Reptile is the fifteenth studio album by the British rock musician Eric Clapton. It was released by Reprise Records on March 13 in 2001. The album was produced by Eric Clapton with Simon Climie and is Clapton's first album to feature keyboard work by Billy Preston and background vocals by the Impressions. The album reached the Top 10 in 20 countries, topping the national album charts in three of them. In total, the album sold more than 2,5 million copies and gained several certification awards around the globe. To help promoting the album sales, music network VH1 streamed the album in full on TV.
Rolling Stones Anthony DeCurtis awarded Reptile three and a half out of five possible stars. The jouralist thinks Clapton combines both Blues and pop music on the 2001 studio album very well and "blends virtually every style he's worked in during the past thirty-five years".PopMatters critic Simon Warner reviews the album "could have been mawkish but it's actually quite moving. Clapton, circumspect as a composer and still highly adept as a musical practitioner, has his own authentic blues to draw on now and, in many ways, they hit a truer note than when he dips into the older, existing catalogue of standards. Reptile may be an uneven collection, but it's best moments stand close listening". Christa L. Titus from Billboard magazine calles the album a perfect example for Clapton's typical "heritage rock format". Critic William Ruhlmann started his AllMusic review, summing up Clapton's history as a rock guitar player and rock god in the early stages of his musical career. Afterwards, Ruhlmann describes the dedication and album artwork of Reptile. He awarded the album only two and a half out of the five possible stars, noting:
Reptile seems conceived as an album to address all the disparate audiences Clapton has assembled over the years. His core audience may think of him as the premier blues guitarist of his generation, but especially as a solo artist, he has also sought a broader pop identity, and in the 1990s, with the hits "Tears in Heaven" and "Change the World", he achieved it. The fans he earned then will recognize the largely acoustic sound of such songs as "Believe in Life", "Second Nature" and "Modern Girl". But those who think of Clapton as the guy who plays "Cocaine" will be pleased with his cover of another J.J. Cale song, "Travelin' Light", and by the time the album was in record stores mainstream rock radio had already found "Superman Inside", which sounds like many of his mid-tempo rock hits of the '80s. This diversity is continued on less familiar material, especially the many interesting cover songs. Somebody, perhaps the artist himself, has been busy looking for old chestnuts, since Reptile contains a wide variety of them: the 1930 jazz song "I Want a Little Girl", recorded by McKinney's Cotton Pickers among others; John Greer's 1952 R&B hit "Got You on My Mind"; Ray Charles' 1955 R&B hit "Come Back Baby"; James Taylor's 1972 hit "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight"; and Stevie Wonder's 1980 hit "I Ain't Gonna Stand for It". The two earliest of these songs are old and obscure enough that Clapton is able to make them his own, and he recasts the Taylor song enough to re-invent it, but remaking songs by Charles and Wonder means competing with them vocally, and as a singer Clapton isn't up to the challenge. He is assisted by the current five-man version of the Impressions, who do much to shore up his vocal weaknesses, but he still isn't a disciplined or thoughtful singer. Of course, when that distinctive electric guitar sound kicks in, all is forgiven. Still, Reptile looks like an album that started out to be more ambitious than it ended up being. There may be a song here for each of the artist's constituencies (and, more important to its commercial impact, for every major radio format except talk and country), but as a whole the album doesn't add up to the statement Clapton seems to have been hoping to make.
In the United States, Reptile peaked at number five on the Billboard 200 top albums chart, gaining a so-called "Hot Shot Debut" recognition by the American magazine, as the album sold a total of 101,500 units in its first week. In addition to its success on the main albums chart, compiled by Billboard, the 2001 release also topped the magazines top Internet albums chart for several weeks. In the first quarter of 2001, Reptile sold more than 215,000 copies in the United States alone. On June 8, the rock album was certified with a Gold disc by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) to commemorate outstanding sales figures reaching more than 500,000 copies. In total, the album stayed sixteen weeks on the Billboard 200 chart and sold more than 700,000 copies by the end of 2001 in the United States, making it that years 184th most purchased album. In Canada, Clapton's 2001 release went to number eleven on Billboards top Canadian albums chart in 2001, and was certified with a Gold record sales presentation by the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA) for shipments of over 50,000 copies in the country. By the end of 2001, Reptile sold more than 56,000 copies in Canada. In South America the album was a medium success, gaining two Gold records in Brazil by the Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos (ABPD) and in Argentina by the Argentine Chamber of Phonograms and Videograms Producers (CAPIF), selling more than 50,000 and 20,000 copies in the countries. However, in Japan, the release more successful, reaching position six on Oricons album chart in 2001. In addition, the release was awarded a Platinum certification for outstanding sales exceeding 200,000 copies in Japan by the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ). By the end of 2011, Reptile had sold more than 395,000 copies in the country and ranked number 66 on 2001's year-end album chart. In New Zealand, Reptile peaked at number 15, but did not reach the year-end charts of 2001. However, in Australia, the Clapton album reached number 20 on the ARIA charts in 2001, and was certified Platinum for sales exceeding 70,000 copies in the country.
Reptile was a big success in Europe, topping three album charts in the continent, reaching the Top 10 in 16 countries and gaining a total of 13 certification awards for outstanding record sales. In Austria, the album peaked at number two on the albums chart in 2001 and went on to be the 79th best-selling album in the country that year. In Belgium, the release peaked at number ten in Flanders and number 13 in Wallonia. In the Czech Republic, the release topped the nations album chart and was certified with a double Platinum by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) CNS award for selling more than 20,000 copies in the country. In Denmark, the album reached position seven on the Hitlisten chart in 2001, and was later certified Platinum by the IFPI Denmark for selling a total of 50,000 copies in the Nordic country, reaching number 62 on the nations year-end chart. In the Netherlands, Reptile reached number nine on the MegaCharts album compilation, and was later certified Platinum by the The Dutch Association of Producers and Importers of image – and sound carriers (NVPI) for sales more than 80,000 copies.Reptile also reached number five on Finlands Suomen virallinen lista albums chart and was in 2001 the 71th best-selling album. In France, the album peaked at number nine on the album charts, compiled by the Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique (SNEP) in 2001. In Germany, the album peaked at nuber two on the albums chart, and was certified, Gold by the Bundesverband Musikindustrie (BVMI), selling more than 150,000 copies in the country. The release reached position 78 on the countrys year-end chart in 2001. In Greece, Hungary and Ireland, the album reached positions one, 13 and 25 in 2001.Reptile was a hit album in Italy, as it peaked at number eight in the country, sold more than 200,000 copies in the country, gaining a double Platinum award by the Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana (FIMI) and became the countrys 89th most-purchased album of 2001. In Latvia, the album did not reach the nations official albums chart, but was eventually certified triple Platinum by the Latvian Music Producers Association (LaMPA) for sales exceeding 24,000 copies. In Norway, Reptile reached number seven on the VG-lista chart and was that years 60th best-selling album in Norway, as it was certified with a double Platinum disc by IFPI Norway, selling more than 100,000 units in the country. In Poland, the Clapton album reached number four on the countrys album chart in 2001 and was later certified with a Gold disc by the Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry (ZPAV) for sales of more than 50,000 copies. In Portugal, Reptile reached number five on the nations album chart in 2001. In Romania, the album topped the national albums chart, and was awarded a Platinum certification for sales more than 25,000 albums by the IFPI Romania. In Spain, the album reached nmber five on the albums chart, and was certified Gold by the Productores de Música de España (PROMUSICAE) for outstanding sales figures, reaching 50,000 sold copies. In Sweden, the album reached number nine on the Sverigetopplistan albums chart in 2001, and was eventually certified Platinum by the Swedish Recording Industry Association (GLF) for sales more than 80,000 copies.Reptile was also certified Gold in Switzerland by the local IFPI office and was the 81th best-selling album of 2001 in the country, previously peaking at number two on the Schweizer Hitparade. In the United Kingdom, the album peaked at number seven on the charts compiled by the Official Charts Company, where it stayed for nine weeks on chart. It was certified Gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) and eventually sold more than 200,000 copies in the country, reaching position number 157 on the year-end chart. In Scotland, the album peaked at number 22. Overall, the album reached number two on the European albums chart in 2001, and was certified Platinum by the IFPI for sales of more than 1 million copies.