BTS‘s passion and hard work haven’t changed since day one; However, their image has undergone a stark transformation and continues to change as time goes on. J-Hope sat down with Rolling Stone to reveal what caused their image to shift so abruptly over time.

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BTS | HYBE Labels/Youtube

He revealed that the initial reason for their dark and tough image was to match the content of their lyrics and messages.

Back when we had released “No More Dream,” our music embodied the battle against prejudice and oppression. So naturally, such values carried over to the style and visual aspects of the release as well. You could say it was our identity and the image that we also portrayed at that moment.

— J-Hope

However, as time went on, things changed. Not only did the trends in music shift, BTS themselves were also growing as artists and were ready to branch out to new topics.

But we can’t forever dwell in that static state. As time flows, things change and trends change, as did our tendencies in music.

— J-Hope

Fans’ input also played a role in helping BTS find their sound and image.

We took into account the influences around us, including, of course, our audiences. These influences guided us toward our own change in musical style and concepts.

— J-Hope

As BTS continues to grow as both artists and people, they are able to tell more stories through their music and branch out to new genres and themes.

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| @BTS_Bighit/Twitter

Check out more from J-Hope’s interview below!

J-Hope Reveals How Life Was Growing Up In BTS And What He Learned From The Members