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BTS Drop Smooth, Groovy Single ‘Butter’

In a press conference today, the South Korean septet expressed their hope to make everyone’s summer a little brighter with the playful track

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South Korean superstars BTS have unveiled their brand new single “Butter” along with its gleaming music video. The release was preceded by a special countdown feature, during which the band discussed the track while making buttered toast and sandwiches. “Butter” is also now the fastest music video to reach 10 million views on YouTube, accomplishing the task in under 10 minutes–a record that was previously held by BTS’ “Dynamite” at 13 minutes.

BTS are confident and smooth in the music video for “Butter,” diving into an Eighties retro aesthetic as they dance along to the beat. The clip opens with a strong percussion ensemble and monochromatic frame (a taste of which fans got in the teaser video) showing vocalist Jung Kook waltzing in and singing  “Smooth like butter/ Like a criminal undercover/ Gon’ pop like trouble/ Breakin’ into your heart like that”. The distinct baseline keeps the momentum going before the track switches sounds, foraying in an entrancing synth-led chorus as Jung Kook, Jin, Jimin and V sing, “Side step, right, left to my beat (Heartbeat)/ High like the moon, rock with me, baby/ Know that I got that heat/  Let me show you cos talk is cheap/ Side step, right, left to my beat (Heartbeat)/ Get it, let it roll.”

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The group move on to deliver power-packed performances against an array of flamboyant backdrops while rappers SUGA, RM, and j-hope take over for their verses. Notably, RM takes the opportunity to acknowledge the BTS fandom ARMY’s unconditional love and support as he raps, “Fresh boy pull up and we lay low/ All the playas get movin’ when the bass low/ Got ARMY right behind us when we say so/ Let’s go.” The group also incorporated the word ‘ARMY’ into their choreography as a special gift.

Written by Rob Grimaldi, Stephen Kirk, Ron Perry, Jenna Andrews, Alex Bilowitz, Sebastian Garcia and BTS’ leader RM, “Butter” is an upbeat, fresh, yet nostalgic celebration of summer. The lyricism is playful and also features subtle shoutouts to past hits such as “U Got It Bad” by Usher, “Ice On My Wrist” by Master P and “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson, while the production is a blend of shimmering Eighties bass synth and dance pop.

In a press conference earlier today, the group explained that “Butter” is a simple song to make everyone’s summer a little brighter amidst the global crisis of Covid-19. Jimin said, “We prepared a song for easy listening rather than a heavy message. It’s cute and a little charismatic.” Regarding the choreography, j-hope explained, “‘Butter’ is really energetic and cute so the performance also reflects that. So [there are moves like] kissing our hands, a sort of mischievous look, brushing our hair back.”

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BTS demonstrating some of the poses from their “Butter” music video at a press conference today. Photo: Courtesy of Big Hit Music

The group also addressed the comparison of “Butter” to legendary rock band Queen’s “Another One Bites The Dust” (and the latter’s subsequent shoutout to BTS) with RM stating, “Queen, they are our seniors of course. Obviously when we were at Wembley stadium, this was when ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ was really popular in Korea, and we did the [shoutout.] But “Butter” was not a sampling or homage, I can say that with certainty.” Vocalist Jin added that if there is ever an opportunity for a collaboration with Queen however, BTS are more than ready.

BTS will perform “Butter” live for the first time at this year’s Billboard Music Awards on Sunday, May 23rd. On “Butter” hopefully scoring the group their next Number One on the Hot 100, rapper SUGA said playfully, “Number One on the Billboard Hot 100… I think we can do it.”

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