There was plenty of competition from other rappers' new releases in the top 10, but nobody came close to Jay. English prog trio and "Twilight" soundtrack darlings Muse will notch their best U.S. chart debut to date with their ambitious rock opera The Resistance, which lands at #3 on sales of 128,000. They're followed by the trippy debut from rapper
The rest of the top 10 are: Whitney Houston's I Look to You (#2, 156,000), Miley Cyrus' Time of Our Lives EP (#5, 75,000), Taylor Swift's Fearless (which jumped 37 percent to 46,000 following her run-in with Kanye West at the VMAs) and the Black Eyed Peas' The E.N.D. (Energy Never Dies), which slips a bit to #10 on sales of 40,000.
Also seemingly getting the VMA bump is Lady Gaga's Fame, which moves up 11 spots to #12 (33,000) with a 76 percent sales increase over the previous week. Pink's nearly year-old Funhouse zooms up 35 spots to #28 on sales of 16,000 (a 95 percent increase from the previous week). Jonas Brothers-approved act Honor Society hit #18 in the chart debut for their Fashionably Late album (22,000), while Raekwon's Only Built 4 Cuban Linx 2 swan dives from its #4 debut to #22 as sales (21,000) dropped 68 percent. Boys Like Girls had a similar fate as Love Drunk shed 63 percent of its debut-week business to drop 22 spots to #30 (15,000).
Trick Daddy's reverse psychology didn't seem to work, as the rapper's independently released Finally Famous: Born a Thug, Still a Thug only hit #34 in its first week (13,000), finishing just ahead of the latest from former Kid Rock protégé Uncle Kracker, Happy Hour (#38, 13,000), the first Spanish-language album from Nelly Furtado, Mi Plan (#39, 13,000), and the debut from singer/songwriter Pete Yorn and actress Scarlett Johansson, Break Up (#41, 13,000). The news is also just so-so for "You're a Jerk" rappers New Boyz, whose Skinny Jeanz & a Mic pulls up to the #56 position in its first week on sales of 10,000, still beating out the long-awaited release of Q-Tip's Kamaal the Abstract, which limps in at #77 (6,000).
Look for chart debuts from Pearl Jam, Sean Kingston and Brand New next week.