Flashback: when a Japanese band recorded the fastest selling album ever globally

B'z 03

It has been 20 years since the cult Japanese band B’z stormed into their native country’s album chart at #1 with more than 2,7 million retail sales in a week. By then, no album had even break 1 million in the US.

Two decades ago, the rock duo was up to 7 consecutive million selling studio albums, with a peak upwards 3 million. Their 5 EPs had all sold over a million while they broke that mark with 12 consecutive singles. This insane popularity resulted into the fastest selling album of all-time in May 1998.

In fact, the compilations The Best Pleasure opened with 2,709,530 retail sales on Oricon’s chart dated June 1st, 1998. Shockingly, a sequel to this best was, The Best Treasure, started with over 2,5 million units a mere four months later. By November, both records were already 1st and 3rd among the highest selling Oricon albums of all-time. The runner up was Review by Glay, which was charting at #16 when the former B’z compilation first entered.

For the first time ever, we are publishing Oricon’s entry of that chart online. The strength of the local music scene highly limited the impact of foreign albums. There is still 8 of them inside this Top 50, will you be able to spot them in spite of the Japanese characters?

Please notice that Japanese numerals just like Chinese numerals use to group large numbers by 10,000. On its book, Oricon displays them with a factor of 10. Columns should be read as below (in the example of Every Little Thing at #5):

5 = ranking of current week
3 = ranking of last week
2 = ranking two weeks ago
8,634 = 86,340 units sold this week
10,018 = 100,180 unis sold last week
Time to Destination = album title
Every Little Thing = artist name
288,349 = 2,883,490 units sold to date (remains the 10th top seller up to date at 3,52m)
1 = peak position
6 = number of weeks charted
4-15 = released in April 15th

Source: Oricon.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

12 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Chrysalynne Lingling

RLAAMJR., this feat was topped by both Utada Hikaru’s Distance and Ayumi Hamasaki’s A BEST in 2001. As well as Adele’s 25 in 2015.

RLAAMJR.

Let me explain. The first statement which starts with “It has been 20 years” refers to the time when B’z has sold more than 2.7 albums sales in just 1 week.

Your question is answered on the 2nd statement “By then, no album had even break the 1 million in the us”. Which means, nobody yet and I assume nobody will be able to break their first week sales.

Dan

“It has been 20 years since the cult Japanese band B’z stormed into their native country’s album chart at #1 with more than 2,7 million retail sales in a week. By then, no album had even break 1 million in the US.”

And by now? And how many artists? And who’s the record holder now?
Thanks for the article!

RLAAMJR.

Amazing feat for a a local band in Japan to have the biggest sales in a week and probably nobody in the future is going to break it. So what is the total EAS of B’z?

BP

Not only this, but generally it proves that Asian music artists are often better selling and more popular in the Asian region than the favored American stars in the US and especially in Europe, like nothing but anything American exists and its supermega cool.

The reality is that many Asian artists are ones of the best sellers ever, but completely unknown in the US and Europe.

Donald Miller

So you mean that their fans are rabid?

Luminator

Mariah Carey did some impressive business for an foreign act as well that very same year when her compilation #1’s debuted north of the million mark.

Donald Miller

You’ve used the word “cult” in several articles and IMO not in its proper context. Can you help us out and explain how a duo as huge as B’z is a cult act?

12
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x