14 K-pop Songs To Help Unleash Your Inner Extrovert This Gemini Season

By Tássia Assis

If the steadiness of Taurus season got you feeling cozy and comfy, it’s time to get ready for the winds of change brought on by Gemini. With the start of Gemini season last week, the world welcomed a period of enhanced partnership and quick-witted communication. As an Air sign, Gemini is always on the run, flashing through the latest trends. As such, there’s no time to stay still with this sign.

Though often perceived as being two-faced, a Gemini contains multitudes. As a mutable sign, they adapt and flex their way into what each situation asks, and you can never be quite sure of which version you’re going to get. But leaving it to that is to undermine the sign’s best traits: originality, versatility, and socializing. You won’t ever be bored beside a Gemini.

That frenetic way of being can also bring out restlessness, heavy judging, and falling in and out of love like changing shoes. But Gemini energy is all about merging that innate duality and getting in sync. Its symbol — the Roman numeral II, or literal twin figures — depicts how important it is for this sign to find kindred spirits to share their vivacious minds with.

In order to ease you into this quicksilver period and inspire you to make the most of this stimulating, social season, here is a K-pop playlist embracing the many shades of Gemini:

(Lyrics via Color Coded Lyrics)

  • LOONA, “Butterfly”

    One-fourth of LOONA are vibrant Gemini woman. Yves, Choerry, and JinSoul add their twin charms to the 12-member ensemble, and alongside Kim Lip, Chuu, and Heejin, it’s clear that Air signs are the dominant force in this group. That explains LOONA’s breezy nature, effortlessly welcoming change in a powerful, yet delicate, butterfly effect. Their latest single “Butterfly” taps into this very concept. With an experimental, high-pitched chorus and breathtaking choreography, this release is a powerful anthem about courage and freedom. The music video features a diverse cast of women and stands by a very Geminian synergy: Every girl in their orbit is LOONA, and LOONA is every girl.

    Biggest mood: “You just fly like a butterfly / Taking me far away wings wings / Just like this fly like a butterfly / Sounds of winds blowing around my ears.”

  • Seventeen, “My I”

    Seventeen is home to two Geminis: Jun and Hoshi, both part of the group’s performance (or, dance) unit. However, it’s China-line Jun and The8’s duet “My I” that most accurately depicts the twin sign’s duality. In a dark stage, a theatrical choreography gives shape to the inherent dichotomy of life: the yin and the yang, the I and the other. Bonded by the thread of destiny, their movements merge and divide while reminding us that light cannot exist without shadow. The duo yearns to find another version of themselves in the world, and therefore make a compelling spectacle out of Gemini’s innermost energy.

    Biggest mood: “When I meet you after time passes / I’ll know (you were my future) / I’ll know (I was your yesterday) / When I meet you after time passes / I’ll know (you protected me) / I’ll know (I desired you).”

  • Triple H, “Retro Future”

    Hyuna’s star power can easily be mistaken for a boisterous Leo energy, but Geminis like her love to be the center of attention just as much. And what happens when they find a twin flame in the process? E’Dawn, the other half of K-pop’s most electric couple, might have the answer — as he is also a Gemini. Triple H was, without a doubt, one of the most risqué and refreshing acts in the industry, and if not for Hui’s grounded Virgo energy, who knows what tumultuous heights the twin couple would have reached. (Though, we’re about to find out.) The single “Retro Future” is a groovy ride turned up a notch by their indisputable chemistry and overall Geminian talent in being the life of the party.

    Biggest mood: “What makes me dance at this boring party / Is this stop, ah ah ah ah ah / Till we reach out limit, touch, touch, never die / Swallow the deep poison ahead of time, that is mine.”

  • Twice, “Likey”

    Sociable and chatty Geminis are often masters of social media. (Mercury, the ruling planet of this sign, is also the ruler of all things communication and technology.) Twice’s resident Geminis, Tzuyu and Dahyun, helped the group shed some intriguing light on that matter with their 2017 single “Likey.” What appears to be a peppy song — not unlike their characteristic brand — hides a concerning message. Even the video normalizes the constant streaming of our lives, but it’s the lyrics that call out how constructed those images are, and how deeply they affect us. Even the most outgoing Gemini is bound to feel a bit overwhelmed with the demands of social media. Thankfully, “Likey” invites us to add some Air sign lightness into those experiences.

    Biggest mood: “Put on BB cream, pat pat pat / Put on lipstick, mam mam ma / Shall I make a pretty pose for the camera? / Look at this and smile for me / And please press it / On the bottom, that cute and red / Heart heart.”

  • Taeyeon, “Gemini”

    Taeyeon’s haunting ballad “Gemini” draws inspiration directly from its namesake sign’s longing for a soulmate. As the emotional Pisces she is, the singer reminisces about a former love and wishes for them to return in soft “come to me, baby” croons. As they used to do to everything together, this symbiosis led them to become like twins. However, Gemini’s characteristic quick-pace and fleeting feelings soon hit, and left only memories in the aftermath.

    Biggest mood: “We were always together, we became alike / I can’t even imagine forgetting you, / We were one, me and you.”

  • HA:TFELT, “Pluhmm”

    Former Wonder Girls’ member Yeeun, known as HA:TFELT in her solo career, has composed and written several songs throughout her decade-long career. As expected from a Gemini, her razor-sharp mind often results in work that bursts with originality. “Pluhmm,” a bossa nova track mixed with electronic synths is a great example. Yeeun sings in a lush, sensual voice about wanting to know everything about her lover — as curious as Geminis are —  asking mundane questions like “Do you like plums?” and “What is the name of your dog?” The witty music video also makes for a mentally stimulating puzzle in true Gemini style.

    Biggest mood: “I wanna know everything about you / I want to have your heart / I don’t wanna know if it’s not you / Just stay like that for a moment.”

  • NCT 127, “Highway to Heaven”

    If LOONA is the ultimate Air sign girl group, then NCT 127 is its male counterpart. With five members born under that element, two of them are Geminis: vocalists Taeil and Haechan. It’s safe to say NCT wouldn’t be the same without their vocal colors, and “Highway to Heaven” is a soaring example. The song is as freeing as its title, and takes us on a swift journey that satisfies with highs notes and an otherworldly feeling of being infinite. The music video brings a tint of nostalgia with black and white roads, tunnels, and deserts juxtaposed with solo shots of the members. It’s a great song to get into Gemini’s more lighthearted nature and simply go with the flow.

    Biggest mood: “Pull up, if you want (all over the world) / Wherever it is, we can go / Now we fly to the sky / If you want, make you high, follow me / Look! We’re going forward / We can make mistakes, just repeat / Keep going till it works, like this / There’s no limit, we limitless.”

  • Girls’ Generation, “I Got a Boy”

    Geminis are known to be walking contradictions, and here is a track that also can’t decide whatever it is. An avant-garde mixture of styles and transitions, Girls’ Generation’s “I Got a Boy” is a classic that continues to influence K-pop releases to this day. It’s the kind of song that you either love, hate, or learn to love the more you listen to. The clashing, colorful visuals add an epic undertone to the experience, and overall it’s as if hearing a Gemini say, “Why choose only one thing when you can be all of them?”

    Biggest mood: “Let me introduce myself / Here comes trouble, whoo! Follow us.”

  • Ailee, “U&I”

    Just like Hyuna, Ailee is another Gemini who could easily pass as a Leo. Her powerhouse vocals and magnetic smile are undeniable proof that she was born to be under the spotlight, especially with a song like “U&I.” Geminis have no time for BS, and you either follow their frenetic pace or become history, like the love interest in this track. A luxurious music video enables Ailee to gain back her power as she realizes her current relationship doesn’t satisfy her needs anymore, and therefore it’s the moment to break up. Geminis have no problem in moving on and letting go — because they are sure better things await in the future.

    Biggest mood: “I want to stop fighting now / There’s not a day where we just let things go / My days have no meaning now / I don’t smile even for one minute or one second / I can’t do this anymore.”

  • The Boyz, “Giddy Up”

    “Giddy Up” is another song brimming with Gemini’s enthusiasm. The Boyz thoroughly enjoy themselves on this uplifting tune just like the twins do at any social gathering. The visual is set inside a giant pinball machine, where every moment is rather hit or miss, as the group sings about relaxing and rejoicing in the excitement of a new love. Even if this fleeting game only lasts four minutes, Geminis make sure it’s well worth the time.

    Biggest mood: “Just like we feel right now, let’s run to the sky / Throw away your worries, trust yourself with me / Eeny meeny miney mo, no need to make it hard / Just need your heart fluttering eyes, throw yourself.”

  • KARD, “Push & Pull”

    Gemini’s ever-changing opinions are surely hard to understand for most of us. In the B side “Push & Pull,” KARD makes use of a somber tropical house melody to express their frustration on that matter. Like a tug of war, the co-ed quartet feels played and tries to reason why their partner can’t be more straightforward. Although no behavior is exclusive of a Zodiac sign, this one particularly fits the “I’m in/I’m out” habits that so many Geminis are known for.

    Biggest mood: “Don’t play with me that game / With the sign you sent / I went closer to you / But why are you confusing me?”

  • NU’EST, “Sleep Talking”

    As the most conversational sign of the Zodiac, Geminis can easily relate to “Sleep Talking” instead of sleeping. However, on this track, NU’EST — who is home to two Geminis, JR and Aron — suffers from an inability to declare their love and instead find themselves living it in their dreams. The vivid music video features a set of surreal rooms from where they try to escape and come back to the real world. While they struggle, the main intention of Gemini is still present: communicating, no matter what obstacles they might find.

    Biggest mood: “This doesn’t make sense / She’s smiling right in front / Of me Right now / She appears when I go to sleep / She disappears when I awake / I want to hold onto her, say / I want to confess, confess, confess, confess but I sleep talk.”

  • DIA, “Woo Woo”

    DIA is another group that features a trio of Geminis: Huihyeon, Jueun, and Eunchae. In their 2018 release “WooWoo,” summertime vibes infuse with Miami bass influences. The music video follows the relaxing sounds, and features the girls having fun at the beach, eating pizza, and being playful with each other. There’s even a challenge to find specific items hidden in the scenes, instigating Gemini’s curious nature. Meanwhile, the lyrics yet again approach the two-faced nature of this sign, as the girls feel confused about a love who can’t seem to decide what is happening between them. And it’s this disparity between visuals and lyrics that make “WooWoo” even more authentically Gemini.

    Biggest mood: “I get tied up with just one word / Then you loosen me up again / It just takes one moment / You do this all the time / You confuse me.”

  • Weki Meki, “Picky Picky”

    Ultimately, Geminis can’t stand still because they are always on the lookout for the best. This kind of powering through can create an inclination toward indecisiveness, or rather, being picky, as Weki Meki can attest. “Picky Picky” is a cheerful track that takes pride in choosing exactly what you want, no matter what others think. The fun music video has the girls messing around in a school and forming a rock band (in true Gemini learning skills) where they exercise blissful confidence in being unapologetically who they are.

    Biggest mood: “Make me feel better, ooh / But someone too typical / I don’t like, I don’t want / I like being risky, I like it but / I don’t like being scared, hate it.”

Sufjan Stevens Is Ringing In Pride Month With Two New Tunes

For Pride Month, Sufjan Stevens has released two beautiful new songs about genuine love. “Love Yourself” and “With My Whole Heart” are two drastically different odes to romance that will see some of their proceeds going to support LGBTQ and homeless children in the United States through the Ali Forney Center and the Ruth Ellis Center. It’s never been a better time to listen to Stevens’ wuthering voice.

“Love Yourself” is a smooth and somber affair. It buries feel-good synths that unfold into a heavenly solution of chords. On the soothing number, Stevens sings about having faith in yourself. “You’re the one thing that I believe in,” he sings. The second number, “With My Whole Heart” is brighter and more upbeat. It’s a love song with a soft, nostalgic feel. As Spin reports, Sufjan revealed in a press release that the song is supposed to be “an upbeat and sincere love song without conflict, anxiety, or self-depreciation.

The songs were released to streaming services in a four-track EP that also features an original 1996 demo of “Love Yourself” along with a “short reprise” of the record. “Love Yourself” and “With My Whole Heart” will be available on limited-edition 7″ vinyl on June 28. In addition to the songs, Stevens also released a Pride-themed “SUFJAN” shirt.

Listen to the new songs for Pride month up above.

Miley Cyrus Gets Freaky With Fruit In New She Is Coming Promos

Miley Cyrus is pulling out all the stops to promote her latest EP, She Is Coming, which is about to drop on May 31.

As we all know, any time Miley’s involved, we get a heaping helping of extra, as the singer is quite well known for. When it comes to hyping up her latest album release, she’s pulling out all the stops.

One video finds Miley rubbing a piece of fruit all over her body as “She is Coming” flashes onscreen with a strobing effect. Then, she’s suggestively shoving a banana completely covered in sprinkles into her mouth, then squeezing out what appears to be some delicious fruit juice straight onto her tongue. It’s extremely suggestive, and totally not SFW, but it absolutely must be seen.

The second video is even messier, featuring Miley slurping up an unidentified fruit and flirting again with the banana covered in sprinkles.

The latest videos are the wildest, though, as we get close-ups of Miley suggestively going ham on a delicious fruit buffet, smacking her lips and serving up some serious ASMR. Hope you were ready for the tingles today.

If these promotional videos are any indication, it certainly looks like we may be in for some particularly steamy tracks for She Is Coming. We’ve already heard snippets of a few new songs from the album, including the pop-rap banger “Cattitude,” the somber “Dream,” and the rocking “Mother’s Daughter.” Given what we’ve heard so far, it’s tough to forecast what type of album we’re looking at – but looking at these sultry fruit promos, we have it on good authority we can expect something sexy from it, too.

Not much longer to wait now, as we’ll get our sticky paws on She Is Coming in just a few days. What will Miley post between now and then? That’s anyone’s guess, but we can’t wait for the next big reveal.

Ty Dolla $ign And J. Cole Show Off All Kinds Of Love In ‘Purple Emoji’ Video

Ty Dolla $ign and J. Cole have dropped off a stirring video for their new heartwarming single “Purple Emoji.” The song is about deep and honest love, and in the accompanying video, they retain this focus. By showcasing all kinds of affection, the video becomes a portrait of love and the beauty that can be found in between the smiles and well-orchestrated Instagram shots edited by Facetune. You’ll let out a non-stop barrage of “Aww”‘s until the video is over.

True love is refreshing to see. Movies never seem to capture it just right. Sure, the well-thought-out dialogue and camera angles make it look good, but it never feels authentic. Ty Dolla $ign, J. Cole, and video director Olivia Rose are able to find the reality in love. It doesn’t just exist in perfect shots, it’s also in the road to those setups, the in-between times. The video follows a group of couples of all ages, ethnicities, and sexualities as they work to pose for pictures. They smile and laugh, nuzzle on each other’s faces, and revel in the company of their partners. Often times, it’s as if the camera isn’t even on them, like we’re watching these couples in private. This is what love looks like and feels like. The world doesn’t matter when the other person is there. 

Ty Dolla $ign released “Purple Emoji” earlier this month. A new album should be on the way; his last solo effort was 2017’s Beach House 3Last year, he connected with Jeremih for a joint LP, MihTy. 

Watch the beauty of all kinds of love in “Purple Emoji” up above. 

Lil Wayne’s WeezyAna Fest 2019 Enlists Travis Scott, Megan Thee Stallion, Meek Mill, And More

Lil Wayne’s WeezyAna Fest is in its fifth year, and each of its lineups has successfully engulfed the last, bringing some of the most culturally significant artists to New Orleans for a massive celebration. The iconic rapper has announced the roster for this year’s fest, and it’s a significant one: Megan Thee Stallion, Meek Mill, Travis Scott, and more are all set to appear. The fun kicks off on September 7 at the Uno Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The WeezyAna Fest of 2019 will be the stuff of legend. Aside from the dominating raps of Megan, the powerfully visceral bars of Meek, and the soft metallic melodies of Travis, Kash Doll, Saweetie, and Trey Songz will also get super-powered performance sets. The official poster that Lil Wayne revealed on Instagram also features three other names: Melii, Leven Kali, and Akbar V.

Last year’s WeezyAna Fest featured Nicki Minaj, Birdman, Jeezy, and others. Birdman took the occasion to give Wayne an official apology for their volatile relationship. Next month, Lil Wayne will embark on a co-headlining tour with Blink-182 that lasts through September.

Check out the festival artwork up above.

Taylor Bennett Connects With Big Brother Chance The Rapper On ‘No One Outside’

Taylor Bennett gets his smooth touch from his big brother, Chance The Rapper. The two bring the family charm and easy-going charisma on their new collaboration, “No One Outside” with Bianca Shaw. As the two rap about prospective love, they paint a picture of a future with their partners that could last the length of a lifetime. It’s adorable love that contains a reference to The Office. How could it possibly get any better?

This is a song solely about heart-eyed emojis and being excited for Valentine’s Day. In this world ruled by Cupid, Bennett and Chance are making promises to the partners in their lives because they can. Bennett promises his woman a Volvo, Chance to follow his wife to her dreams because she’ll take it there. Their rhymes are vulnerable and honest and they feel like they come from the heart. Bianca Shaw, the first signee to Bennett’s record label Tay Bennett Entertainment, provides soft vocals for the chorus that plead for affection. Bennett and Chance match her energy and provide just what she’s looking for.

“No One Outside” appears on Bennett’s new project The American Reject that’s out today (May 28). The eight-track body of work features Ty Dolla $ign, Mr. Hudson, and more. In a recent interview with Lyrical LemonadeBennett revealed that the project is about “the acceptance and the idea of understanding, knowing, and discovering who you are.”

Listen to the lovey-dovey world of “No One Outside” up above.

Nasty Cherry Go All In For The Craft-Inspired Music Video

Since being unveiled as one of Charli XCX‘s favorite new groups (and collaborators) earlier this year, Nasty Cherry have gained plaudits for their spunky, victorious debut anthem “Win.” It’s a good one, and it’s easily replayable, but so far, it’s been the only one to their name. Until now.

On Tuesday (May 28), the hybrid British-American band — comprised of drummer Deborah Knox-Hewson, guitarist Chloe Chaidez, bassist Georgia Somary, and singer Gabbriette Bechtel — dropped their next song, a gauzy and vulnerable slice of dream-pop called “What Do You Like in Me,” produced and co-written by Planet 1999. Fittingly, it arrived with an equally gossamer video that dips into goth and macabre elements through the lens of an ’80s late-night cable offering.

There’s a simply terrific amount of candles and skulls here in the Indiana Piorek-directed clip, and Bechtel (who co-directed) vamps around like Elvira for a good portion of the video. It’s as moody as the “Win” video was punchy, but there’s also an air of playfulness that dominates the scene.

If it feels a little like a homemade project, that’s because it was. “We used all of our own clothes and ‘props’ from our homes and friends to help out,” Bechtel told Paper. “There’s a lot of Juul fog featured and a lot of love went into making it so we hope you love it,” the band wrote on Instagram. Watch the full clip above.

Miley Cyrus Announces ‘She Is Coming’ EP With A Nostalgic Cover

Miley Cyrus is coming. On Memorial Day (May 27), Miley unveiled that she’s dropping a new EP, She Is Coming, very soon — the Friday (May 31) kind of soon. She teased new music earlier this month when a snippet of “Bad Karma” was unveiled ahead of her appearance at the Met Gala. Now, it looks like that, along with more fresh Miley magic, will be available in the near future.

Miley’s announcement came via Twitter in a two-part attention raiser: First, the announcement itself, then an icy threat for those who might pass it up (“Pre Save now! Or live with regret for the rest of your existence”). She also unveiled the cover art depicting her in black-and-white wearing a shirt shouting out the Sex Pistols’s sole album, Never Mind The Bollocks. Afterward, a few teasers involving fruits (mainly bananas) oozed down her timeline, further building the anticipation.

Her reveal comes days after performing three fresh tracks at BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend reportedly called “Cattitude,” “Dream,” and “Mother’s Daughter.” “Cattitude” features pop-rap, “Dream” is a mellower, more somber affair, and “Mother’s Daughter” is a little darker and emotional than the two previous. The varied sound of each tune makes guessing what She Is Coming will sound like next to impossible.

Miley’s last studio release was 2017’s Younger Now. In addition to dropping new music in the near future, she’ll be dropping into the fifth season of Netflix’s sci-fi series Black Mirror as some kind of musician.

How The Bold Type‘s Women-Powered Soundtrack Elevates The Show

What do Lizzo, Maggie Rogers, and Sigrid have in common? Aside from releasing breakout albums in 2019, each artist has had her music featured on the third season of Freeform’s hit dramedy The Bold Type. Part juicy journalism drama, part Sex and the City-esque comedy, the series — which chronicles the lives of three besties working for a glossy women’s magazine in Manhattan — has resonated because it tackles vital issues that young women face today, like sexism, cancel culture, and Internet harassment. But the show also shines thanks to its soundtrack — like The O.C. and Grey’s Anatomy before it, The Bold Type uses fresh and relevant tunes that weave into plot lines, making the music a central thread of the show’s fabric. Notably, that thread spotlights women in ways no other series on television is doing.

In April, the show’s music supervisor, Rob Lowry, tweeted, “We only use artists on #TheBoldType that identify as a woman or non-binary (there are very few exceptions). Yes, this is purposeful. I had to fight for this creative decision. It is important.” His mentions were promptly flooded with positive feedback from some fans who had already picked up on the show’s female-driven soundtrack, and others who hadn’t. After all, Lowry had never explicitly acknowledged that creative decision, but as he recalled to MTV News a few weeks later, he wanted to highlight the fact and make it known that The Bold Type‘s musical blueprint puts it in a league of its own.

Lowry, who has worked on The Bold Type since the series premiered in June 2017, didn’t set out with the intention of exclusively using music made by women. In fact, about half of the songs used in the pilot episode were by male artists. But as the show found its footing over the course of Season 1, its musical identity began to take shape.

“If I was working on a show that took place in 1972, I would only want to use songs from 1972 or beforehand. I see Bold Type and the soundtrack playing a role in the show in a similar way,” Lowry explained. “This is a show about strong women, diversity, identity, empowering yourself, and feeling comfortable in your skin. So it only makes sense that the people soundtracking the show would also be women talking about these things.”

Lowry gives the example of a scene from the second episode of Season 1, when Kat proves herself an invaluable friend by gamely helping Jane get a Yoni egg unstuck from her vagina. “What does a male perspective and voice have to comment on that situation?” he asked.

Showrunner Amanda Lasher recalls that when she joined The Bold Type for Season 2, Lowry and series creator Sarah Watson were keen to continue evolving the women-powered soundtrack, because the audience was “really responding to it.” She explained, “I think that there’s a depth to the feminism and the female lens of the show. The more levels it’s baked into, the more it’s going to resonate.”

While music may be an afterthought for some television shows, Lasher described it as an integral component of The Bold Type. It gives real-life context to the progressiveness and inclusivity viewers see onscreen.

“Everybody is cognizant that they’re working on a show that has a point of view and is portraying women in a way that is empowering and that’s intentional,” she said. “And I think, more than some of the other shows I’ve worked on, people are really proud of the message that The Bold Type is putting out there, so they bring a thoughtfulness to their choices.”

That’s not to say that the team’s music strategy went immediately unquestioned. As Lowry indicated in his tweet from April, he faced some “resistance” from higher-ups who worried that his music choices were too monotonous.

“I remember there was a scene in particular where we got a note about, ‘Why isn’t there a male vocal here?'” Lowry recalled. “Because it was all women singing, I think some people felt like it was just a wall of music and you weren’t really able to differentiate between the songs or the vocals or the sound. Which is kind of silly to me, because when you hear a Dua Lipa song, you know that’s not Camilla Cabello. That’s a pretty bland note, and it’s kind of a lazy note.”

And while the team’s creative decision does, technically, restrict them by giving them fewer options for songs, Lowry has never felt hindered by it, simply because of the sheer quantity of music available. “It does put us in a box in a sense, but to me, it’s exciting. I like the challenge,” he said. More importantly, it’s a challenge with a purpose — that creative decision, he says, is about heightening and deepening the narrative of what’s happening onscreen, especially because the show is “telling underserved stories.” It also has ripple effects behind the camera; the stories seen onscreen are supplemented by the stories of female artists sharing their own music, their own words, and their own experiences.

Singer-songwriter FLETCHER, whose song “Gold” was featured in Season 1, told MTV News, “The fact that it’s a show about the female perspective and female stories, who better than to have narrating the storylines and the music behind it than female and non-binary artists? There’s not enough women on radio or on playlists, and I love that this show is a space for female artists like myself.”

Part of the way the show shares those stories of female and non-binary artists is by using their music intentionally. This season, for example, there’s an episode called “Plus It Up” that centers around an elaborate Queer Prom fundraiser. The episode featured primarily LGBTQ artists and specifically women of color, like Lao Ra and Kehlani. Doing so enhanced the story being told onscreen while also highlighting underrepresented artists and sharing their music in a way that took their own identities into account.

As Lowry conceded in his tweet, there are exceptions to the show’s “women only” music rule. In the third episode of Season 3, there’s a storyline involving Alex, a male writer at Scarlet who takes a hard look at his dating life after realizing he’s the subject of a viral #MeToo exposé. During a pivotal scene for him, the song that plays is “I Know” by the male electronic producer Bayonne — it was a musical choice that fit Alex’s perspective and the scene’s transition, Lowry explained. Exceptions like that are few and far between, though, especially now that the show’s musical DNA is firmly established. To hear Lowry explain it, “female-driven” is only part of that identity; more than anything, it’s about the feeling the music conveys.

“Even talking about how we only use female artists, I’m not entirely sure how to say that because ‘female’ is not a genre; it’s not an identifying factor for a piece of music,” Lowry said. “But obviously, women being at the forefront is a huge part of it. Beyond that, a lot of [our music] does feel anthemic. It feels empowering. These songs have a lot of emotions packed into them. For a lot of them, we do the goosebumps test, where it’s like, did that song give you goosebumps in that moment? If it didn’t, we’re going to find something better.”

That litmus test has given way to some of the series’ most thrilling musical moments to date, from Selena Gomez’s “Hands to Myself” playing over Jane and Pinstripe’s first kiss, to MILCK’s “Quiet” soundtracking the climactic Season 1 finale that shined a light on sexual assault survivors. This season, the music has only continued elevating — Lowry scored a coveted Taylor Swift sync, and the premiere episode featured a performance from Betty Who, appearing as herself. Who is a longtime fan of the show, and she explained to MTV News why it’s important to her that the show uses art in a thoughtful way.

“It’s so fucking cool. I love that the show is so progressive and they care about their impact in the choices they make,” she said. “They don’t have to. [Lowry] could just pick whatever songs he wanted and nobody would think about it twice because nobody does music by female artists only. But they were like, ‘No. We have the opportunity to do something that’s important. Let’s do it.'”

Last week, Freeform announced that The Bold Type has officially been picked up for Season 4, meaning fans are in for more of Jane’s digital drama, Sutton’s styling schemes, and Kat’s political prowess. Accompanying it all will be Lowry’s carefully curated soundtrack, and while he has lofty goals in mind for future seasons — he’d love to do a musical episode and is gunning for a Carly Rae Jepsen cameo — the first priority is keeping the show’s unprecedented musical mission reverberating.