Jack Johnson floats in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with "To the Sea," selling 243,000 copies in its first week of release, according to Nielsen SoundScan. It's the third chart-topper for Johnson, who previously reigned with "Sleep Through the Static" and his soundtrack to "Curious George" . . . The second-best debut belongs to Taio Cruz's "Rokstarr," arriving at No. 8 while Clay Aiken comes in at No. 9 with his Decca debut, "Tried & True."


FLASH POINTS

• Jack Johnson claims his third No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 as "To the Sea" debuts atop the tally with 243,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

• The album breaks an eight-week-long streak of chart-toppers selling less than 200,000—and five of those weeks were sub-100,000 frames.

• Downloads made up 114,000 of the first-week sales for "Sea," nearly half of the set's overall figure. In terms of downloads, it's the biggest week for an album since the week ending Jan. 31, when the digital-exclusive charity compilation "Hope for Haiti Now" sold 143,000 downloads in its second week of release.

• "To the Sea" also helps perk up the overall album market. There were 5.2 million albums sold in the past chart week (ending June 6), up 4% from the nearly 5 million sold the week previous.

• Johnson's last studio set, 2008's "Sleep Through the Static," arrived in the penthouse with 375,000 while his first No. 1 was 2006's "Curious George" soundtrack. The latter bowed with 163,000 in February of that year. Overall, "To the Sea" is Johnson's fifth top 10 album. He previously reached the region with 2005's "In Between Dreams" (No. 2) and 2003's "On and On" (No. 3).

• Last week's No. 1 album, "Glee: The Music, Volume 3: Showstoppers," slips to No. 3 with 45,000 (down 29%). Meanwhile, Justin Bieber's "My World 2.0" climbs one rung to No. 2 with 52,000 (up 4%). Nos. 4-6 are non-movers this week, as Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" remains at No. 4 (41,000; down 12%), Usher's "Raymond v Raymond" stays at No. 5 (35,000; down 2%), and Lady Gaga's "The Fame" holds at No. 6 (33,000; up 6%). Carole King and James Taylor's "Live at the Troubadour" moves up two spots to No. 7 with 25,000 (down 4%).

• After Johnson, the next-highest new entry on the chart belongs to Taio Cruz's debut album, "Rokstarr," arriving at No. 8 with 24,000. The set's lead single, "Break Your Heart" (featuring Ludacris), hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in March and has sold more than 2.2 million downloads, according to SoundScan.

• Speaking of downloads, over on the Hot Digital Songs chart, Cruz finds himself with two titles in the top 20. "Break Your Heart" falls from No. 10 to No. 11 with 109,000 (though with an increase of 2%) while "Dynamite" debuts at No. 13 with 83,000. The highest debut on the chart is Drake's "Miss Me" (featuring Lil Wayne), which enters at No. 8 with 128,000. The top three slots remain static, with Katy Perry's "California Gurls" holding at No. 1 (318,000; up 19%), B.o.B's "Airplanes" at No. 2 (248,000; up 5%) and Usher's "OMG" at No. 3 (226,000; down less than 1%).

• Back on the Billboard 200, Clay Aiken earns the third-highest arrival on the list this week with his debut album for Decca Records, "Tried & True." The covers album, which features the singer's take on such standards as "Mack the Knife" and "Moon River," enters at No. 9 with 22,000 copies sold. "Tried" is Aiken's fifth top 10 set and first since departing RCA Records. Aiken's last studio release, "On My Way Here," opened at No. 4 with 94,000 in 2008.

• Rounding out the top 10 is Ke$ha, who rebounds up seven slots to No. 10 with "Animal," selling 20,000 (up 5%).

• Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending June 6) totaled 5.2 million units, up 4% compared with the sum last week (5 million) and down 19% compared with the comparable sales week of 2009 (6.4 million). Year-to-date album sales stand at 130.6 million, down 11% compared with the same total at this point last year (146.6 million).

• Digital track sales this past week totaled 22.6 million downloads, up 4% compared with last week (21.7 million) and up 8% compared with the comparable week of 2009 (20.9 million). Year-to-date track sales are at 510.6 million, up less than 1% compared with the same total at this point last year (509.6 million).


• AND NEXT WEEK:

• The Billboard 200 is finally heating up after a long spell of lackluster weeks, as three just-released albums will make big bows on the tally next week.

• "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" soundtrack is going up against both Christina Aguilera's first studio release in nearly four years, "Bionic," and the latest EP from the cast of Fox TV's "Glee," "Journey to Regionals."

• Industry prognosticators think "Eclipse" will debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, with possibly as much as 140,000 to 160,000 copies sold by week's end on June 13. The last "Twilight" release, "New Moon," was released on a Friday and sold 115,000 in just three days, debuting at No. 2. In its first full week, it sold 153,000 and moved to No. 1.

• Sources also predict that the "Glee" album might sell around 110,000 to 130,000 while Aguilera's "Bionic" could move 100,000 to 120,000 copies.

• Aguilera's sales projection could change, considering the number of high-profile TV appearances she has lined up this week. She played NBC's "Today" yesterday (June 8), and will visit "Late Show With David Letterman" tonight and "Live With Regis & Kelly" tomorrow (June 10). She'll finish up the work week with a Friday (June 11) visit to CBS' "Early Show." On Sunday (June 13), she'll be the focus of new episodes of VH1's "Behind the Music" and "Storytellers."

• Aguilera's last effort, the 2006 double-album "Back to Basics," bowed at No. 1 with 346,000 copies sold. The week of the set's debut, she was riding high on the Billboard Hot 100 with the top 10 single "Ain't No Other Man," the album's lead track. However, the first single from "Bionic," "Not Myself Tonight," has so far underperformed on the Hot 100, peaking at No. 23 the week of its release back in late April.

• Other albums on course to make noteworthy debuts next week on the Billboard 200 include Plies' "Goon Affiliated," Dierks Bentley's "Up on the Ridge," Jewel's "Sweet and Wild," Saving Abel's "Miss America" and Grace Potter & the Nocturnals' self-titled album.



MARKET WATCH

• Album units, current chart week: 5.2 million units
• UP 4% from last week's charts: 5 million units
• DOWN 19% from the comparable week in 2009: 6.4 million units
• This week: Only the No. 1 album sells more than 100,000 copies.
• This week last year on the Billboard 200: Dave Matthews Band's "Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King" took the crown at No. 1 in its opening week, selling 424,000 copies. The previous week's No. 1, Eminem's "Relapse," slipped to No. 2 in its third chart week, shifting 141,000 (down 33%). Two more albums arrived in the top 10 that week: 311's "Uplifter" at No. 3 with 60,000 and Chickenfoot's self-titled set at No. 4 with 52,000.


A LOOK AHEAD

• Among the albums released this week, due on next week's charts: the soundtrack to "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse," Christina Aguilera's "Bionic," the soundtrack to "Glee: The Music—Journey to Regionals," Dierks Bentley's "Up on the Ridge," Jewel's "Sweet and Wild," Plies' "Goon Affiliated," the "2010 Warped Tour Compilation," Hanson's "Shout It Out," Grace Potter & the Nocturnals' "Grace Potter x& the Nocturnals," Juan Luis Guerra's "A Son de Guerra," Renee Fleming's "Dark Hope," Saving Abel's "Miss America," Blitzen Trapper's "Destroyer of the Void," Tiesto's "Magikal Journey," Orianthi's "Believe (II)" and the original Broadway cast recordings of "The Addams Family" and "Fela!"

• Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2009 when: the Black Eyed Peas' "The E.N.D." debuted at No. 1 with 304,000 copies while the previous week's No. 1, Dave Matthews Band's "Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King," slipped to No. 2 with 128,000 (down 70%). Aventura's "The Last" was the second-highest entry, coming in at No. 5 with 47,000."