Eric Church's "The Outsiders" easily debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 288,000 in its first week (ending Feb. 16), according to Nielsen SoundScan.
It's the largest sales week of the year, and the biggest since Beyonce's self-titled album sold 310,000 in its second week of release (last December). It's also by far Church's best frame ever.
"The Outsiders" is Church's fourth studio album and second No. 1 set, following his last studio effort, 2011's "Chief." The latter bowed with 145,000—his previous best sales week. (In between "Chief" and "The Outsiders," Church released the live album "Caught in the Act: Live," which debuted and peaked at No. 5.)
"The Outsiders" also logs the biggest week for a country album since Luke Bryan's "Crash My Party" debuted at No. 1 with 528,000 on the chart dated Aug. 31, 2013.
Church's new set is the only new arrival on the top 10 of the Billboard 200 this week. The next-highest debut belongs to The Glitch Mob's second album, "Love Death Immortality," at No. 13 with 22,000. It's the electronic act's best week yet and its first appearance on the Billboard 200. It previously reached No. 39 on the Heatseekers Albums chart with its first album, 2010's "Drink the Sea."
Back in the top 10, the "Frozen" soundtrack holds steady at No. 2, but gains by 13%, selling 100,000 copies for the week. It's the first time the set has surpassed 100,000 in weekly sales since the sales week that ended Jan. 5 (165,000). And with another 100,000 sold this past week, cumulative sales for “Frozen” surpass 1 million. It's the first soundtrack to sell 1 million copies since "Pitch Perfect" in the week ending Dec. 29, 2013. The two albums are the first million-selling theatrical film soundtracks since "Michael Jackson's This Is It" moved 1 million in December 2009.