J-Hope of BTS made a highly anticipated return with his solo album “Jack in the Box” and a music video for “Arson,” the album’s lead single, on July 15.
With 10 new songs, the theme and style of “Jack in the Box” breaks away from J-Hope’s traditional “sunshine” image. In an interview with Variety last week, the artist stated that he wanted to “express a little bit of a darker side of me, as J-Hope, as an individual.”
Addressing the darker rap and rock aspects of “More,” which was the first song released off his new album, J-Hope shared that “the feeling that you might have got when you first listened to this song is probably definitely reflected on all the other tracks in the album… [the album] definitely reveals a little darker side of me, a different aspect of myself.”
Unlike previous BTS albums and J-Hope’s mixtapes, “Jack in the Box” notably lacks featured artists. J-Hope explained that this is because the tracks are “filled with my voice only, because I wanted to convey my own narrative, my own story as an individual.”
To celebrate his solo debut, J-Hope held a listening party on Thursday night, bringing celebrities from both the music and entertainment industries together. The list of notable attendees includes Heize, Zico, Sumni, Hyuna, Jessi, Bibi and J-Hope’s fellow BTS members.
The festivities were shared on social media, with many uploading photos with encouraging messages for “Jack in the Box.”
J-Hope is expected to return to the stage at Lollapalooza on July 31 with labelmates Tomorrow X Together. He is set to make history as the first South Korean artist to headline the main stage of a major U.S. music festival.
While BTS announced their group hiatus following the release of their latest album “Proof” last month, they explained that they wanted to “take time to explore some solo projects.” Out of the group’s seven members, J-Hope was the first to announce his upcoming return.
Fans can listen to “Jack in the Box” on Spotify, Apple Music, Melon and all other online streaming platforms.