Rapper Future makes history with back-to-back No. 1 debuts

Rapper Future, 33, is one of the leading forces in Atlanta's rap scene.
Rapper Future, 33, is one of the leading forces in Atlanta's rap scene.PHOTO: AFP

New York (AFP) - Rapper Future made history on Sunday (March 5) by debuting at No.1 on the United States chart in back-to-back weeks with different albums.

He had entered the Billboard album chart at the top for the week through Feb 23 with a self-titled album.

He returned a week later with a completely new album, HNDRXX. It debuted at No.1 for the week through Thursday (March 2), pushing the self-titled album to No.2.

HNDRXX sold 121,000 copies in the US or the equivalent in streams or downloads during its first week, according to the tracking service Nielsen Music.

It is unusual for artists to release albums with such a short gap, but longstanding promotional strategies have been increasingly evolving - especially in rap and dance music - as streaming shakes up the industry.

Future, 33, one of the leading forces in Atlanta's rap scene, stays true to his signature style on the self-titled album with tracks that boast of his success and the delights of the rap lifestyle.

But the album ends on Feds Did A Sweep, a tale of a police raid that sets the stage for the more introspective HNDRXX. On HNDRXX, Future reflects on his life and apologises for excesses. It features appearances by two of the biggest stars in R&B, Rihanna and The Weeknd.

Future had increased his profile in 2015 when he recorded a mixtape with one of the top names in hip-hop, Drake, called What A Time To Be Alive.

While Future is the first artist to replace himself at No.1 in debut weeks, nine acts have had albums at No.1 and No.2 at the same time.

Among them is Guns N' Roses, who released Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II simultaneously in 1991.