Katherine’s K-Pop Recap: September 6-12, 2021

A summary of the news, current and upcoming comebacks, charts and music show wins, and more!

NOTE: Except in special cases, the news recapped in these posts will refer to K-pop only. K-dramas, variety shows, and other forms of entertainment will only be mentioned if there is an idol or idol group involved.

News to Note

  • LABOUM’s leader Yujeong announced she would be leaving the group after the expiration of her contract with her company. She shared this information in an Instagram post and mentioned the other members had all renewed their contracts. Shortly after, it was revealed that the remaining four members of LABOUM had transferred agencies and are now being managed by Interpark Music Plus. You can read a translation of Yujeong’s Instagram post here and an update on LABOUM here.
  • There were some other news items about different idols leaving their various agencies:
    • Soyou is the last member of SISTAR to leave their original agency Starship Entertainment. Bora and Hyolyn both left after their initial contracts ended in 2017 (when the group disbanded), and Dasom recently departed earlier this year. You can read a translation of Starship Entertainment’s statement about it here.
    • SONAMOO member Euijin has left TS Entertainment and joined Mellow Entertainment. You can read a translation of her Instagram post about it here. It was reported that two other SONAMOO members had also left the agency, but I haven’t seen anything confirmed yet.
    • P.O from Block B has left Seven Seasons Entertainment. You can read a translation of the agency’s statement about it here.
  • Dispatch revealed some messages and transcripts of conversations between current and former members of AOA, revealing new details on the girl group’s ongoing scandal. (A VERY BASIC recap: former member Mina, who left the group in 2019, revealed last year that leader Jimin severely bullied her. This resulted in Jimin leaving both AOA and the entertainment industry entirely, while Mina continues to speak about these events on social media.) You can read a full translation of Dispatch’s report here. It includes translations of:
    • Messages between Mina and Jimin several months before the former publicly exposed the latter
    • Records of a conversation between the members of AOA last year: the five who were active at the time (including Jimin), Mina, and ChoA who had left in 2017. While I’m not 100% clear, I believe it’s a transcription of the conversation they had when they all gathered to try and resolve the situation right after Mina’s first accusations – it seems their discussion was recorded.
    • Messages Mina sent Jimin after the scandal, from late 2020 through 2021 (they were unanswered)
    • Messages between Mina and various AOA managers that show how she allegedly treated them
    • Mina’s Instagram post in response to these texts and conversations being revealed
  • N.Flying member Chahun tested positive for COVID-19, meaning that all five members of the band currently have the virus. (The other four tested positive last week.) You can read a translation of FNC Entertainment’s statement here.
  • B.I has received his sentence after being indicted earlier this year for purchasing and using drugs – he was given three years in prison suspended for probation for four years. You can read more about the situation here.

This Week’s Debuts and Comebacks

(Please note that I won’t necessarily link every release that came out this week – just the ones that I’m aware of or popped up on my radar. The same is true of the “Coming Up Next Week” category.)

YoungK (DAY6), “Guard You” (*solo debut*, 9/6)

OMEGA X, “What’s Goin’ On” (9/6)

Baek A Yeon, “아무것도 하기 싫으면 어떡해” (9/7)

HyunA & Dawn, “Ping Pong” (special unit, 9/9)

Lisa (BLACKPINK), “Lalisa” (*solo debut* 9/10)

STAYC, “Stereotype” (9/6)

Sungmin (SJ), “Goodnight, Summer” (9/7)

PURPLE KISS, “Zombie” (9/8)

Lee Hi feat. Yoon Mirae, “Red Lipstick” (9/9)

Monsta X, “One Day” (special English single, 9/10)

Coming Up Next Week

Monday (9/13)Tuesday (9/14)Wednesday (9/15)Thursday (9/16)Friday (9/17)
ATEEZWonhoMAMAMOO*NCT 127

*MAMAMOO will be releasing a compilation album of their hit songs with a new one included, but I’m not sure if they’ll promote it like a full-on comeback.

This Week’s Music Show Wins

The Show (SBS MTV)fromis_9, “Talk & Talk” (1st win/1st EVER win)
Show Champion (MBC)Stray Kids, “Thunderous” (5th win)
M! Countdown (MNET)Stray Kids, “Thunderous” (6th win)
Music Bank (KBS)Lee Mujin, “Traffic Light” (2nd win)
Music Core (MBC)Red Velvet, “Queendom” (6th win)
Inkigayo (SBS)Red Velvet, “Queendom” (7th win)

Album Sales, Streaming, and Charting

Gaon Weekly Chart

NOTE: Gaon‘s weekly charts reflect the previous week. To see a full breakdown of the chart, you can go here.

#1#2#3#4#5
Album SalesStray Kids,
NOEASY
BTOB,
4U: Outside
Red Velvet,
Queendom
The Boyz,
THRILL-ING
Jay B (GOT7),
Somo: Fume
Overall DigitalTHE KID LAROI and Justin Bieber,
“Stay”
Lee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
aespa,
“Next Level”
MSG Wannabe (M.O.M),
“Foolish Love”
Red Velvet,
“Queendom”
StreamingTHE KID LAROI and Justin Bieber,
“Stay”
Lee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
aespa,
“Next Level”
MSG Wannabe (M.O.M),
“Foolish Love”
AKMU feat. IU,
“NAKKA”
DownloadsBTOB,
“Outsider”
Key (SHINee) feat. Taeyeon,
“Hate That”
THE KID LAROI and Justin Bieber,
“Stay”
Baekhyun (EXO),
“Is it Me?”
(OST)
K.Will,
“Back in Time”
(OST)
SocialBTSBLACKPINKCLIm Young Woong TWICE

Gaon Monthly Chart (for August)

#1#2#3#4#5
Album SalesStray Kids,
NOEASY
TXT,
The Chaos Chapter: FIGHT or ESCAPE
The Boyz,
THRILL-ING
Red Velvet,
Queendom
ASTRO,
Switch On
Overall DigitalLee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
AKMU feat. IU,
“Nakka”
MSG Wannabe (M.O.M),
“Foolish Love”
aespa,
“Next Level”
Taeyeon,
“Weekend”
StreamingLee Mujin,
“Traffic Light”
MSG Wannabe (M.O.M),
“Foolish Love”
AKMU feat. IU,
“Nakka”
aespa,
“Next Level”
Taeyeon,
“Weekend”
DownloadsASTRO,
“Switch On”
The Boyz,
“Thrill Ride”
AKMU feat. IU,
“Nakka”
ONF,
“Popping”
Lee Chan Won,
“Convenience Store”
SocialBTSBLACKPINKTWICEIm Young Woong Kim Ho Joong

Gaon Certifications

Group/ArtistAlbum/SongCertification
BTSButter (single album)Double million (album sales)
BLACKPINKKill This LoveDouble platinum (album sales)
ENHYPENBorder: Day OneDouble platinum (album sales)
D.O. (EXO)EmpathyPlatinum (album sales)
Monsta XTake.1 Are You There?Platinum (album sales)
SEVENTEENDirector’s CutPlatinum (album sales)
NCT DreamHello Future (kit version)Platinum (album sales)
Billie Eilish“Bad Guy”Platinum (digital downloads)
Changmo“METEOR”Double platinum (streams)

The International Side of K-pop

  • BTS’s “Butter” returned to claim #1 on Billboard‘s “Hot 100” for its 10th non-consecutive week.
  • “Butter” was also crowned #1 on Billboard‘s “Top Songs of the Summer” for 2021
  • TXT’s The Chaos Chapter: FREEZE ranked #26 on the Billboard 200, extending its record as the longest-running K-pop album on the chart for 2021.
  • BLACKPINK is now the #1 most followed artist channel on YouTube, reaching 65.2 million subscribers and passing Justin Bieber.
  • The following K-pop music videos reached new viewer milestones on YouTube this week:
    • TWICE’s “TT” is their first music video to reach 600 million views.
    • BTS had four music videos hit new viewer milestones: “Fake Love” and “IDOL” passed 1 billion views (their fifth and sixth to do so), “ON” hit 400 million (the Kinetic Manifesto Film version), and “Permission to dance” reached 300 million.
    • Red Velvet’s “Psycho” is their second music video to hit 300 million views (after “Bad Boy”).
    • 2NE1’s “I Am the Best” is their first music video to reach 300 million views.
    • BLACKPINK’s “Whistle” hit 700 million views.
    • BLACKPINK’s Lisa might have also set a couple of YouTube records with her debut “LALISA,” though this hasn’t been officially confirmed by YouTube yet. First, the view count on “LALISA” reached at least 70 million in 24 hours – this means that number could become the highest amount of first day views for any solo artist. And second, “LALISA” hit 100 million views after a little over two days and could be the fastest music video by a solo artist to do so. (And not just a K-pop solo artist, ANY solo artist). I’ll write about this again in next week’s post when YouTube confirms all the numbers.

Notable Variety Shows Featuring K-pop Idols

Weekly IdolKnowing BrothersAmazing Saturday
This WeekSTAYCNon-idol guestsDynamic Duo and Code Kunst
Next WeekATEEZAOMG artists: Lee Hi, Simon Dominic, Code Kunst, and GrayHyunA & DAWN

SOURCES NOTE: I get my news from a mix of sources, and all of them report the same information and sometimes cite each other as well. So rather than linking the exact article for each and every news item (unless the article provides a lot more detail), I will cite my general news sources below. Each of them will most likely have an article and/or tweet providing more details on the item in question.

MY REGULAR NEWS SOURCES: Soompi, Omona They Didn’t (Livejournal), The Seoul Story (Twitter @theseoulstory), and Girl Group Zone! (Twitter @girlgroupzone)

FEATURED IMAGE SOURCE: YG Entertainment (Lisa)

VIDEO SOURCES: YouTube, AOMG (Lee Hi), Eden Entertainment/1theK (Baek A Yeon), High Up Entertainment (STAYC), JYP Entertainment (YoungK), P Nation (HyunA and DAWN), RBW Entertainment (PURPLE KISS), SM Entertainment (Sungmin), Spire Entertainment (OMEGA X), Starship Entertainment (Monsta X), YG Entertainment (Lisa)

OTHER SOURCES:  YouTube, Wikipedia, BillboardGaon Chart, KBS, MBC, MNET, SBS

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