Bon Jovi’s countrified Lost Highway became the band’s third No. 1 album this week; the record, which is the band’s first to be co-released by Mercury Nashville, sold 288,000 copies and beat out the White Stripes and Brad Paisley on this week’s chart. The 81 readers who picked Highway to finish at the top should pat themselves on the back; the only aspect of this result that’s surprising to us is the fact that only 1987′s Slippery When Wet and 1988′s New Jersey had previously topped the charts for the Jersey boys before this. (Perhaps SoundScan undercounts the New York suburbs?)
Biggest Debuts: Coming in at No. 2 were the White Stripes, whose Icky Thump sold 223,000 copies; behind Icky was Brad Paisley’s 5th Gear, which shifted 197,000 units. The Shop Boyz, who are responsible for the enforced-partying jam “Party Like A Rockstar” debuted at No. 11, selling 52,000 copies of Rockstar Mentality and paving the way for their inevitable partnering with Rockstar Energy Drinks; Lifehouse–remember them?–entered at No. 14, selling 49,000 copies of Who We Are. Huey’s Notebook Paper debuted at No. 26 (29,000 copies sold), Chrisette Michelle’s I Am came in at No. 29 (26,000 sales), and finally, down at No. 30 is Mandy Moore’s Serious Album, Wild Hope, which was purchased by 25,000 Harp readers in its first week.
Charting The Decline: Despite three six-figure debuts, album sales were down 7.1% from last week, topping out at 8.9 million units. The current year-to-year total is down 15% from last year–but there’s a glimmer of hope in that statistic. As Coolfer notes, that represents a two-percentage-point increase from two months ago.
Nickelback Award For Inexplicable Durability: Yes, Linkin Park is still holding on in the top 10 this week; Minutes To Midnight is at No. 6 for the second straight chart in a row. But we’re going to switch it up a bit and give this award to the arched-eyebrow marketing steamroller Fergie; The Dutchess skids back into the top 20 this week, going from 23-15 on the strength of her mushmouthed ballad “Big Girls Don’t Cry (Personal).” If you haven’t heard this track yet, it’s an absolutely terrible, half-enunciated track with a title inspired by Lindsay Lohan’s floptastic second album. And it’s a huge, huge hit. Are we just not drinking from the right water supply?
Bon Jovi Scores First No. 1 Album Since 1988 [Billboard]