LOS ANGELES (Billboard) - Eminem returned to the top spot on the U.S. pop album chart Wednesday after being sidelined for the past two weeks by No. 1 debuts from rock bands Avenged Sevenfold and Arcade Fire.
The Detroit rapper sold 133,000 copies of “Recovery” during the week ended August 15, according to Nielsen SoundScan, enough to end its stint in the runner-up slot.
Total sales for “Recovery” stand at 2.1 million after eight weeks. Only Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now” (2.5 million) has sold more. At this point last year, no albums had surpassed the two-million mark — though seven had sold at least one million. This year, six albums have hit the million mark.
“Recovery” has also sold at least 100,000 copies each week of its entire chart life. The last album to sell 100,000 or more copies during each of its first eight weeks was Andrea Bocelli’s “My Christmas” in November and December of 2009.
Montreal rock band Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” dropped to No. 2 with 52,000 units in its second week, down a hefty 66 percent. First-week sales were perhaps overweighted with downloads due to aggressive sales pricing via Amazon.com’s MP3 store. Download sales slid 74 percent.
The Billboard 200’s top debut came in at No. 3: the soundtrack to the Disney Channel’s “Camp Rock 2: the Final Jam” sold 41,000 copies, ahead of the TV movie’s September 3 premiere. The first “Camp Rock” album also began at No. 3, but with 188,000 copies, coming out the same week as the accompanying movie’s bow in 2008. Like the previous set, the sequel sports new music from the show’s stars, the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato.
Black Label Society earned its highest charting album with the No. 4 bow of “Order of the Black” (33,000). The Zakk Wylde-fronted rock band’s previous best chart rank came in 2005 when “Mafia” started at No. 15 with its highest sales week: 42,000.
Country singer Blake Shelton’s second EP release of the year, “All About Tonight,” started at No. 6 with 33,000 — a big drop from the 71,000-unit start for “Hillbilly Bone” in March. That EP has sold 234,000 units to date, returning to the chart at No. 197.
Mike Posner’s debut effort “31 Minutes to Takeoff” flew in at No. 8 with 29,000. The set was led by the single “Cooler Than Me,” which has been in the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the past seven weeks.
As for the rest of the top 10, Justin Bieber’s “My World 2.0” climbed two places to No. 5 (33,000), swapping places with Rick Ross’ “Teflon Don” (30,000); the “Kidz Bop 18” set rose two to No. 9 (28,000); and Avenged Sevenfold’s “Nightmare” tumbled seven to No. 10 (27,000).
Overall album sales totaled 4.95 million units, down 6% from the previous week, and down 16% from the comparable week of 2009. Year to date album sales stand at 185.1 million, down 12% compared to the same total at this point last year.