Deepika Gill, Gurgaon, Haryana
O!RUL8,2? (Oh! Are you late, too?), by BTS is their first mini-album released in 2013 after ‘2 Cool 4 Skool.’ It was released on September 11, 2013. It consists of 10 tracks namely Intro: O!RUL8,2?, N.O., We On, Skit: R U Happy Now?, If I Ruled the World, Coffee, Cypher: Pt.1., Attack on Bangtan, Paldogangsan, and Outro: Luv in Skool. Through this album, BTS convey a message “you must find your happiness and your own life before it’s too late.” The lyrics of the tracks in this album brutally lay open reality as it delivers a bold admonition to a world that inflicts despair. Children are raised like study machines without a motive and without a chance to think about their future by themselves.
A world where classmates are not friends but competitors who are trying to trample each other. BTS sing about the sounds and anguish that such hopeless life has left on today’s teens. The concept trailers of the album shows them under the dark light which soon turns into the members doing hip hop and getting caught by the police.
The music video teaser shows that all the students are settled on their benches while they do everything their teacher asks them to, like puppets.
But at last, their bottled up emotions come out as they all stand against their teacher. Similarly, music video teaser 2 shows them all dressed up in white, repeating the line, ‘EVERYBODY SAY N.O,’ which means ‘No Offence.’ Therefore, this album implies that as some children are not given choices and are forced to do what their parents and society wants them to, they should say NO to such restrictions and take a stand for themselves.
If you listen to the intro of the album, The group leader Kim Nam-joon who goes by the stage name RM explains the meaning. They are saying not to be late to do what you want to do. RM refers to the time when he did not do what he wanted, he studied instead of pursuing his dreams. So he’s saying, “Are you late like I was?” This relates to their title track ‘N.O’ which talks about the pressure of the school system and society to focus only on studying and being the best which takes away your passion and humanity.
Moving on to the hard copy part of the album. The hardcover of the album is white in color with ‘O!RUL8,2?’ highlighted in red. It comes with a poster, and 2 photo-cards, in which one of them is a random member and the other official card is an OT7 group photo. All the track names are written on the backside of the album, even inside of it. It starts with a group picture of the whole group and goes on with the official photo shoot of the group members. This album was a part of their ‘School Trilogy’ series.
Their second promotional song for the same album ‘Attack on Bangtan’ also carried a special meaning. Attack on Bangtan (otherwise known as Rise of Bangtan) is a very upbeat song and shows their rebellious side and how they desire to rise to the top, although it has no official music video but whenever they performed it leaves the audience pumped up. The overall lyrics seem to be about growing within the music industry and becoming better than everyone they come across. J-Hope raps about hitting a home run with his first bat and telling others that ‘if you’re not confident, put your bat down and that he does whatever he wants on the stage, knowing that the crowd is still going to cheer.
Their song ‘Coffee’ also shows their confidence when they talk to a girl about how they’re succeeding and now she has to get used to all this as they have debuted and now a lot has changed for them yet they reminisce their days filled with nostalgic scents when they used to be carefree.
This album carries a very important message and that is to believe in your dreams and fight against society for them with songs like If I Ruled the World that and Cypher: Pt.1 while paying homage to their home country in Paldogangsan. This album gives out a positive message to all the youngsters out there who are still confused about what they want to do in the future.
These were some of my favourite tracks from this album. You can check out all the songs from this album here:
Have you listened to the songs on this album? If yes, tell us in the comment section your favorite O!RUL8,2? track.