Beyoncé’s Renaissance blasts in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart (dated Aug. 13) with 2022’s biggest week by a woman – and the second-largest week of the year overall – as the set launches atop the chart with 332,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending Aug. 4, according to Luminate.
Notably, Renaissance – Beyoncé’s seventh solo No. 1 album – is the first album released by a woman in 2022 to top the Billboard 200. The last woman at No. 1 was Adele with 30, which ruled for its first six weeks on the list (charts dated Dec. 4, 2021-Jan. 8, 2022). Notably, both 30 and Renaissance were released via Columbia Records (with Renaissance issued through Parkwood/Columbia).
Renaissance is Beyoncé’s seventh solo studio album, and first since the chart-topping Lemonade in 2016. Since then, she teamed with husband Jay-Z on The Carters’ Everything Is Love (2018), released Homecoming: The Live Album and led The Lion King: The Gift soundtrack (both in 2019; all three reached the top five of the Billboard 200). All seven of her solo studio albums have also opened atop the tally (outside of her output as part of Destiny’s Child), starting with Dangerously in Love in 2003.
Unlike Beyoncé’s last two solo albums (Lemonade and her self-titled set in 2013), Renaissance wasn’t a surprise release. The new set was announced in mid-June, preceded by its first single “Break My Soul” on June 20, and was available to purchase on physical formats (both CD and vinyl LP) by street date (July 29). Comparably, her last two solo studio sets before Renaissance were both initially available exclusively only through streamers and digital retailers, and their physical release came later.
Also, unlike her last two studio efforts, Renaissance was not ushered in alongside a longform visual component – or, in fact, any official music videos. The Lemonade project debuted initially on HBO through its same-titled film, while her self-titled effort was initially sold exclusively through iTunes accompanied by 18 music videos. As of Aug. 7, no official videos for Renaissance have been released – only lyric videos and visualizers.