What a week Jungkook has had in New York as he promotes his debut album, GOLDEN, which dropped last Friday. There was an appearance and performance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. He was at Sirius XM doing promotion.
He did a set on The Today Show and he made little Lenny’s life:
Can you imagine? She’ll have that forever…and he may have just ruined every man who comes into her life forever because how will he ever compare to JK, the golden maknae of BTS?
But there’s more. Last night, a surprise. Jungkook takes over Times Square, serving up five songs from the new album as the inaugural artist to be featured on the “first permanent stage located in the heart of New York City”. There was very little advance notice about the show – apparently fans were given just a 30 minute heads-up, and if you’ve seen the performance (I’ve embedded the video below), you can hear how loud it is, how many ARMY showed up…which tells you the enduring power of BTS, even as we’re over a year into their group hiatus, and the appeal of the band’s youngest member, who NME called a “new pop king” in their review of the album.
It's a fitting description because JK is leaning in hard to the Michael Jackson influence on “Standing Next to You”, the main track off GOLDEN, the song he’s been performing the most this week, and the song he kicked off his mini-concert with last night. “Standing Next to You” is the right choice for this moment. It’s exactly the sound for the moment, a mix of retro and current trends, and a showcase for all of Jungkook’s impressive abilities – his vocals, his range, his charisma and style, and his dancing. Look at this choreo! As usual, the BTS members’ choreography videos are often, in my opinion, better than the official ones because you can see all the formations and the grooves. Also note the white socks, an obvious homage to MJ and specifically the reason for MJ’s white socks: to better show off the dance moves.
Seriously, do me a favour if you haven’t already…just watch this and be awed.
This is a BANGER!
And it’s not an easy song to do live, towering over Times Square, on top of all that intricate choreo – it takes him about 10 seconds, tops, to find his voice, and then he’s at full blast, pure vocals on top of the dancing…
Here is JK feeling the sh-t out of himself, in command and confident – you can see exactly why, on this track, he’s at maximum strength. Because on this song, it’s obvious, he believes it, JK believes in JK. I wasn’t entirely convinced of this on some of the previous releases off GOLDEN that came before “Standing Next to You” but on this track, the truth of it is there: JK is finally ready to be golden.
If you don’t have time for the whole thing, just watch the first song starting at 23:30 below.
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