Date: October 8
Pusha T's debut solo album had been delayed over and over again. Several mixtapes were released to keep the buzz going. Interviews were conducted at a continual rate. Announcements were stretched out over the course of three years, singles released and disappeared, and the title of his second album was even announced. When the real thing finally came out earlier this week, expectations were hopeful, but not the strongest. "New God Flow" was over a year old. So was "I Don't Like (Remix)." This year's single, "Numbers On the Board," didn't put any numbers on the board. Pusha wasn't even on the charts; sophomore slump records from 2 Chainz and Big Sean at least had singles in rotation on the radio.
Then the projections came in... and, lo and behold, it looks like Pusha might outsell his more buzz-worthy G.O.O.D. Music affiliates. Sure, he had a Kanye cosign. But for an aging gangster rap artist to drop a record and actually move units more than a decade after his commercial peak? He might not sell millions of copies of this record. He most probably won't. But at the very least, Pusha has proven there is a market for the kind of music he makes, and that skittish labels might want to find more long-term prospects worth investing in. And that's a good thing. — David Drake