The 20 Best K-Pop Albums of 2024 (So Far): Staff Picks

2024 has been a year of exciting versatility in the K-pop scene. From highly anticipated albums by BTS’ RM, TWICE, and ATEEZ, which propelled K-pop to the upper echelons of the Billboard 200, to projects by several emerging and impressive newcomers, the year has practically delivered too many releases that demand full attention, appreciation, and listen-through.

Some artists underwent refreshing and creative switch-ups years into their careers: NCT DREAM embraced the dark on DREAM( )SCAPE, the ITZY members tried their hands at songwriting and composing across tracks on Born to Be, and Cha Eun Woo showcased his captivating storytelling Entity. Meanwhile, Trust Me by GOT7’s Yugyeom, Fourever from DAY6, DALL by ARTMS, My Girl : My Choice from A.C.E, and Yves’ first solo album LOOP all arrived with a revitalized energy from the artists, sounding like the beginning of new stories in their musical journeys.

As always true with the best K-pop projects, this year’s top albums bring the exciting experimentation and risk-taking that’s shot South Korea to compete on the global music stage. But these releases also stand out for spotlighting artists’ personalized stories, unveiling new areas for their careers to evolve through and developing the next step in their unique musical worldviews.

With so many top-notch mini-albums, EPs and full-length albums from the K-pop scene to choose from in just the first six months, these 20 records helped the artists stand out from their peers. Below, Billboard offers our critics’ picks of the 20 best albums from the Korean-pop industry released in 2024 so far.

Don’t miss the 20 best K-pop songs from this year, either.

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