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The Top 40 K-Pop Album Tracks & B-Sides of 2018 (Part One: 40-21)

2018 was a fantastic year when it came to album tracks. In fact, many of them were stronger (and more interesting) than their title track counterparts.

This makes for a very competitive top 40 list, as well as a host of honorable mentions. Honestly, I could’ve tripled the amount of honorable mentions and still had more songs left to spotlight.

Honorable Mentions:

Infinite – I Hate, Begin Again
Red Velvet – Mosquito
NCT Dream – 1, 2, 3
Monsta X – Destroyer
Twice – Sunset
ONF – Your Day
EXO-CBX – Off The Wall
2018 United Cube – One & Young

+ Make sure to check out the rest of the year-end countdowns here!


40. BOA – MANNISH CHOCOLAT

A pulsing burst of catchy deep house taken from BoA’s ninth Japanese album. (full review)


39. ALPHABAT – BLOCKBUSTER

A percussive thump of electro pop that hearkened back to the best of 2013’s experimental K-pop sound. (full review)


38. A.C.E – DESSERT

A grade-A take on tropical house trends, incorporating icy 80’s synths and an instrumental drop that didn’t totally suck.


37. UP10TION – BIG WAVE

A rollicking explosion of sing-along power pop, standing as the most memorable entry in the group’s growing Japanese discography. (full review)


36. CHUNGHA – CHERRY KISSES

A good old-fashioned pop track with a sweeping chorus and an assured performance that began to unlock more of Chungha’s enormous potential. (full review)


35. FROMIS_9 – 22nd CENTURY GIRL

An ultra-catchy stab at retro dance-pop, dialing down the group’s cuteness in favor of a refined melody and sterling instrumental. (full review)


34. GOLDEN CHILD – I SEE U

A strong reminder that tropical pop can still yield success if paired with a fantastic hook and solid vocal layering.


33. ATEEZ – TWILIGHT

A beguiling blend of flute-like synth hooks and gorgeous vocals, buoyed by a memorable chorus and warm instrumental breakdown.


32. SEVENTEEN – THINKIN’ ABOUT YOU

A summer single posing as a mid-winter album track, and a refinement of Seventeen’s sound at its most carefree and pop-informed. (full review)


31. KEY – GOOD GOOD

A charisma-dripping blend of funk guitar and pounding percussion, Good Good harnessed Key’s addictive attitude better than either of his singles.


30. GFRIEND – LOVE IS IN THE AIR

A robust blend of GFriend’s stellar vocals and a lush instrumental that layered strings upon strings for maximum pop potency. (full review)


29. TAEMIN – ECLIPSE

A throwback to the Taemin sound of 2014, Eclipse‘s driving chorus sets its sights toward the stars, radiating dancefloor-filling power. (full review)


28. TAEYANG – LOUDER

A suitably anthemic slice of pump-you-up pop that provided a soundtrack to the 2018 Olympics while recalling the stadium-filling material of pop legends past. (full review)


27. BLACKPINK – FOREVER YOUNG

An album track that feels more like the main single, Forever Young‘s tropical pop is trendy but unarguably addicting.


26. BOA – U&I

A rousing blast of 80’s-inspired dance pop that gave BoA plenty of space to show off her admirable range and undeniable allure. (full review)


25. SHINEE – CHEMISTRY

Another example of SHINee breathing new energy into a tired trend, Chemistry‘s tropical pop improves tenfold thanks to a knockout chorus and powerful vocal performance.


24. NCT 127 – REPLAY (PM 01:27)

An uncharacteristically straightforward shot of electro-pop, leveraging its slight hook with enough variation to make it an album standout. (full review)


23. DAY6 – FEELING GOOD

A breezy surge of throwback dance-rock that saw the guys aim straight for the pop jugular with energy-boosting success. (full review)


22. SHINEE – JUMP

An airy blend of retro electronics and tight pop songcraft, performed to perfection with an offhand sense of cool confidence. (full review)


21. SEVENTEEN – HOLIDAY

A concentrated barrage of Seventeen’s most upbeat charms, standing as the chart-conquering summer smash that never was. (full review)


NEXT: 20-1

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5 thoughts on “The Top 40 K-Pop Album Tracks & B-Sides of 2018 (Part One: 40-21)

  1. Pingback: K-POP Best of 2018 Masterpost | The Bias List // K-Pop Reviews & Discussion

  2. I’m not sure why, but I just couldn’t ever get into NCT’s Replay no matter how many times I listened to it. I just find it too repetitive, and it doesn’t quite make up for it as well as, say, Good Thing from their Limitless album.

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  3. Ah, my favorite countdown is here! This one’s always super interesting because your music taste is very similar to mine, but there tend to be a handful of songs on this list that are far from stellar to me. Even though I don’t typically rank songs, the order in which you put them is often pretty different from what I think I would have, though the actual songs are the same. This half of the list doesn’t conflict with my opinions at all, but a good number of them are songs I’ve never listened to. I’ll have to give them a shot and see if we’re still mostly in agreement!

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  4. Pingback: The Top 40 K-Pop Album Tracks & B-Sides of 2018 (Part Two: 20-1) | The Bias List // K-Pop Reviews & Discussion

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