May 21, 2009 / 12:48 AM / 10 years ago

Green Day rule U.S. and international pop charts

LOS ANGELES (Billboard) - Green Day easily grabbed the top spot on the U.S. album chart, and also went to No. 1 in at least 13 other countries, the punk trio’s label said on Wednesday.

Members of Green Day, Mike Dirnt (L), Tre Cool (C) and Billie Joe Armstrong (R) present the Grammy for Album of the Year at the 51st annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, February 8, 2009. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

“21st Century Breakdown” sold 214,828 copies across the United States during the week ended May 17, according to Warner Bros. Records. But it was on sale for only three days, having reached stores on Friday instead of the usual Tuesday.

The band’s previous album, 2004’s “American Idiot,” which also debuted at No. 1, sold 267,000 copies during its first six days. Both “Breakdown” and “Idiot” were hampered by not being stocked in Wal-Mart stores, as the big-box giant declines to stock albums that carry parental advisory stickers. (Neither album was available in an edited version.)

The sales figure for “Breakdown” will perhaps grow on next week’s chart, when it will have a full week’s worth of sales reflected on the tally. However, Eminem’s “Relapse” — which was released Tuesday — is expected to take over the top slot on the Billboard 200 with sales possibly reaching 650,000 copies.

“Breakdown” also went to No. 1 in the U.K., Canada, Japan, France, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Argentina, Mexico, South Korea, Sweden, South Africa, and New Zealand, with more chart-topping performances expected by the end of the week, Warner Bros. said.

Elsewhere on the Billboard 200, the “Hannah Montana” movie soundtrack held at No. 2 with 68,000 copies. Rapper Cam’Ron’s “Crime Pays,” his first release since 2006, debuted at No. 3 with 43,000 copies.

Lady GaGa’s “The Fame” moved up two slots to No. 4 with 41,000, while Rascal Flatts’ “Unstoppable” slipped one to No. 5 with 33,000.

Bob Dylan’s “Together Through Life” fell one to No. 6, Taylor Swift’s “Fearless” held at No. 7, reigning champ Chrisette Michele’s “Epiphany” slid to No. 8, Rick Ross’ “Deeper Than Rap” dropped four to No. 9, and Ciara’s “Fantasy Ride” fell seven to No. 10.

Rapper Paul Wall’s “Fast Life” entered at No. 15 with 22,000. His last set, “Get Money Stay True,” bowed at No. 8 with 92,000 in 2007. He topped the tally with “The Peoples Champ” in 2005 when that set opened at No. 1 with 176,000.

Roots rocker Steve Earle achieved the highest charting album of his career as his “Townes” set bowed at No. 19 with 18,000. The effort is comprised of 15 songs written by late singer/songwriter Townes Van Zandt.

New rock band Parachute landed at No. 40 with its debut album “Losing Sleep,” starting with 11,000 solely from sales through the iTunes Store. The digital retailer got the set one week early — all other physical and digital retailers releases the album Tuesday. Not coincidentally, the set’s song “Under Control” was promoted as a free single of the week in the iTunes Store, which likely garnered a lot of consumers to snap up the economically priced $6.99 album.

Overall album sales in this past chart week fell 10.5 percent from the previous week to 5.82 million units, and were off 21.6 percent from the year-ago period. Sales so far this year are off 13.3 percent from the same period in 2008.

Editing by Dean Gooodman

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