Yes, yes I know – another BTS so close to the last one but I promise you there won’t be another mention of them until S so you’re safe for now. I couldn’t not put this song in this list for obvious reasons – this song messed me up and continues to mess me up to this day.
When I say this album is a monster, I bloody mean it. It was released on 2 May 2016 with a whopping 23 tracks spread out over two discs. Although this could be regarded as a repackaged album it did feature three new songs – as well as full length versions of previous album outros – Fire, Save Me and Epilogue: Young Forever.
I said it could be regarded as a repackaged album because 20 of the songs were from their previous two instalments in their The Most Beautiful Moment In Life trilogy – this album being the last instalment. To be fair, some of the songs were remixes which provided different executions of their previously produced tracks but do you know how annoying it is to have multiple of the same song??? It’s a hardship that I’m more than happy to be annoyed with internally.
This song was released before their two title tracks were released. Young Forever was released 19 April 2016 as a kind of teaser for this upcoming album to be released along with their two title tracks Fire and Save Me.
Young Forever starts of with slow piano chords before Rap Monster comes in with a slow rap. Interestingly, he seems to be the background vocals as well which makes it seem like all the members are contributing to the start of this song but really, it’s just Namjoon. He tends to rap in a monotonous way while still sounding like he’s almost singing as he keeps his voice soft. When Suga comes in with his token roughness and unmistakable rapping the beat kicks in, though no other instrumentation other than the piano heard at the start. Like Rap Monster, Suga sings as well but this time at the end of his lines as well as being his own echo in the background. I’m not too sure why they did that as Suga is probably the least talented in singing but I feel like it’s a kind of foreshadowing for the melody that’s about to happen when the chorus hits. As J Hope comes in straight after Suga his signature rap/sing-style unifies everything the previous two were doing, only this time it sounds more uniform as he adds in harmonies into the main verses and in the background vocals. When J Hope draws an end to his verse he shouts out without any musical accompaniment “영원히 소년이고 싶어 난 Aah” which translates to “I want to stay young forever”. This part of the song was done so well and you can’t help but hear the desperation in his voice. When the chorus kicks in after J Hopes yell, the beat finally picks up and is now complete sounding.
The song is about performing on a stage and being absolutely terrified but continuing to chase their dreams. A topic like this is very important to people – particularly teenagers – who are afraid of what’s to come and the challenges that lay ahead. Yet another reason why I love BTS so much – they have an ability to relate to such a wide range of people in a way that unifies us all together.
I stand on the middle of the hot, empty stage
And suddenly I feel so afraid of the void
These mixed feelings with my life on the line
I pretend to be careless
This isn’t the first time, I better get used to it
I try to hide it, but I can’t
When the heat of the show cools down
I leave the empty seats behind
Trying to comfort myself
I tell myself the world can’t be perfect
I start to let myself go
The thundering applause, I can’t own it forever
I tell myself, so shameless
Raise your voice higher
Even if the attention isn’t forever,
I’ll keep singing
I want to stay this way for life
I want to stay young forever
Aah Forever we are young
Under the flower petals raining down
I run, so lost in this maze
Forever we are young
Even when I fall and hurt myself
I keep running toward my dream
The parts I enjoy the most are in beginning verses from the rap-line, the catchy chorus and the last 1 minute of the song when the beat totally slows down and the vocal-line share a moment to share their vulnerability. In this part specifically, the only beat is the sound of clapping which is only enforced by a choir of voices that keep repeating the chorus over and over again while the vocals do their runs over top. Again, this is a way to unify those with similar feelings. Almost as if saying that it’s ok to be afraid as long as you’re working towards what you love.