What did BTS’ livestream reveal? Sizzling, melting butter and a possible summer hit

Seven members of BTS pose in a line at the Grammys.
BTS announced Monday that it will release a new single just in time for summer.
(Jordan Strauss / Associated Press)

What is BTS cooking? The K-pop group surprised many on Monday with a YouTube livestream featuring an hourlong countdown, sizzling and a slowly melting piece of butter.

Fans took to the livestream’s chat to express their excitement — and confusion — with comments such as, “What’s melting? I’m melting,” “What’s going on here?” and “What if they started this live by mistake?”

But once the countdown hit 00:00:00 and the butter slowly melted into a heart, everything fell into place. BTS’ new single, “Butter,” arriving May 21, was announced. The song was described in a press release as a “dance pop track brimming with the smooth yet charismatic charm of BTS.”

“Butter” will be the boy band’s second song in English since its hit “Dynamite” was released last summer. “Dynamite” was the K-pop group’s first No. 1 single in the United States, breaking records and landing a Grammy nomination for best pop duo/group performance.

Across social media, fans were thrilled by news of BTS’ comeback, even while some acknowledged the different reception an all-English track could receive.

“it’s okay to recognize that butter being an english track will have better promo especially in the west, it’s okay to realize that there are still many institutions and people in general that will only favor an english track, just don’t shift the blame on bts. be smart about it,” one user wrote.

“So I’m HYPED for Butter but I’m also a little sad it’s not in Korean. Ik ppl are gonna come at me saying I’m ungrateful or whatever, but look at the bigger picture,” another user commented. “If the music industry wasn’t centered around America + English, would they feel the need to sing in English??”


In an interview with The Times in 2018, RM, one of BTS’ seven members, said Korean lyrics were a core part of the group’s music. Suga, another member, said he had experimented with English tracks on a mixtape and decided the language was a “better conduit” for other “emotions and sensibilities.”

Here are some reactions to the group’s announcement: