Every BTS album, from 2014 to 2020, ranked

BTS - Getty New Years Eve
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BTS has released a lot of music since they first formed in 2013. Since then, a lot of their songs have become well-loved and recognized by fans around the world. And while some knew the group thanks to the songs that were constantly played on the radio, some knew the group from the very start when they first formed.

The well-known K-pop group released nine studio albums, a couple of re-releases, and multiple compilation albums and EPs, each of them showcasing BTS’s experimentation and how they grew as a group over the years. But out of their multiple releases, which one of them is the best?

Here are every BTS album, from 2014 to 2020, ranked.

7. BE

BE is BTS’s fifth Korean studio album, which was released during the COVID-19 pandemic. So of course, the songs are based around and were inspired by lockdowns and what it was like to be stuck at home. A majority of the songs are softer and less dance-heavy. It was also the first album where their first English lyrics song “Dynamite” was included, which was streamed over 1 billion times on Spotify.

It was a perfect album that fit the overall mood that the world was in during those unprecedented times.

6. Dark & Wild

Dark & Wild was an album that focused on maturity, moving on from the school themes the previous EP (Skool Luv Affair) had. Before the album’s release, a trailer was released on YouTube, which featured the song “What Am I To You.” The video starts with romantic and beautiful scenery, only to drag the viewer to a dark and depressing world. The album had more of a “bad boy” vibe and was clearly seen in their music video for their featured single “Danger.”

5. Wake Up

Releasing an album featuring Japanese versions of popular songs isn’t new. Plenty of K-pop groups tend to rerelease re-recorded songs in another language just to reach a wider audience. And BTS is no different. And after 3 EPs and an album, BTS released Wake Up, a studio album featuring songs from their previous releases, but sung in Japanese. The album contained two new songs – “The Stars” and “Wake Up.” According to the Japanese music site Oricon, “Wake Up” made it to the top of the Japanese music charts for the first time as it sold over 28,000 copies during its first week.

4. MAP OF THE SOUL: 7

MAP OF THE SOUL: 7 was described by fans as an album where BTS felt “united” as a group more than ever. The singles that were featured were based on how the band was perceived. Yet, it also talked about the band’s growth and the journey they’ve been through as a group for seven years. The album was so successful in America that one of the songs, “Friends,” was featured in the Marvel film, Eternals.

Five months later, a Japanese version studio album was released titled Map of The Soul: 7 – The Journey.

3. Love Yourself

Love Yourself was an album released in three parts – An EP (Her), a studio album (Tear), then a compilation album (Answer). What’s also significant about this release was that it was the first album released after the group changed its brand identity from “Bangtan Sonyeondan” (Bulletproof Boy Scouts) to “Beyond the Scene.”

Love Yourself has somewhat of a story structure within each of their songs. It’s about a boy who falls in love, only to realize that they’re not compatible. It’s only until the end when he learns to love himself and can move on from heartache. The album also made waves as it was announced that Nicki Minaj would be featured in the song “Idol.”

In 2017, BTS released Face Yourself, a studio album featuring songs from Love Yourself: Her, but in Japanese.

2. The Most Beautiful Moment in Life

Back in the day, before BTS was played on contemporary radio, plenty of BTS fans would point to new fans to the music video of the song “Dope.” To most fans, this song was their first exposure to this K-pop group. The Most Beautiful Moment in Life was somewhat also a three-part album release. Part 1 contained nine new songs, including “Dope,” but it also featured their other single “I Need U,” which talked about their uncertain futures. Part 2 was released seven months later in November 2015, which added nine more new songs such as “Butterfly.” Part 3 was labeled as “Forever Young,” combined the two EPs as a compilation album, and added three new songs.

This type of album release would continue in future BTS entries moving forward. In September 2016, BTS released Youth, an album with Japanese versions of some of the popular tracks from The Most Beautiful Moment in Life.

1. Wings

“Wings” is one of BTS’s most successful albums as according to the Korean website Naver, it sold over 1.49 million copies in 2017. The album contained the hit single “Blood, Sweat, and Tears” which was streamed over 435 million times on Spotify and was viewed over 892 million times on YouTube. In 2017, a “repackaged” album titled You Never Walk Alone was released and included three new songs.

This album was so successful that it led to the Kpop group being featured in Rolling Stone. Looking back, this album was the start of BTS’ music dominance in the Western music scene.

Recently, BTS announced that the group would be going on a break and would be focusing on their solo work. But, just because the group stopped making music doesn’t mean we shouldn’t revisit their past work. Each of their releases showcased how BTS has grown together both artistically and as a group. So, looking back on their past songs is a good reminder of what this group has been through and how their music slowly made an impact in the Western music scene and how the world viewed K-pop as a genre.