In these rather dire times, when album sales continue to plummet and ringtones seem to be the driving force of the music industry, there are still, on occasion, old-school bright spots: artists and albums that seemingly defy the odds and continue to move units, week after week.
[artist id="502642"]Eminem[/artist] is officially one of those bright spots, because once again, his [article id="1646449"]Recovery sits atop the Billboard albums chart[/article], the seventh week it's held the #1 position in its nine weeks of release. (And if it weren't for those meddling kids in [article id="1645056"]Avenged Sevenfold[/article] and the [article id="1645528"]Arcade Fire[/article], Em probably would have gone nine-for-nine.)
The list of accomplishments doesn't stop there. [article id="1645528"]Recovery sold more than 741,000 copies in its first week of release[/article], giving Eminem not only the year's biggest debut, but the biggest opening-week numbers of any artist since 2008. To date, Recovery has sold more than 2.2 million copies, which already makes it the second-highest-selling album released in 2010. And in the nine weeks since it was released, the album has yet to fall any lower than #2 on the Billboard chart.
So, clearly, we are witnessing something pretty remarkable here. Historical, even.
According to Billboard, the album's seven non-consecutive weeks at #1 are the most for any album since Taylor Swift's Fearless held the top spot for 11 non-consecutive weeks in late 2008/ early 2009. Recovery's seven weeks at #1 are the most for any male artist since Usher's Confessions, which earned nine weeks atop the chart in 2004, and the most for any hip-hop album since Outkast's Speakerboxxx/The Love Below held the top spot for seven weeks in late 2003 and early 2004.
It's likely that Recovery will fall to #3 on next week's Billboard chart, as it faces tough challenges from Katy Perry's Teenage Dream and Fantasia's Back to Me. But following that onslaught, who's to say it can't reclaim the top spot? At this point, we're not willing to bet against Eminem (or his remarkable album). And who knows? With a little bit of luck — and some endurance — perhaps Recovery can lay claim to the most weeks at #1 of any album released in the SoundScan era. The "Bodyguard" soundtrack holds that record (20 weeks), and while Whitney Houston probably isn't quaking in her boots just yet, Em's definitely going to make it interesting.
Do you think Recovery has what it takes to top the "Bodyguard" soundtrack? Let us know in the comments!