Britney Spearheads Hot Euro Chart Return

Britney Spears' comeback album "Blackout" (Jive/Zomba) has lit up the European Top 100 Albums Chart, holding off new sets from the returning Eagles and Eros Ramazzotti to soar to the No. 1 slot.

"Blackout" benefits from a consistent performance across the European region, where it is a top 10 hit in no less than 10 markets, although it makes a No. 1 bow in just one territory, Ireland. "Blackout" enters at No. 2 in Finland; No. 4 in Switzerland; No. 6 in Austria; Italy and Denmark; and No. 10 in Germany and Portugal. Spears' fifth studio set also rises 30-6 in the Belgian region of Wallony.

In the U.K., "Blackout" sparks sales of more than 42,000 units, according to charts compiler the Official U.K. Charts Company, good enough for the No. 2 spot. But in Britain, like the United States, the best-seller last week was the Eagles' "Long Road Out Of Eden" (Polydor/Universal), where it shifts more than 134,400 copies.

"Eden" starts on the European albums list at No. 2, after nesting in the top 10 of numerous territories, with No. 1 debuts in the Netherlands and Norway complementing the U.K. chart berth. The Eagles' first studio album in 28 years opens its account at No. 2 in Austria, Switzerland and Denmark; No. 4 in Ireland; No. 6 in Finland; No. 7 in Italy; and No. 9 in France.

Universal Music Group is claiming 3 million global sales of "Eden" since its Oct. 29-30 release. "We have sold more copies of 'Long Road Out of Eden' in its first week than any other album this year," comments Max Hole, executive VP, marketing and A&R, at Universal Music Group International. UMG distributes and markets the set in the world outside North America.

Italian crooner Eros Ramazzotti's "E2" (Ariola) takes the bronze-medal position on the pan-European albums survey, after slotting into the top chart position in Switzerland, Wallony, and his home country. "E2" grabs the No. 2 spot in Germany; No. 3 in Austria and Spain; No. 5 in the Netherlands; No. 7 in Denmark and No. 8 in France.

Fresh from her appearance at the Nov. 1 MTV Europe Music Awards in Munich, Amy Winehouse's sophomore set "Back To Black" rises 5-4. Winehouse performed the title track at MTV's flagship European awards gala, and won the artist's choice category.

British pop singer James Blunt's second set "All The Lost Souls" (Atlantic/Custard) slips from 2-5, while Georgia-born, British-based songstress Katie Melua loses her European chart crown, dropping 1-6. Rock veteran Bruce Springsteen's former European chart-topper "Magic" (Columbia) also loses ground, moving 3-7.

Veteran boyband Backstreet Boys' sixth studio album "Unbreakable" (Jive/Zomba) breaks into the European chart at No. 8, and is the fourth new release to crack the top 10 this week.

At No. 9 is the "High School Musical 2" soundtrack, dropping three places from the previous week. And rounding out the top 10 is Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant's collaboration with country star Alison Krauss on "Raising Sand," which leaps 63-10.

On Eurochart Hot 100 Singles, Rihanna continues a year to remember with her latest track "Don't Stop The Music" (SRP/Def Jam) which holds onto No. 1. Her earlier hit "Umbrella" lasted 11 weeks at the pan-European chart's crest this summer.

The other podium finishers are Spears' "Gimme More" (Jive/Zomba), which rises 15-2, and Plain White T's ballad "Hey There Delilah" (Hollywood).