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"Moving the Metallica up was tough, but our team definitely responded well, and we got the job done. This was also a great week for Jewel, and I think it’s a terrific record, which never hurts."
——Best Buy’s Lon Lindeland

LOOK UP IN ANGER!

Jewel Shines, Train Gets a-Rolling, but This Week Belongs to the Headbangers
When was the last time a rock & roll band was early for anything?

After Elektra pushed its release forward to last Thursday in an effort to thwart online pirates, Metallica’s hotly anticipated St. Anger (its first studio effort in six years) powered to a chart-topping debut, selling 416k in less than a week.

With Atlantic’s new-look Jewel making an impressive bow—or should we say curtsy?—behind the metal legends, WMG topper Roger Ames kept his hot streak going, nailing the top two spots, eight out of the Top 20 and 11 out of the Top 25, spurred by plenty of intra-music-group competition.

Aware/Columbia’s smooth-rocking Train (#4) and RCA Nashville’s Lonestar (#6) were the other two Top 10 newcomers.

Best Buy retailer Lon Lindeland, who denied he tunneled into San Quentin for the Metallica video shoot, is pleased to see three new records in the Top Five: "Moving the Metallica up was tough, but our team definitely responded well, and we got the job done. This was also a great week for Jewel, and I think it’s a terrific record, which never hurts."

Bulletproof Shady/Aftermath/Interscope hip-hop icon 50 Cent continued his reign, with a #3 finish and a 100k-plus sales week. Wind-up’s Evanescence (#5), Def Jam South/UMG Strx.’s 2 Fast 2 Furious (#7, with a 10% boost from the film’s #1 box office opening), Walt Disney’s Lizzie McGuire Movie soundtrack (#8), RCA’s Kelly Clarkson (#9) and Blue Note’s Norah Jones (#10) round out the Top 10.

The other Top 50 debuts were Atlantic/Atl G’s Sugar Ray (#24), Columbia rock veteran John Mellencamp (#27) and Side One Dummy’s Warped Tour 2003 compilation (#47).

Double-digit increases were registered by a pair of rock-critics’ darlings in V2’s White Stripes (21-15, up 14%) and Capitol’s Coldplay (22-17, 11%).

Next week. Capitol’s Radiohead and J’s ailing soul crooner Luther Vandross, whose new album could surprise with a huge demand, hit the streets. Could a three-way horserace for the top spot be shaping up with holdovers Metallica, in their first full week on the streets.

Added Lindeland: "We’re really looking forward to those two releases. It beats the hell out of watching the WNBA on the Oxygen network."

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