The Billboard 200
We had a one-two-three punch at the top of the Billboard 200 albums chart this week, thanks to debuts at Nos. 1-3. Matchbox Twenty led the pack, earning its first chart-topper with North (95,000 sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan). Rock group Imagine Dragons bowed at No. 2 with its first full-length album, Night Visions (83,000), and Christian hip-hop artist Lecrae bounded in with his best sales week ever, selling 72,000 of Gravity in its first frame (No. 3).
But now, let's take a look at some of the other movers and shakers on the Billboard 200 and elsewhere on our album charts:
-- Two Door Cinema Club: The band's second album, Beacon, nets its best sales week yet, starting with 17,000 at No. 17 and gives the act its first taste of the Billboard 200. Its 2010 debut, Tourist History, peaked at No. 5 on Heatseekers Albums. The latter has been a steady seller since early 2011, moving about 1,000 copies a week. In total, the album has shifted 142,000 in the United States.
-- John Mayer, Train & Offspring: John Mayer's Born and Raised (28-25 -- up 14%; 19% in downloads), Train's California 37 (27-26 -- up 4%; 8% in downloads) and the Offspring's Days Go By (a re-entry at No. 166 -- up 24%; 74% in downloads) are among those titles sale priced for $5 this month at Amazon MP3.
-- Stars: The indie pop/rock band, which has been releasing albums since 2001, scores its highest rank ever on the Billboard 200 (No. 48) with The North. (Not to be confused with Matchbox Twenty's album North at No. 1). The Stars album also debuts at No. 12 on the Top Independent Albums chart as well as No. 11 on the Alternative Albums tally.
-- Jack White: Jack White played the iTunes Festival on Sept. 8, which streamed free via various iTunes services and was heavily promoted by the retailer. In turns, his album Blunderbuss flies up the chart 121-67 with a 45% overall gain and a 97% jump in download sales.
-- Judas Priest: The 30th anniversary reissue of its Screaming For Vengeance album gooses the sales of the set by 827% (selling a total of 4,000). The new deluxe package includes six bonus tracks and a DVD of a 1983 concert.
-- Big Bad Voodoo Daddy: The swinging rock group -- now signed to Savoy Jazz Records -- earns its first entry on the Traditional Jazz Albums chart as Rattle Them Bones arrives at No. 2. On the Billboard 200, at No. 129, it's the act's highest rank since 1999's This Beautiful Life hit No. 93.
-- Paul McCartney: The icon's latest album, Kisses on the Bottom, re-enters at No. 121 with a 579% sales gain. It returns to the tally courtesy of the premiere of PBS' "Great Performances" special "Live Kisses" on Sept. 7.
-- Marvin Winans: A performance on the finale of BET's "Sunday Best" (Sept. 2) aids his Praise & Worship set with an overall 111% jump in sales (a re-entry at No. 179). With 2,000 sold, it's the best week for the album since its debut in late June.
-- Neil Young: Concert ticket/album redemptions reported during the tracking week help kick up sales for Americana, which re-enters at No. 157 with a 135% gain.