When Beyoncé released Renaissance, it immediately became the talk of the music world for reasons both good and bad. It’s an album that people haven’t been able to stop listening to and now the charts reflect that: On the new Billboard 200 dated August 13, Renaissance debuts at No. 1, making it Beyoncé’s seventh solo no. 1 album. All of Beyoncé’s solo albums have now debuted at No. 1.
Renaissance finds itself on top thanks to 332,000 equivalent album units earned, which is good for the second-biggest week of the year, beaten only by the 521,500 units Harry Styles’ Harry’s House had during its debut week in May. It’s therefore also the biggest week for an album by a woman this year. Renaissance is also the first 2022 album by a woman to top the Billboard 200: The last one was Adele’s 30.
It’s only been about a week since Renaissance came out but the album has already undergone some significant changes. First, Beyoncé vowed to change the lyrics of “Heated” after a negative response to the use of an ableist slur. The album also made use of Kelis’ “Milkshake” but that musical nod has since been removed due to Kelis’ discontent, with her saying recently, “This was personal on many levels which people don’t understand.”