Beyonce's new self-titled album remains unstoppable on the Billboard 200 chart, as it spends a second week atop the list.
"Beyonce" sold 374,000 copies in the week ending Dec. 22 (down 39%), according to Nielsen SoundScan. It bowed at No. 1 on the previous week's chart, after only three days on sale, with 617,000 sold.
The album was released on an off-cycle Friday, Dec. 13. Its debut on the chart a week ago came from sales in the week ending Dec. 15.
Thus, in its first ten days of release, "Beyonce" sold 991,000 and is (so far) the 12th biggest-selling album of 2013. There is one more tracking week left in the year -- the week ending Dec. 29. It's likely that "Beyonce" will finish 2013 among the top 10 sellers (all of which have sold at least 1 million this year).
"Beyonce's" debut was fueled by sales only from the iTunes Store, as the album was exclusively available through the retailer until the end of last week. After that, the set went on sale through all traditional sellers of music, including brick-and-mortar establishments. (Notably, both Target and Amazon.com declined to sell the CD version of the album.)
Impressively, "Beyonce" sold more copies in its second chart week than the diva's last album, "4," did in its debut on the chart. The latter album was released in 2011 and debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with 310,000. (And, the album was released on a traditional Tuesday, giving the set six days of sales in its debut frame.)
In its second week, "4" sold 115,000 (securing a second, and final, week at No. 1).
Although "Beyonce" became widely available in its second week, its digital sales remain strong (most of those coming from the iTunes Store). Of its 374,000 second week, downloads made up 63% (235,000). It was the top selling digital album of the week, and remains at No. 1 on the Digital Albums chart. (Among the top selling physical albums of the week, "Beyonce" was the No. 3 seller, behind Garth Brooks "Blame It All On My Roots" and One Direction's "Midnight Memories.")
Speaking of Brooks, his Walmart-exclusive box set spends another week at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, selling 199,000 copies (up 16%). The cumulative sales of the six-CD/two-DVD box -- which sells for $24.96 -- now stand at 681,000. The album, like the rest of Brooks' titles, is unavailable as a download.
One Direction's "Midnight Memories" is No. 3 on the Billboard 200 -- up two spots -- with 166,000 (up 35%). The set has sold 954,000 in its four weeks on sale.
The Robertson's "Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas" album rises two rungs to No. 4 with 132,000 (up 22%), while Kelly Clarkson's "Wrapped In Red" slips two positions to No. 5 with 124,000 (down 9%).
Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP 2" climbs two positions to No. 6 (115,000; up 39%), Katy Perry's "PRISM" jumps 9-7 (99,000; up 67%) and the soundtrack to "Frozen" rises 10-8 with 81,000 (up 45%). Michael Buble's "Christmas" returns to the top 10, as it steps 13-9 with 68,000 (up 43%) and Luke Bryan's "Crash My Party" closes out the top 10, rising 14-10 with just over 68,000 (up 44%).
This week's chart represents the final full week of shopping before the Dec. 25 Christmas holiday, so it's natural to see an overall lift in album sales. (Album sales volume is up by 22% this week.) Next week's tracking frame ends on Dec. 29, so there will be two more days of pre-Christmas shopping (Dec. 23 and Dec. 24) in next week's chart. So, we should see the top of the Billboard 200 chart post some sizable numbers again.
Few significant albums were released on Dec. 17 -- the release date that impacts this week's chart -- so relatively few titles debut on the tally. The top debut this week is B.o.B's new "Underground Luxury," which bows at No. 22 with 35,000. His last album, 2012's "Strange Clouds," debuted and peaked at No. 5 off a 76,000 start.
Over on the Digital Songs chart, A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera's "Say Something" remains at No. 1, selling 238,000 downloads (up 2%). That number could grow even larger next week, once the traditional rush of purchases made with newly-received gift cards kicks in. (The chart's sales volume increases dramatically in the weeks after Christmas, as consumers redeem digital download gift cards at retailers like iTunes.)
The top five titles on the Digital Songs chart this week are all non-movers. Pitbull's "Timber," featuring Ke$ha, is No. 2 (213,000; up 14%), Eminem's "The Monster," featuring Rihanna, is No. 3 (193,000; up 10%), OneRepublic's "Counting Stars" is No. 4 (168,000; up 16%) and Passenger's "Let Her Go" is No. 5 (135,000; up 14%).
Lorde's "Royals" rises 7-6 (111,000; up 14%).
Katy Perry's "Dark Horse," which is now officially the third single from her "PRISM" album, gallops 17-7 with just under 111,000 (up 87%). The song concurrently jets 32-25 on the Pop Songs airplay chart (known as Mainstream Top 40 on Billboard.biz).
One Direction's "Story of My Life" slides 6-8 on the Digital Songs chart with 110,000 (up 2%). Like Perry's tune, "Story" is also making gains at top 40 radio. This week, "Story" jumps 15-13 on the Pop Songs chart, making it One Direction's second-highest charting song ever on the tally. Only "What Makes You Beautiful" went higher, reaching No. 3 in June of 2012.
Imagine Dragons' "Demons" descends 8-9 on Digital Songs with 103,000 (up 14%) and Ellie Goulding's "Burn" drops 9-10 with 84,000 (down less than 1%).
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Dec. 22) totaled 10.6 million units, up 22% compared with the sum last week (8.7 million) and down 17% compared with the comparable sales week of 2012 (12.7 million). Year to date album sales stand at 280 million, down 9% compared to the same total at this point last year (306.2 million).
Digital track sales this past week totaled 21.83 million downloads, up 12% compared with last week (19.57 million) and down 14% stacked next to the comparable week of 2012 (25.5 million). Year to date track sales are at 1.22 billion, down 5% compared to the same total at this point last year (1.28 billion).
Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2012 when: Taylor Swift's "Red" held at No. 1 with 241,000 (down 12%), while the soundtrack to "Les Miserables" jumped 33-2 with 136,000 (up 218%).
Billboard holiday chart schedule: Please note that all Billboard.com and .Biz charts will update on Friday (Dec. 27) at 9am ET. The top 10 of the Billboard 200 and Hot 100 charts will be revealed on Thursday (Jan. 2) and update in full on Friday (Jan. 3).