BTS's V (real name: Kim Tae-hyung) has unveiled an album that beautifully captures his intrinsic color.
Today, at 1 pm, V released his solo album 'Layover'. While V has previously released solo tracks included in BTS albums, self-composed songs shared as free tracks, and drama OSTs, this is his first solo album under his own name.
'Layover' consists of six tracks, including the title track 'Slow Dancing', pre-released 'Rainy Days', 'Love Me Again', 'Blue', 'For Us', and a bonus track 'Slow Dancing (Piano Ver.)'. This album reflects 100% of V's musical taste.
So, what exactly is V's taste? In one word: "Jazz". V had previously mentioned in an interview that this album has a jazz vibe. Jazz, originating from the African-American culture in New Orleans, Louisiana, in the late 19th to early 20th century, is a musical genre that combines elements from European classical music, gypsy music, blues, and more. Among the diverse emotions jazz offers, V seems to be particularly captivated by its 'melancholy'.
V has long proclaimed himself a fan of the legendary American jazz musician Chet Baker (1929-1988). As evident from the title of Baker's biographical film 'Born to be Blue', Baker was a musician whose melancholy was deeply embedded in his music. The inclusion of the track 'Blue' in V's album suggests he wanted to express the melancholic beauty of jazz.
Melancholic jazz feels especially poignant when listened to on a rainy day. The movie 'A Rainy Day in New York', which features a memorable scene of Gatsby (played by Timothée Chalamet) playing the piano and singing Chet Baker's classic 'Everything Happens to Me', didn't just randomly choose the term 'Rainy Day' for its title. Similarly, V's inclusion of the track 'Rainy Days' in his album is no coincidence.
The melancholy of jazz offers listeners a sense of solitude and a peculiar comfort. Introducing his album, V said, "The title track is 'Slow Dancing'. As the name suggests, it's a song you can listen to leisurely. There's a flute performance in the latter half, and I hope everyone feels free and relaxed while listening to it." V's wish for ARMY (BTS's fandom) to take a brief respite in his album 'Layover' and experience the comfort of slowness is evident. Just as he felt when listening to jazz.
V added, "Producer Min Hee-jin captured what some might see as my weakness - my natural slowness in speech and action - and turned it into a unique feature of this album. That's why I think the music I wanted came out." It's because of V's inherent slowness that he beautifully perceives the melancholy of jazz. And with this album, he successfully showcases that beauty as he takes his first official solo step.