UPDATE: Rihanna’s Anti debuted at Number 27 on the Billboard 200, according to Billboard. The album had only been one out day before the end of the current tracking session, which ended January 28th. Album sales were driven primarily by “track sales and streaming activity of its lead single ‘Work’ along with streams of the album’s tracks.” the site reported.
Adele reclaimed the top spot after two weeks at Number Two as 25 ascended to Number One thanks to another 116,000 total copies sold. In its 10 weeks of release, 25 has now spent eight of them atop the Billboard 200, with only one-week champs like David Bowie’s Blackstar and Panic! at the Disco’s Death of a Bachelor temporarily interrupting her reign. Within the next week, 25 will likely shoot past the 8 million in sales mark, Billboard reports.
The 116,000 copies Adele sold is significantly less than the 1.4 million copies of Rihanna‘s Anti that were downloaded after that singer surprise-released her new LP on Tidal, first as an album stream and then as a free download. While the Recording Industry Association of America has already deemed Anti platinum, those “sales” will not be counted toward its Nielsen SoundScan tally – and thus the Billboard 200 – due to the fact that were distributed via a Samsung partnership or Rihanna’s password unlocking the free download.
“There were conversations [with Billboard] early on when this promotion and partnership started, but ultimately it became about giving music directly to the fans,” Tidal’s director of marketing Grace Kim told Spin. “While everyone would’ve loved to have it count, the thing that we’re focused on here is that it’s Number One.”
Of Anti‘s 1.4 million downloads, only 400,000 will count as actual sales in the eyes of the Billboard 200. This week’s Billboard 200 covers sales through January 28th, the same day as Anti‘s arrival, so while Rihanna’s new album won’t be recognized on the charts as instant platinum like Adele’s, it should still grab the Number One spot next week.
Back on this week’s charts, Justin Bieber’s Purpose held strong at Number Two, while Megadeth’s new LP Dystopia sold 49,000 copies to take Number Three, the metal group’s best Billboard 200 showing since 1992’s Countdown to Extinction peaked at Number Two. Dystopia was one of only two new releases to break into the Top 10, the other being the 2016 Grammy Nominees compilation, which opened up at Number Nine.
Last week’s Number One, Panic! at the Disco’s Death of a Bachelor, dropped to Number Five, while the previous week’s chart topper, David Bowie’s Blackstar, sold another 35,000 copies to finish at Number Six.