Chart Beat

Japanese Megastar Utada Hikaru Returns to the Charts as 'Fantome' Tops World Albums

Utada Hikaru, 'Fantome' album cover

After years away, Utada Hikaru has made her official comeback to the music industry with new album Fantome and, with that, the Billboard charts.

The Japanese-American megastar, who holds the record for largest-selling album ever in Japan, released Fantome on Wednesday, Sept. 28, marking her first full-length album since 2009's This Is the One (Utada's second album in English) and her first Japanese LP since 2008.

That feeling is perhaps best felt in must-hear single "Michi" -- which rises to No. 5 on the Japan Hot 100 this week -- blending a dance beat with Utada's vulnerable, on-the-verge-of-cracking delivery, "It's a lonely, it's a lonely, it's a lonely road / But I'm not alone," she sings as she details how someone may be gone, they are inside her heart.