Who needs a week?

Green Day tops chart despite short sales frame

Green Day easily debuts atop the Billboard 200 this week, but if the tally for the superstar band's first album in 41/2 years looks relatively paltry, there's a reason.

"21st Century Breakdown," the California trio's follow-up to its 5 million seller "American Idiot," got an off-cycle Friday release to align more closely with its worldwide street dates. Still, the album's three-day count of 215,000 units sold was plenty to give Green Day its second chart-topper behind "Idiot," which debuted in October 2004 with 267,000 after a normal-length frame.

Cam'Ron makes the only other top-tier debut as "Crime Pays" sold 43,000 units to bow at No. 3. It's the New York rapper's fifth top 10 album.

Elsewhere, roots-rock veteran Steve Earle scores the highest-charting album of his career with "Townes," which bows at No. 19. The set features 15 songs written by the late Townes Van Zandt.

Billboard analyst Keith Caulfield contributed to this report.