This was perhaps the biggest week on the charts of 2012. At the top, Taylor Swift went platinum in less than seven days with Red. Only the Country/Pop starlet could steal Kendrick Lamar's thunder, as the Compton, California's first major label album, good kid, m.A.A.d. city sold nearly 250,000 units and grabbed the Black Hippy member a coveted #2.
Further down the charts, the latest Wu-Tang Clan off-shoot, a soundtrack to RZA's new film, made a Top 40 grab with appearances by Clan members, Kanye West and Wiz Khalifa alongside Kool G Rap, Pharoahe Monch and M.O.P.
Independent Hip Hop went strong, as Psychopathic Records released a new solo project from Above The Law's Cold 187um (a/k/a Big Hutch) after a tumultuous year, scoring him benchmark solo success. Doomtree's P.O.S. landed a Top 50 in his third Rhymesayers Entertainment solo record, all while battling a kidney condition that pulled the Punk/Poetry-inspired emcee from touring. Jedi Mind Tricks' Vinnie Paz reached the Top 100 with his sophomore solo album, God Of The Serengeti. Paz linked with production from DJ Premier and The Beatnuts on his latest outing. Lastly, another former Ruthless Records artist (albeit from another era), Stevie Stone rang the Top 200 for the second time this year with his Momentum release on Strange Music.
Kendrick Lamar Takes A Quarter Million People To His m.A.A.d. city
Kendrick Lamar has dominated the Hip Hop media cycle for the last 11 days. Fans and critics have thrown the c-word around ("classic," that is) regarding his first album through Interscope Records/Aftermath Entertainment. K.Dot's first major label release, while Shyne and Game got into it regarding their own opinions. Whichever side is taken, the album shines as one of Rap's premier releases from 2012. Appearances by Compton legends Dr. Dre and MC Eiht are balanced with those by Drake and band/label-mate Jay Rock. Production is split between TDE's longtime contributors such as Sounwave, THC and Tabu with work offered by Just Blaze, Pharrell, Hit-Boy and even Like of Pac Div. An online smash, "The Recipe" featuring Dre only made the album's Deluxe version, while "Swimming Pools (Drank)" has gone mainstream in the last month on terrestrial radio.
The success and fanfare of G.K.M.C. also brought 2011's Section.80 back to the charts. The self-released album deemed the best of last year by the HipHopDX staff went to #129 scanning over 3,000 units last week digitally (including a purchase by a confused Juicy J). That effort has sold just under 80,000 units overall.
After A Difficult Year For Above The Law, Cold 187um Breaks Through
It was a big week for fans of West Coast Hip Hop, and not just TDE. Following the death this summer of KMG, Above The Law has suffered a difficult year. In the middle of a reported lawsuit against Eve, Interscope Records and Ruff Ryders Entertainment regarding "Love Is Blind," Cold 187um (a/k/a Big Hutch) inked a death with Insane Clown Posse's Psychopathic Records. Releasing his sixth retail project, The Only Solution is the first time Hutch has a solo record appearing on the Top 200. This particular outing finds the A.T.L. alum and Pomona, California pioneer rhyming over some of his label-mate's beats, including I.C.P., Twiztid, and Blaze Ya Dead Homie.
This is Hutch's sixth solo effort, dating back to 1999's Executive Decisions.
Hip Hop Album Sales: The Week Ending 10/28/2012
#2. Kendrick Lamar - good kid, m.A.A.d. city - 241,000 (242,000
#27. 2 Chainz - Based On A T.R.U. Story - 12,000 (354,000)
#31. Man With The Iron Fists Original Soundtrack - 12,000 (12,000)
#34. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - The Heist - 11,000 (108,000)
#35. G.O.O.D. Music - Cruel Summer - 11,000 (331,000)
#37. Machine Gun Kelly (as MGK) - Lace Up - 9,700 (75,000)
#47. P.O.S. - We Don't Even Live Here - 9,000 (9,100)
#93. Vinnie Paz - God Of The Serengeti - 4,300 (4,300)
#119. Big Hutch (as Cold 187um) - The Only Solution - 3,400 (3,400)
#167. Stevie Stone - Momentum - 2,400 (2,400)
* data comes from Nielsen Soundscan, rounded to nearest thousandth for units above 10,000, nearest hundredth for units below 10,000. Each week, HipHopDX presents top albums in Hip Hop/related, and five notables.