The Decemberists' "The King is Dead" hits No. 1 on the sales charts
A week after indie-rock stalwarts Cake shocked the world by having a No. 1 album, in comes Portland, OR's the Decemberists atop the nation's album sales chart. "The King is Dead," the Decemberists' sixth album, sold a healthy 94,000 copies to take the pole position, according to figures compiled by Nielsen SoundScan.
The Decemberists, whose highest previous chart position came when "The Hazards of Love" hit No. 14 in 2009, actively promoted the well-reviewed new album with live webcasts and national TV appearances. They started a tour last week in New York that runs across the U.S. through the middle of February. They head to the U.K. in March.
The top five was filled with newcomers, but James Blunt, whose "You're Beautiful," which was the top song of 2005, missed the top 10 by fewer than 200 sales.
The 19th edition of Kidz Bop Kids sold 70,000 copies to debut at No. 2, a strong showing for the series that last hit No. 2 in 2006. The 12th volume, released in 2007, was the last one to top 70,000 in sales.
The children's record far outpaced the third album from Celtic soul trio the Script, "Science & Faith," which sold 49,000 units. The band had only charted once -- in 2009, when their self-titled album hit No. 64.
Social Distortion scored a personal high in chart position, coming in at No. 4 as "Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes" sold 46,000 copies.
Gregg Allman's first solo album in 14 years, "Low Country Blues," was tied to the No. 5 post, moving 36,000 copies.
Among the returning top 10 acts, only two posted sales increases. Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" was up 42 percent to 33,000 sold, rising six slots to No. 7, and Mumford & Sons' "Sigh No More" spiked 2 percent, selling 27,000 copies and dropping a slot to No. 10. Perry's album has now sold 1.08 million; Mumford & Sons is at 710,000.
Blunt's "Some Kind of Trouble," his third album, sold 26,000 copies to come in at No. 11.
Cake's "Compassion" took a 67 percent hit, sliding down to No. 25 on sales of 15,000. Selling about 1,000 more copies than Cake was the Pearl Jam concert compilation, "Live on Ten Legs," which debuted at No. 21.
Among other debuts, Brandon Heath's "Leaving Eden" sold 12,000 (No. 36); Times of Grace's "Hymn of a Broken Man" moved 10,000 (No. 44); and Ryan Adams' outtakes from some 2007 sessions, "III/IV," sold 8,000 (No. 59).