Sara Bareilles' 'Heart' Beats at No. 1 on Billboard 200

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Sara Bareilles scores her first No. 1 album -- and best sales week ever -- as her sophomore effort "Kaleidoscope Heart" bows atop the chart with 90,000 sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Bareilles first set, "Little Voice," peaked at No. 7 in 2008. It has so far sold 997,000 in the U.S.

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Though Bareilles is one of four new entries in the top 10, expect the chart to get a lot more exciting in a week's time. That's when the biggest albums of the fall season will start hitting the chart, including anticipated high bows from Linkin Park's "A Thousand Suns" and Trey Songz's "Passion, Pain & Pleasure."

And those albums can't arrive any faster, either. Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Sept. 12) totaled 4.83 million units -- marking the lowest weekly sales figure since SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991. Last week's sum falls below the record low of 4.95 million sold, which was only set in the week ending Aug. 15.

Last week's No. 1 album, Disturbed's "Asylum," falls to No. 5 in its second week with 57,000 (down 68%). Eminem's "Recovery" moves up one notch to No. 2 (81,000; down 12%) while the "Now 35" compilation declines one to No. 3 (63,000; down 40%). Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" holds at No. 4 (59,000; down 33%) while Stone Sour debuts at No. 6 with "Audio Secrecy" (46,000). The band's last album, 2006's "Come What(ever) May," debuted and peaked at No. 4 with 81,000.

Interpol starts at No. 7 with its self-titled set (38,000). It's the second top 10 album for the latter act, as its 2007 effort "Our Love to Admire" topped out in its first week at No. 4 with 73,000. Just behind them is Justin Bieber's "My World 2.0," as it stays steady at No. 8 but with a gain of 14% (35,000). Rounding out the top 10 are Anberlin's debuting "Dark Is the Way, Light Is a Place," at No. 9 with 31,000, and the soundtrack to "Camp Rock 2: the Final Jam," down one to No. 10 with 31,000 (up 11%, but trailing Anberlin by a small margin). It's the first top 10 set for Anberlin, which had previously topped out at No. 13 with its last set, 2008's "Surrender."

Outside the top 10 this week, we notice how Florence + the Machine's "Lungs" vaults from No. 100 to No. 44 with 8,000 (up 70% -- the largest percentage gain on the chart). The act was nominated for a number of MTV Video Music Awards for its video "Dog Dogs Are Over" and played the tune on Sunday night's (12) show. "Dog Days" also debuts at No. 52 on the Digital Songs chart with that single, shifting 27,000 downloads (up 276%). Because the VMAs took place on a Sunday night, and since the SoundScan's sales tracking week ends at the close of business on Sunday each week, the show's impact on the charts this week is a bit muted. Thus, any punch felt from the VMAs will be distributed over two weeks.

At the top of the Digital Songs chart this week is a new No. 1: Bruno Mars' "Just the Way You Are," which moves up one notch with 209,000 (up 19%). It displaces Perry's "Teenage Dream," as it falls to No. 2 with 197,000 (down 11%). It's the first time Mars has been No. 1 on the Digital Songs chart as a lead artist. He previously guested on B.o.B's No. 1 "Nothin' On You."

Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Sept. 12) totaled 4.83 million units, down 7% compared to the sum last week (5.22 million) and down 28% compared to the comparable sales week of 2009 (6.71 million). Year to date album sales stand at 205.4 million, down 13% compared to the same total at this point last year (235.7 million).

Digital track sales this past week totaled 20.03 million downloads, up 3% compared to last week (19.44 million) and down less than 1% stacked next to the comparable week of 2009 (20.10 million). Year to date track sales are at 801.84 million, down less than 1% compared to the same total at this point last year (807.75 million).


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