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MAXWELL THAT ENDS WELL!!!
Juvenile Bows Big, Adema Rocks Hard, But This Week, It's All About Columbia's Maxwell
He came, he got all sexy and stuff, he conquered.

Columbia's sultry R&B song master Maxwell dominated this week's Top 50 Album chart, posting a monster #1 debut and serving notice that his whole burgeoning "neo-soul" movement is not just something invented by our Editor In Chief during his many hours alone with just a computer and a bottle of skin moisturizer.

According to Tower Records' Bob Feterl (yes, that's really his name), "Maxwell is the king of crooners. People have been talking about it for months. It's been delayed, and I think that it only helped build up the momentum. It debuted easily at #1 for us."

Of course, Maxwell wasn't the only killer debut this week. Check out Cash Money/Universal's Juvenile, who bowed at an impressive #3. Take it Bob:

"Juvenile's big debut was no surprise. He has a huge fan base, and the sales reflected that."

Besides Maxwell and Juvenile, this week's Top 5 is rounded out by Virgin's "Now 7" at #2, J's remarkable Alicia Keys at #4 and Jive's still cute and vibrant NSYNC at #5.

But it was a #22 debut by Arista rock band (that's right, we said "Arista rock band") Adema, which not only had a great first week but scored better first-week numbers than such current chart rock monsters as Linkin Park and Sum 41. That says something. Um, Bob. Will you say something?

Arista is breaking a rock act with Adema. That's going to be a very big record. It should stay in our Top 10 or 15 for the foreseeable future."

And of course, there's the Aaliyah tragedy, which occurred last Saturday night. Retailers nationwide are reporting that fans are doing a lot of their mourning in music stores.

"The Aaliyah tragedy has brought a phenomenal reaction from her fans. People have covered every inch of the ad board in front of our Sunset store," said Feterl. "They've been camping out with candles and stuffed animals."

Summer may be ending, but it's really just the beginning, kids. Our annual march to the holiday buying season heats up even more next week with chart debuts from Roadrunner/IDJ's Slipknot, Universal's Afroman, MCA's Mary J. Blige, Loud/Columbia's Krayzie Bone and Motown's Brian McKnight among others.

Happy holidays, everyone.

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