Wanna hear something that will freak you out? We’re now so far into BTS’ career that the gap between their debut and releasing the Love Yourself: Tear album is smaller than the gap between that album and today. Smaller! How can that be true when it feels like ‘Fake Love’ on the BBMAs was just yesterday?!
Well, maybe one of the reasons it still feels so new is that it’s some of Bangtan’s best work (a big statement) and a firm fan favorite! Just like the rest of ARMY, we’re still in awe of the storytelling in Tear. It’s an album of two clear halves and is the glue of the whole Love Yourself series.
Despite it being a year that BTS often cite as one of their hardest, 2018 brought them a lot of success too. Love Yourself: Tear was their first album to hit number one on the Billboard 200, making them the first Korean act to ever achieve this, and the first foreign-language album in twelve years.
Because we’re never emotionally recovering from the Love Yourself: Tear era, or anything BTS does for that matter, we’re unpacking seven of our favorite lyrics from the album right here!
All translations in this article are credited to Doolset Bangtan.
결국엔 언젠가 봄이 와
But, eventually, someday, spring will come
If there’s one thing BTS are gonna do, it’s sing about spring. Taehyung’s solo song ‘Singularity’ is a true anomaly in BTS’ discography, and we couldn’t love it more if we tried. The neo-soul track perfectly sets the tone for the experimental nature of the album, as well as the storytelling.
이뤄지지 않는 꿈속에서 / 피울 수 없는 꽃을 키웠어
In a dream that can’t come true / I raised a flower that couldn’t bloom
The idea of something being “fake” comes up time and time again through BTS’ lyrics in Love Yourself: Tear, and that’s never more obvious than in the title track, which is literally called ‘Fake Love.’ The song depicts becoming resentful of a relationship that’s more of a trap than anything else, and our spring motif pops up again with the notion of an eternally unblooming flower.
멈춰서도 괜찮아 / 아무 이유도 모르는 채 달릴 필요 없어
It’s okay to pause / There’s no need to run without knowing the reason
A true fan favorite that BTS paid dust! Justice for her! No, but in all seriousness, ‘Paradise’ is one of the most comforting songs we’ve ever heard, and Love Yourself: Tear wouldn’t be the same without it. Amongst an album full of pain and dashed hopes, BTS reminds us (and themselves) to pause. Life is about happiness and not about wasting your energy for the sake of it! Anyways, we’ll stop preaching now…
문을 하나 만들자 너의 맘 속에다 / 그 문을 열고 들어가면 이 곳이 기다릴 거야 / 믿어도 괜찮아 널 위로해줄 Magic Shop
let’s build a door in your mind / Once you open the door and enter, this place will wait for you / It’s okay to believe Magic Shop that will comfort you
Speaking of comforting songs, what is ARMY without ‘Magic Shop?’ This lyric is lowkey one of the best in BTS’ whole back catalog, and we don’t remember who we were before hearing it, TBH. BTS describing themselves as living behind a secret door inside ARMY’s hearts in times of need is literally the most romantic depiction of the artist-fan relationship we’ve ever heard.
But ballin’ ballin’ still 방탄 / 아파도 hero 두려움은 뒤로
But ballin’ ballin’ still Bangtan / Even if I’m hurt, I’m a hero, put the fear behind
After ‘Magic Shop’ serves as the turning point of Love Yourself: Tear, BTS kick it up a notch! They begin to find themselves again, and are no longer the “dolls” they were in ‘Fake Love.’ In fact, they even name-drop themselves, which is a pretty baller move TBH.
때론 바보같이 멍청이 달리기 / 실수와 눈물 속에 we just go / So what
Sometimes run like a fool / With mistakes and in tears, we just go / So what
And we step the freedom up another level! After being trapped in “puppet strings” for so long, BTS are shrugging the past off their shoulders! This lyric and the energy of ‘So What’ make it easily one of the most fun Bangtan performances.
P.S. We highly recommend you watch all seven of these member-focus videos for ‘So What.’ You can thank us later!
이별은 내게 티어 / 나도 모르게 내 눈가 위에 피어
Goodbye, to me, is tear / Even without my noticing, it comes into bloom around my eyes
Every single lyric in ‘Outro: Tear’ is a big ouch. We won’t go into too much detail on the story behind this track, mostly because our hearts can’t take it, and we’re assuming yours can’t either. But what we will say is that we love how this song brings Love Yourself: Tear full circle. We’ve been waiting for spring to come and flowers to bloom, and now they have, but perhaps not in the way we expected.
Do you see what we mean when we say BTS’ lyrics are next level? Love Yourself: Tear deserves all her flowers (even the ones that can’t bloom!)
Want more BTS? You’ve come to the right place!