Country duo sitting pretty, but Taylor Swift storm on the horizon
Country act Sugarland’s “The Incredible Machine” arrived at No. 1 on last week’s U.S. album chart, with Kings of Leon nipping at its heels.Duo of Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush saw first-week sales of 203,000 for their Mercury Nashville set, according to Nielsen SoundScan figures for the week ending Sunday. It’s their third chart-topping set. They succeed fellow country acts Toby Keith, Kenny Chesney and the Zac Brown Band at the pinnacle. Sugarland will have a short time to savor its socko debut, as country-pop princess Taylor Swift’s “Speak Now,” released Monday, is expected to sweep to the top this week. Familial Tennessee band Kings of Leon placed strongly. Group’s “Come Around Sundown” (RCA) moved in at No. 2 with a 184,000-unit stanza. It bested the No. 5 bow of their previous collection, “Only by the Night,” which contained this year’s record of the year Grammy winner “Use Somebody.” Entering at No. 3 was “The Union” (Decca), a collaboration by Elton John and his piano-playing Oklahoma inspiration, Leon Russell. T Bone Burnett-produced set shifted 80,000. It was John’s best-charting release since “Blue Moves,” issued in 1976 during his bestselling heyday; for Russell, second only to his 1972 hit “Carny,” which reached No. 2. Another familiar face, Rod Stewart, moved in at No. 4 with “Fly Me to the Moon … The Great American Songbook Volume V” (J Records). Vet rocker’s latest recital of the standard catalog reaped opening sales of 79,000. All five volumes have reached the top 10. Lil Wayne’s “I Am Not a Human Being” (Cash Money), which ascended to No. 1 last week after its physical debut, fell to No. 5 with a 65,000-unit week (off 49%). “The Rocky Horror Glee Show” (Columbia), latest spin-off of the Fox TV hit, debuted at No. 6 on sales of 48,000. Set features the “Glee” cast interpreting seven songs that originated in the cult Richard O’Brien-penned tuner. Latin luminary Shakira’s Spanish-language “Sale el Sol” (Columbia) settled in at No. 7 with a 46,000-unit tally. Colombian songstress’ previous album in her native tongue, “Fijacion Oral Vol. 1″ (2005), entered at No. 4 with 157,000 copies sold. Eminem’s “Recovery” (Interscope) dipped three positions to No. 8 on a 43,000-unit frame. Christian music unit Third Day’s “Move” (Essential) bowed at No. 9 with 37,000. Previous week’s No. 2 entry, Darius Rucker’s “Charleston SC 1966,” fell eight rungs to No. 10, about 300 units behind Third Day. This week, it’s all about Taylor.