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Big Machine country phenom Taylor Swift’s reign of 11 weeks at #1 comes to an end, though her 51k is still enough to land the runner-up slot, ahead of debuting Anti act Neko Case at #3 with 47k.

U2’S LINE STARTS HERE

Neko Case Bows at #2, Lady GaGa Rises into Top 5, Kelly Clarkson Up Next
Never mind No Line on the Horizon.

U2 has drawn a line on the sand, as their new Interscope album debuts at #1 with the year’s largest one-week total of 480k, nearly a third of them downloads on either Amazon (who were selling it for $3.99) or Apple’s iTunes.

By comparison, the band’s previous album, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, which came out in Nov. 2004, hit the streets with 840k in first-week sales, eventually moving 3.25 million in the U.S. and 9 million worldwide, with eight Grammy awards, including Album and Song of the Year. Of course, those were different times, though the band did pitch in with a slew of TV appearances, including an entire week on Letterman, an ABC Good Morning America performance and three live radio interview shows this week in L.A., Chicago and Boston.

Big Machine country phenom Taylor Swift’s reign of 11 weeks at #1 comes to an end, though her 51k is still enough to land the runner-up slot, ahead of debuting Anti act Neko Case at #3 with 47k.

Interscope’s surging Lady GaGa, up 26%, is now #4, while Nickelback’s Roadrunner album, Dark Horse, rounds out the Top 5.

Epic’s The Fray (#6, +7%), J Records/RMG’s Jamie Foxx (#7), Columbia’s Beyonce (#8), Roc-a-Fella/IDJ’s Kanye West (#9) and Grand Hustle/Atlantic’s T.I. (#10) all remain on the leader board.

Thrive’s Total Dance 2009 is the week’s other top debut, landing at #12, along with Warner Bros.Watchmen soundtrack (#31), Roadrunner’s Theory of a Deadman (#45) and Atlantic’s Rush Retrospective 3 album (#49). 

Also showing growth is Britney SpearsJive/JLG album Circus (#25-16) as her tour opens up to rave reviews, fueled by two Top 5 pop hits.

This week’s retail releases include Kelly Clarkson’s RCA/RMG album, All I Ever Wanted, fueled by the hit single, “My Life Would Suck Without You,” Def Jam’s The-Dream with his album Love vs. Money and its twin singles, “My Love” (featuring Mariah Carey) and “Rockin’ That Thang,” as well as Capitol soul man J. Holiday.

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