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Manson Golden at Number One

Shock rocker holds off 50 Cent

Marilyn Manson’s The Golden Age of Grotesque sold a modest 118,000 copies last week, according to SoundScan, but it was enough
to give the shock rocker his first Number One album in five years.

Manson’s tally is the sixth-lowest Number One sales figure of
2003, and is the lowest of any album that debuted in the top spot
this year. It’s easy to say that his 1998 excursion into glam rock
(Mechanical Animals) was a jumping of the shark, but a
closer look at Manson’s sales suggest that his bark (a rallying cry
for disenfranchised youth seven years ago) has always a bit worse
than his bite, at least from the standpoint of mass appeal.
Grotesque‘s first-week sales topped those of his last
album, 2000’s Holy Wood: In the Valley of the Shadow of
Death
(which debuted Number Thirteen), by 1,000. But even at
his peak, between 1996’s Antichrist Superstar and
Mechanical Animals, Manson’s highest first-week figure was
the latter, which sold 223,000 (Antichrist scanned 132,000
in its first week). Those are the only Manson albums to have even
reached 1 million sales, and neither has topped 2 million.

Golden Age edged 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die
Tryin’
, which sold 106,000 copies at Number Two, itself barely
topping Floridian new-metalheads Cold, who moved 101,000 units of
their latest, Year of the Spider, at Number Three. Most of
the rest of the chart featured minor shuffling. Two other debuts
broke into the Top Fifty: Third Eye Blind’s Out of the
Vein
(Number Twelve, 63,000 copies sold) and Alkaline Trio’s
Good Mourning (Number Twenty, 40,000).

Manson’s reign looks to be short-lived, as Staind’s 14
Shades of Grey
arrived in record stores this week. Even if the
album falls far short of the 716,000 copies that the band’s last,
Break the Cycle, sold in its first week two years ago,
Grey should have a lock on Number One.

This week’s Top Ten: Marilyn Manson’s The Golden Age of
Grotesque
; 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’; Cold’s
Year of the Spider; Evanescence’s Fallen; the
Matrix: Reloaded soundtrack; Norah Jones’ Come Away
With Me
; Kelly Clarkson’s Thankful; the Lizzie
McGuire Movie
soundtrack; Cher’s The Very Best of
Cher
; and the Isley Brothers’ Body Kiss.

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