When aespa first debuted in late 2020, they were releasing singles on a fairly regular basis, with their first mini-album, Savage, dropping about a year into their career.
Over the last year or so, however, their releases seemed to have slowed down quite a bit, with their only major comeback in 2022 being the release of the mini-album Girls in July.
In fact, now just over two years since they first debuted, aespa has fewer songs than most artists at their age, which is unusual for an SM Entertainment group. Excluding collaboration singles, the group has released just 15 songs.
In comparison to other groups that debuted around the same time, such as Weeekly with around 23 songs and ENHYPEN with over 30 (including Japanese tracks), it seems even more odd that aespa falls so far behind in terms of number of releases.
When you add collaboration tracks, however, things are a little different.
In fact, with the announcement of GOT the Beat, SM Entertainment’s multi-girl group power unit that includes aespa’s Winter and Karina, planning to release a mini-album with six tracks in January, aespa will officially have more collaboration songs than songs of their own.
더 강렬해진 ‘퍼포먼스 갓’ GOT the beat 컴백!
첫 미니앨범 ‘Stamp On It’ 1월 16일 발매!
신곡 무대 ‘SMTOWN LIVE 2023’ 선공개!
https://t.co/7JT1kcV6nr#GirlsOnTop #GOT #걸스온탑#GOT_the_beat #갓더비트 #StampOnIt #GOT_StampOnIt pic.twitter.com/kDnWiY9bkV
— Girls On Top (@GirlsOnTop_SM) December 29, 2022
At this time, aespa has 10 collaboration tracks: “Zoo” (by Giselle and NCT‘s Taeyong, Jeno, Hendery, and YangYang); “Snow Dream” (with NCT and Red Velvet); “Step Back” (GOT the Beat’s 2022 single); “Beautiful Christmas” (with Red Velvet); “Hot & Cold” (by Karina and NCT’s Jeno, EXO‘s Kai, and Red Velvet’s Seulgi); “The Cure” (featuring many SM Entertainment artists); “Time After Time” (by NingNing ft. BoA and Red Velvet’s Wendy); “Good To Be Alive” (featuring several SM Entertainment idols); “Jet” (also featuring many labelmates); and “Priority” (by Winter ft. TVXQ‘s Changmin and Girls’ Generation‘s Taeyeon).
considering the got comeback is a mini album that definitely means aespa are gonna officially have more collabs songs than ot4 songs.. 2 years in their career pic.twitter.com/xFMRWHK1xK
— karina #1 fan (@karinafulI) December 28, 2022
So with the additional six songs on GOT the Beat’s upcoming album, aespa will have 16 collaboration songs and 15 songs of their own, for a total of 31 tracks.
While it is nice that the members of aespa are getting the opportunity to collaborate with their fellow SM Entertainment artists that have been in the industry for longer than they have, some fans aren’t too happy about the realization of what their current discography looks like.
The conversation is happening on multiple social media platforms, with opinions pretty unanimous overall.
I think they should prioritize aespa’s comeback, promotion and the tour. After that they can have that collaboration. aespa need that to strengthen their fan base. MY literally is fighting with each other and some lose their interest @SMTOWNGLOBAL
— Wednesday Addams (@Winter46354190) December 28, 2022
SM debuted aespa just to have one group for the 4th gen and then they forgot that the girls are actually a group 💀
— Rosie’s coffee shop (@Rosie11410532) December 28, 2022
WTF, THEY DID THEM DIRTY 💀😶
— æsthetic. (@aesthetic0__) December 28, 2022
this makes me sad tbh https://t.co/QvnNA4vpIQ
— snow (@4wrns) December 28, 2022
couldn’t they have waited for aespa to be at least 3-4 year old group? it’s like SM themselves are making the end for myville and creating more solos moving like this https://t.co/u2am25hTWW
— ᵃᵉSai (@foreversynk) December 28, 2022
Hopefully aespa will have their long-awaited comeback (and maybe finally a full-length studio album) before too much longer to help balance out the numbers!