Kamikaze's surprise-release strategy paid off for Eminem

The 45-year-old rapper has earned his ninth No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart, as Kamikaze moved 434,000 equivalent album units in its opening week. A total of 252,000 came from traditional album sales. The 13-song project earned 225.5 million on-demand audio streams in its opening week, making it the largest streaming week in Eminem's career. Those impressive numbers propel Kamikaze to the fourth-largest week in 2018, behind Drake's Scorpion with 732,000 total units, Travis Scott's ASTROWORLD with 537,000 units, and Post Malone's Beerbongs & Bentleys with 461,000 total units.

Kamikaze's opening week performance is a significant improvement over Eminem's last album, 2017's Revival, which debuted at No. 1 with 267,000 total units. The new album also notably included a long list of name-drops and disses throughout the project. In the week following Kamikaze's release, artists like Machine Gun Kelly, Ja Rule, Die Antwoord, and Joe Budden have publicly responded to their mentions on the album.

Eminem has now tied Garth Brooks and The Rolling Stones for fifth on the all-time list of artists with the most total No. 1 albums. Kamikaze is his ninth straight album to debut at No. 1.

Elsewhere on this week's Billboard 200 albums chart, Travis Scott's ASTROWORLD comes in at No. 2 with 80,000 units, Drake's Scorpion charts at No. 3 with 79,000 units, Troye Sivian's Bloom earns the No. 4 spot with 72,000 units, and Ariana Grande's Sweetener rounds out the top 5 with 56,000 units. Nicki Minaj's Queen comes at No. 7 with 47,000 units.