Former teen idols take to charts

Avril Lavigne’s “The Best Damn Thing” held onto the No. 1 spot on the nation’s album sales chart for the second straight week, but two former teen idols had the debuts that will generate the chart chitchat.

Neil Sedaka, who has not been in the top 30 for 31 years, and Donny Osmond, who hasn’t charted that high in 33, made their returns in the week ended Sunday.

Lavigne’s album sold 122,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan, easily outpacing the debut sesh of R&B singer Joe’s “Ain’t Nothing Like Me” (Jive), which sold 98,000. It is Joe’s second No. 2 album in his six-album career.

The second full-length disc from Brit rockers the Arctic Monkeys entered at No. 7 as their “Favourite Worst Nightmare” (Domino) sold 44,000 copies. Band’s first single, “Brianstorm,” is the bestselling single in the U.S.

Sedaka’s “The Definitive Collection” (Razor & Tie) opened at No. 22 on sales of 24,000. His last album in the top 30 was “Steppin’ Out” in 1976.

Osmond’s newly recorded “Love Songs of the ’70s” (Decca) entered at No. 27, selling 22,000 copies. His two 1973 albums, “My Best to You” and “Alone Together,” were the last to reach the top 30. Osmond laid low in the 1980s and ’90s; this release is his fourth in the 21st century.

The other top 40 debut came from another ’70s recording artist, Chuck Brown, whose go-go music never spread far beyond Washington, D.C., in its heyday. His disc “We’re About the Business” (Raw Venture) sold 17,000 to open at No. 37.

Brown had a smash hit in 1979 with “Bustin’ Loose” ; “Business” is his fifth disc for Raw Venture in the last 10 years.

“In Sort Diaboli” (Nuclear Blast), by Dimmu Borgir, opened at No. 43 on sales of 14,000. The Norwegian metal band’s 11th album is its first to crack the top 100.

Last week’s “American Idol” impact was minor: Rascal Flatts’ “Me and My Gang” rose 3,000 units to 23,000 (No. 23); sales of Josh Groban’s “Awake” climbed by 4,400 to 11,000 (No. 56); and Il Divo returned to the top 200 as “Siempre” sold 8,000 (No. 88) and “Ancora” moved 4,000.

Sales for the first four months of the year are down more than 16%.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more