Stuck In Second: Kayne West’s ‘Yeezus’ Has 80 Percent Sales Drop

July 5, 2013  |  

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After getting off to a fast start with sales and reviews, Kanye West’s “Yeezus” drops an amazing 80 percent in sales its second week in stores. And it made some not-so-great history — its decrease is the fourth-largest for a No. 1-bowing album in the SoundScan era, reports Billboard.

The sales drop can be attributed to increased competition. Wale claimed his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart this week when “The Gifted” debuted with 158,000 copies sold according to Nielsen SoundScan. Kanye’s “Yeezus” was No. 1 and fell to No. 3. During its second week, the CD sold 65,000; last week it sold 327,000 units.

This the second time West has suffered a major drop in sales following a debut. West’s last solo album, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” which debuted at number one in 2010, slid by 78 percent in its second week.

It is not all that unusual for first place albums to see a decrease during their second week on the charts. Justin Bieber’s “Believe: Acoustic,” for example, dropped 79 percent in week number two. And Fall Out Boy’s “Save Rock and Roll” dropped 77 percent, reports the magazine.

Madonna holds the record for major second week sales slump. Her “MDNA”  tumbled by 87 pecent in its second week in 2012. During the album’s first week there was a very successful concert ticket/album bundle promotion. “Without the promotion to help shore up sales in its second week, the album took a significant tumble,” reports Billboard.

West, on the other hand, did no special promotion during his CD’s first week. According to Billboard, “Yeezus” was sent to retail without the standard promotional campaign that most super star albums receive. “It did not have an official single, no music from the set was released before the album came out, and West only made one TV appearance (a performance on NBC’s Saturday Night Live),” reports Billboard. Because of this lack of marketing in addition to the new competition, the album couldn’t sustain its momentum.

Finally, West’s record label, Def Jam, released an official radio single from the set: “Black Skinhead,” on July 2nd. Next week’s chart numbers will show if this created enough buzz for a bump in sales.  Plus, the song is also featured in trailers for the upcoming Leonardo DiCaprio film “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

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