"High School Musical 2" makes it three for three at the top of The Billboard 200 as it extends its stay in the penthouse ... an eclectic group of debuts grace the top 10 this week, including a career-high No. 2 placing for Casting Crowns, a second top three set for rapper Yung Joc, a new high for rock band Atreyu and the second top 10 album for Ben Harper ... In Progress Reports: Garth Brooks makes chart history by bowing at No. 1 on Hot Country Songs, Timbaland finally gets his own No. 1 single on the CHR/Top 40 airplay chart and Ozzy Osbourne just won't "Stop" at No. 1 on the Rock airplay chart.



FLASH POINTS



• The "High School Musical 2" soundtrack holds steady at No. 1 for a third straight week on The Billboard 200. It's the first time an album has spent three consecutive weeks at No. 1 since Rascal Flatts' "Me and My Gang" did the trick in its first three frames last year. While the No. 1 album stays the same this week, the top 10 is full of debuts from a wide array of acts. Christian group Casting Crowns earns its highest-charting album, rapper Yung Joc returns with his second set, rock group Atreyu enters at No. 8 and Ben Harper grabs his second top 10 album.

• Casting Crowns' "The Altar and the Door" checks in at No. 2 with 129,000 -- record highs for the group. The set's first single, "East to West," is spending its second week at No. 1 on the Hot Christian Songs chart. "Altar" is the group's third studio album and easily surpasses its previous chart high -- No. 8 with "Lifesong" (71,000) in 2005. The new one also becomes its second No. 1 set on Top Christian Albums. Wal-Mart sale-priced it for $12.88 ($13.88 with an exclusive bonus DVD) ... Switching gears, Yung Joc starts at No. 3 on The Billboard 200 and at No. 1 on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums with "Hustlenomics." It's the follow-up to his No. 3 Billboard 200 set "New Joc City." The rapper's current single, "Coffee Shop" (featuring Gorilla Zoe) already hit the top 40 of the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Joc's album was sale-priced for less than $10 at Target, Best Buy, Circuit City and Kmart. The MVI edition of the album went for less than $14 during its first sales week at Target and Best Buy as well.

• Atreyu's first release on Hollywood Records gives the act its highest-charting album as "Lead Sails Paper Anchor" enters at No. 8 with 43,000. The band's last studio set, 2006's "A Death-Grip on Yesterday," bowed at No. 9 with 67,000. The new album's lead single, "Becoming the Bull," rises to No. 38 on the Alternative/Modern Rock chart this week and to No. 20 on the Active Rock chart ... Meanwhile, Ben Harper nabs his second top 10 set as "Lifeline" bows at No. 9 with 41,000. His last effort, 2006's "Both Side of the Gun," started at No. 7 with 59,000. Harper's chart history dates back to 1997, when "The Will to Live" spent 11 weeks on The Billboard 200, peaking at No. 89.

• Other debuts in the top half of The Billboard 200 this week include Lyle Lovett's "It's Not Big, It's Large" (No. 18; 25,000), Kottonmouth Kings' "Cloud Nine" (No. 44; 14,000), Aesop Rock's "None Shall Pass" (No. 50; 13,000), Caedmon's Call's "Over Dressed" (No. 54; 12,000), Point of Grace's "How You Live" (No. 56; 12,000), Scorpions' "Humanity Hour 1" (No. 63; 10,000), Shane and Shane's "Pages" (No. 66; 10,000), Ledisi's "Lost & Found" (No. 78; 9,000), Scary Kids Scaring Kids' self-titled effort (No. 80; 9,000), Bill and Gloria Gaither's "Amazing Grace" (No. 88; 8,000), Bill and Gloria Gaither's "How Great Thou Art" (No. 95; 7,000) and the 1979-1982 lineup of Black Sabbath reunites for "Heaven Hell: Live at Radio City Music Hall" (No. 99; 6,000).



The Billboard 200

Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
1 1 SOUNDTRACK High School Musical 2 (Walt Disney ) 11 12 LINKIN PARK Minutes To Midnight (Machine Shop / Warner Bros.)
*2 New CASTING CROWNS The Altar And The Door (Beach Street / Reunion) 12 13 T.I. T.I. Vs T.I.P. (Grand Hustle / Atlantic / AG)
*3 New YUNG JOC Hustlenomics (Block / Bad Boy South / Atlantic) 13 14 AMY WINEHOUSE Back To Black (Universal Republic / UMRG)
4 3 MILEY CYRUS Hannah Montana 2 (Soundtrack)/Meet Miley Cyrus (Walt Disney / Hollywood ) 14 11 JONAS BROTHERS Jonas Brothers (Hollywood )
5 6 FERGIE The Dutchess (will.i.am / A&M / Interscope / IGA) 15 16 TAYLOR SWIFT Taylor Swift (Big Machine )
6 4 SOUNDTRACK Hairspray (New Line ) 16 10 UGK Underground Kingz (UGK / Jive / Zomba)
7 5 VARIOUS ARTISTS NOW 25 (Universal / EMI / Sony BMG / Zomba / UMRG) 17 17 SOUNDTRACK High School Musical (Walt Disney )
*8 New ATREYU A Lead Sails Paper Anchor (Hollywood ) *18 New LYLE LOVETT AND HIS LARGE BAND It's Not Big It's Large (Curb / Lost Highway)
*9 New BEN HARPER & THE INNOCENT CRIMINALS Lifeline (Virgin ) 19 24 MAROON 5 It Won't Be Soon Before Long (A&M / Octone / IGA)
10 9 NICKELBACK All The Right Reasons (Roadrunner ) 20 2 TALIB KWELI Eardrum (Blacksmith / Warner Bros.)
* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week





MARKET WATCH

• Album units, current chart week: 7.65 million units
• DOWN 4.9% from last issue's charts: 8.05 million units
• DOWN 18.6% from same week, 2006: 9.39 million units
• This week: the top two albums sell more than 100,000 copies.
• This week last year on The Billboard 200: Bob Dylan debuted at No. 1 with "Modern Times," selling 192,000. Danity Kane's self-titled album slipped to No. 2 with 117,000. Meanwhile, Young Dro's "Best Thang Smokin' " started at No. 3 with 104,000. Other debuts in the top 10 included Jessica Simpson's "A Public Affair" (No. 5), Method Man's "4:21 . . . The Day After" (No. 8) and the Roots' "Game Theory" (No. 9). The top five albums sold more than 100,000 units.



BORDERLINES

• The No. 20 album this week, Talib Kweli's "Eardrum" (Blacksmith/Warner Bros.), sold 24,000.
• The No. 20 album for the same week of 2006, the soundtrack to "High School Musical" (Walt Disney), sold 32,000.
• Average total of the No. 20 album for the same week of the year during the past 10 years (1998-2007): 40,136.



PROGRESS REPORTS



• Garth Brooks makes history as he scores the first-ever debut at No. 1 on Hot Country Songs. His "More Than a Memory" enters atop the chart with 36.3 million in country audience, replacing Rodney Atkins' "These Are My People." The tune is Brooks' 19th Country chart-topper and first this decade. He last led with "To Make You Feel My Love" in July 1998. His first No. 1, "If Tomorrow Never Comes," debuted this month back in 1989. "More Than a Memory" is the first offering from Brooks' double-disc set "The Ultimate Hits." The album hits stores Nov. 6.

• Timbaland tops the CHR/Top 40 radio chart for the first time as a lead vocalist as "The Way I Are" steps 2-1, though the multi-faceted artist is no stranger to No. 1. He added vocals to Nelly Furtado's "Promiscuous" and has written and produced six chart champs since July 2006, two by Furtado and four by Justin Timberlake ... Bubbling under the chart is Britney Spears' comeback single "Gimme More." With only three full days of airplay during the tracking week, the song racked up 688 detections on the CHR/Top 40 panel of radio stations. Figure that "Gimme More" will make its debut on the chart next week.

• Ozzy Osbourne's "I Don't Wanna Stop" logs a 20th week at No. 1 on the Rock chart -- the second-longest stay at No. 1 in that chart's history. "Stop" breaks out of a tie with Staind's "It's Been Awhile" and the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Dani California" and now trails only the 26-week run of 3 Doors Down's "When I'm Gone" in 2002/2003 ... Two Hot AC/Adult Top 40 chart veterans return, led by Backstreet Boys at No. 39 with "Inconsolable," the lead single from the band's fifth studio set, "Unbreakable," due Oct. 30. The Boys last charted on the Hot AC/Adult Top 40 chart when "Incomplete" reached No. 21 in the summer of 2005. At No. 40 on the Hot AC/Adult Top 40 list, Vanessa Carlton debuts with "Nolita Fairytale," her first Hot AC/Adult Top 40 appearance since "White Houses," a No. 27-peaking song in late 2004.



Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums

Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
*1 New YUNG JOC Hustlenomics (Block / Bad Boy South / Atlantic)
2 3 UGK Underground Kingz (UGK / Jive / Zomba)
3 4 PLIES The Real Testament (Big Gates / Slip-N-Slide / Atlantic / AG)
4 6 T.I. T.I. Vs T.I.P. (Grand Hustle / Atlantic / AG)
5 5 COMMON Finding Forever (G.O.O.D. / Geffen / IGA)
6 2 TALIB KWELI Eardrum (Blacksmith / Warner Bros.)
7 7 T-PAIN Epiphany (Konvict / Nappy Boy / Jive / Zomba)
8 1 SWIZZ BEATZ One Man Band Man (Universal Motown / UMRG)
*9 27 AKON Konvicted (Konvict / Upfront / SRC / Universal Motown / UMRG)
*10 New LEDISI Lost & Found (Verve / VG)
* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week
Top Country Albums

Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
1 1 TAYLOR SWIFT Taylor Swift (Big Machine )
2 5 TIM MCGRAW Let It Go (Curb )
3 4 BRAD PAISLEY 5th Gear (Arista Nashville / SBN)
4 6 CARRIE UNDERWOOD Some Hearts (Arista / Arista Nashville / RMG)
5 3 TRAVIS TRITT The Storm (Category 5 )
6 7 TOBY KEITH Big Dog Daddy (Show Dog Nashville )
7 8 RASCAL FLATTS Me And My Gang (Lyric Street / Hollywood)
*8 11 SUGARLAND Enjoy The Ride (Mercury / UMGN)
9 2 JOE NICHOLS Real Things (Universal South )
10 10 BIG & RICH Between Raising Hell And Amazing Grace (Warner Bros. / WRN)
* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week
Top Pop Catalog Albums

Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
*1 2 TIM MCGRAW Greatest Hits (Curb )
*2 1 MICHAEL BUBLE It's Time (143 / Reprise / Warner Bros.)
3 3 GUNS N' ROSES Greatest Hits (Geffen / IGA)
4 4 PINK FLOYD Dark Side Of The Moon (Capitol )
5 5 AC/DC Back In Black (Legacy / Epic / Sony Music)
*6 7 MICHAEL BUBLE Michael Buble (143 / Reprise / Warner Bros.)
*7 9 EAGLES The Very Best Of (Warner Strategic Marketing )
8 11 JOURNEY Journey's Greatest Hits (Legacy / Columbia / Sony Music)
9 8 ORIGINAL BROADWAY CAST RECORDING Wicked (Decca Broadway / Universal Classics Group)
*10 28 GENESIS Turn It On Again -- The Hits (Atlantic / Rhino)
* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week




A LOOK AHEAD

• Among the titles released this week, due on next week's charts: Joshua Bell and John Corigliano's "The Red Violin Concerto," Andre Rieu's "Live in New York," Patti Scalfia's "Play It as It Lays," Manu Chao's "La Radiolina" and the 25th-anniversary edition of Fates Warning's "No Exit."
• Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2006 when: Beyonce celebrated her second No. 1 album with "B'Day" bowing atop the chart with 541,000. Audioslave arrived in second place with "Revelations," starting with 142,000. The top three albums sold more than 100,000 units.