Despite dropping out of the blue, Eminem‘s surprise LP Kamikaze opened at No. 1 on North America’s Billboard 200 album chart with the fourth-best sales week of 2018.
Kamikaze sold 434,000 total copies – including 252,000 digital-only traditional copies; the physical version followed a week after the album’s unannounced arrival – to give Eminem his ninth US Number One album. According to Billboard, only The Beatles, Jay-Z, Bruce Springsteen, Barbra Streisand and Elvis Presley notched more Number One LPs.
Every Eminem solo album since 2000’s The Marshall Mathers LP – including the 8 Mile soundtrack – has debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.
Only three albums – Drake’s Scorpion, Travis Scott’s Astroworld and Post Malone’s Beerbongs & Bentleys – posted better 2018 opening week numbers than Kamikaze. However, on a purely traditional sales standpoint, Kamikaze was only bested by Dave Matthews Band’s Come Tomorrow and Astroworld this year.
The week’s US Top 10 included two more newcomers: Troye Sivan established a new Billboard 200 high as his sophomore LP Bloom debuted at Number Four and 72,000 copies, an improvement on the Number Seven peak of 2015’s Blue Neighbourhood. Why Don’t We’s first album 8 Songs dropped in at Number Nine.
Travis Scott’s Astroworld once again led the returnees at Number Two, a spot ahead of Drake’s Scorpion. Ariana Grande’s Sweetener finished at No. 5 followed by Beerbongs and Bentleys (No. 6), Nicki Minaj’s Queen (No. 7), BTS’ Love Yourself: Answer, which fell to No. 8 after debuting at Number One last week, and Juice WRLD’s Goodbye & Good Riddance at Number 10.
New releases competing for next week’s Number One include Paul McCartney’s Egypt Station, Lauren Daigle’s Look Up Child and Lenny Kravitz’s Raise Vibration, as well as an influx in sales and streams for Mac Miller following that rapper’s death Friday at the age of 26.
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