Elvis, Stones Top Billboard Albums Chart: What Year Is This?

Elvis 30 #1 Hits sold more than 336,000 copies last week.

When Neil Young sang “The King is gone but he’s not forgotten,” and the Rolling Stones covered Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away,” it’s doubtful either believed the lines would hold true more than 20 years later. But that’s just the case on next week’s Billboard albums chart.

Elvis Presley and the Rolling Stones will reside in the #1 and #2 positions, respectively, according to SoundScan figures released Wednesday (October 9). Elvis 30 #1 Hits sold more than 336,000 copies last week to bring the double album’s two-week sales to more than 837,000 copies. The Rolling Stones, knee deep into their Licks World Tour and the subject of a multimedia blitz punctuated by a shirtless and shrivel-skinned Keith Richards gracing the cover of Rolling Stone, saw their umpteenth greatest-hits collection, Forty Licks, a double album featuring four new songs, move more than 309,000 copies in its first week out.

Thank goodness for Xzibit to remind us that we’ve progressed beyond the 20th century. The X man’s futuristic flavored Man Vs. Machine, the rapper’s fourth album, sold more than 156,000 copies to take the #3 spot.

Xzibit placed just before the LP chronicling America’s latest voyeuristic TV obsession, American Idol – Greatest Moments. Featuring cuts by almost-idols such as Justin Guarini, Nikki McKibbin and Tamyra Gray, as well as the lion’s share devoted to series champ Kelly Clarkson, the LP sold more than 146,000 copies last week.

The Young and the Hopeless proved to be a promising second album for Good Charlotte, the pop-punk quartet fronted by twin brothers Joel and Benji. The LP, led by first single “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous,” will make its chart debut at #7.

Rounding out next week’s top 10 will be the Dixie Chicks’ Home, dropping three places to #5; Avril Lavigne’s Let Go, losing the same ground and occupying the #6 slot; Nelly’s Nellyville, also taking a similar slide to #8; Eminem’s The Eminem Show dropping a deuce to #9; and Disturbed’s Believe, losing faith to the tune of six spots and 34,000 copies, at #10.

Country singer LeAnn Rimes’ Twisted Angel will land at #12 with more than 65,000 copies sold; jazz pianist/singer Diana Krall’s Live in Paris will come in at #18; and Floetry’s Floetic, featuring the title track as first single, will float in at #19 to close out next week’s top 20 chart debuts.

Initially released approximately one year ago, Incubus’ Morning View and the Strokes’ Is This It received chart gooses thanks to reissues with bonus DVD footage, a practice used recently with releases by P.O.D. and Mary J. Blige that is becoming increasingly commonplace. With the addition of concert footage and videos, sales of Incubus’ fourth album increased by nearly 11,000, causing its chart position to change from #139 to #58. The Strokes’ debut LP, meanwhile, more than doubled its previous weekly tally of 7,000 copies and will leap 83 spots to #73.

Conversely, Ryan Adams’ Demolition, a collection of previously unreleased demos that made its chart debut at #28, caught the wrecking ball after diehard fans snatched it up during its first week and will plummet down to #96.

Other notable debuts include the Christian compilation Wow Hits 2003, featuring cuts from Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith, among others, at #34; Dire Straits frontman Mark Knopfler’s Ragpicker’s Dream, his fourth solo album, at #38; Sting and the Police’s The Very Best of Sting & the Police at #46; female R&B quartet Isyss’ debut, The Way We Do, at #55; soul-pop quintet 3rd Storee’s Get With Me at #91; the various Christian artists compilation Wow Christmas at #131; electronic duo’s Thievery Corporation’s Richest Man in Babylon at #150; Selena’s greatest English and Spanish hits compilation Ones at #162; and Cruel Smile, Elvis Costello’s odds and sods companion to his latest album, When I Was Cruel, at #180.