Eminem’s “Recovery” will blast in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart this week with 741,000 sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. That’s the largest sales week for a single album since October 2008, when AC/DC’s “Black Ice” debuted with 784,000 in its first week.
“Recovery” is the hip-hop king’s sixth straight No. 1 debut — and sixth overall chart-topper on the Billboard 200. His only set to miss the top spot was his “Slim Shady LP” debut, which bowed and peaked at No. 2 in 1999. Among hip-hop acts with the most No. 1 albums, only Jay-Z has earned more, with 11.
The debut sales week of “Recovery” surpasses the first week of Eminem’s last set, “Relapse,” which began at No. 1 in 2009 with 608,000. It also beats the opening of 2005’s “Curtain Call: The Hits” which entered at No. 1 with 441,000 in 2005.
Eminem’s new album also wows digitally, as downloads made up 255,000 of its first week. That’s the second-biggest digital week for an album in history. Only Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends” notched a larger frame, when it debuted with 288,000 downloads in the summer of 2008.
Eminem also naturally makes big news on the Digital Songs chart with his “Recovery” collaboration with Rihanna, titled “Love the Way You Lie.” It debuts at No. 1 with 338,000 downloads sold. It’s the sixth time the rapper has topped the Digital Songs chart and the second time he’s done it this year, following “Not Afraid’s” entry atop the list back in May with 379,000.
Check back Billboard.biz on Wednesday morning for the full recap of this week’s top 10 on the Billboard 200.