Vernon becomes the third member of the 13-piece group to release solo material, having previously teamed up with Charli XCX and Omega Sapien
Pop punk colors Black Eye, the debut solo from Vernon, one-thirteenth of the K-pop supergroup Seventeen. The third to venture out on his own, following Hoshi and Woozi, the hip-hop unit member previously appeared on a string of features, popping up alongside Charli XCX and Rina Sawayama on a “Beg For You” remix and Omega Sapien on “Wrecker.”
Vernon chose chaos from the initial announcement of the project, sharing a teaser trailer previewing the guitar-heavy title track with the lyrics: “I’m on my worst behavior/How you like me now?/Put a muzzle on me/I’ll spit in your mouth.”
The fiery concept photos accompanying the release of Black Eye set the basis for an adoption of pop punk’s roughed up aesthetic. The “Black Eye” music video is all cathartic emotional release riding on the high of destruction captured in camcorder-quality footage. The singer is seen singing against moody backdrops, from abandoned buildings to forlorn sunsets.
Vernon has been working towards enveloping himself in the genre’s sound since first suggesting Seventeen toy with it in the style of Avril Lavigne on their 2021 bonus track “2 Minus 1,” he and his bandmate Joshua told Forbes at the time.
“I’ve been into that genre recently and when our label offered a chance to work on an all-English track to me and Joshua, I thought ‘Why not a pop-punk track?’,” Vernon said. “Bring back the early-2000s vibes, but we also took inspiration from that and new-school sounds.”
Fans pressed him on his influences from there, finding that he was as much of a student of Green Day as he was of Lavigne, with Black Eye reflecting the streamlined rock sound of artists like Yungblud and Machine Gun Kelly with a sharp pop edge.