Props to Justin Timberlake this week for saving the music industry from another set of ugly sales stats. We'll get to him in a moment.
First, the Canadian report. There are three new releases at the top of the album charts, pushing sales up 4% over last week and keeping things at just -2% from 2012. Physical CDs are down again and are now trailing last year by 17%. Meanwhile, digital album sales--units, not revenue, of course--are up 24% while digital singles are up 10%.
Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience debuted (as expected) at #1 with a first-week sales total of 46,000 units. This is the best one sales total of the year so far but exactly half of what Celine Dion did with Sans Attendre back in November.
At #2--a DISTANT #2--is Quebec's Marc Hervieux with 7,200 copies of Le Plasiris Demondes followed by Swollen Members at #3 with sales of 7,000 for Beautiful Death Machine.
As for the biggest single, it's still "Stay" from Rihanna, which saw another 28,000 downloads, pushing her past the 200,000 mark.
Moving to the US, JT put up some HUGE numbers wtih 968,000 units of The 20/20 Experience. That's still less than the 1.2 million copies Taylor Swift sold of Red back in October, but jeezus, that's a good number today. It's also a whopper compared to the 684,000 first-week copies he sold of Future Sex/LoveSounds in 2006. Of those 968,000 albums, 452,000 were digital-only. That's the third-highest number of its kind. And one more stat: by selling this many records in week 1, The 20/20 Experience is already the best-selling album of 2013.
Looking further down the chart--a LOT further down--we find country singer Kacey Musgraves at #2 with 43,000 copies of Same Trailer Different Park.
When it comes to digital singles, it's P!nk and "Just Give Me a Reason" with 241,000 downloads, moving up from #5 last week.
Finally, the most-streamed song in the US--a stat we don't get in Canada for a number of reasons--is "Suit and Tie" from Justin Timberlake wtih 1,671,215 listens.
All figures courtesy Nielsen Soundscan