Kanye West’s ‘The Life Of Pablo’ Fails To Chart Because Tidal

Carl Williott | February 23, 2016 9:40 am

Since appearing exclusively on Tidal nine days ago, Kanye West‘s new album The Life Of Pablo boosted Tidal to the No. 1 spot in the app store (and some 500,000 bootleg copies were downloaded…not to mention West sold out Madison Square Garden merely for an album listening party). But despite all that apparent demand, West’s seventh LP is nowhere to be found on the latest album chart.

And it’s because Tidal is not disclosing streaming numbers for the set. Billboard’s vice president of charts and data development told the New York Times in a statement: “Billboard has been informed that Tidal is not currently reporting streams for tracks on Kanye’s album to Nielsen Music. Therefore streams from Tidal for this title will not contribute to Billboard’s chart rankings at this time.”

After releasing the album, West tweeted that he has no intention to stream it through any other services, nor does he plan to sell it, meaning unless Tidal changes its operating procedure, we could never see T.L.O.P. on the charts. It would certainly be one of the more significant chart anomalies of the digital/streaming era — and after the botched ANTI release, another potential reason for artists to steer clear of the service. Not that any of this would bother West. Back in 2013, during the lead-up to the release of Yeezus, he basically said he was done worrying about stats and sales.

“When I listen to radio, that ain’t where I wanna be no more,” he told the Governors Ball crowd that year. “And honestly, at this point I can give a fuck about selling a million records, as long as I put out an album y’all can rock to all summer.”