The Week in Music Sales: 'Glee' Warblers Album Flies High


Glee Presents the Warblers, the latest entry from the the Fox TV series' line of soundtrack albums, flies in at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, debuting with 86,000 according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Warblers -- a showcase for recent Billboard magazine cover man Darren Criss and his Glee co-star Chris Colfer -- is the tenth Glee album to chart. And all ten of them have debuted in the the top 10. However, Warblers posts the smallest debut sales week of any Glee release, save for the The Rocky Horror Glee Show (EP) which bowed with 48,000.

With that in mind, one's sales expectations should have been appropriately tempered for Warblers. It's a unique album in that it operates essentially as a stand-alone Criss/Colfer effort and is the first to focus on so few cast members. (Credit also goes to the backing vocalists heard on the album, and on Glee, as the Warblers -- the Tufts University Beelzebubs.)

Last week's No. 1, Foo Fighters' Wasting Light, slips to No. 3 with 72,000 (down 69%). Replacing them at the top is Adele, who returns to No. 1 (up one slot) with 21 selling 153,000 (up 65%) -- its fifth non-consecutive week atop the tally. It garners a boost thanks to Easter-infused shopping and an American Idol contestant's rendition of Rolling In the Deep last week. The album is one of 11 sets in the top 50 than see an increase of at least 50% this week.

Speaking of massive gains, the soundtrack to Disney Channel's Lemonade Mouth jumps 18-4 with 69,000 (up 222%) in its second week on the chart. Credit not just Easter shopping but also repeated airings of the high-rated TV movie and an $11.99 sale tag at Target.

Britney Spears' Femme Fatale climbs a rung to No. 5 with 45,000 (up 6%) -- its first gain since its release. The album was sale priced in the iTunes Store on April 24 for $6.99 and marked down to $9.99 at Target -- and featured in its circular advertisement -- over the weekend. Femme was one of many titles hyped by the big retailers over the Easter holiday.

Target additionally helps push gains for Justin Bieber's Never Say Never: the Remixes (22-10 with 36,000; up 85%) and Chris Brown's F.A.M.E. (a non-mover at No. 9, though with a sales increase of 4% - 37,000). Also in the top 10 is Mumford & Sons' Sigh No More, which was promoted for $9.99 at Best Buy, and rises 10-7 with 39,000 (up 12%).

Alison Krauss + Union Station's Paper Airplane glides down three rungs to No. 6 (42,000; down 49%) and Paul Simon's So Beautiful Or So What falls four slots to No. 8 (37,000; down 46%).

Over on the Digital Songs chart, Adele almost captures dual No. 1s on both our Billboard 200 and Digital Songs charts, as her Rolling In the Deep download zooms 5-2 on the latter tally with 298,000 (up 99%). Showcased on "Idol" last week, this marks the its best sales frame yet. Its cumulative sales stand at 1.72 million.

Standing in Adele's way is the steady-as-she-goes Katy Perry, who returns to No. 1 (up one slot) with E.T. (344,000; up 21%). She bumps Rihanna's S&M out of the penthouse down to No. 5 (159,000; down 46%). The latter's slide was expected, as its gain last week was fueled by the then-new Rih-mix featuring Britney Spears.

The Black Eyed Peas' Just Can't Get Enough holds at No. 3 (207,000; up 20%), Bruno Mars' The Lazy Song flies 9-4 (188,000; up 52%) and Lady Gaga's Judas falls 4-6 (156,000; down 4%). Gaga's decline is notable in that Judas debuted a week ago from a partial week's worth of sales -- as it arrived to digital retailers on Friday, April 15 (the tracking week ends on Sunday). Thus, one would have expected a full seven days' worth of impact to have pushed it up the list this week with a gain.

Jennifer Lopez's On the Floor stands still at No. 7 (158,000; up 19%) as does Chris Brown's Look at Me Now at No. 8 (153,000; up 18%). Ke$ha's Blow surges 14-9 with 151,000 (up 59%) while Jeremih's Down On Me drops 6-10 with 148,000 (despite its 12% gain). Blow was performed on last Friday's (April 22) episode of Nickelodeon's Victorious, where Ke$ha guest-starred.

Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending April 24) totaled 6.48 million units, up 2% compared to the sum last week (6.32 million) and up 17% compared to the comparable sales week of 2010 (5.55 million). Year to date album sales stand at 96.49 million, down 2% compared to the same total at this point last year (98.24 million).

Digital track sales this past week totaled 26.69 million downloads, up 11% compared to last week (24.06 million) and up 22% stacked next to the comparable week of 2010 (21.73 million). Year to date track sales are at 413.04 million, up 9% compared to the same total at this point last year (378.57 million).

Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2010 when: B.o.B's The Adventures of Bobby Ray opened at No. 1 with 84,000 while Bullet For My Valentine's Fever started at No. 3 with 71,000. The previous week's No. 1, Glee's The Power of Madonna soundtrack, fell to No. 10 with 29,000 (down 70%).

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