Cage the Elephant debuted on the UK Albums Chart at number 38 in its week of release, and debuted at number 171 on the Billboard 200, later rising to number 67. Upon release of the band's second album, Thank You, Happy Birthday, Cage the Elephant reappeared on the Billboard 200, this time reaching number 59.
The first and second singles from the album, "Free Love" and "In One Ear", did not make significant impact in any charts. However, the third single "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked", (from its original 2008 release) reached number 32 in the UK Singles Chart, and a later 2009 US release would reach number 3 on the Alternative Songs chart, number 8 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, and number 83 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart. Although it was their most successful and most popular single to date, it did not hit number 1 on the Alternative Songs chart like "In One Ear" and "Back Against the Wall", but it actually had more airplay on alternative rock radio stations than the other two and it was also the most played Cage the Elephant song on the radio. It would also be featured in numerous television spots, becoming their most popular single so far. "Back Against the Wall" became the fourth single from the album, and reached number 1 on the Billboard Alternative Songs, number 26 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, and number 12 on their Rock Songs chart. The song "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" was featured in the opening cutscene to the video game Borderlands.