Creed Outsell Garth

Creed are third new No. 1 in three weeks

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Quick, name the lead singer of Creed. The moody Florida rock band (led by singer Scott Stapp) may fight an image of being a faceless outfit, but more than 300,000 fans flocked to stores last week to catapult the band's sophomore release, Human Clay, to No. 1 on the nation's album chart. The album sold 316,000 copies for the week ending Oct. 3, according to SoundScan.

Meanwhile, country mega-star Garth Brooks, whose albums often flirt with selling one million copies within one or two weeks of hitting store shelves, crashed back to earth, this time disguised as pop singer Chris Gaines. The singer's unorthodox project, ...In the Life of Chris Gaines, in which Brooks adopts the persona of the pop singer, sold just 262,000 copies. Brooks label, Capitol Nashville, shipped a hefty three million copies to stores, and while execs there knew the somewhat confusing premise of the Gaines record would not sell as strongly as a typical Brooks release (the record has been met with shrugs by both country and pop radio programmers), they did expect to sell 400,000 copies last week. The 262,000 figure is particularly weak considering Brooks was featured on a prime time NBC Chris Gaines special last week.

Right behind Brooks at No. 3 was the new album by rappers Method Man and Redman, Blackout. The week's other top ten debut belonged to Latin star Marc Anthony, whose self-titled released bowed at No. 8.

Further down, Sting's latest, Brand New Day, came in at a respectable No. 15, Queens rappers the Lost Boyz's LB IV Life, debuted at No. 32, Mac World's War III arrived at No. 44, and the soundtrack to Drive Me Crazy (with tracks by Britney Spears and Barenaked Ladies) slipped in at No. 48.

A few records suffered especially weak second week sales, including the Nine Inch Nails' The Fragile (which plummeted from No. 1 to No. 16), Barbara Streisand's Love Like Ours (No. 6 to No. 17), Tori Amos' To Venus and Back (No. 12 to No. 27) and Chris Cornell's Euphoria Morning (No. 18 to No. 41).

From the top, it was Creed's Human Clay (selling 316,000 copies), followed by Garth's Brook's ...In the Life of Chris Gaines (262,000); Method Man and Redman's Blackout (254,000); Santana's Supernatural (159,000); the Backstreet Boys' Millennium (158,000); Christina Aguilera's Christina Aguilera (134,000); Britney Spears' ...Baby One More Time (132,000); Marc Anthony's Marc Anthony (124,000); the Dixie Chicks' Fly (118,500), Kid Rock's Devil Without a Cause (118,000).

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