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Kendrick Lamar Returns to No. 1 in Doldrums of Music Sales


Kendrick Lamar’s latest album, “DAMN.,” released in April, returned to the top of the Billboard chart.

Amy Harris/Invision, via Associated Press

After three months, Kendrick Lamar has returned to the top of the Billboard album chart in a slow week of music sales during which last week’s best-seller, Arcade Fire, plunged to No. 38.

“DAMN.,” Mr. Lamar’s latest album, came out in April and, with big sales and streaming numbers, spent its first three weeks at the top of the chart. Since then it has remained a solid hit, holding in the top 3 every week except for one when it dipped to No. 5. This week, “DAMN.” claims its fourth No. 1 with 46 million streams and 11,000 copies sold as a full album, according to Nielsen.

In total, “DAMN.” is credited with the equivalent of 47,000 album sales for the week, the second-lowest figure for a No. 1 album since the Billboard chart shifted in late 2014 to accommodate streaming. (The low-water mark remains at 42,000, set in August 2015 by the soundtrack to the Disney Channel movie “Descendants.”)

Mr. Lamar, who is on an arena tour supporting “DAMN.,” held off the self-titled new album by the country singer Brett Eldredge, released by Atlantic and Warner Music Nashville, which opened at No. 2 with the equivalent of 45,000 sales. Also this week, DJ Khaled’s “Grateful” is No. 3, Meek Mill’s “Wins & Losses” is No. 4, and Vol. 63 of the pop compilation series “Now That’s What I Call Music!” opened in fifth place.

“Everything Now,” the new album by Arcade Fire, had a precipitous drop in its second week out, falling to No. 38 and losing 88 percent of its sales. Lana Del Rey’s “Lust for Life,” which bowed at the top of the chart two weeks ago, has fared a little better, landing at No. 23 in its third week.

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