Outkast Top Billboard Albums Chart For Fifth Time

The Very Best of Sheryl Crow jumps from #6 to #2 in week's biggest top-10 leap.

Five’s the magic number for Outkast. Speakerboxxx/ The Love Below will once again place at #1 on the Billboard albums chart, the fifth time in the top slot for Dre and Big Boi’s fifth album.

The double album sold more than 97,000 copies to rule the roost on next week’s chart, according to SoundScan. Outkast will return to #1 from the #3 spot. It debuted on top where it remained for two weeks when it was released in September and had another two-week penthouse stay for the period spanning the last week of 2003 and the first of 2004.

By moving more than 73,000 copies, The Very Best of Sheryl Crow will make the longest chart stride among the top 10 albums, jumping from #6 to #2 11 weeks after its release. The Diary of Alicia Keys will slip a spot to #3, with more than 69,000 copies sold. Josh Groban’s Closer, which made a surprising appearance in the
top slot last week after nine weeks out, reverses Crow’s four-spot differential. It moves to #5 by selling more than 65,000 copies, enough to push the album above the 2 million mark.

The rest of next week’s top 10 finds Toby Keith’s Shock’n Y’all up a peg to #4 (with more than 66,000 copies sold); Now That’s What I Call Music! Vol. 14 doing the same down to #6 (64,000); and No Doubt’s Singles 1992-2003 dropping three spots to #7 (64,000). Ruben Studdard’s Soulful (63,000), Evanescence’s Fallen (61,000) and Jay-Z’s The Black Album (54,000) will hold positions #8, #9 and #10, respectively.

Stone Cold Steve Austin, Kurt Angle and the Dudley Boys may have a career in music if they ever hang up their tights and retire from the squared circle. WWE Originals, a 17-track LP of original songs recorded by those pro wrestlers and others, will be next week’s highest charting debut, at #12.

Britney Spears had the pleasure of selling more records last week than she did the week before, the only top-20 artist to do so. In the Zone sales jumped 11 percent, or roughly 5,300 copies, to propel Spears’ fourth album from #16 to #11.

Following their appearance on “TRL” ‘s “Breakout Stars” week, Maroon 5 will jump from #57 to #37 with their debut album, Songs About Jane. The album began the year at #120, but the recent success of “Harder to Breathe” helped it along. With second single “This Love” out, and a trek with John Mayer on the horizon, the future looks bright for the Los Angeles quintet.

The week leading up to Michael Jackson’s arraignment on charges of child molestation was not kind to sales of his Number Ones. After leaping from #39 to #15 in the wake of a CBS TV special promoting the album last week, the hits collection will return to nearly the same spot, #40, with weekly sales cut by half.

Meanwhile, the week after B2K announced their split was equally harsh on the R&B group. Sales of You Got Served, the soundtrack album to the boys’ first movie, have never been stellar, and next week’s chart will reflect an even greater depression. The album will dip 22 spots to #98 while losing a quarter of its weekly take. After four weeks, the album has sold more than 158,000 copies.

Other notable debuts on next week’s chart include The Best of Keith Sweat: Make You Sweat at #31; electronic duo Crystal Method’s third album, Legion of Boom, at #36 and Florida metalheads Iced Earth’sGlorious Burden at #145.