U2 Knocks Taylor Swift From Top Spot of SoundScan Charts

With the biggest sales week of the year, Rock icons U2 have knocked Country-Pop star Taylor Swift from the pole position on the charts with nearly 500,000 CDs sold last week.  There was a surpise Top 3 appearance from a critically acclaimed indie Alt-Country artist too.

For but the third time in 2009, Taylor Swift isn't the Top selling album on the SoundScan Hot 200 Albums chart.  With 483,925 albums sold, U2's latest album "No Line On The Horizon" topped the charts, as expected.  With a plethora of hot pop/rock releases now in the pipeline, it will take some sort of chart miracle for Taylor to score a 13th week at the top of the charts.  The biggest surprise on the charts this week is the #3 debut of Alt-Country star Neko Case and her buzz worthy album "Middle Cylcone."  With 44,300 albums sold, the album was less than 8,000 copies from selling as much as Taylor Swift.  Rounding out the Top five Country albums of the week are Robert Plant and Alison Krauss' "Raising Sand" at 26, Darius Rucker's "Learn To Live" at 28 and Zac Brown Band's "The Foundation" at 30.

Last This Artist Album This Week Total Sales
1 2 Taylor Swift Fearless 52,285 2,797,630
NEW 3 Neko Case Middle Cyclone 44300 44601
16 26 Plant/Krauss Raising Sand 15,165 1,328,230
30 28 Darius Rucker Learn To Live 14,490 491,937
37 30 Zac Brown Band Foundation 14,092 328,376

Swift's three-year old album "Taylor Swift" continues to sell well as it comes in at the sixth best-selling Country record and next week it will surpass the 4 million albums-sold mark.  Sugarland's "Love On The inside" continues to sell as well, as the seventh best-selling Country album.  Carrie Underwood's "Carnival Ride," Dierks Bentley's "Feel That Fire" and Jamey Johnson's "That Lonesome Song" round out the Top 10 Country albums on the chart.  Unlike the last few weeks, all the Top 10 Country albums on the chart were found inside the top 60 albums in the Nielsen SoundScan Hot 200 chart.

Last This Artist Album This Week Total Sales
41 35 Taylor Swift  Taylor Swift 13,296 3,995,519
51 43 Sugarland Love On The Inside 10,899 1,444,839
61 53 Carrie Underwood Carnival Ride 9,628 2,671,768
53 56 Dierks Bentley Feel That Fire 9,087 134,490
58 57 Jamey Jonson That Lonesome Song 8,906 329,327

Five more interesting chart numbers follow below as Last week's 13th best selling album has drooped all the way to 61st on the chart.  Jake Owen's "Easy Does It" only moved slightly less than 8,500 units this past week, its second on the charts.  Lady Antebellum continues to sell their nearly year-old album.  With "Sissy's Song" starting its rise on the charts, Alan Jackson's "Good Time" managed to sell three percent more than it did last week. Joey+Rory continue to be a remarkable success story in Country music as their debut album; "The Life Of A Song" continues to sell well, despite only a Top 30 hit.  Their album is continuously outselling the latest albums from Garth, George Strait, Kenny Chesney and Toby Keith.  Garth's "The Ultimate Hits" deserves a mention here as well with the 2 CD, 1 DVD set now having sold over two million copies. 


Last This Artist Album This Week Total Sales
13 61 Jake Owen Easy Does It 8,452 31,658
83 73 Lady Antebellum Lady Antebellum 7,467 461,052
92 82 Alan Jackson Good Time 6,781 721,088
96 99 Joey+Rory The Life Of A Song 5,672 116,377
108 110 Garth Brooks The Ultimate Hits 5,140 2,067,735

Next Week, with no major releases released, we should find a similar chart on the country music side.  But it will be interesting to see if Taylor Swift will continue to be a Top 3 presence with Kelly Clarkson's hotly anticipated fourth album debuting.