Now that’s what I call a major flop

flop

It’s the ultimate purpose of all charts and sales discussions: define which album is a success and which one is a flop. There are thousands of ways to compare records and as many misleading facts to highlight wrongful conclusions. Obviously, there isn’t a manager nor a stan in the world that will accept that his favorite act flopped. It’s their job to point out every minor argument to have the general public believe he did well. Regardless, the truth doesn’t lie.

At Chartmasters.org, we are very close to 1,000 studio albums analyzed so far with the CSPC process. Among them, many of the most successful records of all-time. But also various severe bombs. Would you like to know which albums posted the steepest declines in comparison to their immediate predecessor?

Some results are truly ugly. There is 9 albums which sold more than 10 times less than their predecessor. The harshest drop is 94,5%, that is producing 550,000 units after a 10-million smash. As you can guess, all numbers are expressed in equivalent album sales rather than pure sales since they are much more representative of the success of an era. That’s why we will be extensively using the acronym EAS which stands for Equivalent Album Sales.

Setting up some rules…

These scores are obtained on a like-to-like basis. For example, recent albums are excluded since they aren’t completely done. That is, albums less than a year old when their related CSPC article was posted. For instance, exit Katy Perry‘s Witness. In any case, it is down 81,9% from Prism so it almost looks like a smash against the albums that we are going to present you here.

Also, exit Christmas albums. It would be unfair to include successful Christmas records from N’Sync, Destiny’s Child, Mariah Carey, Justin Bieber or Taylor Swift just because their proper studio albums sold even more. Additionally, side-projects Soundtracks like Madonna‘s Who’s That Girl, Phil CollinsBuster or BeatlesYellow Submarine are also excluded. Similarly, discographies of bilingual artists are split in two. For example, we won’t be considering Céline Dion‘s S’Il Suffisait D’aimer a flop just because it did much less than Let’s Talk About Love. Instead, it is compared with D’Eux.

Cross-artists statistics

Let’s start with a few statistics. After the application of exclusion rules, 832 albums remain. There is 94 debut albums, which obviously have no predecessor. That’s 738 candidates to feature in this article. As many as 213 of them sold less than half of the album they followed. Then, a significant 86 of them represented a drop of 70% or more for the artist. These key data show that dropping your results by 50% is fairly frequent. Consequently, it takes a sharper decrease to be flagged as a flop.

Of course, we can’t define an album as a success or a flop only with the evolution over its predecessor. Market data and standards of the artist should be considered too. Still, except a pair of records, albums that will be presented here dropped so much that no matter how we look at it, they bombed. As a matter of fact, let’s just point out that even Mariah Carey‘s Glitter doesn’t belong to the Top 50 of largest bombs.

Top 41-50 major flops

Failures vs Successes

50 Kelly Clarkson Piece by Piece (2015): -76,4%

Clarkson needed two albums to recover from the disappointment she suffered with My December in 2007. After re-peaking with 2011’s album Stronger at 5,16 million EAS, she dropped all the way back to 1,22 million with her 2015 effort Piece by Piece. In-between, she issued an Adult Contemporary Christmas album which makes us to wonder how much that negatively impacted her pop star appeal.

49 Michael Jackson Music & Me (1973): -76,5%

Little Michael Jackson started strong with both Got to be There and Ben featuring solid hits. They both broke the 5 million EAS mark. His 3rd album Music & Me completely failed to reproduce this level of success yet. In spite of decades of super-successful follow ups, it still stands at 1,18 million EAS to date.

48 Janet Jackson Damita Jo (2004): -76,9%

Untouchable from 1986 to 2001, the reign of Janet Jackson came to an abrupt end with 2004’s album Damita Jo. Previously, All For You had registered 7,33 million EAS and the star was off 5 eras which averaged nearly 14 million EAS. Still, with this new release she tumbled to a dreadful 1,69 million with all its singles failing to gain traction.

47 Bob Marley Survival (1979): -76,9%

Survival produced 5,72 million EAS for the reggae legend Bob Marley. While this is a great tally for sure, it falls short of the 24,79 million units of its predecessor Kaya. Before, Exodus had registered 31,50 million sales. Survival‘s follow up Uprising stands on 16,03 million, which confirms the album from 1979 performed truly poorly by Marley‘s standards.

46 Avicii Stories (2015): -77%

It’s hard to follow up an album like True which included smashes as big as Wake Me Up and Hey Brother. It’s even harder for DJs like Avicii who have virtually no fanbase, so they need the hits to sell well. Some songs from Stories even performed OK. Nevertheless, it was nowhere near enough to sustain the hype of its predecessor with overall sales down 77%.

45 Lana Del Rey Ultraviolence (2014): -77%

Talking about hype, Lana Del Rey debuted her career strongly with a 10,20 million selling era, Born to Die. Ultraviolence hasn’t moved similar numbers, stopping its way at 2,34 million as of the last count.

44 Cher Backstage (1968): -77,1%

It’s the first album of Cher to belong on this ranking, not her last. Her 5th solo album back then, it wasn’t even the follow up of a smash record. Her 4th era, With Love, Chér, sold only 615,000 EAS to date. Backstage sold much less still at 141,000 EAS. Upon release, this LP completely failed to make the US BB200 Chart and it never recovered.

43 Elton John Victim of Love (1979): -77,1%

Victim of Love, but definitely not victim of success. The most successful solo artist of the 70s struggled to close the decade. In fact, Elton John‘s 70s records generated more than 127,45 million EAS to date, but this 1979 release is responsible for a mere 724,000 units among this total. Chaotic considering that from 1971 to 1976, the flashy singer dropped 8 consecutive albums which fueled at least 6 million sales each.

42 Elton John Friends (1971): -77,3%

Before his prime, John already had his share of ups and downs. It’s all due to his eponymous 1970 LP which featured Your Song. From that 20-million era, he then dropped to 2,42 million with Tumbleweed Connection, the project Friends followed  it at an awful 548,000 total. Soon after, Madman Across the Water smashed and changed in full the trajectory of the artist’s career.

41 Phil Collins Brother Bear (2003): -77,4%

While I excluded several soundtracks from this ranking, among which Collins‘ own Buster, here comes Brother Bear. Why so? Both albums are fundamentally different for the singer. In 1988, he was a massive pop star. He was so big that he tried acting in a comedy and happened to release a pair of songs for the soundtrack. Buster was his Who’s That Girl, a side project. By 2003 though, he was already an Adult Contemporary artist who recorded covers and theme songs frequently, a la Barbra Streisand. He went from Dance Into the Light (studio) to Tarzan (OST) to Testify (studio) to Brother Bear (OST) to Going Back (covers). Under those circumstances, we can’t ignore Brother Bear. This album sold only 891,000 EAS, more than 4 times less of the previous career-low of Collins.

Top 31-40 major flops

Down Is The New Up

40 Backstreet Boys Never Gone (2005): -77,6%

Well, although the Backstreet Boys claimed that they were Never Gone, for the general public they definitely were. This reunion attempt was a massive flop. Their 2000 album Black & Blue sold 13,34 million EAS thanks to the massive hysteria surrounding the group. In reality, it was already a disappointment with sales down 55% from Millennium. In spite of these negative signs, they tried it still again with Never Gone and remained below 3 million EAS.

39 Dire Straits On Every Street (1991): -77,8%

The second highest selling album in absolute terms of this ranking. On Every Street moved a huge 10,15 million EAS through the years. While this is a high figure, it pales in comparison of Brothers In Arms. The 1985 blockbuster sold 45,75 million EAS to date. Ironically, On Every Street seemed truly strong upon release thanks to the anticipation effect, but it is now clear that if it wasn’t for Dire Straits‘ popularity back then, it would have sold nowhere near 10 million up to date.

38 Gorillaz Plastic Beach (2010): -78%

After two smash albums, one may expect great results from the third output. Gorillaz‘ self-titled debut sold 8,03 million EAS, their sophomore album Demon Days did 9,67 million. Still, their 2010 comeback Plastic Beach sold only 2,13 million units in total. The lack of hits always hurts no matter who you are and how high you are rated.

37 Christina Aguilera Bionic (2010): -78,1%

Often used as the ultimate example of a bomb on online boards, Aguilera‘s Bionic charts at #37 on our list of the biggest freefalls studied so far. It sold a mere 1,38 million EAS, a far cry from Back to Basics‘ tally of 6,30 million. That latter album already sold only half of its predecessor, pushing fans to hope for a rebound with Bionic. Its final results ended up being all the more disappointing.

36 Usher Here I Stand (2008): -78,3%

When Here I Stand was announced, it was regarded as one of the most anticipated albums in recent years. It was natural since Confessions was the lone Diamond album in the US in like a century and its singles topped the Hot 100 chart for 28 weeks. Usher was so big during this era that many took as a given that he was the Michael Jackson of the 00s. All told, Confessions recorded 19,82 million EAS. Here I Stand did nearly 5 times less at 4,31 million. Lessons learned: it’s never a given to be successful.

35 Jackson 5 Moving Violation (1975): -78,3%

During the first half of the 70s, the Jackson 5 tried to maintain as long as possible the initial hype they created with their various early #1 singles. By 1973, the group wasn’t a selling force anymore with both Skywriter and Get It Together generating an average of less than 700,000 EAS. The 1974 rebound Dancing Machine, which sold 1,68 million EAS, got them hoping for better days. At a disastrous 364,000 EAS, Moving Violation completely killed this new momentum. This flop caused the departure of the Jackson 5 from Motown. The newly named Jacksons would sign with Epic immediately after this bomb.

34 Pink Floyd The Endless River (2014): -78,4%

Possibly the most atypical release of this list. The Endless River could be seen as a bootleg release. After all, it is made of recordings from The Division Bell sessions. It is also almost entirely an instrumental LP. At the other end, it was promoted as the first album of the band in 20 years and their final studio output. It started strong and sold well in the Christmas season. Nevertheless, it sold 2,85 million EAS, a tiny fraction of The Division Bell‘s 13,19 million total.

33 Bruce Springsteen Tunnel of Love (1987): -79%

It’s the dark side of success. Tunnel of Love was a #1 album in various countries. Overall, it moved close to 10 million EAS. We can’t forget it was the follow up of Born in the USA though. This album is on 47,37 million so far, so falling to 10 million is still a massive decline. After that, Springsteen continued to release multi-million selling records, without ever coming close again of his 1984 peak. Basically, Tunnel of Love had the bad luck to follow an album that was even bigger than its artist.

32 AC/DC For Those About to Rock We Salute You (1981): -79,5%

Here comes the highest selling album of this top 50. For Those About to Rock We Salute You sold a solid 11,93 million and keeps on selling well. The point is, AC/DC is a massive selling band. Their previous album Back In Black sold an unreal 58,22 million EAS. One may say the comparison is unfair for For Those…, but then The Razors Edge released in 1990 did 17,67 million. This shows that AC/DC have it and that the 1981 LP simply missed to produce enough iconic tracks by their standards.

31 Usher Hard II Love (2016): -81,7%

Hard to love indeed. Usher had rebounded after his 2008 troubles. In 2010, Raymond v. Raymond sold 6,92 million EAS. It was his last whisper as a popular star though. Looking 4 Myself from 2012 did 2,28 million, a 67% drop. Then, Hard II Love was an immense disaster. It sold 418,000 units in total. Hard to believe from someone who was expected to debut with 1 million pure US sales a few years before.

Top 21-30 major flops

down is the new up

30 Cher Foxy Lady (1972): -81,9%

Cher had her first solo career peak in 1971 thanks to the 3,87 million EAS selling LP Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves. At the time, it was her first Gold album, which brought her to the league of solid record sellers. She was ejected from it instantly though. Foxy Lady failed to confirm her new status, producing only 699,000 EAS in total. It’s the diva’s second entry in this list.

29 Barbra Streisand The Main Event (1979): -82,2%

The career of Barbra Streisand is so extensive that it is hard to point out her peak years. What’s safe to say is that the 1974-1980 period produced more than 75 million EAS. Still, among the albums she released at that time, several weren’t so strong. The sharpest drop of the period came with The Main Event. It moved 1,22 million EAS, nowhere near the 6,86 million tally of Songbird from 1978.

28 Kylie Minogue Body Language (2003): -82,6%

The era of Fever was so big by Minogue‘s standards that we though she had at last broke the global audience. She completely failed to confirm yet. Body Language produced 1,83 million EAS, it competes with 10,48 million from its predecessor. This flop resulted into many returns due to a large over shipment upon release.

27 Barbra Streisand Yentl (1983): -82,9%

Yentl is far from being the worst seller of Streisand. In a way similar to Minogue and Body Language, although at a higher level, it failed to confirm the new league of the singer. For many years, Streisand was the main female vocalist of the American songbook. She wasn’t among the industry main forces though. Her albums had nowhere near the impact of the likes Beatles, Pink Floyd or Elton John. She did get there with Guilty in 1980. This 22,97 million selling era was absolutely massive. Thus, dropping back to 3,93 million after a wait of 3 years is quite a large disappointment.

26 Elton John Leather Jackets (1986): -83,1%

Just like Victim of Love killed the first golden period of John, Leather Jackets killed his second. His 3 albums released from 1983 to 1985 sold 19,1 million EAS. The last of them, Ice On Fire, did 4,94 million. Leather Jackets divided these results by nearly 6, selling an awful 832,000 units overall.

25 Enrique Iglesias 7 (2003): -83,7%

With Enrique and Escape, Iglesias managed back-to-back 10-million selling eras, a tremendous achievement. His Spanish efforts were also extremely successful. His 3rd English-language LP was a major meltdown though. It sold 1,91 million EAS while Escape had done 11,73 million. In 1999-2001, Bailamos (US #1), Be With You (US #1) and Hero (US #3, UK #1) where all massive hits. No song from 7 reached even the Hot 100.

24 Fleetwood Mac Tusk (1979): -84,2%

When you led the US BB200 Album chart for 31 weeks with one album, no doubt you expect more than a #4 peak with its follow up. Tusk destroyed in full the hype started with Fleetwood Mac and elevated even higher by Rumours, an album which produced sales of 61,26 million units. Fleetwood Mac‘s heavily anticipated new album Tusk did a mere 15,8% of this number, although it still represents 9,69 million EAS. Good sales in absolute terms, weak ones relatively speaking.

23 Sonny & Cher Good Times (1967): -84,4%

This time Sonny joins Cher. The career of the duo was short but full of drastic ups and downs. They issued only 6 albums, but there is still two more to come on this ranking. The flop of this album marked the end of the first career of Sonny & Cher. Their 4th album in 2 years, after this failure they went into a hiatus. They returned in 1972, after Cher‘s solo success with Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves. Good Times sold barely 275,000 EAS through all formats.

22 Pink Floyd The Final Cut (1983): -85,4%

The never ending appeal of Pink Floyd‘s catalog make it look like they never flopped. They did. The Final Cut followed The Wall, an album which fueled 50,31 million EAS. More, their 4 previous albums moved an insane 151,57 million units. Therefore, selling 7,35 million EAS with The Final Cut ends up being truly unimpressive.

21 Cher Bittersweet White Light (1973): -85,4%

Many albums feature into this list because they are follow ups of career-peaks. Bittersweet White Light is the follow up of Foxy Lady, the album at #30 in this ranking. To make it short, her albums went from 3,87 million to 699,000 to 102,000 EAS in 2 years only. Radiohead wrote How to Disappear Completely in 2000, but it looks like Cher knew the recipe for very long.

Top 11-20 major flops

failure

20 Whitney Houston Just Whitney… (2002): -85,5%

Depending on which album you consider to be Bodyguard‘s follow up, you can possibly add The Preacher’s Wife to this list. What’s safe though is the presence of Just Whitney… Last seen with My Love Is Your Love in 1998, Whitney Houston had proved one more time her selling ability. This album shifted 14,75 million EAS in total. Her return with Just Whitney… was a gigantic bomb. Owner of nothing close to a hit, the record climbed to 2,15 million EAS overall, a true nightmare for an artist of Houston‘s stature. After that, she never really recovered.

19 Fleetwood Mac Behind The Mask (1990): -86,2%

The second appearance of Fleetwood Mac is due to the poor performances of Behind the Mask. All 5 albums of the band released from 1975 to 1987 registered at least 8 million EAS. The immediate predecessor of this 1990 set, Tango In The Night, was a massive smash at 21,07 million EAS. Behind the Mask did only 2,91 million. This huge drop in popularity led many people to argue they haven’t survive to the departure of Lindsey Buckingham. The singer / guitarist joined the band in 1975 and left in 1987, precisely during their hey-days.

18 Gorillaz The Fall (2011): -86,3%

Well, surely we can forgive this album. Issued physically 5 months after being given away to the fans of the band online, The Fall had virtually no chance to do well. With this in mind, it isn’t surprising to see that the era generated only 292,000 EAS.

17 Queen Flash Gordon (1980): -86,3%

All five albums released before Flash Gordon moved at least 14,4 million EAS. Massive hit makers, Queen bombed hard with the soundtrack of the famous comic strip, just like the movie. The Game, released the same year, was home for 2 ground-breaking US #1 smashes. It climbed all the way up to 29,48 million EAS. Flash Gordon stalled at 4,03 million.

16 Cher Prisoner (1979): -86,5%

Already the 4th solo album of Cher in this article, 5th overall. From 1975 to 1982, the vocalist was on a hole success-wise. Out of her 7 releases, 6 sold 160,000 EAS or less. The exception was Take Me Home, which did well at 950,000 units. Its follow up which immediately broke this new traction is no other than Prisoner, an album estimated on 128,000 EAS. This severe flop led Cher to release her following album under the name of a band, Black Rose. It bombed too. Casablanca records dropped her. It’s when Columbia Records decided to give her a chance with the album I Paralyze in 1982. It was one more disaster. This run of chaotic sales forced the artist to stop her singing career for 5 years until her rebirth in 1987.

15 Billy Joel Streetlife Serenade (1974): -86,8%

Billy Joel is often highlighted as an example of consistency. After all, he issued 11 consecutive US Platinum studio albums including 8 multi-platinum in a row. He also retired after that string, thus his popularity never had the chance to fade away. While all this is true, there is significant gaps between Platinum and Diamond albums. Joel exploded thanks to the song Piano Man from the album of the same name, which ultimately produced 18,36 million EAS. Streetlife Serenade had no hit and no lasting appeal either. It sold 2,43 million, a career-low for the artist who used to sell twice as much thanks to his strong following / catalog sales alone.

14 The Jacksons 2300 Jackson Street (1989): -87,3%

One more album which marked the end of an artist’s career. Just like Moving Violation (at #35) closed the career of the Jackson 5, 2300 Jackson Street was the curtain call of the Jacksons. This had to be one of the most expected album on this list. Losing Michael from your line-up can’t help. Victory had sold 5,37 million EAS, 2300 Jackson Street hasn’t gone higher than 684,000 units.

13 Paul Simon Songs from The Capeman (1997): -87,6%

One may exclude this album since it can be seen as a side project. Truth is, if you consider that the follow up of 1990’s The Rhythm of the Saints is You’re the One rather than Songs from the Capeman, you would barely switch of flop since they sold similar numbers. Simon‘s sales went from 5,40 million to 670,000 EAS. Obviously, the career of the songwriter was mostly done already by then.

12 Cranberries Roses (2012): -87,6%

Reunion attempts are rarely productive. If you have split, it’s more likely because you were already struggling. Thus, trying it again once your fanbase moved away from you is highly unlikely to work out well. Wake Up and Smell the Coffee had generated 1,47 million EAS back in 2001 for the Cranberries. It was their 3rd album in a row to register drops of 40-68% since their peak album No Need to Argue, so they had definitely run their curse. The masses quite simply ignored their 2012 return Roses which sold an abysmal 182,000 EAS.

11 Elton John Tumbleweed Connection (1970): -87,9%

The immediate successor of the eponymous album, Tumbleweed Connection made Elton John a one-hit-wonder for a pair of years. Ironically, the lack of competition in January added to the interest created by his previous album and the absence of physical single made it peak at #2 in the UK. Its songs did poorly airplay-wise though and its content ended up being dead meat for the artist. A couple of years later, Rocket Man transformed the one-hit-wonder into an absolute sales beast.

Top 10 major flops

catastrophic failure

10 Kelly Clarkson My December (2007): -88%

I already pointed out the violence of My December‘s hardcore flop. I can tell you more: out of the 333 albums issued during the digital era that we studied at Chartmasters.org, since 2003 to date, Clarkson‘s My December registers the sharpest collapse of all. It sold 1,88 million EAS while its predecessor Breakaway did 15,72 million. The drop is all the more drastic since digital years tend to limit falls for several reasons – more on that on an upcoming stand-alone article.

9 Cher Stars (1975): -90,6%

The never ending ups and downs of Cher conclude on one more victim. This time it’s Stars, the 1975 follow up of both Half-Breed and Dark Lady. The magnitude of this flop is especially surprising since the two aforementioned albums had sold 1,5-1,7 million EAS each. That was the first time the artist had shown some consistency since the start of her career. On its side, Stars sold a mere 159,000 units. It’s also the album which sent her into a very dark period which lasted for more than a decade. Additionally, it’s the first album we met that sold less than 10% of its immediate predecessor.

8 Sonny & Cher The Wondrous World of Sonny & Cher (1966): -90,6%

Well, the positive side is that to register so many massive drops, Cher had to enjoy various huge increases too. The Wondrous World of Sonny & Cher is the sophomore effort of the duo. It was issued just after Look At Us and its huge single I Got You Babe. It failed to record the same success. Although it got 3 Top 20 singles in the US, the album on its own sold very poorly and its songs got forgotten quickly. All told, it stands on 681,000 EAS against 7,24 million for Look At Us.

7 Spice Girls Forever (2000): -91,1%

One more disastrous reunion attempt. After the Backstreet Boys, Cranberries and Jacksons, it’s the turn of the Spice Girls. The unreal hype that accompanied the group during their immaculate run in mid-90s had completely faded away by 2000. Many blamed the absence of Geri Halliwell, but in all fairness it’s not like she was a composer / songwriter. Their success was a massive buzz, the kind of hysteria linked to a generation, which ultimately doesn’t last. Even if retailers were cautious with this release for these reasons, it still failed to sell its initial shipments. Forever stands on 1,47 million EAS nowadays, a ridiculous showing in comparison to the 29,73 million of Spice and the 16,52 million of Spiceworld.

6 Barbra Streisand ButterFly (1974): -91,2%

We often hear that personal and professional life shouldn’t be mixed. In 1974, Streisand‘s US #1 soundtrack The Way We Were sold strongly. Up to now, it fueled 14,77 million EAS. That same year, the diva entrusted the production of her new album ButterFly to her boyfriend, the movie producer Jon Peters. The album included a weird mix of covers from the likes Bob Marley and David Bowie. It failed to produce a hit and missed the Top 10 inside the BB200. It sold just shy of 1,3 million overall units. Furthermore, the artist herself considers it as her worst album to date.

down is the new up

5 Sonny & Cher Mama Was a Rock and Roll Singer, Papa Used to Write All Her Songs (1973): -92,5%

At least, the 1972 reunion of Sonny & Cher was successful. All I Ever Need Is You moved a decent 1,57 million EAS. The follow up Mama Was… shot down this vibe instantly though. The album peaked at #132 in the US. Its lone single never went higher than #77 inside the Hot 100. Both records had no impact abroad. The era combine for a mere 118,000 EAS up to date.

4 Bee Gees Living Eyes (1981): -93,1%

After 1978, media backlashed strongly everything coming off the Disco era. Naturally, the Bee Gees were impacted too. In less than 4 years, they went from releasing the most successful album of all-time up to that point to peak at #41 in the US and #73 in the UK with a fresh new album, Living Eyes. As the title of the article states, now that’s what I call a major flop! Saturday Night Fever moved a stunning 66,13 million EAS. Spirit Having Flown from 1979 continued to surf on that wave at 18,24 million. Then Living Eyes ended its way at… 1,26 million. Luckily for the band, all their subsequent releases until their final 2001 effort sold at least that number.

3 Cher Living Proof (2001): -93,1%

Cher records a 9th entry on this list. The highest of them had to be Living Proof: the highest she climbed, the deepest she then dropped. Even the era of Believe, worth a massive 19,24 million EAS, hasn’t been able to bring her a following. Living Proof, one more album that had plenty of its initial shipments returned, sold less than 7% of that number. That equals to 1,32 million units. Facts don’t lie. Indeed, while everyone know Believe, who can tell the name of a single from Living Proof?

2 Barbra Streisand What About Today? (1969): -93,3%

The tradition of Streisand with successful soundtracks started with Funny Girl in 1968, an album that lasted more than 2 years inside the BB200. It is responsible for 6,24 million EAS to date. Since her breakthrough in 1963, the vocalist became a specialist in Adult Contemporary albums. Her covers of past classics were highly popular and her Broadway-related records did well. Unlike these records, What About Today? was a pop record, her first. Unlike them too, it wasn’t successful. At all. In total, it moved 445,000 EAS, nearly 15 times less than its predecessor released 11 months earlier.

1 Fleetwood Mac Time (1995): -94,5%

You can’t cheat the consumer. Time was credited to the band Fleetwood Mac. For the general public though, an album without Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks isn’t a Fleetwood Mac album. Globally and across all formats, it sold a disgraceful 161,000 EAS. Ironically, its predecessor Behind The Mask was already a huge flop. In two albums only, the band saw its sales divided by 131, from over 21 million to that atrocious figure of 161,000.

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James Hall

From a statistical data standpoint this article has merit. Although many factors can be attributed to low sales.
I think it would be interesting to compare high selling “junk” to low selling artistic achievement(s).

Lydia

Whoa, Paul Simon’s career was definitely not “mostly done” by 1997, the albums Surprise (2006) and So Beautiful or So What (2011) are both incredible

Simon B.

AC/DC’s For Those About to Rock should have sold many more copies. The problem was not that it “missed to produce enough iconic tracks by their standards” but that in the US, the band’s label released the five-year-old Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap just months before the new album, its second with new singer Brian Johnson, was supposed to come out. Dirty Deeds went on to sell massive numbers, robbing momentum from the superb For Those About to Rock, and causing the band to suffer from overexposure by the time it came out. Dirty Deeds is a great album, but… Read more »

Matrix

If an CSPC analysis for ‘Grease 2’ soundtrack would be done, I have no doubt that album would have take the first place on this list. Consider the possible difference between ‘Grease 1’ soundtrack – 52 216 000 milion CSPC – and big flop named ‘Grease 2’ sounftrack.

Drewwwwww

How much did it sell?

Matrix

Some more candidates for this Flop – list:

The Rolling Stones: ‘Tattoo You* 16.24 million units ——–>’Undercover’ 3.93 million.

Bon Jovi: ‘Crush’ 12.13 million units ——–>’Bounce’ 3.15 nillion.

Matrix

Looked through Rod Stewart CSPC numbers, and noticed several strong candidates for this list. For example ‘Every Picture Tells a Story’ had registered 30,37 million sales. Album after that *Never A Dull Moment* produced ‘only’ 5.64 million.

Or, ‘Blondes Have More Fun’ 15.22 million, compared to the following album ‘Foolish Behaviour’ just 3.68 million units.

And, last but not least, ‘Vagabound Heart’ produced 11. 28 million units. But, next album ‘A Spanner In the Works’ flops hard, just only 1.98 million units!