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CHART STORY:
25 IS THE NEW 21

Queen Adele adds 787k to her tally for 25 (XL/Columbia), topping the HITS Album Sales Chart for a fourth consecutive week. At SPS, the much-coveted set scores 820k. That means her RTD will have hit 6m by the time you read this. As we head into the final week before Christmas, while it’s not a certainty, the potential for her to nab another 1m exists, and updated projections put her at 7.5m by year’s end. Yay!

It’s also worth noting that 25 sees a remarkably high 85% or so in physical sales. The London-bred songstress may just be single-handedly saving the biz. She also might be a wizard—we’re not sure.

Meanwhile, RCA’s Pentatonix continues to jingle up the holidays just as we predicted. That’s Christmas to Me—released in October of last year—rakes in another 122k and slips past RBMG/Def Jam’s Justin Bieber to nab the #2 slot. Their self-titled 2015 project also remains in the Top 15, currently at #13. Look for more big action through Xmas day.

The Biebs continues his outstanding run, jumping #5-3 in his fifth week out with 102k and a particularly impressive 173k at SPS, thanks to colossal streaming and big single sales. You better belieb that Purpose is here to stay.

This week’s biggest bow belongs to Def Jam’s August Alsina, who lands at #9. Arista Nashville/RCA newcomer Cam rounds out the Top 10 with her debut full-length, and the only other new release to make the Top 15, R. Kelly’s The Buffet (RCA), appears at #12.

Chris Stapleton’s Traveller (Mercury Nashville) sees a Grammy-related bump after being nominated for Album of the Year, Country Album and more, moving #8-4 with 52k.

Also recently recognized by the Recording Academy, Big Machine’s Taylor Swift breaks back into the Top 10.

On our SPS chart, The Voice season 9 winner Jordan Smith appears with approximately 50k on the strength of about 400k in single sales.

This week’s release schedule includes RCA’s Chris Brown and labelmate Cage the Elephant, Def Jam’s Pusha T and Disney’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens score. Keep in mind, when the Star Wars franchise was last restarted with The Phantom Menace in 1999, that score opened with 173k. Could the force be strong enough with this one to repeat 
a six-digit debut? You bet your light saber.

And as for the sneak attack trend, Republic’s Ariana Grande surprises fans with her Christmas & Chill. Stockings everywhere, prepare to get stuffed!

AJR ORBITS MERCURY
The Met brothers have a new label home. (5/18a)
TOP 20: KENDRICK
LEADS THE WAY
Another record-breaking debut week. (5/18a)
GREEN AS EVER
A think piece—cool! (5/18a)
LIVE FROM NEW YORK, IT'S HARRY ON APPLE
Won't be long now. (5/18a)
AN OPEN LETTER TO
KEVIN WEATHERLY
We can't wait to see what he's got up his sleeve. (5/18a)
SUPERSTAR RELEASES
Who's next?
MUSIC BIZ SPECIAL
It's Comic-Con for numbers geeks.
THE BIG CHEESE
Theories of evolution from 30,000 feet.
THE NEXT GIANT DEAL
A&R in overdrive.
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