Ending months of speculation over the future of South Korean boy band BTS, music label BIGHIT MUSIC and its parent HYBE have issued an official statement, confirming that the seven members will be enlisting for their country’s mandatory military duty. Having won over legions of fans worldwide over their almost decade-long run, starting slow with No More Dream in 2013, picking the pace with I Need U in 2015, to recent mass favourites like Butter, Dynamite, Permission To Dance, and Life Goes On, this news definitely is a dampener. The K-pop stars’ devoted fanbase, known as ARMY, have certainly had to come to terms with it; Stan Twitter timelines were filled with disappointment at first, but later, fans decided to stand behind their beloved boy band, showing their support with “Trust BTS.”
Coming back to the announcement, BIGHIT MUSIC said that BTS members were moving forward with their plans to fulfill their military service, adding that they were honoured to serve the country. With record-breaking success that catapulted BTS into global fame, BIGHIT MUSIC has had to focus on the milestone moment that would both respect the needs of the country and for these young men to serve with their countrymen. “After the phenomenal concert to support Busan’s bid for the World Expo 2030, and as each individual embarks on solo endeavors, it’s the perfect time,” read the statement.
As of now, BTS member Jin will initiate the enlistment procedure of the Korean government as soon as his schedule for his solo release concludes at the end of October. Other members of the boy band intend to carry out their military service around their individual plans. Earlier this year, during a televised dinner celebrating their anniversary, BTS members had mentioned that they would be pursuing solo projects. While Jimin said the group had been going through a “rough patch” and that trying to find their identity was an exhausting and long process, RM added that although they had achieved a great deal as a unit, individually, they needed to grow and mature.
On the bright side, both the company and BTS members are looking forward to reconvening as a group again some time in 2025, following their military service commitment. “As part of the HYBE family, we support and encourage our artists and are beyond proud that they will each now have time to explore their unique interests and do their duty by being of service to the country they call home,” the statement further read. Referencing the track from their latest album, Yet To Come (The Most Beautiful Moment), the announcement said this was not just a song, but a promise that there’s much more to come in the years ahead from BTS. And as band member V told fans during the anniversary dinner, the group wasn’t splitting for good, and “later, when we gather again as a group, that synergy will be like no other,” it’s just what we’re going to wait and hope for.
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