Linkin Park, Songz eye Billboard's top spot
Artists' new release sales expected to near 250,000 markNext week on the Billboard 200 albums chart, not only will the very top of the chart welcome handsome debuts from both Linkin Park's "A Thousand Suns" and Trey Songz's "Passion, Pain & Pleasure," but there may be up to six new entries in the top 10.
Industry prognosticators suggest that Linkin Park's fourth studio set, "A Thousand Suns," could sell as much as 250,000 to 260,000 by week's end on Sunday, Sept. 19. However, Songz is nipping at Linkin's heels, as his "Passion" album is looking to move perhaps between 230,000 to 250,000.
If Linkin Park triumphs and opens at No. 1, it will be the band's fourth leader on the tally. They previously reached the top with 2003's "Meteora," their 2004 "Collision Course" mash-ups set with Jay-Z and their last studio effort, 2007's "Minutes to Midnight." It blasted onto the chart with 623,000 in its first week.
As for Songz, his last album, 2009's "Ready," debuted and peaked at No. 3 with his best sales week: 131,000. The album, which is his highest charting set, has so far shifted 807,000 in the U.S. according to Nielsen SoundScan. That sum is more than the combined sales of his two earlier albums: 2005's "I Gotta Make It" (396,000) and 2007's "Trey Day" (346,000).
Songz's current single, "Bottoms Up" (featuring Nicki Minaj), climbs from No. 20 to No. 17 on the Billboard Hot 100. Meanwhile, Linkin Park's "The Catalyst" -- the first single from "Thousand Suns" -- peaked at No. 35 last month.
Other albums in the hunt for a top 10 debut next week include Jamey Johnson's "Guitar Song," Weezer's "Hurley," Brandon Flowers' "Flamingo" and Robert Plant's "Band of Joy."