The Detroit rapper's new album, "Recovery," debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart Wednesday (June 30) with first-week sales of 714,000 copies -- not only the biggest opening so far in 2010 but also the best debut since 2008. "Recovery's" first single, "I'm Note Afraid," was only the 16th song to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, in may, while it second single -- "Love the Way You Lie," with a guest appearance by Rihanna -- is making its own quick climb.
"Recovery" is Eminem's fifth consecutive album to debut at No. 1. Last year's "Relapse" sold 608,000 copies in its first week and has sold more than three million copies worldwide.
In a statement released Wednesday (June 29), JImmy Iovine, chairman of Eminem's label Interscope Geffen A&M Records, called "Recovery's" debut "a real watershed moment in his career. In my opinion, with this album Eminem's impact on popular culture, and as a lyricist and writer, puts him on course to be mentioned in the same sentence as Dylan, Springsteen and Bono."
Eminem begins his live performance schedule to promote "Recovery" on July 9 at the Freuenfeld festival in Switzerland, followed by dates July 10 in Scotland and July 11 in Ireland. He and rapper Jay-Z perform Sept. 2-3 at Detroit's Comerica Park before hitting Jay-Z's home turf of New York for shows Sept. 13-14 at Yankee Stadium.