Last week, an unmistakable voice in the international music community made yet another solo debut, deeming him the highest charting Korean solo act of all time. RM is known for his splendid and extraordinary performances in the Korean pop band BTS, but has recently released an album that is far from the stereotypical “k-pop” sound. As a rapper, it can prove to be difficult to make a track unique and individualized while still maintaining a theme or concept, however RM has decimated any preconceptions about his style and writing abilities. His album, appropriately named “mono.”, has reached the pinnacle of charts and has exceeded record sales of his group act, BTS. His accomplishments have been so grandiose lately, giving a speech at the United Nations about self respect and self love, publicizing a brand new single with group act BTS entitled Waste It On Me, and to further these achievements, he has revealed yet another solo debut for fans and newcomers alike to revel in and appreciate.
RM’s new album could be categorized as displaying a sort of mellow hip-hop ambience. He has demonstrated his skills in writing meaningful and sincere lyrics that cater towards the idea of identity and what it means to feel worthwhile and content. He has exhibited many of his innermost trials and tribulations within this album, and it is evident that he is able to express himself through transcribing lyrics into reality. His distinctive voice, usually intermingled with six other members harmonizing and supplementing each other, becomes the central and foremost voice in his solo album, which gives fans a chance to experience his views and methodology in writing. The atmosphere of the album indicates a sort of longing expression, not for anything in particular, but the inhibition to acquire absolute solitude and inner peace. The name of the album, “mono.”, displays the concept of individuality and singularity. The prefix mono is commonly used in words that are intended to connote the idea of one, singular person, place, or being. With this in mind, perhaps his independent music is supposed to convey the feeling of loneliness, but not necessarily the in the detrimental connotation that we ordinarily describe it as impacting us. Perhaps this feeling of seclusion and aloneness is professed in this album as something that should not be neglected and forgotten, but embraced and utilized as meditative and ruminative for the feelings that we attempt to ostracize from our lives.
Music typically has some sort of concentric point that the artist attempts to convey, and is derived from experiences that an artist has endured and feels impassioned to write about. “Mono.” is an album that correlates to the ideals of someone who is inspired by the bittersweet feeling of isolation and how that feeling remains unresolved until you find fulfillment within yourself. It is about how your identity is not conclusive of your environment, but is defined by your motivation and adherence to change. RM proves himself to be a very versatile writer and producer, one that is influencing others through sentimental anecdotes in songs that serve as an opportunity to reflect on growth and self stability.