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It probably shouldn't come as a surprise that Eminem's new album, Relapse, debuts at No. 1 today on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. What is just a tad suprising is how many copies it sold. There were those who doubted the continued relevance of one of Detroit's favorite sons -- including one guy (who shall remain unnamed) who not only regularly comments drivel on this site but even followed me to WDET's Detroit Today two weeks ago when I was interviewed about my recent Em interview, posting more nonsense on their blog, which led to me being greeted by host Craig Fahle with the comment that "a listener is claiming Eminem is 'toast'; that nobody cares anymore..." But the numbers certainly don't lie.

Relapse sold 608,000 copies its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan (and that doesn't even include all the illegally downloaded copies). That's the year's biggest-selling album to date, leaving U2's 484,000 albums in March behind in a large trail of dust. Not only that but it was a pretty heavy-duty week for album releases, with seven total making their debut (not to mention some major discs, including Green Day's new album -- this week's No. 2 CD -- released the previous week).

Nevertheless, our man sold nearly as many albums as the rest of the Billboard Top 10 combined!

Nice! Congratulations, Marshall. Detroit should be feeling a certain pride today...

The hottest album of 2009 to date...

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