Justin Timberlake’s new album The 20/20 Experience has exceeded expectations from industry experts to debut at the top of the Billboard's music chart.
The singer’s third solo album The 20/20 Experience has topped Billboard after selling 968,000 copies, according to newly released figures from SoundScan.
It marks the 19th highest debut for Nielsen’s 22-year-old tracking system.
The figure soars past Billboard’s initial projection of 500,000 units.
It also beats Justin’s personal record. His 2006 offering FutureSex/LoveSounds sold 684,000 copies by comparison.
As Billboard reports, the performance is the highest from a male artist since Lil Wayne released Tha Carter III in 2008. The rapper's album sold 1.01 million copies in its first week.
The last album to beat Justin’s sales record was Taylor Swift’s Red which sold 1.2 million copies in October.
Billboard's associate director of charts/retail Keith Caulfield credited the success of Justin’s album to his seven-year hiatus. He considers it smart of the singer to stay in the public's consciousness by diving into acting during that time, leaving fans wanting more of his music.
"When you have arguably the biggest male pop star take a vacation for several years, there's a lot of demand for new music, and that demand never went away," he said.
The album has seen similar success online.
The 20/20 Experience clocked up 7.73 million streams in the US in the past week with each song downloaded a minimum of 500,000 times.
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