Originally the album was titled The Big Withdrawal, but because of two women he had a ménage à trois with in 2005 who leaked an unmastered copy of the album he had left at their home, the album was scrapped. Soon after, Banks began working on Rotten Apple.
The album so far has a score of 51 out of 100 from Metacritic based on "mixed or average reviews".Rolling Stone's Evan Serpick gave it 3 out of 5 stars and said that "Eminem, Mobb Deep’s Havoc and a host of G-Unit regulars produce an album’s worth of chunky, ominous beats to fit Banks’ foul mood, but it runs a little thin over sixteen tracks."AllHipHop gave it a score of three-and-a-half stars out of five and said that it was "primed to remind folks what crew controlled the game before his hiatus." DJ Booth gave it three stars out of five and said it " doesn’t offer the same amount of high energy bangers. Subsequently, the label is now left to wonder what would have been if their decision on a lead single was different from the jump off."
But XXL gave it a L/XXL (the equivalent of three stars out of five) and said, "Not falling far from 50 Cent’s platinum-rooted tree, Rotten Apple is fertilized with potent doses of sonic strength and catchy hooks. But overall, it isn’t the new massacre that'll shake New York hip-hop down to its core."Allmusic's David Jeffries gave it 2.5 out of 5 stars and said that "The highlights are way high, but the album as a whole is fans-only."HipHopDX gave it a similar score of two-and-a-half stars out of five and said, "Much like Banks' rapping, the beats just plod along. It is easy to expect less from some of his less talented G-Unit brethren, but Banks has shown himself to be capable of a lot. Minus a few moments where he shines, this album is as rotten as the City."
After 5 weeks of sales the album was at number 71 on the Billboard charts with 15,000 copies sold that week and 250,000 copies sold total. Despite not being certified in the United States, the album managed to strike Gold in Canada. As of January 2012 the album has sold a total of nearly 600,000 total copies.The album has been since certified Gold by the RIAA
Debuting at number 3 with 143,000, Banks fell more than 40,000 albums short of a chart-topping repeat. The album fell to number 15 the following week with sales of 49,000. In its third week, the album sold 25,000. In its fourth week, the album sold 19,000 to land at number 43 on the album chart. In its fifth week the album sold 15,000 to land at number 71 on the charts. The album had sold a total of 351,000 copies.