BTS throw it back with ‘MTV Unplugged’, plus the K-pop stars drop a surprise Coldplay cover

  • The K-pop stars appeared on a special edition of the 90s music show, performing hits from their pandemic-influenced album ‘Be’ such as ‘Dynamite’ and ‘Telepathy’
  • Band member Suga returned to the stage for the first time since his shoulder surgery in autumn 2020
Associated Press |

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The septet brought the drama to their live performances on MTV Unplugged. Photo:

Seeing how everything 90s is cool again, it only made sense that the biggest band of the moment would appear on a special edition of that decade’s top music TV phenomenon. Members of BTS teamed up with MTV to perform songs from their latest album Be in an special edition of MTV Unplugged on Tuesday night.

Obviously smash hit Dynamite, was on the playlist.

During its ’90s heyday, a string of top musicians including Mariah Carey, Eric Clapton, Nirvana and Shakira graced the Unplugged stage. The show is known for presenting a stripped-down look at musicians and their songs.

“It’s really an honour to be a part of the MTV Unplugged legacy, where so many legends have performed,” group leader RM said at the start of the 30-minute broadcast.

“We’re definitely thankful, honoured we got to be a part of this.”

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One of the most exciting moments for fans was seeing Suga return to performing. He’d been sidelined after undergoing shoulder surgery last autumn.

The group’s record label, Big Hit Entertainment, said the surgery was needed because it was “a problem that had constantly been a health and wellness issue” for the singer.

“It’s been a while since I’ve been on stage, and I missed it a lot while I was recovering,” Suga said. “It feels good to be performing together. I’m very happy.”

The Unplugged special hops between slick performances on highly produced sets (Telepathy and Blue & Grey) to more intimate conversations between group members and a surprise cover of Coldplay’s Fix You (which, along with the rousing rendition of No. 1 song Dynamite, put each member’s talents front and centre).

The band’s latest album Be, dropped in November. Many of the tracks were influenced by the pandemic which has prevented the group from touring and connecting with its devoted fanbase in person.

“We miss you ARMY so much,” Jungkook said. “We look forward to seeing you again, and until then we will continue to stay by your side this year with good music.”

Blue & Grey is one of those tracks spawned by the pandemic. Member V, who helped write the song, explains it to viewers: “Blue & Grey is a pop ballad track with charming acoustic guitar sounds. I tried to express my inner sadness and uncertainty so I translated the feeling of burning out as ‘blue’ and the sadness of not being able see the ARMY as ‘grey’.

“The melody of the song is simple, so I paid closer attention to delivering emotions through the lyrics.”

The song expresses despair, with lyrics such as these: “Where is my angel? / Someone come and save me, please / Can you look at me? /’Cause I am blue and grey.”

The show wrapped on an upbeat note with BTS performing Dynamite, their first song recorded entirely in English, first to debut at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100, and first to earn them a Grammy nomination. The wall of framed record awards in the background underscores why BTS earned its own MTV special.

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