Plus: ATEEZ’s ‘Spin Off: From the Witness’ debuts in top 10.
SZA’s SOS makes it a month at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, as the album spends a fourth straight and total week atop the list (dated Jan. 14). It earned 125,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending Jan. 5 (down 2%), according to Luminate.
SOS is the first album by a woman to spend its first four weeks at No. 1 in a year, since Adele’s 30 ruled for its first six weeks (Dec. 4, 2021 through Jan. 8, 2022-dated charts) and is the first album by a woman to have four consecutive weeks at No. 1 since 30’s six week-run at No. 1.
SOS is also the first R&B album by a woman to have four weeks at No. 1 since February of 2008, when Alicia Keys’ As I Am notched a fourth and final nonconsecutive week atop the list (Feb. 16, 2008). More strikingly, SOS is the first R&B album by a woman to spend its first four weeks at No. 1 in nearly 30 years, since Janet Jackson’s janet. ruled for its first six frames (June 5-July 10, 1993). (R&B albums are defined as those that have hit or are eligible for Billboard’s Top R&B Albums chart.)
Also in the top 10: holiday albums vacate the region (and chart) entirely after five dotted the top 10 a week ago, while ATEEZ notches its second top 10-charting album, as Spin Off: From the Witness debuts at No. 7.
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units, compiled by Luminate. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album. The new Jan. 14, 2023-dated chart will be posted in full on Billboard‘s website on Jan. 10. For all chart news, follow @billboard and @billboardcharts on both Twitter and Instagram.
Of SOS’ 125,000 equivalent album units earned, SEA units comprise 121,500 (down 4%, equaling 162.42 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks), album sales comprise 3,000 (up 289%) and TEA units comprise 500 (down 7%). SOS got a sales boost following the release of two new digital album variants of the set, released late on Jan. 5 exclusively in SZA’s Top Dawg Entertainment webstore. The two versions included two bonus tracks (“PSA” and a solo version of the album’s “Open Arms”) and sold for $4.99 each, and one of them boasted alternative cover art. SZA promoted the release on her social media, including her official Twitter.
The rest of the top six on the Billboard 200 consists of former No. 1s. Taylor Swift’s Midnights is a non-mover at No. 2 (117,000 equivalent album units; up 10%). The set’s album sales grew by 7% for the week (to 58,000) following the release of four new digital album variants in Swift’s webstore for one day only on Jan. 5. Each had alternative cover art, an exclusive bonus track (a short “behind the song” commentary from Swift about one of four different songs on the album) and sold for $4.99 each. The four alternative covers, if combined, would complete a clock face image – similar to the back covers of her CD and vinyl LP variants. Swift promoted the limited-time offer in her Instagram Stories.
Metro Boomin’s Heroes & Villains rises 4-3 (57,000 equivalent album units; down 2%), Drake and 21 Savage’s Her Loss bumps 6-4 (52,000; up 4%), Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti climbs 7-5 (50,000; up 4%) and Morgan Wallen’s Dangerous: The Double Album jumps 11-6 (42,000; up 6%).
ATEEZ collect its second top 10-charting album on the Billboard 200 as Spin Off: From the Witness debuts at No. 7. The set starts with 41,500 equivalent album units earned. Of that sum, album sales comprise 40,000; SEA units comprise 1,500 (equaling 2.11 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks) and TEA units comprise a negligible sum.
CDs comprise a little over 39,000 of Spin Off’s sales for the week, while digital album purchases comprise 1,000. Like many K-pop releases, the CD configuration of Spin Off was issued in collectible deluxe packages (six), each with a standard set of items and randomized elements (photocards and posters).
ATEEZ previously visited the top 10 with The World EP.1: Movement last June, debuting and peaking at No. 3.
Rounding out the Billboard 200’s new top 10: Zach Bryan’s American Heartbreak (22-8 with 33,000 equivalent album units; up 12%), Lil Baby’s chart-topping It’s Only Me (20-9 with 32,000; up 6%) and Harry Styles’ former No. 1 Harry’s House (19-10 with 29,000; down 4%). Bryan continues to benefit from his guest appearance in the Dec. 18 episode of the hit show Yellowstone, which has prominently featured his music in previous episodes.