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Billboard 200 Chart Moves: Elton John & Bernie Taupin Tribute Albums Debut in Top 40

Elton John Bernie Taupin
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for NARAS

Elton John and  Bernie Taupin attend the 60th Annual Grammy Awards - I'm Still Standing: A Grammy Salute To Elton John at the Theater at Madison Square Garden on January 29, 2018 in New York City.

Plus: Kylie Minogue, Bazzi & Alice Merton arrive.

On the latest Billboard 200 albums chart (dated April 21), Cardi B bows at No. 1 with her debut studio effort, Invasion of Privacy, becoming just the fifth female rapper to top the chart. The set starts with 255,000 equivalent album units earned in the week ending April 12, according to Nielsen Music -- the second-largest week of the year for any album.

The Billboard 200 chart ranks the week’s most popular albums based on their overall consumption. That overall unit figure combines pure album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).

Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the action on the rest of the Billboard 200:

Various Artists, Revamp – No. 13 & Restoration – No. 36 — Twenty-six years after Elton John and Bernie Taupin received the tribute album treatment with Two Rooms: Celebrating the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin, the songwriting team is being feted again with two star-studded sets: Revamp and Restoration. Both albums carry the subtitle Reimagining the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin.

The pop- and rock-leaning Revamp, which features P!nk and Ed Sheeran covering John & Taupin tunes, bows at No. 13 on the Billboard 200 (25,000 equivalent album units earned in the week ending April 12, according to Nielsen Music). The country-flavored Restoration -- boasting Little Big Town and Chris Stapleton, among others -- starts at No. 36 (15,000 units).

Revamp and Restoration also arrive at Nos. 2 and 4 on the Top Rock Albums and Top Country Albums charts, respectively.

The two sets follow Two Rooms, which arrived in 1991 and climbed to No. 18 the following year. The album has sold 1.4 million copies and helped usher in a bevy of tribute projects in the mid-1990s. Among them were Common Thread: The Songs of the Eagles (No. 3, in 1993), Stone Free: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix (No. 28, 1993), Kiss My Ass: Classic Kiss Regrooved (No. 19, 1994) and Encomium: A Tribute to Led Zeppelin (No. 17, 1995).

Bazzi, Cosmic – No. 35 Bazzi bows at No. 35 with his debut effort, Cosmic, following a partial week of activity after the album’s off-cycle release on Thursday, April 12 (instead of on a Friday, when most albums are released, ensuring that it would get a full seven days of tracking in its debut week). The set -- which starts with 15,000 equivalent album units (mostly driven by streaming activity) -- will likely hold in the top 40 on the April 28-dated Billboard 200, following its first full week of charting activity.

Soundtrack, Jesus Christ Superstar: Live in Concert – No. 46 The April 1 live NBC-TV concert rendition of Jesus Christ Superstar launches at No. 46 with 13,000 equivalent album units earned, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 11,000 were in traditional album sales. The set (out April 6) is the fifth iteration of Superstar to reach the chart. It was preceded by the concept album (No. 1, 1971), Percy Faith’s instrumental highlights set (No. 186, 1972), the original Broadway cast recording (No. 31, 1972) and the movie soundtrack (No. 21, 1973).

Kylie Minogue, Golden – No. 64 Kylie Minogue arrives at No. 64 with her ninth chart entry, and first independently-distributed album in the U.S., as new studio album Golden takes a bow.

The pop princess’ new effort starts with 10,000 equivalent album units, of which 8,000 were in traditional album sales. The latter figure enables Golden’s launch at No. 4 on the Independent Albums tally. Golden, released through BMG, is Minogue’s first indie-distributed set after having her entire previous U.S. catalog go through major labels and distribution. (She was most recently with Parlophone/Warner Bros.)

On the Billboard 200, Golden arrives almost 30 years after Minogue’s U.S. debut set, Kylie, entered the list on Sept. 10, 1988.

Golden’s lead single, “Dancing,” rises 9-5 on Dance Club Songs. It’s her 18th top 10 hit on the list.

Lorde, Melodrama No. 68 The album zooms 159-68 (9,000 units; up 76 percent, of which 5,000 were in traditional album sales; up 441 percent) after its vinyl release on April 6. It sold 4,000 vinyl LPs and bows at No. 3 on the Vinyl Albums chart.

Alice Merton, No Roots EP – No. 171 Alice Merton makes her Billboard 200 chart debut with her No Roots EP at No. 171 with 5,000 units (2,000 in traditional album sales).

The five-song set was led by the hit title track, which in February reached No. 1 on Rock Airplay (the first No. 1 by a woman since Lorde’s “Royals” in 2014) and Alternative Songs (the ninth solo woman to top the tally in its 29-year history).

“No Roots” is now percolating on the Pop Songs airplay chart, as the track bullets at No. 27 (its peak). Meanwhile, the EP’s “Lash Out” debuts on Alternative Songs, starting at No. 39.

Concurrent with the bow of No Roots, Merton hits a new high on Emerging Artists, vaulting 11-3.


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