With the May 21 release of its fifth studio album, “Random Access Memories,” Daft Punk finally earned its first-ever No. 1 album on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart. Though they’re arguably one of the most influential and recognizable electronic bands in history, the French duo had previously only hit the top of the niche U.S. Dance charts, with a peak spot on the main chart at No. 44 for 2001’s “Discovery.”
With this accomplishment, Daft Punk is leaving a surprisingly elite group of artists that are widely recognized as icons in music history, but unbelievably, never topped the charts with a No. 1 studio album in the U.S. Read through the list below to see some of the most unexpected musicians in this group.
Aretha Franklin | Tickets
The undisputed “Queen of Soul” was crowned Rolling Stone magazine’s Greatest Singer of All Time, but even in her heyday, Aretha Franklin was never able to edge out her contemporaries for a chart-topping album. With over 30 studio releases, Franklin charted 14 singles in the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100, but this Kennedy Center honoree never earned the top Billboard album spot.
Hall and Oates | Tickets
Hall and Oates has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and ranked in Billboard’s Top 20 Artists of all time, but they never rose to the peak of the Billboard 200. Impressively, this duo earned 13 Top 10 singles in the 1980s alone, with six No. 1 tracks in their career. Their highest charting album, “H20,” only rose to No. 3, but it has been certified Platinum twice since its release in 1982.
Rush | Tickets
Despite this Canadian rock trio’s devoted following and a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Rush has only ever peaked at the second spot on the Billboard 200—once with the 1993 album, “Counterparts” and again with the 2012 release, “Clockwork Angels.” They have fared better in their native Canada with three No. 1 albums, but never broke through to the top in the U.S.
The Who | Tickets
Although they’ve received innumerable accolades and have ranked highly in both Billboard and Rolling Stone lists of the greatest musicians of all time, The Who’s discography lacks a U.S. No. 1 album. Like Rush, the British band did top the charts in its home country, but peaked at the No. 2 slot stateside. To date, this legendary group has sold an estimated 100 million albums worldwide.
The Beach Boys | Tickets
This iconic band’s 1966 album, “Pet Sounds” was ranked by Rolling Stone as the second best album of all time, but the late accolades didn’t help this renowned California group reach the top of the Billboard 200. “Pet Sounds” peaked at 10 in the U.S., but was outperformed on the charts by two of the group’s previous releases that had reached No. 2. Technically, The Beach Boys did reach No. 1 on two occurrences, but only for a live and a compilation album, never a studio release.