On the most recent Billboard 200 albums chart (dated Jan. 9, but reflecting data for the week ending Dec. 24), Adele’s 25 continued to lead while Chris Brown’s Royalty earned the week’s highest debut. In addition, the Star Wars: The Force Awakens soundtrack blasted in at No. 5.
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the week’s most popular albums based on their overall consumption. That overall unit figure combines pure album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).
Let’s take a closer look at some of the action on the chart:
— Foo Fighters, Greatest Hits – No. 159 – The rock band’s best-of collection returns to the list at No. 159, one week after the album surpassed 1 million in U.S. sales. It’s the sixth million-selling album for the group.
Greatest Hits jumped past the million mark in the week ending Dec. 17 with 3,000 sold, and shifts another 6,000 in the newest week. Its total sales stand at 1,009,000.
Foo Fighters have also scored million-selling albums with The Colour and the Shape (1.9 million), In Your Honor (1.5 million), One By One (1.4 million), There Is Nothing Left To Lose (1.3 million) and their self-titled debut (1.3 million).
— Adele, 21 – No. 10 – While Adele’s 25 hangs out at No. 1 for a fifth straight week, her previous album, 21, continues to perform strongly. The former No. 1 set, which holds at No. 10, collects its 84th nonconsecutive week in the top 10. That staggering sum ties the album with Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. for the second-most weeks in the region since 1963 (when the Billboard 200 combined its separate stereo and mono album charts into one all encompassing tally). In that span of time, only The Sound of Music film soundtrack accumulated more weeks in the top 10, with 109.
— Ariana Grande, Christmas & Chill (EP) – No. 34 – The pop star’s surprise holiday effort, Christmas & Chill, bows at No. 34 with 32,000 units (27,000 in pure album sales). The digital-exclusive set also debuts at No. 3 on Holiday Albums and No. 7 on Digital Albums.
Christmas & Chill is Grande’s second holiday effort, following Christmas Kisses in 2013. While the latter title didn’t reach any of Billboard’s charts, its four songs — which were each released in consecutive weeks late that year — all charted in the top five of the Holiday Digital Songs list. To date, Christmas Kisses has sold 15,000 while its quartet of tunes have moved a combined 235,000 downloads.
— Original Broadway Cast Recording, Hamilton: An American Musical – No. 37 – Thanks to a deep price cut in the Google Play store, the cast recording of Hamilton scores a 54 percent sales increase (rising to 23,000 sold for the week). It also climbs 41-37 on the chart, with 28,000 total units. During the tracking week, Google sold the title for just $1.99 for multiple days.
— The Braxtons, Braxton Family Christmas – No. 144 – Nineteen years after The Braxtons last charted on the Billboard 200, the family group returns to the list with its Braxton Family Christmas album (a debut at No. 144). The Christmas album is in its eighth week of release — and has charted on some of Billboard’s other genre-specific tallies — but collects its first week on the overall Billboard 200 (and with its best sales week yet: 8,000 sold). The seasonal effort has sold 21,000 to date.
Braxton Family Christmas is the second album from the sister act, which previously charted with So Many Ways back in 1996. Back then, the group was a trio (Trina, Tamar and Towanda Braxton), and saw So Many Ways peak at No. 113 on the Billboard 200. On the new album, the trio becomes a quintet, as Toni and Traci Braxton join their three sisters.