The new players in the K-pop game: Babymonster, ZB1, BOYNEXTDOOR and xikers

A slew of new groups are emerging in the K-pop realm, with teams like Babymonster, ZB1, BOYNEXTDOOR and xikers.

Staff Writer

| May 19, 2023
ZB1. Photo: @ZB1_official/Twitter

We are ready for a slew of new groups in the K-pop realm. This includes teams like Babymonster, ZEROBASEONE, BOYNEXTDOOR and xikers.

Various Korean press outlets have made claims that these groups may just be the frontrunners of the fifth generation of K-pop. Though that has not been officially confirmed.

From YG Entertainment’s Babymonster to ZB1 (ZEROBASEONE), a boy band birthed out of a Mnet reality television programme, HallyuSG takes you through the groups that’d probably make it into the fifth generation of K-pop.

1. Babymonster

YG Entertainment first introduced seven female trainees through an online reality series Last Evaluation.

Previously, head producer Yang Hyun-suk announced that he will only choose five out of the seven trainees. But Babymonster is now officially a septet.

The final line-up of Babymonster. Photo: YG Entertainment

As for the two other members that he did not choose, “think of them as members you (the fans) chose,” he said.

To date, Babymonster is the largest girl band under YG Entertainment. Girl groups from the label mostly had four members — like Blackpink and the now-defunct 2NE1.

Babymonster, comprising of members Ruka, Pharita, Asa, Ahyeon, Haram, Rora, Chiquita just dropped their pre-debut track Dream (2023) exclusively on the group’s YouTube channel.


ZEROBASEONE, or ZB1 in short, is a boy band formed through Mnet’s global boy group survival program Boys Planet.

They are a multinational nine-membered boy band made up of Sung Han-bin, Kim Ji-woong, Zhang Hao, Seok Matthew, Kim Tae-rae, Ricky, Kim Gyu-vin, Park Gun-wook and Han Yu-jin.

While they have not made their official debut, the boy band is already booked for shows. They recently played at KCON Japan 2023. Playing energetic tracks like Here I Am (2023) and Say My Name (2023), it marked their debut performance as a group.

The group will make their debut officially in July. And they will be active for 2½ years.


Another boy group, BOYNEXTDOOR, is in the pipelines. They are signed under KOZ Entertainment, an entertainment label rapper Zico founded in 2019.

They first announced members’ names weeks ago on 3 May. The group has a total of six members: Sungho, Riwoo, Jaehyun, Taesan, Leehan and Woonhak.

They will make their debut at the end of the month, on 30 May (Tue) with their 1st single album titled Who.

The album will contain a total of three tracks, all of which are title tracks — But I Like You, One and Only and Serenade.

4. xikers

KQ Entertainment, which houses boy band ATEEZ, first introduced their 10-member trainee group end last year. Prior to their debut, they were known as KQ Fellaz 2. The boys dropped a pre-debut track Geek (2022) then.

Comprised of Minjae, Junmin, Sumin, Jinsik, Hyunwoo, Junghoon, Seeun, Yujun, Hunter and Yechan, the group officially debuted on 30 Mar as xikers.

They also dropped their first mini album House of Tricky: Doorbell Ringing. It sold over 100,000 copies in the first week.


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