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Meaningful Lyrics From RM's Mono Album

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Mono is RM’s second mixtape, following his first self-titled album, RM. With seven tracks, Mono was released on October 23, 2018. It debuted at no. 1 on the iTunes chart in 86 countries, including US, UK, Germany, and Brazil, and made it at no. 26 on the Billboard 200 album charts with 21,000 album units sold.

On November 2018, RM went on VLive and explained how Mono was created. He expressed his thoughts on each song, as well as the album as a whole. The album was created during the time when there were many uncertainties and worries. RM said that there could’ve been no better title than Mono because it’s the best title that can bring all the tracks together, and if he were to define the playlist on his own, it’s something that defines RM from mid-2016 to early 2018. He used to be stuck in dark wear, only opting for gothic style. Even in his studio, he used to only have black figurines, bandannas, chair, desk, everything was in black, white, or grey. It hasn’t been long since he started wearing brighter colors.


1. Tokyo

Tokyo is the only English song in Mono. The Japanese translation of Tokyo has the same pronunciation in Korean, which translates in English as ‘state of longing.’ The song has a background city noise, then a melodic piano instrumental, which depicts waking up in Tokyo and in the state of longing. The lyrics speak about the feeling of missing something from home, and wanting to be comforted. On Vlive, RM said that this song almost didn’t get included in the album. That it’s a song that makes him feel very lonely.

As for me, this song feels like RM misses his old self. As if he’s losing himself and doesn’t exactly know whether he loves or hates himself because love and hate just sounds the same to him. Below is my favorite line from the song:

“Life is a word that sometimes you cannot say, and ash is the thing that someday we all should be.”


2. Seoul

Just like the first song, it seems that RM is conflicted about his feelings and this time, its towards Seoul. I guess because he’s not originally from Seoul. He’s unfamiliar about the place, but it had to become his home. I think what he wants to express in this song is, just like in any place we go to, there are times when we love it because of the good memories, and there are times when we hate it because of the unpleasant or unfamiliar feeling. Here are my favorite lines from the song:

“If love and hate are the same words, I love you Seoul. If love and hate are the same words, I hate you Seoul.”


3. Moonchild

During the behind the scenes of making Mono, RM revealed that he included a spoiler for this song by putting the word “moonchild” in the song, 4 o’clock, which was sang by V and RM. He said that he wrote the song simply because he liked the word, “moonchild.” The song is for people who prefer the night like he does, because during the day, people are feeling choked either because of a job or something else. Then at night, people get away from the shackles and feel a sense of freedom.

As for me, I like Moonchild’s relaxed backing instrumental and heavy beat, and I think that RM is referring to himself as a moonchild. That he’s destined to feel all the pain and all the sorrow because it’s his destiny, but then he consoles himself by giving an assurance that when the moon rises, it’s his time to shine. The song encourages those who are struggling to find comfort in the darkness to hold on, to hope, and to find light just like the light from the moon which is gathered from within itself. I can’t just pick one line from this song because I want to share how RM comforts himself during difficult times through the following lines:

We gotta dance in the rain

Dance in the pain

Even though we crash down

We gon dance in the plane

Moonchild, you shine.

When moon rise, it's your time.

Scroll to Continue

Moonchild, don't cry.

When moon rise, it's your time


4. Badbye ft. eAeon

On VLive, RM expressed that it is a huge honor to sing a duet with an artist that he admires. He also thinks that though Badbye is short, it’s what makes it perfect.

For me, I think this song gives a haunting vibe because of its melody and repetitive chant. It felt like something that a broken-hearted person is dealing with. Based from the lyrics below, the point is very direct. The song is definitely about a bad experience in parting with someone.

Bad badbye, no goodbye

Bad badbye, don’t say goodbye

Bad badbye, cuz it’s a lie


5. Uhgood

Uhgood phonetically translates to ‘uhgood,’ but it literally translates to ‘being off.’ The song focuses on the struggle of being what is ideal versus what is reality, and expresses the desire to reach your true self.

On VLive, RM explained that this song was supposed to be Reflection. The drum beat was different in the beginning, so he created another version of it for many reasons. He saved the song and used it later on for a track that Bang PD sent to him, stating that it will match well with the track. RM then changed the rhythm of the song and that’s how Uhgood was born. He further expressed that the track is a bit heartbreaking for him and has many memories. It has a meaning of “going against something.”

See my favorite lines below:

My ideal and what is reality

They’re so far, far away

But I still want to cross the two bridges

To reach myself


6. Everythingoes ft. Nell

On VLive, RM said that he wrote this song in three days when he had to return to Korea alone while shooting Bon Voyage 1, though it’s not like the melody hit him all of a sudden. He had the song in mind long before Bon Voyage 1. He explained that his mentor told him that the only way to relieve psychological pain is to think that it will pass eventually. That thinking that the pain shall pass will eventually reduce the pain.

I like the piano and guitar sound in this track; it’s uplifting. At first, just by looking at the title, I thought this song was about someone who passed away, or something precious is already gone. But then when I checked the English translation of the lyrics, I realized that it has a positive message. That nothing on Earth lasts forever, including the hardships in life. Here are my favorite lines:

Just like the night leaves, and the morning comes,

The spring leaves, and summer comes


7. Forever Rain

Forever Rain describes a person’s struggle with depression and the constant fear of change; it’s the sentiment of being an outcast. Rain is something that RM embraces because it’s in the pouring rain when tears wouldn’t get noticed as they appear to be when the sun shines.

I got teary-eyed when I saw the English translation of this song. I thought that Forever Rain was RM’s metaphor for never-ending struggle, but then once again, I was mistaken. It actually represents something positive because RM sees rain as a friend that comforts him during his difficulties. The lines below really hit me hard.

When it rains,

I get a little feeling that I do have a friend

Keeps knocking on my windows

Asks me if I’m doing well

And I answer, I’m still a hostage of life

I don’t live because I can’t die

But I’m chained to something

© 2021 Shey Saints

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