Here Are 10 Impressive K-Pop Debuts From 2012

See how many you recognize!

We can’t believe it’s already been 10 years! There were over 50 K-Pop groups that debuted in 2012, here are some of the debuts we can’t forget.


(From left to right) EXID’s Jeonghwa, Hyerin, Solji, LE and Hani | @exidofficial/Instagram

EXID debuted on February 16, 2012 with their powerhouse vocals on single, “Whoz That Girl”. The group saw their popularity sky rocket when member Hani‘s fancam for their song “Up & Down” went viral in 2014 with over 36 million views to date!

“Up & Down” was originally released a few months prior to lackluster results, but when the fancam circulated the song shot to the top of the charts and allowed the group to promote it again on music shows!

Although the members have all parted ways with their company Banana Culture, they have assured fans that they’ll find a way to promote together as EXID in the future.

Here’s an EXID track we recommend you check out!


(From left to right) VIXX’s Hyuk, N, Leo and Ravi | @vixx_stagram/Instagram

VIXX debuted on May 24, 2012 with their upbeat single “Super Hero”. VIXX quickly became known for their unique and well executed concepts earning the title, “concept-dols”.

The group’s debut process was captured through Mnet‘s reality show MyDOL where 10 Jellyfish Entertainment idol trainees competed for a chance to debut. Through elimination, they narrowed down the 6 members who officially debuted as VIXX!

| RealVIXX/YouTube

In 2020, it was announced that former member Hongbin left the group after a controversial VLIVE where he bashed fellow K-Pop groups. N and Ravi have since left Jellyfish Entertainment for solo ventures, but still remain in VIXX with fellow members Hyuk, Leo, and Ken. The 5 current members recently thrilled fans by reuniting on VLIVE!

VIXX has many amazing songs, here is one you should add to your playlist.

3. AOA

(From left to right) Hyejeong, Seolhyun, Jimin (former member), Chanmi and Yuna (former member)

Did you know that AOA debuted with a band concept? The group debuted on August 9, 2012 with 8 total members, 5 of which promoted as a band under the name AOA Black. The members under AOA Black played the bass, keyboard, guitar and drums. Previous member Youkyung only joined the group for AOA Black promotions, leaving 7 members in AOA full-time.

AOA saw a series of member exits and currently consists of Chanmi, Seolhyun and Hyejeong.

AOA became known for their catchy songs with dances that other K-Pop idols loved to cover. Check out their single, “Like a Cat”!

4. Crayon Pop

(From left to right) Crayon Pop’s Ellin, Choa, Soyul, Gummi and Way | @crayonpop_official_/Instagram

This group strayed from the norm when they debuted in matching track suits with song, “Saturday Night” on July 19, 2012. Crayon Pop has an infectious, fun-loving presence that they brought to each single. When one of their songs comes on, it’s hard not to want to dance along! It seemed the nation agreed when they released track, “Bar Bar Bar” in 2013. It was a song you couldn’t escape!

The group has been on hiatus since 2016, but their song “Bar Bar Bar” left a lasting impression.

5. EvoL

(From left to right) Jucy, Hayana, Say, J-Da and Yull

This group was only able to promote two songs before their company Stardom Entertainment merged with Hunus Entertainment in 2015. As a result of the merge, the girls found their contracts terminated.

EvoL had a lot of potential based on their strong debut with single, “We Are A Bit Different”. Check out the song below!


6. Spica

(From left to right) BoA, Jiwon, Bohyung, Narae and Sihyun

This group’s debut was highly anticipated as they released a predebut track with their labelmate, top idol Lee Hyori. Spica released their debut music video for single “Russian Roulette” on February 8, 2012. The group quickly gained interest for their impressive vocal talent which they showcased in each release.

The group officially disbanded in 2017, though hint that they are open to reuniting as Spica in the future. Here is their funky US debut single, “I Did It”.

7. 15&

Jamie (left) and Yerin (right) | Pinterest

Yerin and Jamie (formerly known as Jimin) debuted as the 15& duo under JYP Entertainment on October 7, 2012. They caught the attention of fans with their first single, “I Dream” for their strong vocals, especially considering they were only 15 years old!

The group only released one studio album before going on hiatus in 2015. JYP Entertainment has not officially announced their disbandment, but member Jimin confirmed in an interview that they had disbanded. Many international fans will recognize Jamie for her long-standing role as a co-host of Arirang TV‘s After School Club.

Check out their fun music video for single “Somebody”!

8. B.A.P

(From left to right) Yongguk, Jongup, Youngjae, Daehyun, Himchan and Zelo

For those of us who witnessed their debut on January 26, 2012, it was hard to forget the 6 idols with the matching bleach blond hair, the deep voiced leader Yongguk ,and the maknae (youngest member) Zelo with his fast rapping skills! They showcased their confidence in debut track, “Warrior”.

The group remained active until their official disbandment in 2019 with many noteworthy releases.

Here is their powerful single “One Shot”.

9.  BTOB

(From left to right) Hyunsik, Peniel, Changsub, Minhyuk, Eunkwang and Sungjae | cube_official_btob/Instagram

This group debuted with 7 members and became known for being able to successfully pull off different concepts from ballads to dance tracks. They debuted under CUBE Entertainment which is home to labelmates such as CLC, Pentagon, and formerly 4Minute and Beast (now promoting as Highlight).

BTOB are still actively promoting with 6 of the original members and released a new album this year! Here is their debut single “Insane”.

10. EXO

| (Top row, left to right) D.O., Suho, Chanyeol, Chen, Sehun and Xiumin (Bottom row) Kai (left) and Baekhyun (right)

Last but not least, SM Entertainment mega-group EXO debuted with “MAMA” on April 8, 2012. The group originally debuted as 12 members, 6 members promoted their Korean debut EP as EXO-K with a focus on Korean promotions. The 6 additional members promoted their Mandarin Chinese debut EP as EXO-M with a focus on promotions in China.

EXO entered the scene with a unique concept that gave each member a supernatural power that they showcased throughout their “MAMA” promotions.

The group now has 9 members and still actively promote! Here is one of their hit songs, “Growl”.