It was only a matter of time. After spending 24 non-consecutive weeks at #1 on the Billboard 200 and nearly all of its run in the top 10, Adele’s Grammy-winning smash 21 will finally cross the 10 million in the U.S. next week.
The album moved to 10,020,000 thanks to sales of 28,000 copies last week, crossing the rare diamond threshold in its 92nd week of release, according to figures provided by Nielsen SoundScan. With that, 21 becomes, yes, just the 21st album to move 10 million or more copies since SoundScan began tracking data in 1991.
Billboard reported that the most recent album to move that many units in a shorter period of time was ’NSYNC’s No Strings Attached, which shot to 10 million in just its 43rd week on the charts in January 2001.
Adele’s album is one of only eight to cross the 10 million mark within two years of release. The other albums to reach that plateau earlier include: Backstreet Boys, Millennium (39 weeks), Santana, Supernatural (60), Alanis Morissette, Jagged Little Pill (66), “The Bodyguard” soundtrack (72), Creed, Human Clay (93) and Shania Twain, Come On Over (96).
In addition to its 24 non-consecutive weeks at #1, 21 spent 80 weeks in the top 10 and hasn’t fallen off the charts since its #1 debut in January 2011. Two other albums reached that vaunted golden circle this week as well: Linkin Park’s Hybrid Theory (released in 2000) and Usher’s Confessions (released in 2004.) The next disc on target to join the club is Pearl Jam’s legendary debut, Ten, which sits currently sits at 9.98 million.
And not for nothing, due to vocal cord surgery, Adele has moved that incredible number of albums after playing just a handful of North American dates.