Kanye West’s ‘Jesus Is King’ Is No. 1

The New York Times Entertainment 1 week ago

For his latest album, the gospel-infused “Jesus Is King,” Kanye West missed multiple deadlines, made erratic public appearances and promoted his work as the latest manifestation of his self-declared genius. In other words, business as usual.

And once again West has topped the Billboard album chart, as “Jesus Is King” opened at No. 1 — his ninth consecutive time in the peak position.

“Jesus Is King,” released by Def Jam, had the equivalent of 264,000 sales in the United States in its opening week, including 197 million streams and 109,000 copies sold as a full album, according to Nielsen. Its sales were helped by deals that bundled digital copies of the album with merchandise on West’s website — like a $20 pair of socks and a $170 hoodie — and offered fans early access to tickets for an unspecified “upcoming Kanye West event.”

The album also topped Billboard’s Christian albums and gospel albums charts, marking West’s first appearances on those rankings.

Every one of West’s albums, including “Watch the Throne,” his collaboration with Jay-Z from 2011, has topped the Billboard 200, the magazine’s overall album chart, with the exception of his debut, “The College Dropout,” in 2004 — which was held at No. 2 by Norah Jones’s “Feels Like Home.”

Post Malone’s “Hollywood’s Bleeding,” last week’s No. 1, fell to No. 2, while “Pony” (RCA), the first major-label album by Rex Orange County — a British indie-pop singer who had built a sizable following as an independent — opened at No. 3. The rapper YoungBoy Never Broke Again’s “AI YoungBoy 2” is No. 4, and the R&B singer Summer Walker is in fifth place with “Over It.”

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