Kendrick Lamar‘s album was supposed to be out on Monday, March 23. Internet super users were expecting a leak by this Wednesday or Thursday, but Sunday changed all of those expectations. The album was slowly presented to the entire world in shocking fashion, first by way of an iTunes clean version, then an explicit Spotify stream, then finally an official explicit release to iTunes. Anthony Tiffith, Top Dawg Entertainment CEO, sent out a tweet blasting Interscope Records for screwing up the release, but several reports suggest that the Twitter rant was a mere publicity stunt, and that TDE and Interscope had this rollout set up with Spotify and iTunes. Regardless, it didn’t prevent the people from getting their hands on Kendrick’s sophomore LP, To Pimp A Butterfly.
The innovative record, which featured production from Bilal, Thundercat, Pharrell and TDE in-house producer Sounwave, and guest contributions from George Clinton,Ronald Isley, Snoop Dogg and Rapsody, was streamed 9.6 million times in the 24 hours following its release, breaking the previous record set by Michael Buble‘s Christmas album. So far, there have been no concrete predictions on what Lamar’s first-week sales-plus-streams numbers will look like, but he will more than likely at least double the first-week mark of his debut, good kid, m.A.A.d. city, which moved 242,000 copies back in October of 2012.