MercyMe Extends Record at No. 1 on Christian AC Songs Chart
As MercyMe's "Flawless" leads Billboard's Christian Airplay chart (dated Sept. 5) for a fifth week, with 11 million audience impressions, according to Nielsen Music, and reaches a new peak by rising 3-2 on the airplay/sales/streaming-based Hot Christian Songs chart, the track adds a new honor: it becomes the veteran act's record-extending 14th No. 1 on the Christian AC Songs chart. With the coronation, MercyMe pushes further ahead of runners-up Jeremy Camp and Third Day, each with 10 Christian AC Songs No. 1s.
"Flawless" is the third single from MercyMe's 2014 album Welcome to the New. Lead track "Shake" peaked at No. 8 on Christian AC Songs in April 2014 and "Greater" began a 10-week reign at No. 1 last October. The set became the group's eighth No. 1 on Top Christian Albums and spends a 72nd week on the list, rebounding 10-6.
The highest debut on Top Christian Albums this week belongs to Knoxville, Tenn.-based worship group United Pursuit, whose Simple Gospel opens at No. 2 with 6,000 sold. It trails only TobyMac's This is Not a Test, which holds at No. 1 (13,000, down 63 percent) in its second week. Simple Gospel marks the second appearance on the survey for United Pursuit, formerly known as Will Reagan and United Pursuit, whose Endless Years spent four weeks on the chart in 2012, peaking at No. 15.
Meanwhile, The Monks of Norcia's collection of Gregorian chants Benedicta: Marian Chant From Norcia soars 24-10 on Top Christian Albums with a 56 percent surge to 2,000. Sparking the rise: notable coverage detailing the project, including feature stories by such major outlets as USA Today and The Huffington Post. The act, whose music is based on Scripture, is led by choirmaster Father Basil Nixen and based at St. Benedict's Monastery in the ancient city of Norcia, Italy.
(Fun fact: the monks run a microbrewery on the premises.)