Tomorrow X Together have the first new #1 album of 2023. The K-pop group’s five-song EP The Name Chapter: Temptation debuts atop the Billboard 200 this week with 161,500, almost none of those via streaming. As New York Times points out, 98% of the band’s total comes from CD sales — an anomaly in today’s mainstream, except in K-pop, where interest in collectible CDs runs high. Tomorrow X Together released 14 different editions of the EP; some are autographed, while some come with mystery bonuses like photo books and postcards.
The arrival of The Name Chapter: Temptation ends a seven-week run at #1 for SZA’s SOS, which falls to #2 this week with another 100,000 units, largely powered by streaming. This isn’t the first time a Korean pop group and a Black American R&B star have squared off at the top of the charts; Summer Walker and SuperM had a similar streaming vs. sales showdown in 2019.