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As forecasted last week, Foo Fighters finally get their first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart as Wasting Light debuts atop the list with 235,000 sold according to Nielsen SoundScan.
The start is the band’s second-largest sales week — trumped only by the No. 2 launch of In Your Honor in 2005, which began with 311,000.
They have notched eight previous sets on the Billboard 200 — with five earlier top 10s. Their last studio album, Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace, debuted at No. 3 in 2007 with 168,000.
The new album’s first single, Rope, debuted at No. 1 on the Rock Songs chart and continues to reign for an eighth straight week. On the Alternative Songs list, it’s in its sixth week at No. 1 — the band’s eighth chart-topper.
Because of the Foo Fighters‘ bow, last week’s No. 1, Adele‘s 21, is pushed back to No. 2 despite a 5% sales increase (up 4,000 units to 93,000).
Coming in at No. 3 is Alison Krauss and Union Station‘s Paper Airplane, selling 83,000. Krauss has gone higher once before (and sold more), with Robert Plant on their Grammy-winning collaboration album Raising Sand (No. 2 in 2007 off a 112,000 bow). However, Paper posts Krauss’ highest chart rank on her own (or with Union Station) and her second-biggest sales week. Krauss’ bigger sales week, not counting the Plant collabo, came when Lonely Runs Both Ways shifted 86,000 over Christmas week way back in 2004.
Right behind Krauss is the legendary singer/songwriter Paul Simon, who has a career-high debut at No. 4 with So Beautiful Or So What (68,000). It’s the icon’s best sales week since SoundScan began tracking data in 1991 and his highest rank on the Billboard 200 since Rhythm of the Saints peaked at No. 4 in 1990.
Latin rock band Mana is the fourth and final debut in the top 10, as they start at No. 5 with Drama y Luz (47,000). It’s Mana‘s second top 10 effort following 2006’s Amar Es Combatir, which bowed at No. 4 with 87,000. They’re currently enjoying a sixth No. 1 on the Latin Songs chart with the new set’s Lluvia Al Corazon, which debuted atop the list on April 2.
As for the rest of the top 10, Britney Spears‘ Femme Fatale falls four rungs to No. 6 with 43,000 (down 43%) and the Songs For Japan charity compilation holds at No. 7 with 37,000 (down 28%). Wiz Khalifa‘s Rolling Papers slips three to No. 8 with just under 37,000 (down 38%), Chris Brown‘s F.A.M.E. drops three as well, to No. 9, with a little over 35,000 (down 32%) and Mumford & Sons‘ Sigh No More slides two positions to No. 10 with 35,000 (up 1%).
Right outside the top 10 are three new arrivals: new British singer Jessie J‘s debut set Who You Are starts at No. 11 (34,000), TV On the Radio‘s Nine Types of Light enters at No. 12 (32,000) and Atmosphere‘s Family Sign launches at No. 13 (28,000).
Over on the Digital Songs chart, there’s a lot of action, as Rihanna‘s S&M jumps 3-1 with 293,000 (up 108%) — powered by last week’s release of the new Rih-mix featuring Britney Spears. Katy Perry‘s E.T., falls from No. 1 to No. 2 with 284,000 (down 12%). The Black Eyed Peas‘ Just Can’t Get Enough also is down one rung, to No. 3 with 172,000 (down 7%).
The highest new entry comes from Lady Gaga‘s rush-released single Judas, which hit retailers on Friday, April 15 after it leaked to the Web. With less than three full days of sales — the tracking week ends at the close of business on Sunday night — it debuts at No. 4 with 162,000.
Adele‘s Rolling in the Deep jumps 8-5 (150,000; up 21%), Jeremih‘s Down On Me (featuring 50 Cent), climbs 13-6 (131,000; up 30%) and Jennifer Lopez‘s On the Floor is stationary at No. 7 (130,000; up 4%). Chris Brown‘s Look at Me Now moves 6-8 (129,000; up 2%) and Bruno Mars‘ The Lazy Song vaults 16-9 (124,000; up 42% following the premiere of its music video last week). Closing out the top 10 is Spears’ Till the World Ends, dancing down 5-10 (120,000; down 10%).
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending April 17) totaled 6.32 million units, up 8% compared to the sum last week (5.87 million) and up 16% compared to the comparable sales week of 2010 (5.46 million). Year to date album sales stand at 90.02 million, down 3% compared to the same total at this point last year (92.69 million).
Digital track sales this past week totaled 24.06 million downloads, up 4% compared to last week (23.17 million) and up 8% stacked next to the comparable week of 2010 (22.10 million). Year to date track sales are at 386.35 million, up 9% compared to the same total at this point last year (356.84 million).
Next week’s Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2010 when: “Glee’s” The Power of Madonna soundtrack bowed at No. 1 with 98,000 while AC/DC‘s companion album to Iron Man 2 started at No. 4 with 76,000. The previous week’s topper, Justin Bieber‘s “My World 2.0,” fell to No. 3 with 81,000 (down 12%).
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