By AUBREE STAMPER, Staff Writer
Hailing from a planet far outside of our solar system–“EXO-Planet”–is a group consisting of nine superpower-wielding members who are breaking K-pop records left and right and stealing the world spotlight.
The group, made up originally of twelve members, is split up into EXO-K (Suho, Baekhyun, Chanyeol, Sehun, Kai, D.O) and EXO-M (Lay, Chen, Xiumin), and release every album in Korean and Mandarin.
They debuted in 2012 with their first mini-album MAMA and their unique alien-like concept. To many people’s amazement, in only four years this group reached the very top of the K-pop totem pole and show no signs of coming down anytime soon.
Each member has many talents such as singing, dancing, acting, rapping and being comedic, not to mention crazy good looks. Their performances are always unique and out of this world (ha, get it?), which is only enhanced by the large number of members.
In 2013, their tough, animal-like singles “Wolf” followed by “Growl” from their album XOXO rocketed them into super-stardom with the album selling one million copies within only six months; a first for a Korean act in the previous 12 years, and it was only their first full-length album.
2014 was a depressing year for EXO, with them losing two members (and a third in early 2015) who in turn sued their company, SM Entertainment, as well as a dating scandal involving one of the members. The group still continued to sell albums like crazy, including their 2014 mini-album Overdose, and sell out concerts all over the world with their first solo concert tour, but people began to doubt if their next comeback would be successful after all of the drama.
But once again EXO took home all of the Grand Prize awards at the end of the year before returning in 2015 with an even hotter selling album, Exodus, which reached one million copies sold in only two months, breaking their own record before anyone else even had a chance to. They even beat One Direction in world album sales that year.
Their second concert tour “EXO-Planet #2: The Exo’Luxion” also took them to even more places, including Japan, North America, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines; selling out more domes, arenas and stadiums all over the planet, truly making it an “Exo-Planet.”
EXO is and always has been a group that works extremely hard to make their fans happy. In 2015 alone they released their second full-length album and the repackaged version (as well as the Chinese versions), made their Japanese debut with a 2-song mini-album, released a single for Disney’s Star Wars (Korean, Chinese, and Japanese), and released a winter album (which sold 100,000 copies in one day).
In many different awards shows, such as MAMA and the Seoul Music Awards, they’ve held onto the “Album of the Year” title for three consecutive years now, something never done before in K-pop, but that’s just another record on top of their already impressive list.
Now, the facts and figures might not want to make you go check out this groups music or buy an album, but the numbers truly reflect their raw talent and hard work. They have sensual R&B jams, slow love-sick ballads, upbeat funky tracks, sexy but annoyingly catchy singles, and even EDM hits you can dance to in the club.
The performances, a great attraction in K-pop, make the songs even more enjoyable. From the alluring facial expressions, to each member’s unique vocals, to the ridiculously on-point choreography, to their control over the stage and the crowd with overflowing energy and passion–they have it all.
Watch out for EXO’s next comeback coming this summer!