Plus: good news for Soundgarden, Green Day, the Weeknd
First! Deadmau5 told SPIN that the prophetically named One Direction are the future, so welcome to it. The English-Irish boy band has returned to the No. 1 slot on the Billboard 200 for the second time this year after their 2011 overseas debut, Up All Night, got its stateside launch back in March. The sequentially titular follow-up Take Me Home bowed at a whopping 540K, giving these X Factor acolytes the third largest initial sales week of the year following Taylor Swift's phenomenal 1.21 million start for Red, and Mumford and Sons' disconcerting 600K for Babel. While this was indeed a landmark sales week for the unlikely lads, their previous No. 1 was more historic (marking the first time in the chart's 56 years that a U.K. act has launched their debut album at No. 1) and besides, one-man(?) boy band Justin Bieber beat these n00bs to the deuce mark earlier this year. By following up his November 2011 Christmas set, Under the Mistletoe, with June's Believe, he became the first star in 2012 to notch a second No. 1 in fewer than 12 months. Also, he was dope at the AMAs.
2 to 10: With 145K units moved of Red this past week, Swift still had a much buffer No. 2 than a lot of artists' Nos. 1 this year (we're looking at you, TobyMac). She's logged 1.89 million so far — still a long way to go before catching up with Adele's 2012-dominating sales of her 2011 album, 21 (4M). After scoring this week's considerable No. 1 win, American Tweendom logs a second victory by sending The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 all the way to No. 3 (93K). That said, the soundtrack is not without its bewitching charms: original jams from Feist, St. Vincent, and POP ETC, plus that super sappy Green Day song about going blind because your arms fell off (or something). Rod Stewart's Merry Christmas, Baby slipped three spots to No. 6 but actually rose 8 percent in sales — expect the latter trend to continue as the holiday of holidays approaches — Christina Aguilera's Lotus premiered at a disappointing (for her) No. 7 (73K). The rest is good news, rung in by the fortuitous exit of the Mumfords: No. 4 goes to the Weekend's Trilogy (86K), No. 5 to Soundgarden's King Animal (83K), No. 9 to Green Day's ¡Dos!, and No. 10 to Lana Del Rey's Paradise. Don't ask us about No. 8.
A Girl's Best Friend: Actually, like it or not, Rihanna's "Diamonds" might be your best friend, too, seeing as it's prevented Maroon 5's "One More Night" from becoming the biggest song of 2012. That blue-eyed clunker of a single was tied with Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" for longest run on top of the Hot 100 list — nine weeks, in which our boy PSY was continually blocked from the winner's corral — but Riri's dominance of last week's chart means that neither of those shitty songs will notch an unmuddled victory. Awesome. Also, this is the 777 psychopath's 12th Hot topper, which ties her with Madonna and the Supremes in the fourth-highest-scoring bracket of the chart. Only the Beatles, Mariah Carey, and Michael Jackson have done better.
Ho! Hey! Turkey Day! They aren't Led Zeppelin's favorite folk act, nor are they Mark E. Smith's least favorite, but we've got no guff with Denver's Lumineers squeaking into the Hot 100's Top 10 with their bluegrass-pop riser "Ho Hey." So watch this, and be thankful to have something you can bond with dad about over the Thanksgiving bird: