Global phenomenon BTS have taken the world by storm with their hip-hop infused brand of K-pop. Their sound is greatly dependent on the contributions of three rappers: Kim Namjoon, aka RM, Min Yoongi, aka Suga, and Jeon Hoseok, aka J-Hope. The trio embellish the group’s tracks with substance, tackling pressing issues such as flawed education systems and classism on some occasions, and delving into their fears and insecurities on others.

In their solo ventures the artists display individuality, using distinct styles to reveal their differing perspectives. To quote one fan’s apt description, “Namjoon analyzes the world, Yoongi criticizes the world, and Hoseok visualizes the world.”

Visualizing appropriately describes J-Hope’s efforts on his debut mixtape, Hope World. The 24 year old paints a vivid picture of himself, optimistically discussing his life over bright instrumentals incorporating upbeat pop, hip-hop, and house influences. From its colorful cover and vibrant video for ‘Daydream’, to its positive lyrics and energetic beats, this project boldly proclaims it is Jeon Hoseok’s unique creation.

The tape kicks off with the title track, ‘Hope World’, a dance track in which the emcee acknowledges his blessings before vowing to take the listener on a journey into his universe, likening himself to Captain Nemo and the listener to Professor Annorax from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. On ‘Piece of Peace’ he sympathizes with the struggles of his fans and wishes to bring them comfort through his music. ‘Daydream’ begins with Hope describing the burdens associated with being a public figure, followed by him expressing his desires to find freedom living a simple life.

‘Base Line’ interrupts the flow of the tape with hard hitting trap production, accompanied by bars that cite Hope’s gratitude and work ethic as the foundations of his success. On ‘Hangsang’, another hip-hop banger, the rapper flexes his team’s fame and status. The track unfortunately falls victim to an annoyingly simple, repetitive beat and overstays its welcome being nearly four minutes long.

Hoseok recalls his childhood dreams of flight then reflects on now living said dream over the chill synths of ‘Airplane.’ The mixtape concludes pleasantly with ‘Blue Side’, a minimal, melancholy outro coated with ambient vocals invoking memories of past days.

J-Hope showcases exceptional creativity, genuine personality, and a cohesive sense of direction over the 20 minutes of the project. He introduces meaningful ideas as well, but they beg to further developed with more nuanced lyricism. All in all, Jeon Hoseok starts his career off on a high note with Hope World, opening the door for further musical exploration in the future.