As BTS have started to roll out their solo material as members enlist, we’ve begun to get a feel for what each of their sounds might be as individuals apart from the group. But while Jungkook has had solo material before, he’s one of the last to really have his own single release that might indicate what he wants to do, and “Seven” emphatically locks in the direction he wants to go. Thankfully, it’s a hell of a promising one.
From the first listen, “Seven” reminded me (pun intended) a bit of Craig David‘s more UK garage-centered tracks, with an acoustic guitar to lighten the mood a bit, yet it also reminded me of the lyrical focus of the R&B of “7 Days“. So it’s a very Western pop formula, but as somebody who was a fan of Craig David’s music, it’s a potent combination nevertheless. The soundscape plays like a psy op to solve the country’s birth rate issues, disguised as a breezy summer anthem, as it’s buttery smooth and surprisingly intoxicating throughout. Additionally, while a lot of featurings by Western artists in K-pop tend to seem either like a phoned in cameo or out of place and just there for association, Latto provides a necessary injection of life and edge to the song at the right moment where she also prevents things from getting too repetitive.
While “Seven” doesn’t have an explosive anthemic chorus, one like that wouldn’t fit here anyway, and the core refrain reciting the days of the week and then dropping “every hour every minute every second, you know night after night, I’ll be fuckin’ you right” works perfectly as a memorable hook. Vocally, it’s still a softer serenade that’s amusingly contrasted by being explicitly about sex, and I loved how the track just keeps its momentum pumping and thrusting the song forward without resting. Just a fun, addictive, and replayable summer offering.
Even the music video works well, taking a playful angle with the song that even dabbles into straight-up meme-baiting (the funeral scene is amazing). It helps “Seven” avoid slipping into self-seriousness, yet still delivers interesting set pieces to work with (and also Han So Hee doesn’t hurt). So while up until now most of my interest in BTS’s solo works have centered around their rap line, with “Seven”, Jungkook definitely provides ample reason to look forward to his solo career as well, and this has honestly just makes me long for an album.