Boyband BTS make K-Pop history topping US album charts

South Korean boyband BTS attend the 2018 Billboard Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 20. BTS became the first K-Pop group to top the Billboard 200 music charts, which ranks albums via sales, downloads and streams. (AFP)
Updated 28 May 2018

Boyband BTS make K-Pop history topping US album charts

SEOUL: Korean boyband phenomenon BTS have become the first K-Pop group to rise to the top of the US album charts, a vivid illustration of the genre’s growing global appeal.
Known for boyish good looks, floppy haircuts and meticulously choreographed dance moves, the septet has become one of South Korea’s best known and most lucrative musical exports.
On Sunday, they passed a new milestone — becoming the first K-Pop group to top the Billboard 200 music charts which ranks albums via sales, downloads and streams.
“It’s the first No. 1 for the seven-member group, and the first K-pop album to lead the tally,” Billboard wrote in its online report detailing the latest chart ranking.
While plenty of older music listeners in the West might be asking “who?,” it’s hard to underestimate the popularity of BTS and their seven stars Suga, J-Hope, Rap Monster, Jimin, V, Jungkook and Jin.
According to one data analysis, they were they most talked about phenomenon on Twitter in 2017, with nearly double the number of mentions on the social media platform than US President Donald Trump and Canadian badboy heartthrob Justin Bieber combined.
Throw in their similarly massive appeal across the globe — they have huge social media followings in Japan, China, Southeast Asia and parts of Latin America — and you have a truly global supergroup.
Their new album “Love Yourself: Tear” toppled “Beerpong and Bentleys” by rising hip-hop star Post Malone, whose facial tattoos are the very antithesis of BTS’ wholesome, meticulously manicured image.
While BTS sing in Korean, their style successfully fuses the catchy earworms of K-Pop with hip-hop and R’n’B.
Last year, their previous release “Love Yourself: Her” became the first K-Pop album to make it into the top 10 US album charts, rising to number seven, and hit the number one spot on iTunes in more than 70 countries.


Screen scene: Films, series to stream this week

‘Sweet Magnolias’ is a romantic drama. (Supplied)
Updated 01 June 2020

Screen scene: Films, series to stream this week

‘I Love Everything’

Starring: Patton Oswalt

Where: Netflix

The award-winning comedian “reflects on hilarious existential anecdotes after recently embracing his fifties,” according to Netflix’s blurb for Oswalt’s latest special — including the sacrifices he’s making as a father to a young girl, and property ownership.

‘Sweet Magnolias’

Starring: JoAnna Garcia Swisher, Brooke Elliott, Heather Headley

Where: Netflix

Romantic drama based on the eponymous series of novels by Sherryl Woods. It follows the lives of Maddie, Dana, and Helen — best friends since high school — in South Carolina as they navigate “the complexities of romance, career, and family.”

‘Control Z’

Mexican drama set in El Colegio Nacional high school. (Supplied)

Starring: Ana Valeria Becerril, Michael Ronda, Andres Baida, Yankel Stevan

Where: Netflix

Mexican drama set in El Colegio Nacional high school. The school’s social order is turned upside down when a hacker begins releasing students’ intimate secrets online. Social outcast Sofia tries to uncover the hacker’s identity before more secrets are released.

‘Douglas’

‘Douglas’ is on Netflix. (Supplied)

Starring: Hannah Gadsby

Where: Netflix

Gadsby’s last special, “Nanette,” was one of the most critically acclaimed comedy shows of all time. No pressure for the follow-up then... Expect further unexpected connections and insights from this talented Australian stand-up.

‘The Lovebirds’

Jibran and Leilani have just decided to split up after four years together when they become unwittingly entangled in a murder. (Supplied)

Starring: Issa Rae, Kumail Nanjiani, Paul Sparks, Anna Camp, Kyle Bornheimer

Where: Netflix

Jibran and Leilani have just decided to split up after four years together when they become unwittingly entangled in a murder. Will the resultant mayhem and danger restore their faith in, and love for, each other? It’s a rom-com, so we’re guessing yes.