Lil Nas X made a serious play for the No. 1 spot on this week’s Billboard 200, Billboard’s ranking of the most-consumed albums and EPs in America. The multi-genre musician’s debut full-length Montero fails to open in first place, settling for the runner-up rung as it comes in behind only Drake’s unstoppable Certified Lover Boy. Right behind the two Grammy winners is South Korean all-male vocal act NCT 127, and with another top 10 title to their credit, the act makes history among their countrymen.
NCT 127’s new album Sticker opens at No. 3 on this week’s Billboard 200, bringing the band to a new high. Last year, their set Neo Zone peaked at No. 5, and now they’ve shown they’re becoming more and more popular with each release. The group is now one of just three musical acts from South Korea to appear inside the top 10 on the all-genre ranking of the most successful projects in America more than once.
BTS leads all names from South Korea when it comes to the most placements inside the top 10 on the Billboard 200. The septet has now sent five releases to No. 1—Love Yourself: Tear, Love Yourself: Answer, Map of the Soul: Persona, Map of the Soul: 7 and Be—while one other early set, Love Yourself: Her, peaked at No. 7. They have accrued half a dozen appearances inside the uppermost tier on the ranking, and it will be quite a while before another name from the K-pop world matches that showing.
The only other musical act of any kind from South Korea to chart several top 10 albums in America is SuperM, a supergroup made up of performers from other highly-successful bands. The group’s debut EP SuperM opened in first place, while their follow-up, a full-length named Super One, nearly matched that performance, instead stalling in the runner-up rung.
A number of other South Korean acts, such as Twice, Blackpink and Monsta X, to name just a few, have also charted a top 10 album on the Billboard 200, but so far, just one each. Soon, one of them will collect a second, and join NCT 127, SuperM and BTS in the feat.
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