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Future flies in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart with his latest album, Evol. The set is his third No. 1 effort, and it marks his third straight title to debut at No. 1. It launches with 134,000 equivalent album units earned in the week ending Feb. 11, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 100,000 were in pure album sales. (The album was exclusively available through Apple Music and the iTunes Store beginning Feb. 5, so all of its units and sales are coming from Apple and iTunes.)
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The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week based on multi-metric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). The new Feb. 27-dated chart (where Future leads) will be posted in full to Billboard’s websites on Wednesday, Feb. 17. (Charts are posted one day later this week due to the Presidents’ Day holiday on Feb. 15.)
Future previously topped the list with his Drake collaboration What a Time to Be Alive, on the Oct. 10, 2015-dated chart, and then his last solo release, DS2, on Aug. 8.
Evol’s No. 1 arrival comes six months and 20 days after Future first hit No. 1 with DS2. Thus, he’s now scored three No. 1s in less than seven months.
Chart historians take note: Future’s trio of No. 1s (counting from each title’s first week at No. 1), is the fastest accumulation of No. 1s for any act since the Glee cast notched three No. 1 soundtracks in one month and 19 days in 2010. Glee: The Music — The Power of Madonna, bowed at No. 1 on May 8, 2010 and was quickly followed by the chart-topping Glee: The Music, Volume 3 — Showstoppers (June 5, 2010) and Glee: The Music — Journey to Regionals (June 26, 2010).
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However, if one were to discount the Glee titles, as they were soundtracks and not traditional artist-driven albums, then Future’s feat becomes even more striking. Before the Glee albums, the last act to notch three No. 1 albums faster than Future was Herb Alpert in 1965 and 1966. Between Nov. 27, 1965 and May 28, 1966, Alpert (with The Tijuana Brass) notched their first weeks at No. 1 with, respectively, Whipped Cream and Other Delights (Nov. 27, 1965), Going Places (March 5, 1966) and What Now My Love (May 28, 1966).
Back on the new Billboard 200, Adele’s 25 climbs one spot to No. 2, as the set shifted another 121,000 units. Of that, 102,000 were in pure album sales, which makes it No. 1 on the Top Album Sales chart (which ranks the best selling albums of the week).
Rihanna’s Anti album slips from No. 1 to No. 3 in its third chart week on the Billboard 200, with 96,000 units (down 42 percent). Its decline was lessened a bit by its new availability as a physical CD release on Feb. 5, following its previous digital exclusivity. In terms of pure album sales, it was down by 58 percent for the week, to 52,000 (of that sum, 24,000 were in CD sales, while the rest were digital albums).
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Coldplay’s A Head Full of Dreams zooms from No. 16 to No. 4 in the wake of the band’s halftime performance during the Super Bowl on Feb. 7. The album shifted 90,000 units (up 265 percent) and sold 71,000 copies (up 372 percent). Also helping matters: the album was deeply discounted in the Google Play store for just 99 cents during the tracking week, while it was also sale priced to $6.99 in the iTunes Store.
It’s no surprise, then, that the album vaults 12-2 on the Digital Albums chart with a 556 percent sales gain, selling 62,000 downloads for the week. (Thus, nearly all of the album’s sales for the week came from downloads, and likely many of those were driven by discounting.)
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Justin Bieber’s Purpose holds steady at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 with 73,000 units (up 1 percent), notching its 13th straight week in the top 5 (its entire chart run).
Wiz Khalifa’s new Khalifa album bows at No. 6 with 64,000 units (45,000 in pure album sales), logging the rapper his fourth top 10 effort. It follows 2014’s Blacc Hollywood, which marked his first No. 1 when it opened atop the list with 90,000 sold.
The new Now 57 compilation enters at No. 7 with 63,000 units (all from album sales). It’s the 63rd Now compilation to reach the top 10, and all 57 of the numbered Now albums have hit the region.
Since 1990, Now-branded compilations comprise half of all top 10-charting compilations on the chart (63 of 126).
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Elton John’s Wonderful Crazy Night bows at No. 8 with 58,000 units (with 57,000 in pure album sales), giving the legend his 19th top 10 album.
John’s first top 10 album came in January 1971, when his self-titled effort climbed 11-7 on the Jan. 30-dated list.
The new album’s single “Looking Up” recently garnered John his record-extending 71st hit on the Adult Contemporary airplay chart. (In second place with the most AC hits is Barbra Streisand, with 64.)
Rounding out the top 10 on the new Billboard 200 are Twenty One Pilots’ Blurryface (sliding 7-9 with 42,000 units; down 2 percent) and Kevin Gates’ Islah (2-10 with 40,000 units; down 64 percent).
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