and Wild? Do you think there is another BTS album that deserves the title of Perfect Album?

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3 comments on “Perfect Album Series: Dark and Wild by BTS”

  1. Thank you for mentioning Intro: What Am I to You!!!!! I LOVE that song and no one ever talks about it! Easily one of BTS’s most impressive feats ever! And you’re right, the intro/interlude/outro pieces are so important to D&W.

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  2. i have yet to explore some of the past BTS albums in full but I will. The only full albums I have downloaded and ‘studied’ are Wings and Love Yourself since I only discovered BTS earlier this year (before BBMAs). I agree with you – they have an art of how they tell a story from song to song to complete the album. With transitions of Intros, Interludes and Outros… it’s quite the masterpiece! This is why I am deep into BTS now. I’ve been studying some of the lyrics and it’s so poetic it brings chills down my spine at times! Funny you should mention playing their song throughout a museum… I’m hoping to steal time on my birthday so I can just walk through the art gallery with my ear buds in. I plan to create a BTS playlist which will fit the mood. A little birthday present to me (I like finding solitude on my birthday).

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