At least seven albums to break 1 million in sales in 2020
With three months to go to the end of the year, Gaon Chart says seven albums are set to break 1 million in sales in 2020.
Last year, only one album made into the list: BTS’s EP "Map of the Soul: Persona."
This year, BTS’s fourth full-length album “Map of the Soul: 7,” released in February, sold 4.31 million copies. Exo member Baekhyun’s second EP “Delight” released in May has sold 1.02 million copies, and Seventeen's seventh EP “Heng:garae” released in June, with 1.37 million copies sold.
Girl group Blackpink and boy bands NCT and Seventeen released their new albums this month, all of which sold over 1 million copies solely on preorders.
An album to be released by BTS next month is sure to break 1 million.
Sales of the top 400 albums from the January to September period reached 26 million copies, surpassing last year's full-year sales of 25.09 million copies.
The million-seller boom is said to be the result of the growth in interest in K-pop globally and the pandemic. Unable to attend concerts, fans have no choice but to buy albums to enjoy the music and express their enthusiasm.
"Japan once experienced such a spike in album sales in 2012 thanks to girl group AKB’s popularity, which didn’t last long,” Kim Jin-woo, a senior researcher at Gaon Chart, said. “On the other hand, album sales in Korea have been rising steeply since 2015. This year, there is a strong tendency among fans to consume multiple albums to make up for not being able to buy concert tickets to offer support as fans.”
K-pop girl groups and boy bands are achieving significant overseas album sales. NCT's second full-length album "NCT 2020: Resonance Pt. 1" released on Oct. 12 has recorded sales of 810,000 in Korea and 400,000 overseas, totaling 1.21 million copies in the first week of its release, according to the band’s agency.
Blackpink's first full-length album "The Album," which made it to second place on the Billboard album chart, has sold 740,000 copies in Korea alone. The overseas sales figures haven’t been released yet.
Seventeen’s special album "; [Semicolon]" released on Oct. 19 has surpassed 1.1 million preorders and is set to top the Oricon’s weekly album chart for the fourth consecutive time.
In the most recent release, they tried different mixes of the 13 members to achieve different sounds.
“The larger the group, the lesser the chance each member gets to show off his or her individual talent," said Professor Lee Gyu-tag of pop music and media studies at George Mason University Korea. “They can make up for what they have missed by performing in solo or unit activities.”
BY MIN KYUNG-WON, KIM YEON-AH [firstname.lastname@example.org]