The holiday shopping season returned the twentieth installment of the ever-popular Now That's What I Call Music! hits compilation -- featuring the likes of Black Eyed Peas, Destiny's Child and Kelly Clarkson -- to Number One this week. But with just 158,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan, this is a very lukewarm sales week.
Still, two new albums did respectable business in the Top Five: R&B newcomer Chris Brown made his name known, as the Virginia teen's self-titled debut took second place, with 154,000 CDs moved. And Colombian singer Shakira's English-language album, Oral Fixation, Vol. 2, landed at Number Five (128,000) -- a slightly weaker showing than its summer Spanish-language counterpart, Fijacion Oral, Vol. 1, which bowed at Number Four.
The rest of the Top Ten is a mainstream merry-go-round of big sellers. The latest American Idol, Carrie Underwood, saw her debut Some Hearts climb back up four spots, to Number Three (154,000); country sensation Kenny Chesney's latest, The Road and the Radio, dropped two places to Number Four (138,000); and New Age-y crooner Enya's latest, Amarantine, climbed two spots to Number Six (116,000). And it's beginning to feel as if you're U.S. citizenship might be revoked if you haven't bought Mariah Carey's The Emancipation of Mimi yet: Its re-release continues to give the comeback album an added boost -- now with another 110,000 copies sold, down one place to Number Seven -- months after the original version hit stores.
Madonna's club-ready Confessions on a Dance Floor, a recent chart-topper for the Material Girl, dropped four places to Number Eight (105,000). While Nickelback's top-selling All the Right Reasons returned to the Top Ten, up one spot from last week to Number Nine (105,000). Surprisingly, however, last week's Number One, System of a Down's Hypnotize, dropped from its massive opening down to Number Ten (102,000) in just a week.
The new incarnation of INXS, helmed by Rock Star: INXS winner J.D. Fortune, made a respectable showing, cracking the Top Twenty. The band's first studio album in eight years, Switch, bowed at Number Seventeen (75,000). But nowhere near the top half of the chart were much-hyped, cheeky British rockers the Darkness: One Way Ticket to Hell . . . and Back, the follow-up to their multiplatinum 2003 debut Permission to Land, sold a measly 26,000 CDs to bow way down at Number Fifty-Eight.
Less dire but not too happy were a couple hip-hoppers who made strong debuts last week. Harlem rapper and Diplomats crew member Juelz Santana's fourth effort, What the Game's Been Missing!, dropped from Nine to Twenty-Four (57,000), while breakout Southern rapper Chamillionaire's major-label debut, The Sound of Revenge, went from Ten to Twenty-Six (52,000).
Next week, look for Lindsay Lohan's sophomore effort, the less pop-y A Little More Personal (Raw), to make it into more than a few little girls' stockings. And New Orleans Cash Money MC Lil' Wayne's fifth album, Tha Carter II, will set the next chart's hip-hop high.Now That's