Despite strong first week outings by Dru Hill and R.E.M., Jay-Z will hold onto the top spot on the album chart once again next week according to sales figures released by SoundScan on Wednesday.
The rapper's "Vol. 2... Hard Knock Life" sold just under 174,000 copies in its fifth week in stores to retain the number one slot on the chart. Dru Hill's "Enter The Dru" posed the biggest threat to Jay-Z's chart position after selling more than 127,000 copies of the album in its first week in stores to land at number two.
The week's next highest debut belongs to R.E.M., whose eleventh studio album, "Up," sold more than 117,000 copies in its debut week to earn the number three spot on the chart.
Other notable debuts on next week's chart will belong to Mötley Crüe's "Greatest Hits" at number 20, Neil Diamond's "As Time Goes By" at number 31, Pras' "Ghetto Supastar" at 55, the "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" soundtrack at 99, Bryan Adams' "On a Day Like Today" at 103, Divine's
"Fairy Tales" at 136, and the Afghan Whigs' "1965" at 176.
Meanwhile, Rob Zombie's "Hellbilly Deluxe" continues to post strong sales numbers 10 weeks after its release. The former White Zombie frontman's solo effort racked up big numbers in its first week out, and since then has managed to consistently sell between 40,000 and 50,000 copies a week. Zombie is up above 50,000 copies again this week and will jump from 22 to 18 on next week's chart.