The one-of-a-kind rollout for Kanye West's The Life of Pablo didn't stop it from hitting No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, which it did this week, a full two months after it was made available on Tidal.
In the process, it also set a new record: According to Billboard, the album is the first No. 1 where a majority of the units -- in this case, a whopping 70 percent -- came from streams. Positioning on the chart, the site explains, is calculated to include "traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA)." The album's 99 million streams for the week ending April 7 translates to 66,000 SEA units; it moved 94,000 units overall during the week.
The album is 'Ye's seventh consecutive No. 1, and only now reaches that mark after a unique album rollout in recent weeks. As the stream initially was posted on Tidal in late February, the album was briefly made available for sale that same night, but quickly taken down. For almost two months, it was only available on that streaming service -- and Kanye himself said it would never be for sale or available on Apple -- but then, last week, a stream became available on services like Apple Music and Spotify, and was posted for purchase on KanyeWest.com.
There's still one unanswered question about the TLOP rollout: Will a hard copy ever exist?