Disturbed’s Indestructible Knocks Usher Off Top Of Billboard Chart

Pre-release sales of Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III bring album to the top 200 a week early.

At this point, it’s been well established that Chicago’s Disturbed are one of the biggest hard-rock outfits in all the land. They’ve sold millions of records, sold out hundreds of shows and been tapped to headline one of this summer’s heaviest tours .

So, naturally, no one batted an eyelash when the boys decided to dub their fourth studio LP Indestructible. And with close to 253,000 copies sold during the album’s first week on record-store shelves, Disturbed truly live up to the title; Indestructible is the band’s third record to debut at #1 on the Billboard albums sales chart.

According to the most recent Nielsen SoundScan tallies, Disturbed’s latest joins 2005′s Ten Thousand Fists and 2002′s Believe, opening on top during what was a strong week, overall, for the music industry. While the new album bests the scan total put forth by Ten Thousand Fists (which sold 238,500 during week one), it couldn’t outperform the 283,600 in sales generated by Believe.

Disturbed’s Indestructible may lead the pack, but it was one of five albums on the chart to generate six-digit sales totals — something that, in the age of the download, does not happen often. In addition, the record was one of 20 new releases that will be appear on next week’s top 200 — but one of those albums wasn’t supposed to enter the chart until a week later.

Rapper Lil Wayne‘s long-awaited Tha Carter III wasn’t officially released until June 10, but the record still managed to enter next week’s chart at #167 with 3,900 copies sold nationwide. Clearly, some legitimate record stores began selling the disc before its actual release date — perhaps as soon as copies arrived from distributors. It remains to be seen how these premature sales might affect the LP’s standing on the following week’s chart; Wayne is poised to claim the #1 spot, with early indicators suggesting he could sell more than 800,000 units, making it the year’s best performer by far.

Along with Disturbed’s LP, next week’s top 10 will include five other newcomers, including the 28th installment in the Now That’s What I Call Music! compilation series, which enters at #2 with 185,000 sold. The disc features tracks from Leona Lewis, Britney Spears, Jordin Sparks, OneRepublic and Daughtry, among others. Finishing at #4, with 126,000 scans, is Weezer‘s latest, the self-titled red album, followed at #5 by Journey‘s Revelation, with 105,000 sold. Ashanti‘s comeback album, Declaration, bows at #6, selling 86,300 copies, while Jewel‘s Perfectly Clear enters at #8 with sales reported at 47,7000.

The rest of the top 10 is rounded out by Usher‘s Here I Stand at #3 (with 144,600 sold), the “Sex and the City” soundtrack at #7 (60,000), 3 Doors Down‘s self-titled latest at #9 (45,000) and Chris Brown‘s Exclusive at #10 (36,200).

Elsewhere on the chart, Swedish melodic death-metallers Opeth‘s Watershed opens at #23, having sold close to 20,000 units, while Radiohead‘s The Best Of debuts at #26 with 18,300 scans. Former Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale‘s Wanderlust follows at #32 with 15,400 in first-week scans, while the 2008 Warped Tour compilation claims the chart’s #34 position with 14,500 sold. Bret MichaelsRock My World opens at #39 with 13,400 sold.

R&B artist Lalah Hathaway‘s Self Portrait opens at #62, thanks to 9,400 scans, while Aimee Mann‘s @#%&*! Smilers takes the chart’s #80 slot with 8,100 sold. Seattle rockers Fleet Foxes‘ self-titled opus follows at #83, selling 8,000 copies, while Alesana‘s Where Myth Fades to Legend enters at #97, having sold 7,200 units.