Music data analysis company BuzzAngle has provided their first annual, comprehensive report on music consumption, and it features some fascinating revelations about what music people bought and streamed in 2016. Vinyl sales continued to grow—up 25.9% from 2015—even as overall album sales decreased by 15.6%. The list of top vinyl releases provided some insight as to the consumer base that was driving these sales–or rather, it demonstrates that it’s a somewhat unlikely, hard-to-characterize mix.
Among the top ten are the expected classic titles, which are circulated in glossy reissue and readily available at your local Barnes and Noble or Urban Outfitters: The Beatles’s Abbey Road, Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue, and Bob Marley’s Legend compilation. Then there are crucial titles by recently deceased icons: Prince’s Purple Rain and David Bowie’s Blackstar, most notably.
But a surprising act leads the list of contemporary albums that made the Top 10: alt-rap-rockers Twenty One Pilots, who not only scored the #1-selling vinyl album with their 2015 LP Blurryface, but charted 2013’s Vessel at #9 as well. With 49k in sales, Blurryface sold roughly 8,000 copies more than its nearest competition, Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black (It was also the #7 best-selling album of the year overall).
2016 chart analyses have demonstrated that Twenty One Pilots were effectively the biggest non-legacy rock act in the country last year, with one of their three major singles keeping them at the top of the Hot Rock Songs charts for a full 52 weeks.
See the top 20 of BuzzAngle’s list of top-selling vinyl albums below.