On the charts: 'Twilight' can't match the power of Buble; Dylan, Archuleta in a Christmas album bout
Vocalist Michael Bublé maintains his grip on the top of the pop charts, withstanding a challenge from the international phenom that is teen soap opera "The Twilight Saga." Bublé's Oprah Winfrey-endorsed "Crazy Love" sold 203,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan, to once again lead the pop chart. In about 10 days of release -- "Crazy Love" was released off-cycle on a Friday rather than the typical Tuesday -- the album has racked up 350,000 sales.
How impressive is that? The hype for Mariah Carey's "Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel" began way back in June, and the superstar release has sold 250,000 copies in three full weeks of release.
Buble also fends off the much-hyped soundtrack to "The Twilight Saga: New Moon," which lands at No. 2 on the strength of 115,000 copies sold. Yet "New Moon" is likely in it for the long haul. The soundtrack to the first film sits at No. 63, having sold just under 2.3 million copies to date.
Additionally, "New Moon" won't be released in theaters until Nov. 20, and expect the soundtrack to still be in the upper echleon of the chart when the film hits theaters. Earlier this year, the soundtrack to "Hannah Montana: The Movie" opened with 146,000 copies sold and fell short of the top spot on the pop 200.
Yet the album was released two weeks in advance of the film and eventually moved into the top spot. Heading into this week, it was the third-bestselling soundtrack of 2009, tallying 1.6 million in sales thus far. Only Michael Jackson's "Number Ones" and Taylor Swift's "Fearless" have sold more in 2009.
Otherwise, the second-best entry in the top 10 comes from the Flaming Lips, whose double-LP, 18-track "Embryonic" bows at No. 8. It sold just under 32,000 copies, and though Billboard's Chart Alert reports that the position is the band's highest-ever chart entry, it enters with significantly fewer first-week sales than 2006's "At War With the Mystics," which landed with 48,000 copies sold.
Just below the Lips is the fourth release from R&B singer Mario, "D.N.A." Sales are just a few hundred copies off the Lips total, but Billboard notes that the artist's 2007 effort "Go" landed with a much higher sales total at 77,000 copies, emphasizing that the latter was released during the holiday season.
Elsewhere, in a Christmas-album bout between Bob Dylan and David Archuleta, Dylan comes out on top. Dylan's charity album "Christmas in the Heart" enters at No. 23 with 20,000 copies sold, and Archuleta's similarly titled "Christmas From the Heart" lands at No. 30 with 17,000 copies sold. Further down, Sugarland's take on holiday cheer, "Gold and Green," makes for a No. 56 entry with about 9,500 copies sold.
-- Todd Martens
Photo: Michael Bublé. Credit: Ringo H.W. Chiu / Los Angeles Times