Hozier scores his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart, as his sophomore full-length set Wasteland, Baby! bows atop the list. The LP, released via Rubyworks/Columbia on March 1, earned 89,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending March 7, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 75,000 were in album sales.
Wasteland is the first rock album to lead the Billboard 200 in more than three months, since Mumford & Sons’ Delta debuted at No. 1 on the Dec. 1, 2018-dated chart.
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units are comprised of traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). The new March 16-dated chart -- where Wasteland launches at No. 1 -- will be posted in full on Billboard's websites on March 12.
Wasteland follows Hozier’s 2018 EP Nina Cried Power, which topped out at No. 60. Before that, the singer-songwriter’s self-titled debut full-length set bowed and peaked at No. 2 on the Oct. 25, 2014-dated list. The album was led by the smash single “Take Me to Church,” which climbed to No. 1 on the Hot Rock Songs tally the week after the album arrived on the charts. “Church” spent 23 weeks atop the list, and also hit No. 2 on the all-genre Billboard Hot 100.
The Hozier album has spent 174 weeks on the Billboard 200 (including its re-entry on the new March 16-dated list at No. 175) and has earned 2.6 million equivalent album units in the U.S., with 972,000 of that sum in album sales.
Wasteland’s debut week of 89,000 units is the largest for any rock album since Mumford & Sons’ Delta started with 230,000 units (chart dated Dec. 1, 2018). Wasteland also snares the largest sales week for a rock album since Delta, with 75,000 copies sold (Delta sold 214,000 in its debut frame).
Wasteland’s opening sum was aided by sales generated from a concert ticket/album sale redemption offer with Hozier’s U.S. tour, which begins tonight (March 10).
Wasteland’s standard-edition track list includes two of the four songs on the Nina Cried Power EP, including the title tune, which spent two weeks at No. 1 on the Adult Alternative Songs airplay chart late last year. The set’s latest radio single, “Movement,” has so far peaked at No. 3 on the most recently published Adult Alternative Songs chart (dated March 9).
Wasteland is also the first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart for Columbia Records in nearly a year, since Jack White’s Boarding House Reach (Third Man/Columbia) premiered atop the list dated April 7, 2018.
At No. 2 on the new Billboard 200 is Ariana Grande’s former leader, Thank U, Next, which holds in the runner-up slot for a second week. It earned 86,000 equivalent album units (down 26 percent). Thank U spent its first two weeks at No. 1.
Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s A Star Is Born soundtrack falls from No. 1 to No. 3 with 74,000 units (down 42 percent).
2 Chainz notches his fifth top 10 album, as Rap or Go to the League debuts at No. 4 with 65,000 equivalent album units (with 13,000 of that sum comprising album sales). He previously visited the region with Pretty Girls Like Trap Music (No. 2, 2017), Collegrove (No. 4, 2016), B.O.A.T.S. II #METIME (No. 3, 2013) and Based on a T.R.U. Story (No. 1, 2012). Lil Skies, meanwhile, scores his second top 10 effort, as Shelby bows at No. 5 with 54,000 units (with 6,000 of that figure in album sales). Lil Skies netted his first top 10 with Life of a Dark Rose, which peaked at No. 10 on the Jan. 17, 2018-dated chart.
Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody soundtrack descends 5-6 with 44,000 units (down 29 percent).
Solange’s When I Get Home is the fourth and final debut in the top 10, as it starts at No. 7 with 43,000 equivalent album units (with 11,000 of that figure in album sales), marking her third top 10 effort. Solange’s last album, A Seat at the Table, garnered the artist her second top 10, and first No. 1, when it entered atop the list dated Oct. 22, 2016.
Closing out the new top 10, Gunna’s Drip or Drown 2 falls 3-8 with 42,000 units (down 54 percent), Offset’s Father of 4 falls 4-9 with 39,000 units (down 56 percent) and A Boogie Wit da Hoodie’s Hoodie SZN slips 8-10 with 35,000 units (down 6 percent).