Metro Boomin’s superstar-filled album Heroes & Villains debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart (dated Dec. 17), giving the producer his third leader on the list. The 15-song set starts with his biggest week yet: 185,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending Dec. 8, according to Luminate — largely driven by streaming activity.
Heroes & Villains boasts a cavalcade of heavy-hitters, including 21 Savage, A$AP Rocky, Chris Brown, Future, Gunna, John Legend, Travis Scott, the late Takeoff, Don Toliver, The Weeknd, Young Thung and unbilled spoken word cameos from Morgan Freeman.
Heroes & Villains is Metro Boomin’s seventh charting effort on the Billboard 200, and fifth to reach the top 10. He previously hit the region with Savage Mode II (a collaborative album with 21 Savage, No. 1 in 2020), Not All Heroes Wear Capes (No. 1, 2018), Double or Nothing (a collaborative set with Big Sean, No. 6 in 2017) and Without Warning (billed to 21 Savage, Offset and Metro Boomin, No. 4 in 2017).
On Sept. 16, Heroes & Villains was initially announced with a release date of Nov. 4. Then, on Oct. 26, the set was pushed to Dec. 2 due to sample clearance issues.
Also in the top 10 on the Billboard 200, Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas returns, rising 11-10. The album, released in 1994, peaked at No. 3 that year, and has returned to the top 10 in each of the last four holiday seasons.
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units, compiled by Luminate. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album. The new Dec. 17, 2022-dated chart will be posted in full on Billboard‘s website on Dec. 13. For all chart news, follow @billboard and @billboardcharts on both Twitter and Instagram.
Of Heroes & Villains’ 185,000 equivalent album units earned, SEA units comprise 179,000 (equaling 233.38 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks), album sales comprise 5,000 and TEA units comprise 1,000. The album’s sales were largely powered by its digital download album, though there was a CD available in limited quantities (including a signed version), which resulted in about 3,000 sales. In addition, on Dec. 5 the album was reissued in a deluxe edition on streamers and at digital retail with 15 bonus instrumental tracks of the album’s standard songs.
Following Heroes & Villains (released via Boominati/Republic) on the Billboard 200, a pair of former No. 1s is up next, as Taylor Swift’s Midnights (Republic) falls to No. 2 with 143,000 equivalent album units (down 5%) and Drake and 21 Savage’s Her Loss (OVO Sound/Republic) dips 2-3 with 78,000 (down 16%). Thus, Republic Records completes a sweep of the top three on the Billboard 200, the first time any label has held the top three since Republic itself did it on the Feb. 6, 2021-dated list. That week, the chart was led by Morgan Wallen’s Dangerous: The Double Album (Big Loud/Republic), Pop Smoke’s Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon (Victor Victor Worldwide/Republic) and Swift’s Evermore (Republic).
Bad Bunny’s chart-topping Un Verano Sin Ti falls 3-4 on the Billboard 200 with 55,000 equivalent album units earned (though up 5%). Michael Bublé’s former No. 1 Christmas is pushed down 4-5 despite a 16% gain to 54,000 units. Harry Styles’ No. 1 Harry’s House rises 9-6 with 49,000 units (up 42% — mostly owed to vinyl LP sales) and Wallen’s Dangerous descends 6-7, but with a gain of 16% to 47,000.
Wrapping up the top 10 are The Weeknd’s The Highlights (7-8 with 42,000 equivalent album units; up 5%), Nat King Cole’s The Christmas Song (8-9 with just over 40,000; up 13%) and Carey’s Merry Christmas (11-10 with 40,000; up 23%).
Luminate, the independent data provider to the Billboard charts, completes a thorough review of all data submissions used in compiling the weekly chart rankings. Luminate reviews and authenticates data. In partnership with Billboard, data deemed suspicious or unverifiable is removed, using established criteria, before final chart calculations are made and published.