It's all about country music on top of the Billboard 200 for the third week in a row, as Reba McEntire scores her second topper on the chart. McEntire's "Keep On Loving You" enters at No. 1 with 96,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan -- her second visit to the penthouse after 2007's star-studded "Reba Duets" set.
The country queen replaces the King of Country, as last week's No. 1, George Strait's "Twang," slides to No. 2 in its second frame with 61,000 (down 61%).
McEntire is also the champ on the all-encompassing Top Comprehensive Albums chart. It houses both older and current albums (the latter are generally those that are 18 months old or less). Over on the Billboard 200 chart, only current or new albums are ranked.
Additionally, "Keep On Loving You" is McEntire's 11th No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart, giving her sole possession of the record for the most No. 1 Country albums among female acts. She was previously tied with Loretta Lynn.
The Billboard 200 also sees an eye-popping entrance from Third Eye Blind's "Ursa Major" at No. 3, giving the band its first top 10 album ever. It's the group's first studio release since 2003's "Out of the Vein," which was, until now, its highest-charting album. It debuted and peaked at No. 12 on May 31, 2003. Digital downloads of the new Third Eye Blind album accounted for 52% of its first-week sales, no doubt helped by a "deal of the day" $3.99 sale tag in Amazon's MP3 Store.
Kings of Leon's "Only By the Night" climbs to a new peak, moving up one notch to No. 4 with 45,000 (up 8%) while the Black Eyed Peas' "The E.N.D." slides two spots to No. 5 with 41,000 (down 10%). Neil Diamond's Wal-Mart exclusive CD/DVD set "Hot August Night/NYC" slips four rungs to No. 6 with 39,000 (down 32%) while the "Hannah Montana: The Movie" soundtrack surges 14-7 on the heels of the film's DVD release on Aug. 18. The soundtrack sold 38,000 -- an increase of 41%.
Rounding out the top 10 are Taylor Swift's "Fearless" at No. 8, up one slot, with 34,000 (down 8%), Daughtry's "Leave This Town" at No. 9, down one position, with 33,000 (down 12%) and the "Now 31" compilation at No. 10, falling four rungs, with just under 33,000 (down 14%).
Michael Jackson's 2003 hits compilation "Number Ones" sells another 68,000 (down 15%) and ranks at No. 2 on Billboard's Comprehensive Albums chart. That brings the set's 2009 total up to 1,619,000, pulling it ahead of Taylor Swift's "Fearless" as the top-selling album of the year. "Fearless" has shifted 1,608,000.
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending August 23) totaled 5.70 million units, down 3.1% compared to the sum last week (5.88 million) and down 18.4% compared to the same sales week of 2008 (6.99 million). Year to date album sales stand at 225.3 million, down 14.5% compared to the same total at this point last year (263.7 million).