Led by lead singer Florence Welch with Isabella Summers and collaborating artists, the band sold 128,000 albums, according to music tracker Nielsen SoundScan.
Although meager in comparison to recent releases by Taylor Swift and other pop artists, sales were enough to claim the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200, helped by a dearth of other releases this time of year.
Swift’s pop album 1989, which debuted with more than 1 million sales last October, is still the No. 2, with 66,000 sales. A$AP Rocky’s album fell to third place with 50,000 units sold for the week ending June 7.
The debut of How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful is an impressive feat for an English indie band that formed in 2007.
The band’s previous album, Ceremonials, peaked at No. 6 on the U.S. album charts following its release in Oct. 2011.
The album, released June 2, also sold 58,000 single downloads and was streamed 4.9 million times, which accounts for 137,000 units, according to Nielsen SoundScan. (10 single sales, or 1,500 streams equal one album)
Welch, 28, and the band released their debut studio album, Lungs, in 2009. It debuted at No. 2 on the UK Albums Chart and hit No. 1 the following year.
The band’s sound has been described as a mix of rock and soul and Welch is known for her melodramatic style and multi-instrumental songs, according to Reuters.
Markus Dravs, who includes Arcade Fire, Coldplay, Björk, Brian Eno, Mumford & Sons among his credits produced all but the closing track. Paul Epworth produced that song, titled, “Mother.”
Critics have been enthusiastic about the release. The album scored a 77 out of 100 on Metacritic based on 27 reviews.
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