38 new titles on Album Sales Chart !!!

Alan Jones Music Week 10/08/10

A fortnight after hitting an all-time high of 47 debuts, it is another busy week in the Top 200 album chart, with 38 new arrivals.

This time, however, they are more heavily weighted towards the top of the chart, with the result that fully half (20) of the Top 40 albums are new entries – a record. The effect of this is to give sales a small fillip, helping them to rise 6% week-on-week, though they are a woeful 23% below same week 2009 levels.

Six of the new entries debut inside the Top 10, with a country handover at the top – the first in more than a year, with former incumbents The Zac Brown Band’s You Get What You Give slipping to number three, to be replaced in pole position by Hemingway’s Whiskey by Kenny Chesney. It is 42-year-old Chesney’s sixth number one album, and enjoyed solid first week sales of 183,000 copies.

Currently incarcerated for possession of a weapon, rapper Lil Wayne’s I Am Not A Human Being follows at number two, with first week sales of 110,000.

While that is considerably down on the 176,000 copies his last album, Rebirth, sold in taking second slot only eight months ago, it is a creditable performance given that I Am Not A Human Being was available only digitally, and won’t get a full CD release (with three extra tracks) until next week.

It ties multi-artist charity album Hope For Haiti to share the honour of earning the highest position yet for an album not released physically. For the record NO release not available physically has made the UK album chart yet – the nearest we have come was in week 27, 2009, when the death of Michael Jackson resulted in a big surge in sales of Bad but stocks of the album were low and all but 109 of its 3,797 sales were digitally delivered.

Back on the US chart, there are also Top 10 debuts this week for rapper Gucci Mane, who earns his second Top 10 entry with The Appeal: Georgia’s Most Wanted (number four, 66,000 sales) and Eric Clapton, in at number six (47,000 sales) with Clapton.

The highest ranked UK act in the list this week, Clapton has now had 18 Top 10 albums in the US, compared to 25 in the UK in a career spanning well over 40 years. Leading the list a week ago, Robert Plant’s Band Of Joy ebbs 14-32.

Mumford & Sons remain the second highest charting Brits, with their Sigh No More reversing 18-25. As mentioned above, however, it’s a busy chart week, and that fall is accompanied by a 12.69% increase in sales week-on-week to 20,000, helping the set to increase its career tally to 260,000. Introductory single Little Lion Man is also on the move, climbing 76-67 on the Hot 100, while falling 1-2 on the Alternative Songs chart and holding at number four on the Rock Songs chart.

Going Back has done very well for Phil Collins around the world but unless it improves on its number 34 debut in America (15,000 sales), it will be his lowest charting solo album there – an unwanted honour previously held by his last studio album, Testify, which reached number 30 in 2002.

Meanwhile, Seal’s latest album Seal 6: Commitment – which, despite its title is his seventh studio set – emulates the rest by reaching the Top 40. Debuting at number 31, it sold 16,000 copies.

That’s 10,000 copies more than Mark Ronson sold of his new album Record Collection last week – but no matter, as even that slender tally is enough for Ronson to break into the top half of the chart for the first time. Record Collection debuts at number 81, easily beating the number 129 peak of its immediate predecessor, 2007’s Version. Ronson’s 2003 debut, Here Comes The Fuzz, failed to make the Top 200 but reached number 84 on the R&B chart.

3,000 sales are all that is required of the repackaged David Bowie album Station To Station to earn its return to the chart at number 142. Surprisingly Bowie’s highest charting album Stateside, it reached number three when originally issued in 1976.

There are also debuts for two acts with key UK personnel this week. Judas Priest mainman Rob Halford is the only Brit but the driving force behind Halford, a five piece band that debuts at number 160 with Halford IV: Made Of Metal, while UK/US hybrid Tired Pony’s Place We Ran From debuts at number 191.

On the Hot 100 singles chart, Bruno Mars continues at number one with Just The Way You Are; there’s an aesthetically displeasing trio of consecutive songs at 16-18 (Toxic, Gonorrhea and Misery); and a continuing fast fade for Florence + The Machine’s Dog Days Are Over (77-99). As suggested last week, six new entries from Glee Cast – including the aforementioned Toxic – take the TV ensemble into third place among acts with most Hot 100 hits, behind only Elvis Presley and James Brown.

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