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Aespa Ready to ‘Embark on Our Next Chapter’ With Summer Comeback Plans

K-pop superstars Aespa are gearing up for their big comeback with a new label deal, new single and a new album due out this summer.

Fresh off their surprise set at Coachella last month, the four-piece girl group are dropping their second mini album on July 8. Titled Girls, the EP is led by the breezy lead single, “Life’s Too Short,” which Aespa first previewed at Coachella. The English-language track will officially be released June 24. A second track, “Illusion,” is available now to preview ahead of the new mini album release.

The album comes on the heels of a new global partnership between Aespa, SM Entertainment and Warner Records announced Tuesday. While the group is still signed to SM, the new partnership will tap into Warner’s network and expertise to help promote and distribute Aespa’s music around the world. Even more noteworthy: Aespa is the first K-pop group to be signed to Warner Records in the U.S.

The first order of business: launching Aespa on Apple Music as the streaming service’s latest global “Up Next artist.” Apple says the group will be featured in a new short film and in a sit down interview that will air on Apple Music 1 radio. The girls are also slated to appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live! later this summer as part of a big promo push from Warner that’s expected to include a string of appearances and tour dates as well.

Aespa celebrated the big announcement on Instagram Tuesday, revealing the date of their new album and potential concept art for the release. “We are thrilled to be welcomed into the Warner Records’ family and so grateful to have them on board as we embark on our next chapter,” the girls say, in a statement. “We are excited for what’s in store, including the release of our new EP later this summer and being named Apple’s Up Next artist.”

“Karina, Winter, Giselle and Ningning of Aespa have already made an impact around the world under the leadership of SM Entertainment,” adds Tom Corson and Aaron Bay-Schuck, co-chairmen of Warner Records. “We’re honored to welcome them to the Warner Records’ family as our first-ever K-pop group and look forward to achieving unprecedented success together.”

In a press release, SM Entertainment CEO Sung Su Lee says he’s excited to see what lies ahead for “Aespa’s rising future,” adding that “together with Warner Records, we are confident that Aespa can continue to showcase groundbreaking music and grow into a global group.”

Girls – The 2nd Mini Album is one of the most-anticipated K-pop releases of the year, and follows Aespa’s well-received debut EP, Savage – The 1st Mini Album. The album bowed in the Top 20 of the Billboard Top 200 when it was released last year, becoming the best-ever K-pop girl group debut on the U.S. album charts. Their debut single, “Black Mamba,” meantime, became the fastest song to hit 100 million views on YouTube for a debut music video.

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