Eighteen-piece K-pop group NCT rises 2-1 on Billboard‘s Emerging Artists chart (dated May 5), to become the top emerging musical act in the U.S. The coronation marks the first time that a K-Pop act has led the list.
The move is powered by the act’s social reach, driven mostly by Twitter reactions. NCT ranks at No. 4 on the Social 50 chart, with an 11 percent increase in overall activity. Plus, its first LP, NCT 2018 Empathy, places at No. 15 on World Albums (after reaching No. 5 in March).
NCT currently includes 18 members. Its brand extends to sub-units NCT 127 (with nine members) and NCT Dream (featuring only teenagers), while more NCT offshoots are expected.
Three albums have hit the World Albums chart under the NCT 127 billing (including Limitless: The 2nd Mini Album EP, which spent a week at No. 1 in January 2017), while one has charted credited to NCT Dream (EP We Young: The 1st Mini Album; No. 3, March 2017).
Elsewhere on the Emerging Artists chart, British singer-songwriter Bishop Briggs re-enters at a new No. 4 high, as her debut studio set Church of Scars arrives at No. 5 on Top Rock Albums and No. 29 on the Billboard 200 with 14,000 equivalent album units, according to Nielsen Music. Briggs’ latest single “White Flag” concurrently re-enters the Hot Rock Songs chart at No. 27 and rises 26-23 on Alternative Songs.
Rounding out the Artist 100’s top five, Bad Wolves bump 3-2, Jordan Davis dips 1-3 and Ella Mai ascends 7-5, entering the top five for the first time.
Among other Emerging Artists moves, country singer-songwriter Morgan Wallen logs a new peak (15-9), as his breakout single “Up Down,” featuring Florida Georgia Line, hits the Radio Songs chart’s top 40 (44-39, up 10 percent to 24.5 million in audience). The track also lifts to No. 12 on Hot Country Songs, a new peak.
Check out this week’s full Emerging Artists chart here.