While Home was hardly threatened, Jessica Simpson's newfound fame as a television personality has restored her chart force. And with "Without You," she's also benefited from something missing for a couple of years: a hooky single. Simpson's In This Skin, nearly D.O.A. when it was released eight months ago, has found some unlikely legs, first creeping into the Top Twenty, and this week driving up to Number Two with sales of 160,000, almost three times its tally last week at Number Sixteen.
Evanescence's Fallen and Kanye West's College Dropout continued with strong sales, posting 118,000 and 107,000 tallies at Number Three and Number Four, respectively.
Debuts were plentiful, though none found their way into the Top Ten. Cee-Lo's Cee-Lo Green Is the Soul Machine made the biggest entry at Number Thirteen with sales of 56,000. Clint Black's Spend My Time (Number Twenty-seven, 37,000), the Get Up Kids' Guilt Show (Number Fifty-eight, 22,000) and Hootie and the Blowfish's Best of Hootie and the Blowfish (Number Sixty-two, 21,000) also posted solid first-week sales.
Next week's chart shouldn't offer much in the way of a chart-topping newcomer, as this week's releases, led by the latest by the Von Bondies, don't offer much pop. But In This Skin's upward momentum (and Feels Like Home's gradual decreases) could give Simpson the Number One that has proved as difficult to grasp as the pronunciation of platypus.
This week's Top Ten: Norah Jones' Feels Like Home; Jessica Simpson's In This Skin; Evanescence's Fallen; Kanye West's College Dropout; Kenny Chesney's When the Sun Goes Down; OutKast's Speakerboxxx/The Love Below; Josh Groban's Closer; Sheryl Crow's The Very Best of Sheryl Crow; Twista's Kamikaze; and Eamon's I Don't Want You Back.