Placebo’s “Meds” (Virgin) withstands all competition to secure a second week at No. 1 on European Top 100 Albums. While the album falls away dramatically in the United Kingdom, dropping 7-35, it continues to top the charts in the Belgian regions of Flanders and Wallony.
Falls of 1-2 in Austria and Switzerland, 1-3 in France, 2-3 in Germany and 4-10 in Italy do not prevent “Meds” from staying ahead of Andrea Bocelli’s “Amore” (Polydor), which is up 3-2 on Top 100 Albums. “Amore” holds at No. 2 in Portugal and Holland and No. 5 in the United Kingdom and climbs 4-2 in Sweden.
Katie Melua’s sophomore set “Piece By Piece” (Dramatico), which has now been a top ten album in 12 European markets, marks six months on the composite chart by improving 6-4, thanks to climbs of 3-2 in Germany, 6-5 in Holland and 9-5 in Austria. In the United Kingdom, where “Piece” is triple platinum for 900,000 shipments, it’s back up 38-29. Total worldwide sales of the album and its 2003 predecessor “Call Off The Search” have now reached five million, according to Dramatico head of international marketing Andrew Bowles.
The highest new entry on Top 100 Albums is Ben Harper’s “Both Sides Of The Gun” (Virgin), in at No. 7 after debuting at No. 1 in Italy, No. 2 in France and No. 4 in Switzerland. Harper also opened at No. 7 on the aggregate chart with his 2004 collaboration with the Blind Boys of Alabama, “There Will Be A Light.” In France, his path to No. 1 is blocked by perennial local favorite Patrick Bruel, whose “Des Souvenirs Devant” (RCA) opens in top spot, and soars 66-2 in Wallony.
Prince’s “3121” (NPG/Universal) falls some way short of its No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200, with a pan-European opening at No. 8. Its best start is at No. 2 in Denmark, followed by No. 3 in Switzerland, No. 4 in Holland, No. 5 in Norway, No. 8 in France. It’s at No. 9 in the United Kingdom, with sales of 37,000 units, according to the Official U.K. Charts Company. “3121” also climbs 24-5 in Flanders.
Two losing finalists on last December’s U.K. talent series “The X Factor” gain the top two places on the British album chart. The duo Journey South comes in at No. 1, selling 216,000 copies of its self-titled Syco Music/Sony BMG debut set. At the same time, Andy Abraham’s “The Impossible Dream” (Sony BMG) is new at No. 2 with sales of 176,000, the OCC says. The albums debut at No. 12 and No. 13 respectively on Top 100 Albums. The winner of the series, Shayne Ward, who sold more than one million copies of the subsequent single “You’re My Goal,” also for Sony BMG, will release “No Promises” as a follow-up there April 10.
There’s a new No. 1 on Eurochart Hot 100 Singles, on which the top two titles are both helped by major climbs in the United Kingdom. Ne-Yo’s R&B ballad “So Sick” (Def Jam/Universal) is up 24-1 and Pink’s “Stupid Girls” (LaFace/Zomba) 10-2 on the Eurochart. Both tracks benefit from the new U.K. ruling that allows download sales into the chart computation one week before a physical CD equivalent is released, so that Ne-Yo climbs 18-1 locally and Pink 49-4 as their singles hit traditional retail.
Another U.K. chart climber by the same methodology, Sean Paul’s “Temperature” (VP/Atlantic), improves 53-11 there and 20-5 on the Eurochart. The composite singles chart’s highest arrival, at No. 10, is “Nature’s Law” (Independiente) by English melodic rock band Embrace, which starts at No. 2 in the United Kingdom on sales of almost 27,000 copies.