The Big News: George Strait went straight to the top of the Billboard album chart as his Troubadour sold 166,305 copies to debut at number one. R.E.M. moved 115,458 copies of Accelerate to take the number two slot, giving the venerable alt-rockers their highest chart position since 1996’s New Adventures in Hi-Fi. NOW 27 placed third, last week’s champ Day26 dropped to fourth, while the indestructible Alvin & the Chipmunks soundtrack rounded out the top five, thanks in part to the movie’s DVD release which boasted its sales 111 percent over last week.
Debuts: The charts were stocked with newbies, with Van Morrison’s Keep It Simple and the Rolling Stones’ soundtrack to Shine A Light leading the charge after Strait, R.E.M. and Trina’s Still Da Baddest, which entered at five. The Black Keys’ Attack & Release debuted strongly at fourteen, Moby’s Last Night took number twenty-seven, Muse’s live H.A.A.R.P. joined in at forty-six and Sun Kil Moon’s April grabbed 127.
Last Week’s Heroes: The debuts shook up last week’s top ten, pushing the Raconteurs’ Consolers of the Lonely into eighteenth place this week after debuting at seven last week. Panic At the Disco’s Pretty. Odd. needed only a week to fall out of the top ten, going from two to twelve. The B-52’s Funplex experienced a similar fate, plunging from eleven to forty-eight. Counting Crows clung to the top ten, with Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings falling from three to eight. In platinum news, Jack Johnson’s Sleep Through the Static broke the million copies barrier this week; the album sits at lucky number thirteen.