Three weeks after debuting at #1, Now That's What I Call Music! 16 has returned to the top of the Billboard albums chart.
The 20-track compilation, which features songs from Outkast, D12 and Britney Spears, sold more than 207,000 copies last week, according to SoundScan, enough to loosen Ashlee Simpson's Autobiography from its two-week hold on the top slot.
Now and Autobiography have been the top two albums since the latter was released five weeks ago. Simpson's LP debuted at #1 in July, slipping to #2 when Now entered the chart on top a week later. The same movement will happen next week, as Autobiography's tally of more than 164,000 copies places it directly behind the hit-singles collection.
On the strength of three shows last week, Prince's Musicology (copies of which are included in the ticket price of his concerts, and thus count toward the charts) will take a six-spot leap up to #3. Musicology sold more than 98,000 copies last week, a 34 percent bump from the previous week's sales. Musicology has been a top-20 staple since its release in April, save for one week last month when it plummeted to #64.
The West side reigns at #4 with 213's debut album, which has been 13 years in the making. The supergroup — composed of Snoop Dogg, Warren G and Nate Dogg — moved more than 95,000 copies of The Hard Way on the back of its single, "Groupie Luv."
And Maroon 5 continue to climb skyward on the wings of their omnipresent singles. As Songs About Jane's third single, "She Will Be Loved," keeps spinning mightily at radio, the album sold another 72,000 copies to advance six spots and re-enter the top 10 at #6.
Ashlee Simpson's ex Ryan Cabrera is taking a cue from his former flame with a top-10 debut of his own. The spikey-haired singer will land at #8 with his debut, Take It All Away, which sold more than 66,000 copies.
The rest of the top 10 will see Usher's Confessions stepping from #4 to #5 (with more than 78,000 copies sold last week); Shyne's Godfather Buried Alive falling four spots to #7 (67,000); Avril Lavigne's Under My Skin moving ahead one notch to #9 (63,000); and Big & Rich's Horse of a Different Color doing the same to #10 (63,000).
The chart's only other top-40 debut comes courtesy of Memphis rockers Saliva, whose fourth album, Survival of the Sickest, will land at #20, as its title track remains a hit single at rock radio.
Other notable chart debuts include Queen's Greatest Hits: We Will Rock You at #42; the compilation Future Soundtrack for America, which features contributions from Jimmy Eat World, Blink-182 and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs at #56; indie-pop outfit Rilo Kiley's third album, More Adventurous, at #161; and Glassjaw side project Head Automatica's Decadence at #169.