Rihanna's "Diamonds" tops Hot 100, "Unapologetic" to debut big

Wed Nov 21, 2012 9:30pm EST
 

By Piya Sinha-Roy

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - R&B star Rihanna scored her 12th chart-topping single on the Billboard Hot 100 on Wednesday, as her seventh studio album "Unapologetic" raced toward a big debut after its release this week.

Rihanna's "Diamonds," the lead single from "Unapologetic," notched the top spot on the Hot 100, tying the Barbadian singer with Madonna and The Supremes for the fourth-most chart-topping singles in Billboard history.

Only Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey and The Beatles have had more hit singles.

The 24-year-old singer has just wrapped up a seven-day mini-tour across seven world cities to promote "Unapologetic," her seventh studio album, which was released on Monday and shot to the top of the iTunes album charts in 43 countries despite garnering mixed reviews.

"Unapologetic" scored 65 out of 100 on review aggregator site Metacritic.com, with some critics unsettled by the singer's harder sound and close-to-home lyrics. Others have embraced it.

The New York Times' Jon Caramanica called Rihanna's latest "one of her best albums yet," adding that the singer's presence made her "without peer when it comes to her image, which is steely and unforgiving and bulletproof."

But BBC Music's Natalie Shaw found the album a difficult listen, calling it "the sound of a human dragged headfirst into a breakdown," and criticizing the singer for using "pop music to inadvertently condone abuse."

The track that Shaw refers to and has everyone talking is Rihanna's collaboration with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown, who was charged with assaulting her three years ago.   Continued...

 
Singer Rihanna poses before an appearance to switch on the Christmas lights at Westfield shopping centre in Stratford, east London November 19, 2012. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor