Nielsen Mid-Year Consumption Report Shows Growth; Post Malone, Drake Reign

Post Malone
Barry Brecheisen / Invision for Park City Live
– Post Malone
Post Malone croons to the fans during Snow Fest at Park City Live in Utah Jan. 20.
Nielsen Music has unveiled the streaming, song sales and album sales information for the first half of 2018, and the report indicates that overall total album equivalent consumption (a combination of streams, album and song sales) increased 18.4 percent from 2017. 
The streaming revolution continues, as services like Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal have seen an increase of 45 percent in the total number of on-demand audio streams from the equivalent period last year. 
Vinyl is also continuing its comeback, with a 19 percent increase in sales in the first half of the year. The report notes that the format saw a record-breaking sales week during this year’s Record Store Day initiative
CD sales were down 19.9 percent, digital album sales 21.7 percent, and digital song sales 27.4 percent respectively.
“The first half of 2018 has shown robust growth for the music industry, building upon the successes of the business in recent years,” said David Bakula, SVP of Industry Insights for Nielsen Music. “Fans have never before had access to music on the scale that we see today, and we expect even more gains for the industry in the six months ahead.”
Based on the numbers, the industry leaders are clearly Drake and Post Malone, both of whom are racking up streams in a huge way.
Posty has the most consumed album in beerbongs & bentleys, with 1.8 million units consumed, the vast majority of which are streams. He was followed by The Greatest Showman Soundtrack and Cardi B’s Invasion of Privacy
Drake is still killing it, as his song “God’s Plan” was the most consumed track, with 5.3 million units, including 655 million on-demand audio streams. Ed Sheeran had the most individual song sales, with more than 1 million purchases of his song “Perfect.”
Another factoid contained in Nielsen’s report is that XXXtentacion’s last album debuted with a strong 159 million audio on-demand streams, and album sales rose again after his death, with 94,000 album units moved the week after his murder.
Finally, Beyoncé continues to dominate in her own way, having broken YouTube’s livestream record for her performance at Coachella, which led to increases in sales for her solo material and Destiny’s Child’s music.
You can read more about Nielsen’s report here.