South Korean rapper J-Hope has released a new song, “Safety Zone” from his debut studio album, “Jack in the Box.”
Released on July 15, 2022, through Big Hit Music, the album contains 10 tracks, including the lead single, “More”, which preceded it on July 1, and the follow-up single, “Arson”, which was released the same day as the album, together with an accompanying music video.
J-Hope released his first solo mixtape, Hope World, on March 2, 2018. It peaked at number 38 on the US Billboard 200 and made him the highest-charting Korean soloist on the ranking at the time. He did not release any new music for some time after that, citing disappointment with the mixtape as a reason, during a livestream in January 2019.
J-Hope further elaborated that a lack of confidence in his skills as a musician, especially in comparison to that of his bandmates, made him feel unprepared and hesitant to try collaborating with other artists. Despite these insecurities, the rapper also expressed feeling motivated by his bandmates’ successes “to write great songs and want to work with great artists”.
The bilingual “Chicken Noodle Soup” single, featuring American singer Becky G, followed in the latter part of the year. No further releases were forthcoming. Speaking to Rolling Stone in 2021 about the likelihood of a second mixtape, J-Hope disclosed that he had been working on his music continuously, but nothing was decided as yet.
J-Hope’s goal at present was “to get inspired and make good music.” He added that Hope World’s creation had greatly influenced his progression as a musician and artist since 2018, and while his style would not change much, it would be more mature.