4 years later, Linkin Park is back with a vengeance

623,000 units is biggest bow of '07

Linkin Park's "Minutes to Midnight" crashes the Billboard 200 in a big way this week, bowing at No. 1 with 623,000 copies sold, the highest first-week total of 2007, according to Nielsen SoundScan figures for the week ending May 20.

It's the biggest debut week number since Jay-Z's "Kingdom Come" moved 680,000 in December; in the past two years only five other titles have moved more than 600,000 in a week.

Linkin Park's most recent album, 2003's "Meteora," debuted at No. 1 with 810,000 and has scanned more than 4 million copies.

R&B singer Tank rolls in at No. 2 with his third album, "Sex, Love & Pain," selling 103,000 units, a sales and charting best for the artist. His 2002 album "One Man" debuted and peaked at No. 20.

After topping the chart in its sophomore week, Michael Buble's 143/Reprise set "Call Me Irresponsible" slips to No. 3 with 88,000.

Wilco earns its biggest charting and sales week yet, as "Sky Blue Sky" (Nonesuch) bows at No. 4 with 87,000 copies. It's the Chicago-based rock group's second top 10 album. Nearly a quarter of its sales were via digital retailers.

Country singer Gretchen Wilson makes it 3-for-3 in the top 5 on the chart as "One of the Boys" jumps in at No. 5. The Columbia set moved 73,000 copies.

Avril Lavigne's "The Best Damn Thing" (RCA) dips a rung to No. 6 on 56,000 sold, while Ne-Yo's Def Jam album "Because of You" falls three spots to seventh with 55,000.

Veteran metal troupe Megadeth scores its first top 10 album in 13 years with "United Abominations" (Roadrunner), which debuts at No. 8 with 54,000. The group's 1994 set "Youthanasia" debuted and peaked at No. 4.

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony's "Strength & Loyalty" (Full Surface/Interscope) slides seven slots to No. 9 with 53,000 copies in its second week, while Daughtry's self-titled RCA debut falls four notches to No. 10 with 51,000.

Katie Hasty is an online editor at Billboard.com.
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