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Coldplay's 740k total represents the biggest first week for any new release in Capitol's history
THE FEARSOME FOURSOME
Coldplay Leads a Pack of Devastating Debuts, as Super Tuesday Lives Up to Its Billing
X&Y marks the spot—specifically the #1 spot on the album chart, as Capitol sees that savvy setup effort on Coldplay pay off to the tune of 740k. That total represents the biggest first week for any new release in Capitol's history, putting the British band in the rarefied rock territory presently inhabited only by U2 (who did 839k on their 2004 album), and there’s no telling how big X&Y will be when all is said and done. 

And that’s not all, kiddies, not by a long shot. Coldplay was but one of four debut albums to rocket onto the charts, with the Black Eyed PeasMonkey Business (A&M/Interscope) easily taking the #2 position, selling nearly 100k more than the forecasters had predicted just days ago to finish at a sizzling 295k, propelled by another smash single from the pop-hop stars.

Behind the Peas at #3 were the White Stripes, the only member of the big four to fall short of expectations but still moving 171k units on the critically acclaimed (if challenging) Get Behind Me Satan (V2).

Behind the Stripes at #4 was Shakira, whose 160k on Fijacion Oral (Epic) absolutely obliterated the record for the biggest-selling Spanish-language bow (previous champ Ricky Martin did 65k). With a start like that, this bombshell could become the nation of Colombia’s second-biggest legal export (snort, snort).

Rounding out the Top 5 is Mariah Carey’s Emancipation of Mimi (Island/IDJ), a phenomenon in its own right and the only non-debut to sell more than 100k, as she adds another 151k to her tally.

After Mariah, there’s a precipitous drop-off, with #6 System of a Down (American/Columbia), doing 86k, #7 Gwen Stefani (Interscope) moving 70k, #8 Toby Keith (DreamWorks Nashville) lassoing 70k, #9 Audioslave (Interscope/Epic) rolling up 66k and #10Kelly Clarkson (RCA/RMG) selling 65k. The Stefani and Clarkson albums are reaping the ongoing benefit of multiple hit singles. 

The other key plot point involves rock’s two-month-long hot streak, which reaches new heights with Coldplay’s stunning performance, along with the presence of four rock bands in the Top 10.

Carrying the rock banner into battle next week are the Foo Fighters, who’ll be pitted against former boy band the Backstreet Boys, rotund rapper Fat Joe and Alanis Morissette, who begins her six-week exclusive run at Starbucks.

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