Sunday, 11 May 2014

Male Groups Ranking [Request]


My Tiers (2011-2013 only NOT entire careers):
BIGBANG: They remain the #1 male group with the best balance of digital and physical sales. They aren't active every year as a group but keep momentum going with popular solo and unit releases. Their per album physical and digital sales are amazing, third in per album physical and 2nd in per album digital in recent years.

Busker Busker: With only 2 albums under their belt, its their amazing digital sales, representative zombie hit Cherry Blossom Ending, and unusually high physical sales for a non-idol male group that lands them as legends. Other non-idol groups such as Boohwal, Nell, 4Men and Vibe don't get close to the sales Busker Busker has managed physically.

National Stars:
CN Blue: They had an explosive debut and managed to maintain good digital sales for a male group with their rock flavoured pop sound. Their albums consistently sell over 100k and despite not having tons of releases and promotions, remain relevant. Their digital strength put them above and beyond most other male groups.

EXO: New to the scene and here mostly because of their massive fanbase; selling over 300,000 per album. That said Growl did very well digitally but their position here will depend on managing another Top 100 yearly digital song since Growl is their only charting song thus far.

SHINee: They have a large fanbase with great album sales and tend to do decently well digitally with at least one song charting in the Top 100 yearly. Their strong performances have helped them gain a place for themselves in the industry.

Infinite: A slowly rising success story Infinite now boasts a large fanbase but are lacking any strong digital hits. While Be Mine was certainly a great showing for a male group, their digital sales have declined seemingly in order to favour building a fanbase.

Peaked but Still Popular:
Super Junior: Like all groups in this category, Super Junior has seen better days. Their physical sales are still strong (or so I assume since its been a while since their last release with members in the army) but since Sorry Sorry they have not had a significant digital hit.

DBSK: Ever since 3 members split off to make JYJ DBSK's physical numbers have fallen somewhat but its their no-show on the year end digital chart during their last release that shows they have certainly peaked in their popularity.

B2ST: Had a great year with Fiction and On Rainy Days with some uppity fans even suggesting they would overtake BIGBANG, but B2ST has not been able to remake the digital or physical numbers from 2011. Still they have better digital numbers than many male groups and usually reach 100k per album.

2PM: 2009 was a great year for 2PM and while Hands Up showed some potential for a revival, 2PM has never managed to regain their digital strength. Their physical numbers, however, are gaining slowly.

Teen Top: Generally speaking Teen Top's popularity tends to be overlooked. Their album sales are decent for a male group and they do better than many other male groups digitally showing that their songs are public friendly. In fact they are around SHINee's level in terms of digital sales but don't have as big a fanbase.

4Men: Overlooked because of their lack of a fanbase and non-idol status, 4Men crushes most male groups digitally. They usually have a Top 30 yearly hit and are often covered. They have the pubic recognition many male idol groups could only dream of. Particularly successful with OSTs.

B1A4: Rising from a no name company, B1A4 has gathered a large fanbase and charts decently digitally, usually in the Top 150 yearly.

FT Island: The forgotten older sibling of CN Blue, the lack of publicity has meant a dip in popularity but they still sell well digitally and do decently physically.

Niche Base:
Shinhwa: A long running group that still has a dedicated fanbase. They actually still manage decent digital numbers, charting on the yearly Top 200 and get around 70-80k per album.

B.A.P: Their constant promotions and strong choreography has gained them a large following and their digital numbers did increase somewhat, but not enough to chart more than 7 or 8 weeks usually.

VIXX: Their fanbase likes their rock-emo influences that have been the mainstay of their image the last little while. Their physical numbers are great but they have no been able to manage as well digitally.

JYJ: After leaving DBSK the three remaining members have been barred from public music television performances meaning they quickly lost their public recognition. They managed to chart their first couple of songs as a group but none after. Their fanabse remains strong and physical sales very high. That said they have no released material as a group in a long time.

MBLAQ: Starting off as a strong rival of B2ST with surprisingly good digital sales, MBLAQ has lost their spotlight in Korea selling less and less both digitally and physically. There remains a small but dedicated fanabse who likes their sexy-smooth sound.

Block B: Their scandal and leaving their former company has dented their rise to the top but Block B's sound and personalities keeps a small fanbase. They have potential to do very well digitally with catchy songs. Their last single just missed the Top 150 and had a Top 60 yearly hit in the past.

2AM: Their ballads usually do amazingly but their popularity has dropped somewhat recently, likely because they have not been as active. Their fanbase is also smaller which is the case for many male groups known for their ballads that do well digitally.

Nell: Well respected rock band that's has been around a long time. Despite all the love they get for their quality music few people buy their album or songs digitally. They do usually sell well enough to at leats chart on GAON's yearly chart.

Epik High: This hip-hop trio has had some big hits but has been less active in recent years following leader Tablo's uncalled for scandal and move to a new label. With only 1 album out these past 3 years and the response to that being lukewarm, they remain on the radar but a shadow of their former popularity.

Vibe: Another ballad heavy, small fanbase group but also does R&B well at times. They have pretty good public recognition and Top 50 yearly hits.

Brown Eyed Soul: Not as active in releasing their own stuff but has done solo projects and some OSTs. Similar vein as Vibe and 4Men, strong ballad-y digital sales with a small fanbase.

Honourable Mentions:
Noel: Does well digitally with ballads but has nearly no fanabse.
OoLaLa Session: Had an explosive debut following their appearance on a singing competition but faltered quickly thereafter, not to mention losing a member.
Boohwal: Long running rock band with several hits but has only charted once in the past 3 years on the yearly chart.

Male Groups on GAON 2013 Download Chart:
#12 Busker Busker - Love, At First: 1,344,882
#18 CN Blue - I'm Sorry: 1,238,277
#22 Busker Busker - Cherry Blossom Ending: 1,191,223
#24 EXO - Growl: 1,180,332
#29 4Men - Hello Its Me: 1,141,246
#34 4Men - Propose Song: 1,119,539
#46 Vibe - See You Again: 1,024,095
#47 Busker Busker - Too Much Regret: 1,019,505
#55 2AM - One Spring Day: 956,133
#58 SHINee - Dream Girl: 942,747
#59 Busker Busker - Love is Timing: 940,533
#81 Busker Busker - Your Lips: 799,632
#86 Teen Top - Miss Right: 788,044
#90 Busker Busker - Refreshing Girl: 770,716
#91 Busker Busker - Night: 768,739
#92 B2ST - Shadow: 766,306
#103 Infinite - Man in Love: 736,454
#106 Busker Busker - Juliette: 728,557
#107 Busker Busker - Beautiful Age: 728,340
#108 Vibe - As Time Goes By: 728,129
#118 B1A4 - Whats Happening: 680,521
#119 B2ST - Will You Be Okay: 679,681
#132 Busker Busker - Autumn Night: 633,142
#145 Noel - Words I Couldn't Say: 591,591
#152 Block B - Very Good: 580,879
#179 Infinite - Destiny: 522,346
#182 2PM - Hear This Song and Come Back: 512,972
#185 Noel - When Night Comes: 498,297
#189 Busker Busker - Yeonsu Night Sea: 491,389
#195 Shinhwa - This Love: 485,334
#196 Brown Eyed Soul - Always Be There: 484,920

Male Groups on GAON 2012 Download Chart:
#3 Busker Busker - Cherry Blossom Ending: 3,399,202
#4 BIGBANG - Blue: 3,365,275
#5 BIGBANG - Fantastic Baby: 3,339,871
#14 Busker Busker - If You Really Love Me: 2,552,704
#18 Busker Busker - Yeonsu Night Sea: 2,479,605
#20 BIGBANG - Monster: 2,363,148
#21 Busker Busker - First Love: 2,323,841
#23 2AM - Do You Hurt Like Me: 2,306,398
#24 FT Island - Severely: 2,291,448
#29 BIGBANG - Bad Boy: 2,216,784
#46 B2ST - I Knew It: 1,961,842
#47 Busker Busker - Ideal Type: 1,961,299
#49 Busker Busker - Blossoms: 1,930,299
#50 Teen Top - Going Crazy: 1,929,638
#53 Oh LaLa Session - Beautiful Night: 1,855,211
#57 Busker Busker - Its Hard to Face You: 1,822,257
#59 Block B - Nallina: 1,810,071
#60 Epik High - Its Cold: 1,807,759
#65 BIGBANG - Love Dust: 1,785,630
#66 B2ST - Beautiful Night: 1,778,432
#71 SHINee - Sherlock: 1,720,124
#74 MBLAQ - Its War: 1,633,902
#81 B2ST - Midnight: 1,590,905
#84 Busker Busker - Loneliness Amplifier: 1,554,320
#87 Infinite - The Chaser: 1,528,132
#100 BIGBANG - Ain't No Fun: 1,371,815
#102 BIGBANG - Still Alive: 1,349,551
#104 Noel - Yearning, Yearning: 1,333,660
#106 CN Blue - Still in Love: 1,312,009
#108 Noel - Words I Couldn't Say: 1,293,600
#114 CN Blue - Hey You: 1,257,932
#115 Busker Busker - Rain Drops : 1,254,348
#118 Busker Busker - Calling You: 1,243,704
#119 Shinhwa - Venus: 1,222,870
#129 Busker Busker - Scent: 1,144,348
#133 Teen Top - To You: 1,115,436
#136 Busker Busker - In the Alleyway: 1,108,533
#141 2AM - You Were Mine: 1,090,328
#145 B1A4 - Baby Goodnight: 1,070,830
#149 Busker Busker - Neon Sign: 1,056,037
#151 Noel - Leaving: 1,047,518
#155 FT Island - I Wish: 1,028,862
#156 Block B - Nalili Mambo: 1,027,204
#169 Epik High - Up: 976,020
#172 Nell - Slip Away: 952,306
#182 Busker Busker - Spring Wind: 905,554
#189 BIGBANG - Ego: 876,736
#190 Super Junior - Sexy, Free & Single: 872,657

Male Groups on GAON 2011 Download Chart:
#17 B2ST - Fiction: 2,865,470
#19 2PM - Hands Up: 2,837,018
#20 Noel - Yearning, Yearning: 2,778,696
#27 B2ST - On Rainy Days: 2,603,271
#31 4Men - Once While Living: 2,519,609
#35 BIGBANG - Tonight: 2,314,355
#40 CN Blue - Intuition: 2,253,797
#58 Infinite - Be Mine: 2,046,479
#61 BIGBANG - Love Song: 2,020,810
#71 Super Junior - Mr Simple: 1,899,728
#77 MBLAQ - Mona Lisa: 1,812,991
#100 FT Island - Hello, Hello: 1,642,170
#102 Busker Busker - Seoul People: 1,624,315
#116 Infinite - Paradise: 1,509,613
#123 BIGBANG - Cafe: 1,473,251
#132 DBSK - Keep Your Head Down: 1,391,468
#147 BIGBANG - What is Right: 1,287,691
#153 Boohwal - Secret: 1,264,570
#158 BIGBANG - Stupid Liar: 1,240,299
#172 JYJ - Get Out: 1,139,561
#174 Ooh LaLa Session - You and I Together: 1,135,004
#188 JYJ - In Heaven: 1,062,629

Total Album Sales [2011-2013]:
Super Junior: 1,174,276
EXO: 1,086,585
SHINee: 828,824
Infinite: 820,264
BIGBANG: 752,977
DBSK: 744,581
CN Blue: 534,404
B2ST: 497,382
Teen Top: 420,847
B1A4: 398,692
B.A.P: 340,266
2PM: 315,649
JYJ: 315,161
FT Island: 308,328
VIXX: 302,792
Busker Busker: 281,507
MBLAQ: 252,853
Shinhwa: 179,020
Block B: 178,939
2AM: 86,021
Nell: 43,264
Epik High: 27,887
OoLaLa Session: 24,615
Brown Eyed Soul: 17,043
4Men: 11,470
Vibe: 7,530
Noel: 4,975
Boohwal: 4,037

Best Selling Album [2011 - 2013]:
Super Junior - Mr. Simple: 380,311
EXO-K - Growl: 335,823
BIGBANG - Alive: 270,445
DBSK - Keep Your Head Down: 264,434
JYJ - In Heaven: 226,658
SHINee - Sherlock: 195,716
Infinite - Destiny: 163,379
Busker Busker - First Album: 161,395
B2ST - Fact and Fiction: 160,184
CN Blue - First Step: 139,262
2PM - Grown: 116,278
VIXX - Jekyll: 112,259
B1A4 - What's Happening: 101,988
B.A.P - Badman: 88,989
Shinhwa - The Return: 83,058
Teen Top - Number 1: 81,956
Block B - Very Good: 61,396
FT Island - Grown Up: 60,891
MBLAQ - 4th Mini 100%: 58,175
2AM - F. Scott Fitzgerald's Way Of Love: 33,462
Epik High - 99: 27,887
Nell - Slip Away: 26,143
OoLaLa Session 1st Mini: 22,316
4Men: The Artist 8,729
Brown Eyed Soul - BES: 11,995
Vibe - Organic Sounds: 7,530
Boohwal: Purple Wave 4,037
Noel - Time For Love: 2,519

*OSTs, solos, sub units, collaborations and special music show releases not included in lists.
**Rankings based on 2011-2013 only unless their previous popularity somehow still DIRECTLY impacts their public recognition and status. It is about how they have done in recent year NOT overall career.


  1. Thanks for the hardwork :)
    Oh there's DBSK - Catch Me too for the best selling album (2011-2013) :)

    1. Oh no its the #1 best selling album from that artist from the years 2011-2013 so each artist only gets their best selling album on the list to compare best selling albums to one another if that makes sense.

    2. Oh my mistake, I didn't see the Keep your head down album for DBSK. :)

  2. this doesn't include soloists, right? do male soloists sell well physically? not really a fan of anyone in particular, just curious

    1. No this is only groups, meaning 3 members or more.
      Some male soloists sell really well.
      Kim Hyun Joong (I think... the one from BOF) sells really well physically
      of course there G-Dragon
      Jay Park does pretty well
      JYJ's members' solo do well
      Cho Yong Pil

  3. Can i request for female???

    1. already made one for female groups!
      except the tiers were based on sports choson not my own,

    2. but unlike male group ranking, you excluded non-idols in female one :(

      btw, from the way they were/are promoted, Davichi and 15& are still idols in my eyes

    3. Yeah well tell that to Davichi and 15& fans that feel the "idol" label taints their group... so I left them out.
      Yeah I'm not doing another one just to add non-idols.
      Aren't even that many anyways.

  4. Haha.. yeah, I hardly name any non-idol girl groups nowadays. Most of big names have disbanded (Big Mama, Seeya (idol?)..)
    Just out of curiosity.. where would you rank Davichi? While 15& does not have enough material to judge, Davichi has been there for a long time (and make it big, I guess)

    Are you going to make one for male soloists?

    1. Davichi is also tough to group because they are a duo and not really a girl group because of that, same with 15&, but Davichi among both soloist and girl groups I'd put them at the bottom of the top tier (Legends).

    2. Agree. I would put them above Ailee and below/equal with Sistar.
      Thanks for your reply ^^

  5. Eh but i remember only in 2013 EXO has selled almost 1,6 million albums ( with 6 disc ) according to Gaon, how come they only has 1,0mil here even you not count MAMA in it yet ?@@