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BTS' 'Map of the Soul: 7' becomes bestselling album in U.S. in H1

K-pop 17:09 July 10, 2020

SEOUL, July 10 (Yonhap) -- K-pop band BTS' latest album "Map of the Soul: 7" was the most-sold album in the United States in the first half of 2020, a global music sales measurement company said Friday.

Nielsen Music's U.S. Mid-Year Report for 2020 showed that "Map of the Soul: 7," BTS' fourth full-length album released in February, has sold some 552,000 units, ranking No. 1 on its Top 10 Albums Total Sales chart in the U.S.

The Top 10 Albums Total Sales chart combines sales of CDs, hard copies, such as vinyl records, and digital albums.

CDs accounted for 96 percent of the sales of the BTS album and digital album sales the remaining 4 percent, according to Billboard.

The album also dominated the Top 10 Physical Albums chart by selling 528,000 units, it added.

"Map of the Soul: 7" was the only music album to sell more than 500,000 units in the U.S. market in the first half.

In the Top 10 Albums chart, where track equivalent album units (TEA) and on-demand audio streaming equivalent album units (SEA) are measured together, the septet's album ranked ninth out of 10, the report showed.

Billboard said BTS was the musician with the largest album sales in the U.S. in the first half.

The group sold some 757,000 units of its albums, including "Map of the Soul: 7" and previously released ones. Among them, 720,000 were physical copies, Billboard said.

In the Top Five Genre Artists chart in the pop scene, BTS came second after Billie Eilish. Ranked third, fourth and fifth were Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber and Halsey, respectively. The chart aggregates album sales, online downloads and streaming.

At home, BTS topped the South Korean Gaon chart run by the Korea Music Content Association, selling a record number of over 4.26 million copies in the first half. The septet also topped the Japanese Oricon album chart in the first half, becoming the first foreign act to claim the honor in 36 years.

Members of BTS pose at a media showcase for its album 'Map of the Soul: 7' released in February, in this photo provided by SM Entertainment. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

Meanwhile, NCT 127, another K-pop band on a roll in the American market, ranked eighth on Nielsen Music's Top 10 Albums Total Sales and fourth in physical album sales with its second full-length album "NCT #127 Neo-Zone."

The success of the two Korean groups has drawn attention amid the fall of overall hard copy album sales in the U.S. market. In the first half of 2020, physical album sales dropped 20.3 percent on-year, while sales of CDs plummeted 30.2 percent in the U.S. Only vinyl album sales increased by 11.2 percent.

This photo, provided by SM Entertainment on Jan. 13, 2020, shows South Korean boy band NCT 127, which will join the 2020 Houston Rodeo concert in Houston from March 3-22. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

nyway@yna.co.kr
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