The 2000s are alive and well in the new Fall Out Boy and BTS remix for "Champion," a cross-generational team-up from two of the last decade's biggest bands. The song — set to be released on Friday, Dec. 15 — is a revamped take of Fall Out Boy's June single of the same name, which was the second song to come from their upcoming seventh album, Mania. It's currently unavailable in American markets, but thanks to a few exuberant international fans, leaked clips can be found online. From the sounds of it, the track keeps Fall Out Boy's pop rock melodies intact, but weaves in some hip-hop flair with a guest verse from RM, BTS' main rapper.
It's an unexpected pairing, but one that oddly makes sense. Fall Out Boy came of age in the Myspace era, launching from suburban Illinois to mainstream stardom with the release of their 2005 major label breakthrough, From Under The Cork Tree. At the height of their success, they were nominated for a Best New Artist Grammy; landed a No. 1 album with their best-selling third effort, Infinity On High; and released hit singles like "Sugar, We're Goin' Down," "Dance, Dance," "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race," and "Thnks fr th Mmrs." By the late aughts, their fame began to wane, and they took a five-year hiatus after 2008's Folie à Deux before returning in 2013 with Save Rock and Roll. They've yet to return to the same recognition they enjoyed in the beginnings of their career, but have steadily been putting out music, and for many that grew up in the early aughts, they remain a nostalgic staple.
Now, BTS are the boy band au courant. It would be a stretch to say Fall Out Boy paved the way for them, but indirectly, they've passed up the torch — save for a few changes of hands in between (looking at you, One Direction). The K-pop seven-piece have been mega-popular in their home country of South Korea for several years, but only recently found international recognition, in part because of collaborations with U.S. artists like The Chainsmokers and Desiigner. Like Fall Out Boy, BTS are internet famous, though they've been propelled by more modern networks like Twitter. In 2016, Forbes listed them as the most retweeted artist on the entire platform; in 2017, they broke Guinness World Record for most Twitter engagements for a music group; and the same year, Time magazine named them one of the 25 most influential people on the internet.
Stylistically, BTS and Fall Out Boy couldn't be more different, but they've shared similar trajectories, and in a year as left of field as 2017, it's not surprising that they collaborated. Music has seen some of its most eclectic couplings yet, including Hot 100 singles like Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee's Spanish pop phenomenon "Despacito," featuring Justin Bieber, and "Let Me Go," a genre-clashing mash-up by pop star Hailee Steinfeld, electro producer Alesso, rock songwriter Andrew Watt, and country duo Florida Georgia Line.
And even if their sound is different, the two groups definitely have one thing in common — loyal fanbases. Based on the reactions to the "Champions" remix before it's even dropped in the U.S., fans across the globe are already so pumped. Seriously, they seem to be bringing together generations.
If this collab teaches people anything, it's that music really can bridge the gap and bring people together. And if you're a U.S. fan who's eager to hear more than just a snippet of the song, you only have to wait a little longer. It's dropping at midnight Friday, so grab that eyeliner and prepare accordingly.