In 2011, the music industry went through many trials and tribulations. However, by the end of last year, most of the figures working in the industry had a reason to celebrate.

One of the main reasons to rejoice was the fact that 2011 ended a decade of dropping album sales: Last year’s sales increased by approximately 2% for the first time since 2001. Mainstream artists, such as the pride of Britain, Adele, contributed greatly to this dramatic increase. The vitality of album sales should not be underestimated even in this day and age, as low sales could mean the end of a career.

The Label Top of the Flops chart sums up 2011’s less successful in the music business:

10. Cobra Starship – ‘Night Shades’

The group’s fourth album flopped hard. Last year, the band cancelled their tour because they wanted to work harder on their upcoming studio album. Despite their efforts, ‘Night Shades’ did not achieve the success they hoped for and the outcome can be branded as shocking. The band are known for topping the majority of the digital charts in the US, for instance, one of their singles sold 1.7 million copies digitally in recent years. Despite this, the album received mainly positive reviews from critics, graded B- by Entertainment Weekly.

First week album sales: 9,000 copies.

09. Stevie Nicks – ‘In Your Dreams’

The Fleetwood Mac singer, whose album was heavily promoted, failed to meet expectations. Despite making appearances on top-rated shows such as Ellen, Oprah, Dancing with the Stars and others, the music business did not smile at Stevie this time around. The album also received amazing reviews by the top music magazines but this still did not reflect in album sales.

First week sales: 52,000 copies.

08. Avril Lavigne – ‘Goodbye Lullaby’

Avril’s first record in four years did not hit the heights of her previous releases. The album received lukewarm reviews, and sampling her single ‘I’m With You’ on Rihanna’s ‘Cheers’ did not give her the boost they hoped for.

First week sales: 83,000 copies.

07. Red Hot Chili Peppers – ‘I’m With You’

The group had to get back on feet and to shake their fans with new material after a long absence. However, the departure of their guitarist, John Fruciante, seems to have had a negative impact on the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ fans. A poor result for RHCP’s tenth studio album!

First week sales: 229,000 copies.

06. Owl City – ‘All Things Bright And Beautiful’

Adam Young obviously couldn’t do anything better after his ‘Fireflies’ smash hit. The album received unfavourable reviews across the board and it was branded as ‘annoying’ due to Owl City’s attempted genre variety.

First week sales: 36,000 copies.

05. James Blunt – ‘Some Kind of Trouble’

James Blunt’s lowest selling album in the U.S. ended up being another ‘flop’ for the year 2011. Mixed reviews from various music critique websites and magazines couldn’t save the album either: A blunt end to a poor year for James.

First week sales: 26,000 copies.

04. T-Pain – ‘rEVOLVEr’

Despite his top ten hit with Lily Allen and Wiz Khalifa, the auto-tuned rapper/singer’s fourth album didn’t gain much attention, and dropped to a measly 34000 sales in the first week of release.

First week sales: 34,000 copies.

03. Limp Bizkit – ‘Gold Cobra’

Receiving mixed to positive reviews usually triggers a successful record. Despite this, the band’s latest album, by contrast quickly vanished from the charts in a matter of weeks.

First week sales: 27,500 copies.

02. Joe Jonas – ‘Fastline’

The Jonas Brothers’ lead singer is apparently not better off alone, even with the strong media support. After his brother’s flop, they must call each other for back up and release another Jonas Brothers album pronto.

First week sales: 18,000 copies.

01. Lou Reed & Metallica – ‘Lulu’

The heavy rock legends are the ‘winners’ for Flop of 2011. Shockingly, the band only managed to sell 6,019 copies in the UK, and approximately 100,000 copies elsewhere. A massively disappointing performance from, arguably, the greatest heavy metal band of all time.

First week sales: 13,000 copies.

Last year’s album sales faced some interesting cliffhangers. However, there are artists who were not included on this chart but big names in the industry that also flopped. Albums, such as the heavily promoted fourth album by Beyoncé ‘4’, and other from artists such as Alesha Dixon, Nicola Scherzinger, Matt Cardle, Nicola Roberts, Katy B and others also bit the bullet. Let the hoping and praying begin for a more album happy 2012.


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