The No. 1 spot on the Billboard Top 200 chart has been battled over with “Game of Thrones”-like intensity every week of 2015 to date. A new contender enters the power struggle this week: Imagine Dragons’ “Smoke + Mirrors” claimed the top spot with its 195,000-unit debut, according to Nielsen Music data for the week ending Feb. 22.
“Smoke + Mirrors” did not rely on any sleight of hand to reach No. 1, but it surely did benefit from a well-placed Target ad during the Grammy telecast two weeks ago. Imagine Dragons used four minutes of Target’s advertising time to perform their song “Shots” live from Las Vegas in the Grammys’ first-ever live ad.
Imagine Dragons’ impressive outing knocks Drake down to No. 2, who reigned from the top spot of last week’s chart with his surprise release of “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late,” which moved 535,000 units in its debut. Drizzy’s mixtape sold 187,000 units this week, a 65% drop.
Drake’s moment on top was also the result of a clash of kings of sorts, with his debut knocking Taylor Swift out of her No. 1 spot for the record-breaking “1989.” With Imagine Dragons in the mix, Swift is now slumming it in the chart’s fourth spot, moving just 93,000 units in the past week, down 26%.
Another holdover from charts past is the popular soundtrack to “Fifty Shades of Grey,” which has slipped to No. 3 after debuting right behind Drake last week. The album, which features cuts from Beyonce, Ellie Goulding and The Weeknd, dropped 36% this week with 165,000 units sold. This dip mirrors the box office trend of the film it accompanies, with the “Fifty Shades” film making only $23.2 million over the weekend (down 73% from its massive $85.1 million debut).
The 2015 Grammy winners continue to hold strong in the top 10, with Ed Sheeran’s “X” coming in at No. 5 with 81,000 units and Sam Smith’s “In the Lonely Hour” at No. 6 with 72,000 units moved. But despite their top-10 status, both gentlemen still suffered drops this week, with Smith dropping 56% from the chart’s third place and Sheeran slipping 42% from No. 4.
Maroon 5’s “V” climbs to the No. 7 spot, up from 10th place last week, with 47,000 units moved. This small surge is likely the result of the band’s Academy Awards performance Sunday night, which beat out Lady Gaga for the evening’s most Shazamed performance.
Coming in eighth is Meghan Trainor’s “Title” with 44,000 units moved, a 39% dip from her No. 6 ranking last week. After Trainor comes Nicki Minaj, whose “Pinkprint” returns to the top 10 in ninth place after spending last week at No. 12. Minaj sold 41,000 units. Also reclaiming a prestige ranking is Hozier, back in tenth place after a few weeks in the teens, with 40,000 units moved.