BTS' RM Enters Billboard 200 With 'Mono'

The rapper-singer's "playlist" flies onto the albums chart with less than three days of charting.

BTS fans had a slew of surprises bestowed upon them last week, including the group's leader RM delivering a new solo release that makes its way onto the Billboard 200.

RM's Mono. (which was labeled a "playlist" on the cover art) was released for free download as well as via digital-download and streaming services on Tuesday, Oct. 23. With less than three days of chart activity, Mono. debuts at No. 26 on the Billboard 200 with 21,000 equivalent album units earned in the week ending Oct. 25, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 16,000 were in traditional album sales. 

The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units are comprised of traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). The new Nov. 3-dated chart -- where RM debuts and the A Star Is Born soundtrack spends its third week at No. 1 -- will be posted in full on Billboard's websites on Tuesday, Oct. 30, along with the rest of Billboard's weekly charts dated Nov. 3.

The genre-ranging release marks a strong pivot from the star's 2015 mixtape R.M., which focused on harder hip-hop and had a more aggressive tone. From its softer, ambient-like sounds to the reflective material, Mono. feels like it represents a star more at peace at himself despite still having unresolved feelings about the world around him. 

Before Mono., the best solo release from the K-pop scene came from RM's BTS band mate J-Hope whose Hope World mixtape peaked at No. 38 in March. This week's Billboard 200 also sees the arrival of EXO member Lay and his solo album NAMANANA at No. 21 -- though, as previously reported, it's tough to consider the release K-pop since it was recorded in Chinese and English despite Lay having his roots initially in the K-pop scene.

On his own, RM has entered a few Billboard charts including the Bubbling Under Hot 100 and rock-genre charts when he appeared on the remix of Fall Out Boy's "Champion" in late 2017. When he was still known as Rap Monster, the R.M. mixtape also hit No. 12 on World Albums, while a collaboration with Warren G titled "P.D.D" entered the top 10 of the World Digital Song Sales chart.

Check back to Billboard.com on Tuesday morning when all the charts are refreshed to see the full scope of RM's latest chart activity.

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