The French robots of Daft Punk did more than “Get Lucky,” they scored a genuine smash with their new album Random Access Memories. Here’s a look at their chart triumph and the rest of this week’s Nielsen SoundScan news:
CHARTS GET “PUNK’D”: All hail our new robot overlords: Daft Punk score their first No. 1 album with Random Access Memories, which sold a robot-tastic 339,000 copies its first week in stores (just like we predicted). The chart-busting debut is the result of a months-long marketing campaign and years of pent up anticipation for new Daft Punk product, after the French duo blew minds with their 2006-2007 tour and then promptly slipped out of the public eye. (To be fair, their 2010 soundtrack to Tron: Legacy peaked at No. 4 on the chart.) Random Access Memories’ chart triumph is that much more impressive considering Daft Punk’s previous studio effort, 2005’s Human After All, debuted at a lowly No. 98. That album has sold 125,000 copies to date, a figure RAM nearly tripled its first week. Daft Punk also lands five entries on the Digital Songs chart: “Get Lucky” (No. 5), “Doin’ it Right” (No. 126), “Instant Crush” (No. 156), “Give Life Back to Music” (No. 173) and “Lose Yourself to Dance” (No. 185).
RIRI GOES PLATINUM (AGAIN): Rihanna has no reasons to apologize for the sales of Unapologetic: Her seventh album crosses the platinum sales marker this week, its 27th week on the charts. The album is No. 39 on this week’s chart, selling 9,400 copies, bringing its total sales to 1.008 million copies. It’s Rihanna’s sixth platinum album; only the singer’s 2005 debut, Music of the Sun, hasn’t reached the 1-million sales milestone. So it’s about time for her to crank out another album now, isn’t it? We’re getting restless!
RUCKER, NATIONAL DEBUT STRONG: Daft Punk leads a week where debuts make up five of the top six positions. Darius Rucker’s latest, True Believers, sold 83,000 copies and arrives at No. 2, matching the debut of his last set, 2010’s Charleston, SC 1966. The National’s Trouble Will Find Me sold 75,000 copies and lands at No. 3, the same chart position that greeted 2010’s High Violet. French Montana’s long-delayed Excuse My French arrives at No. 4 (56,000), while 30 Seconds to Mars’ Love, Lust, Faith & Dreams lands at No. 6 (53,000). That’s the highest chart position yes for Jared Leto’s band, whose previous album, 2009’s This is War, peaked at No. 18.
SOBIECH’S BITTERSWEET CHART SPLASH: A bit further down the chart at No. 20 is Fix Me Up, the debut EP from A Firm Handshake. A Firm Handshake was fronted by Zach Sobiech, the Minnesota folk rock artist who died May 20 at age 18 of a rare form of cancer. The EP’s success was aided by “Clouds,” the single whose video has racked up more than 6.4 million views on YouTube. (A tribute video, featuring stars like Ashley Tisdale, Bryan Cranston, Jason Mraz and others lip-syncing “Clouds,” can be seen above and has been viewed more than 2.4 million times.) “Clouds” makes a big splash on this week’s Digital Songs chart, landing at No. 7 on sales of 156,000 copies.
IDOL SINKS: It was just two weeks ago that Candice Glover won American Idol, but it already feels like ancient history. (It was the lowest-rated Idol finale ever, after all.) This week, sales of Glover’s debut single “I Am Beautiful are sliced in half, and the single falls from No. 39 to No. 92 on the Digital Songs chart. (She’s in a better position than runner-up Kree Harrison, whose debut single “All Cried Out” is nowhere to be found on the chart.) Glover’s debut album is being rush-released for a July arrival, breaking from the show’s typical holiday release timeline. But will it already be too late?
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