Justin Timberlake's "The 20/20 Experience -- 2 of 2" is bound for the top of the Billboard 200, according to industry forecasters.
While Billboard has yet to announce this week's top 10 albums on the Billboard 200, we're already looking ahead to next week's tally. (This week's top 10 will be released Oct. 2.)
It's all but inevitable that Drake's "Nothing Was the Same" will claim the chart throne on this week's chart. However, with this week's batch of new albums having been released on an off-cycle Monday (instead of Tuesday), we're taking an early look at what is heading for the top of next week's chart. (Next week's top 10 albums will be revealed on Oct. 9.)
Timberlake's "The 20/20 Experience -- 2 of 2" might debut with around 325,000 copies sold by the end of the tracking week on Oct. 6. The arrival at No. 1 would give him two chart-topping albums this year, following the No. 1 bow of "The 20/20 Experience" in April.
The new album, the second half of his two-part release, was led by the single "Take Back the Night." It reached No. 29 on the Billboard Hot 100 last month. The album's second single, "TKO," bowed on the Hot 100 last week at No. 54.
Some may be wondering why this week's major new albums all hit retail on Monday instead of the usual Tuesday. Timberlake's camp announced the release date in May, perhaps because it is the final day of the eligibility period for the upcoming Grammy Awards. Other big albums that had been scheduled for a Tuesday, Oct. 1, release have followed Timblerlake's lead and moved up their release to Monday as well.
After Timberlake, we should see Drake at No. 2 with “Nothing Was the Same” and Lorde bow at No. 3 with her debut full-length effort, “Pure Heroine.” The latter is on track to sell perhaps 115,000 and 125,000. Its hit single "Royals" just wrapped a seven-week run at No. 1 on the Alternative airplay chart. This week, it falls 1-2. Over on the Mainstream Top 40 chart (known as Pop Songs on Billboard.com), the cut remains bulleted at No. 5 for a second week (though it's up by 24% in spins at the format, according to Nielsen BDS). It stood at No. 3 on the Hot 100 last week.
The albums from Timberlake and Lorde are the two more significant titles to arrive to market this week, and likely the only new albums that will sell more than 50,000. Other new albums that will debut next week include HAIM's "Days Are Gone" (maybe 20,000), Tyler Farr's "Redneck Crazy" (15,000) and Joan Jett & the Blackhearts' "Unvarnished" (10,000).