Metallica Just Had One of the Biggest First Weeks for an Album in 2016

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How fitting. Photo: TASSO MARCELO/AFP/Getty Images

Metallica's new album, Hardwired ... to Self-Destruct, has done anything but, debuting on this week's Billboard 200 chart at No. 1. It's their sixth consecutive No. 1 album and also one of the biggest first weeks for an album in 2016: Hardwired sold 291,000 album equivalents, almost all of which (282,000) were traditional sales, giving Metallica the third-highest selling first week of the year behind Drake and Beyoncé. Which is great news for Metallica, but false hope for pretty much every other band on Earth: According to Billboard, Hardwired marks the biggest-selling week for a rock album since Coldplay's Ghost Stories a whopping two-and-a-half years ago. (Of the 30 albums to go No. 1 this year, it's also just the ninth from a rock act.) But in far more optimistic overall industry news, Bruno Mars's 24K Magic debuted at No. 2 with 231,000 album equivalents, making this the first (and likely only) week of the year that two albums have debuted above 200,000 at the same time. A round of slow applause for all!