Brooklyn-based alternative rockers the National make the highest debut on this week's Billboard 200 album chart, hitting No. 3 with sales of 51,000 for their new album 'High Violet,' according to Nielsen SoundScan.
The five-man band, which includes two sets of brothers, had previously peaked at No. 68 on the chart back in 2007 with 'Boxer.' That album went on to appear on many Album of the Decade lists, and the National's profile rose as they served as the opening act for R.E.M.'s massive 2008 tour and appeared at numerous music festivals such as Coachella, Sasquatch and Lollapalooza. They are currently touring all across America in support of 'High Violet.'
Meanwhile, White Stripes and Raconteurs main man Jack White and his latest band, the Dead Weather, enter close behind at No. 5 with their new album 'Sea of Cowards' tallying 45,000. The album, which again features White primarily on drums instead of guitar, was released just 10 months after the band's debut album 'Whorehound,' which entered the charts at No. 6 last July.
The rest of the top five is filled out by returning champions. Justin Bieber once again stands tall at No. 1 by ringing up 60,000 sales for his 'My World 2.0' album, and country sensations Lady Antebellum hold strong at No. 2 with 54,000 units sold. Australian rockers AC/DC move up to No. 4 with their soundtrack to 'Iron Man 2,' no doubt benefiting from that movie's strong second-week ticket sales.
Eighteen year old Filipino singing star Charice, already two years into a successful career in her home country, makes her debut on the American charts at No. 8. Her self-titled album notched 43,000 sales thanks partially to a handful of appearances on the Oprah Winfrey show. Heavy Metal Christians As I Lay Dying round out the new entries to this week's chart at No. 10 with 38,000 copies of their latest, 'The Powerless Rise.'
The team-up between 70's songwriters Carole King and James Taylor, 'Live at the Troubadour,' stays high on the charts at No. 6 by moving 44,000 units. Usher's 'Raymond v Raymond' dances up the charts three spots to No. 7 on sales of 43,000, and last week's No. 1, Godsmack's 'The Oracle,' falls to No. 9 with sales of just under 43,000 to round out the Top 10.