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AC/DC ‘Bust’s to No. 1 on Top Rock Albums

AC/DC's first studio album since 2008 arrives at the summit. Plus, chart action for Walk the Moon and 'Voice' contestants Matt McAndrew and Taylor John Williams.

AC/DC‘s Rock or Bust starts as the influential band’s third No. 1 on Billboard‘s Top Rock Albums chart with 172,000 sold, according to Nielsen Music. The hard rock band’s 15th studio album also debuts at No. 1 on Hard Rock Albums and No. 3 on the Billboard 200, where it’s the group’s ninth top 10.

Rock or Bust is the band’s first new set available for purchase on iTunes since ending its holdout from the digital retailer in 2012. The new album was also available for pre-release streaming on iTunes the week before its debut. With digital sales available, physical sales still account for 72 percent of the set’s first-week figure.


AC/DC’s ‘Rock or Bust’ Debuts at No. 1 Down Under

AC/DC had last charted with 2008’s Black Ice, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with 784,000 copies sold in its first week. The title was initially sold exclusively through Walmart, Sam’s Club and the band’s website. Black Ice is the band’s only No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200; the band also reached the summit with 1981’s For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) (in its third week on the chart).

The new album is the Australian group’s 26th charting title on the Billboard 200 and first album without founding member Malcolm Young, who departed the band this year because he’s suffering from dementia.

On the Mainstream Rock Songs radio airplay chart, the Rock or Bust title track rises 37-26 in its second week. It also leaps 42-29 on the airplay/sales/streaming-based Hot Rock Songs list. First single “Play Ball” peaked at No. 5 on Mainstream Rock Songs and No. 17 on Hot Rock Songs.

MOON SHINES: Walk the Moon scores its highest album chart ranks and best sales week with its third set Talking Is Hard. It starts at No. 5 on Top Rock Albums and No. 26 on the Billboard 200 with 24,000 sold. Fueling the figures for the synth-rock band: “Shut Up and Dance,” which spends a fourth week at its No. 8 high on Hot Rock Songs and rises 10-9 on Alternative Songs.

Walk the Moon’s self-titled 2012 album debuted at No. 15 on Top Rock Albums and No. 36 on the Billboard 200 with 11,000 sold.

VOICES HEARD: Matt McAndrew, a contestant on NBC’s The Voice, strikes again as his cover of Damien Rice‘s “The Blower’s Daughter” debuts at No. 4 on Hot Rock Songs. The track marks McAndrew’s highest rank on the chart after he previously reached No. 8 with a cover of Hozier‘s “Take Me to Church” and Nos. 13 and 38 with two Coldplay covers, “Fix You” and “Yellow,” respectively. The Rice remake starts with 92,000 downloads sold (and debuts on the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 40).

McAndrew’s performance of “Daughter” on The Voice spiked sales for the original version (12,000 sold, up more than 3,000 percent), spurring its debut on Hot Rock Songs at No. 15. The track from his 2001 debut album O has sold 573,000 downloads to date. In November, the Irish singer/songwriter released his first album in eight years, My Favourite Faded Fantasy, and scored his highest rank on Top Rock Albums (No. 3) and the Billboard 200 (No. 15).

Another Voice contestant, Taylor John Williams, also scores his highest rank on Hot Rock Songs as his interpretation of Lorde‘s “Royals” starts at No. 10 (38,000 downloads sold). Williams previously charted with his cover of the Beatles‘ “Come Together” (No. 11) and Tears for Fears‘ “Mad World” (No. 18).