Once in a while, a musician decides to get into gaming. Daughter scored the acclaimed video game Life Is Strange: Before the Storm; Trent Reznor, the Nine Inch Nails frontman turned Academy Award winner, wrote the music for Quake. But for BTS, the matter is even more personal: The superstar Korean boy band has been releasing the soundtrack for the forthcoming video game BTS World in drips, starting with the Charli XCX–featuring “Dream Glow,” which started life as a Charli XCX demo; now, they’re back with a second single, “A Brand New Day,” with another major collaborator—Swedish pop star Zara Larsson, who cowrote the song. Somewhere in this string of collaborations, there might be song-of-the-summer material. That is, if "Old Town Road" doesn't stay on top.
The new single offers another dimension of the band’s sound: Where “Dream Glow” was produced by Stargate and sung by BTS members Jimin, Jungkook, and Jin (as well as honorary BTS member Charli XCX, proving she is out here manifesting her career), “A Brand New Day” is produced by Mura Masa, the beloved Guernsey-born indie artist and multiple-time Charli XCX collaborator, and performed by BTS members V, a vocalist, and J-Hope, a rapper (and Larsson).
BTS World interposes players as the band’s new manager, helping usher them toward stardom one logistical challenge at a time. (In one challenge, per CNBC, you’ve got to find the band a dorm room that fits all their respective demands, like kitchen access and proximity to a convenience store.) And given the unexpected production and collaborator choices thus far—compared to, for example, the extremely BTS-sounding “Boy With Luv,” despite its Halsey feature—one might think players are actually going to shepherd in a whole new era for BTS, just, virtually.
According to Uproxx, there’s still one more single to come in the trio of releases BTS has planned to accompany the BTS World video game. Given the trajectory thus far, we’d suspect remaining members Suga, the lead rapper, and RM, another rapper, are on deck to perform, and they’ll probably have an unexpected collaborator in tow—so we’d like to put in a request for someone like...Billie Eilish, please.