I know this is a little random but I really wanted to go a little bit into detail about Suga’s solo track on WINGS. I first posted (a much simpler version of) this write-up on ARMY Amino right after the song came out and now I’m posting it on The Soundcheck because whatever I wrote a year ago is still very true today.
“First Love” to me is a life-changing, otherworldly song because it resonated on such a personal, core level. It hit me hard and sent me reeling because I didn’t expect to make such an instant connection with an artist that quickly.
“First Love” made me realize that while J-Hope is my bias within BTS, Suga is the member I connect to the most because of what he addresses within his music; his discography under his alter-ego ‘Agust D’ includes topics like depression, suicide and anger—an extremely brave move considering the stigma associated with mental illness, even more so when connected to a celebrity—making me feel like he was giving those of us with the same trials a voice via his solo debut mixtape Agust D. “First Love,” while just as raw and vocal, was somehow on a slightly different plane.
The other short films and tracks on WINGS were beautiful and deep but it was this one that had me in tears almost immediately and I didn’t realize I was crying until it was over. It’s been years since that has happened to me. I had nearly stopped breathing and it felt like something had wrapped its fist around my heart and wouldn’t let go. And imagine, BTS hadn’t even released the full song at that point; it was just the imagery and instrumental:
After purchasing WINGS and listening to the full song (with English subtitles on) I knew exactly why I’d had that reaction: my first love being music is exactly what has shaped me into who I am and here was an artist who had penned down my gratitude. Suga is not only a gifted songwriter, but an immensely relatable individual. He is able to paint clear, sharp images of reality with his words and I could see every single moment he was describing in his lyrics. When he talked about reaching out and touching the brown piano, and the rush he felt when he did, I felt it too. It felt so personal, at moments I felt like I was intruding just by listening.
The quote from the book Demian used in his short film is again the one I find to be the most beautiful and true from the seven WINGS films:
“There are numerous ways in which God can make us lonely and lead us back to ourselves. This was the way He dealt with me at that time.”
Music saved me from so much sorrow in my life and I feel Suga has expressed the same thing so accurately in “First Love”; music is portrayed as a guide, a saviour, a lover, a friend, an eternal presence and perhaps, at times, God himself. I feel like Suga has felt the same thing (because of all the stories he included in the Agust D mixtape) which is why most of his songwriting is raw, strong and at times startlingly honest. Most of the time people who have seen the same trials understand exactly what the other is trying to say, which explains why fans are often able to find themselves in his work as producer and songwriter.
There are times we all feel lost and there are moments where we can break, lose ourselves. But sometimes all you need is a goal to lead you back to who you are. Suga communicates all this and more in “First Love”—his piano and music act as that channel to a higher, spiritual place. I’ve seen that place and I am sure Min Yoongi has too, which is also possibly why he often comes across as serious and contemplative.
It takes major trial and pain to discover God and in this case it is music for both Suga and I. Even our careers are so deeply rooted in music; he’s a musician (of course) and I am a music journalist and to be honest, it all makes me feel less alone.
Take a look at “First Love” below:
Lead image of Suga courtesy of Big Hit Entertainment.
GIFS used are not mine, all credit goes to their creators.