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BTS' V Makes Solo Return with Soulful "FRI(END)S"

BTS fans, rejoice! V, the charismatic vocalist from the global K-Pop phenomenon, has finally dropped his first solo project since enlisting in the South Korean military. Titled "FRI(END)S," the song marks a soulful and introspective return for the talented singer.


Released on March 15, 2024, "FRI(END)S" is a melodic R&B track sung entirely in English. This follows V's critically acclaimed September 2023 EP, Layover, his last project before joining his fellow members RM, Jimin, Jung Kook, Jin, J-Hope, and Suga in their mandatory service.


Prior to enlistment, V assured fans that content was coming. In a December statement, he wrote, "I've prepared a lot of things" for his 18-month service, expressing his sadness at missing out on creating memories with fans. He promised, "I'll be back!"


Building anticipation for "FRI(END)S," V teased the song with concept photos and videos on social media starting March 3rd. Big Hit Music, BTS' agency, described the track as "pop soul R&B" with "relatable and witty romance through lyrics." The accompanying artwork featured the song title and release date against a vibrant pink background, hinting at the song's sweet mood.


As a solo artist, V boasts a successful track record. He has landed three songs on the prestigious Billboard Hot 100 chart, with "Slow Dancing" reaching his highest peak at No. 51 in 2023.


The release of "FRI(END)S" is accompanied by a captivating music video directed by renowned British photographer and director Samuel Bradley. The video's narrative revolves around V experiencing love from two distinct perspectives. In one storyline, he's single and surrounded by happy couples. In the other, he's in a loving relationship with a girl played by British actress Ruby Sear, amidst a world filled with conflict.


Adding intrigue, both storylines conclude with V waking up in the same bed after a car accident. This leaves fans pondering the true nature of his relationships and desires.


Beyond the captivating video, the song itself has captivated fans with its heartwarming melody. V's soulful vocals blend seamlessly with the deep bassline and lo-fi drum beats, creating a song that explores the complexities of love and the yearning to move beyond a friend zone.


"FRI(END)S" quickly gained traction, trending on social media within hours. It garnered over a million views on YouTube within two hours of its release, a testament to V's enduring popularity.


This digital single marks V's latest musical activity following his solo debut album Layover and collaborations with artists like IU ("Love Wins All") and UMI ("wherever u r"). While currently on hiatus with his fellow BTS members, V's solo efforts continue to solidify his position as a talented and versatile artist. Fans eagerly await BTS' return in 2025 after completing their military service.

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