Taylor Swift's Red reigns supreme for a third week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 196,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan (down 43%). Swift beats the No. 2 title-the debuting Now 44 collection-by nearly 100,000 units. The latter arrives with 99,000, marking the 43rd straight title in the regular Now series to debut in the top 10. (The first Now set debuted outside the top 10, but eventually climbed into the region.)
The Now series' earlier release, Now 43, debuted at No. 1 on the Aug. 25 chart with 111,000 sold.
Red is Swift's first album to spend its first three weeks at No. 1. Her 2010 set, Speak Now, earned two frames atop the list from the start and then dropped out of the No. 1 slot for five weeks. It eventually returned for four more weeks at No. 1.
Before that, Swift's one other No. 1, 2008's Fearless, debuted at the top, then slipped to No. 4 in its second frame. It returned to rule for another 10 nonconsecutive weeks at No. 1.
Total U.S. sales for Red stand at 1.8 million copies.
aerosmith aims high: Aerosmith returns with its first album of all-original material since 2001, as Music From Another Dimension shoots in at No. 5 with 63,000 copies. The veteran band's last studio set of new music, Just Push Play, debuted and peaked at No. 2 with 240,000 sold on March 24, 2001. Between Just Push Play and Music From Another Dimension, it issued one studio project, the (mostly covers) blues effort Honkin' on Bobo, which debuted and peaked at No. 5 in 2004.
Music From Another Dimension had been pushed back to its Nov. 6 release after being previously slated for an Aug. 28 bow. The set's initial single, "Legendary Child," arrived in May and missed the Billboard Hot 100, but reached No. 27 on Rock Songs. It was followed by a pair of tracks in early September, each targeting a specific radio format: the rollicking "Lover Alot" for rock and the power ballad "What Could Have Been Love" for adult stations. They reached No. 47 on Hot Rock Songs and No. 22 on Adult Top 40, respectively.
Despite the band taking a break from recording new material all these years, it has been surprisingly active on the Billboard 200.
Since Just Push Play, Aerosmith has debuted on the chart with seven new compilations and/or live albums. (If you're in the market for a compilation on the band, there's simply no shortage of selection.)
The biggest of the bunch was 2002's O, Yeah! Ultimate Aerosmith Hits, which debuted and peaked at No. 4 with 137,000 copies. That set-its first career-spanning collection covering both its Columbia and Geffen years-was bolstered by two new tracks, including the minor hit "Girls of Summer" (No. 8 on Heritage Rock).
Nearly half of the act's 29 charting albums-14-have been hits sets or live efforts.
the biggest bond in years: The soundtrack to "Skyfall" debuts at No. 100 on the Billboard 200-the highest charter in the James Bond film franchise since 1985. The Sony Masterworks album arrives with 5,000 copies sold, marking the loftiest rank for a Bond album since A View to a Kill shot to No. 38 on July 27, 1985.
Notably, Skyfall is only the second Bond soundtrack in the franchise's 50-year history to not include its corresponding title theme. (The other: 2006's Casino Royale.) Adele's rendition of "Skyfall" is commercially available as a stand-alone digital single and rises 56-33 on the Billboard Hot 100 (see page 38).
A representative for Sony Masterworks says that Adele's U.K. label, XL Recordings, wouldn't grant Sony the rights to include it on the album. (XL wasn't able to be reached for comment at press time.)
Skyfall is the first Bond film soundtrack to chart during Daniel Craig's tenure as the title character. Previous to this week, the last Bond set to reach the tally was 2002's Die Another Day (No. 156).
Skyfall arrives after the film's blockbuster bow in U.S. and Canadian theaters, racking up the largest opening weekend in the series' history-$88.4 million in the three-day span between Nov. 9 and 11, according to Box Office Mojo.
1d 4 no. 1: Taylor Swift's Red will relinquish control of the Billboard 200's No. 1 slot next week, as a certain fresh-faced boy band is on track to launch atop the tally with a monster sales figure.
Industry sources forecast that One Direction's second album, Take Me Home (Syco/Columbia), could sell more than 500,000 copies and easily open at No. 1. The set might move as many as 575,000 if all things go especially well through the week.••••