The intense competition for the top spot on the Billboard 200 culminated in burgeoning K-pop girl group NewJeans emerging victorious, securing their first-ever leader in the United States with their EP Get Up. The set eked out a win on the all-encompassing ranking, but it also managed to open in first place on the purchase-only Top Album Sales chart, where the outfit makes history and matches some of the biggest names from their home country.
The EP’s meteoric rise to the summit is thanks to its exceptional first-week sales figures. Get Up debuts atop the Top Album Sales chart with a sizable 101,500 copies sold in the United States alone. Notably, a remarkable 99% of these sales constitute physical CD purchases, with only a marginal fraction stemming from digital sales.
NewJeans has outperformed their closest competition by nearly double the sales figures. The Barbie soundtrack, the runner-up on both the Top Album Sales and Billboard 200 charts, managed to sell around 53,000 copies upon its debut.
NewJeans’s maiden No. 1 on the Top Album Sales chart places them among an elite group of South Korean girl groups that have managed to conquer the tally. In fact, they’re just the fifth to do so.
The trailblazing Blackpink became the first South Korean girl group to rule the Top Album Sales chart in 2020 with their release, The Album. The four-member outfit has since doubled their sum with a second leader, Born Pink.
Among K-pop girl groups, Twice takes the lead with the most No. 1s on the exclusive sales-only chart. The vocal troupe has asserted their dominance with three releases attaining the peak position. However, somehow, Twice has yet to replicate this achievement on the Billboard 200, though they have come very close.
Aespa, another beloved South Korean girl group, has also ascended to the penthouse more than once. Two of their three appearances on the Top Album Sales chart have resulted in a No. 1 position, a remarkable testament to their popularity. Their only other placement was a near-miss by a solitary rung.
Itzy is also a part of this bit of history, as they have also secured a solitary bestseller on the Top Album Sales chart.
While this piece focuses primarily on groups, it’s worth mentioning that Nayeon, a member of Twice, also individually reigned over the Top Album Sales chart with her solo debut. She is so far the only solo female musician from South Korea to do so, though she likely won’t be the last.