Ghost’s Impera blasts in at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Album Sales chart (dated March 26) with 2022’s biggest sales week for an album – 62,500 copies sold in the U.S. in the week ending March 17, according to Luminate, formerly MRC Data. It’s the first chart-topper for the rock band on Top Album Sales, and the act’s fourth top 10 overall.
Elsewhere in the top 10 of Top Album Sales, for KING & COUNTRY’s What Are We Waiting For? debuts at No. 2, Rex Orange County’s Who Cares? starts at No. 3, Benny the Butcher’s Tana Talk 4 enters at No. 8, and Joell Ortiz and KXNG Crooked’s Rise & Fall of Slaughterhouse bows at No. 10.
Billboard’s Top Album Sales chart ranks the top-selling albums of the week based only on traditional album sales. The chart’s history dates back to May 25, 1991, the first week Billboard began tabulating charts with electronically monitored piece count information from SoundScan, now MRC Data. Pure album sales were the sole measurement utilized by the Billboard 200 albums chart through the list dated Dec. 6, 2014, after which that chart switched to a methodology that blends album sales with track equivalent album units and streaming equivalent album units. The new March 26-dated chart will be posted in full on Billboard‘s website on March 22. For all chart news, follow @billboard and @billboardcharts on both Twitter and Instagram.
Impera has the biggest week, by album sales, for any album in the 2022 tracking year so far, surpassing the 37,000 copies sold of The Weeknd’s Dawn FM after its CD was released (week ending Feb. 3). Further, Impera has the largest sales week for a rock or hard rock album since the debut of Foo Fighters’ Medicine at Midnight (64,000; week ending Feb. 11, 2021). (Rock and hard rock albums are defined as those that have hit Billboard’s Top Rock Albums and Top Hard Rock Albums chart, respectively.)
Notably, Impera logs Ghost’s best sales week ever, surpassing the 61,500 start of its last full-length studio album, 2018’s Prequelle. The latter’s first-week number was boosted by a concert ticket/album sale redemption offer. Ticket/album bundles, like merchandise/album bundles, ceased to count towards chart sales as of Oct. 9, 2020.
Of Impera’s 62,500 copies sold in the week end March 17, physical sales comprise 51,000 (28,000 on vinyl; 21,000 on CD and 2,000 on cassette) and digital sales comprise nearly 12,000. The album’s sales were enhanced by its availability on a variety of vinyl LP and CD editions. Impera was released in numerous color vinyl variants, including color versions available exclusively via Target, Walmart, Newbury Comics, Zia Records, independent record stores in general, as well as the band’s official webstore.
In total, Impera’s 28,000 copies sold on vinyl LP marks the largest sales week for a rock album on vinyl in over a year, since Paul McCartney’s McCartney III sold 32,000 in its debut frame (Jan. 2, 2021-dated chart). Further, Impera logs the biggest sales week for a hard rock album on vinyl since 1994, when Pearl Jam’s Vitalogy sold 33,500 copies in its opening week (chart dated Dec. 10, 1994). Vitalogy was exclusively available on vinyl in its first two weeks of release, before it became available on CD.
Top Rock Albums and Top Hard Rock Albums rank the week’s most popular rock and hard rock releases, respectively, by equivalent album units. Independent Albums reflects the week’s most popular albums released by independent record labels. Tastemaker Albums ranks the best-selling albums at independent and small chain record stores. Vinyl Albums lists the top-selling vinyl albums of the week across all sellers. Top Current Album Sales ranks the week’s biggest-selling current albums (not including catalog – older – releases).
Brother duo for KING & COUNTRY bows at No. 2 on Top Album Sales with What Are We Waiting For?, selling 28,000 copies. It’s the third top 10 on the tally for the act. The new album’s sales were bolstered by its availability in a CD signed edition on the act’s official webstore. (In total for the week, CD sales comprise nearly 22,000 – both signed and unsigned across all sellers, while digital album sales comprise 6,000. The set is due out on vinyl LP on May 20.)
Rex Orange County’s Who Cares? debuts at No. 3 on Top Album Sales with 20,000 sold, marking the second top 10 for the artist. Of the set’s starting sum, vinyl LP sales accounted for nearly half of its sales – 9,600 copies. The album also got an assist from a pair of boxed sets sold through the artist’s webstore.
Dolly Parton’s Run, Rose, Run falls 2-4 in its second week on Top Album Sales with 8,000 sold (down 49%) and the No. 1 Encanto soundtrack dips 4-5 with 7,000 (down 14%). Nirvana’s Nevermind vaults 11-6 (nearly 7,000) as it basks in the buzz generated by its album cut “Something in the Way” being used in the film The Batman. Olivia Rodrigo’s former No. 1 Sour rises 8-7 with 6,500 sold (down 4%).
Benny the Butcher’s Tana Talk 4 starts at No. 8 with 6,000 sold; Adele’s chart-topping 30 is a non-mover at No. 9 with 5,500 (down 17%) and Joell Ortiz and KXNG Crooked’s Rise & Fall of Slaughterhouse debuts at No. 10 with a little over 5,000.