After a period of confusion on last week’s Billboard album chart, when the top position largely came down to the validity of merchandise bundles, things have settled down a bit, and Billie Eilish returns the top spot for a third time with her debut album, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” (Interscope).
Songs from “When We All Fall Asleep” were streamed almost 65 million times in the United States last week, and 13,000 copies of the full album were sold, according to Nielsen. That gave Eilish the equivalent of 62,000 album sales, according to the formula that Nielsen and Billboard now use to compare the various means of music consumption. In a slow week, that was enough for “When We All Fall Asleep” to rise two spots and notch its third No. 1 in nine weeks.
Last week’s official chart was delayed by several days while Billboard studied the deals used by the top contenders to promote their albums: Tyler, the Creator offered copies of “Igor” with T-shirts and lawn signs that he sold through his website, while DJ Khaled used energy drinks and supplements to push “Father of Asahd.” Tyler’s album — or maybe just his bundles? — won out.
If there is a race for second place, DJ Khaled won it this week, while “Igor” fell to No. 3. The Memphis rapper Moneybagg Yo opened at No. 4 with “43va Heartless,” and Khalid is in fifth place with “Free Spirit.”
Also this week, the soundtrack to Disney’s new “Aladdin” opened at No. 6, while YG’s “4Real 4Real” started at No. 7. The K-pop group NCT 127 started at No. 11 with a six-song EP, “We Are Superhuman,” which had a modest streaming count — about 1.9 million — but sold 25,000 copies as a full package, more than any other title on this week’s chart.
Ben Sisario covers the music industry. He joined The Times in 1998, and has contributed to Rolling Stone, Spin, New York Press and WFUV. He also wrote “Doolittle,” a book about the Pixies. @sisario
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