Drake tops Cher and Kings of Leon on Billboard 200 chart

Drake’s “Nothing Was the Same” beat out a slew of new releases to land at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.

With 658,000 sold, “Nothing” is the second biggest debut of the year, behind Justin Timberlake’s “The 20/20 Experience,” which sold 968,000 in its first week back in March. 

It’s the Toronto rapper’s third No. 1 album, as 2011’s “Take Care,” bowed in the top spot with 631,000 sold, following his debut “Thank Me Later,” which sold 447,000 in its first week in 2010.

“Nothing” was followed by three other newcomers. 

Kings of Leon took the No. 2 spot after selling 110,000 copies of their latest “Mechanical Bull.” It’s the group’s third top 10 album, although the No. 1 spot still eludes them. 2010’s “Come Around Sundown” peaked at No. 2, while 2008’s “Only by the Night” topped out at No. 4.  

At No. 3, it’s hard to believe that the legendary Cher scored her highest debut ever, as “Closer to the Truth” moved 63,000 copies. Her last album, “Living Proof” peaked at No. 9 back in 2002.

In fourth place was another debut from another veteran act. Elton John’s first album in seven years, “The Diving Board,” sold 47,000. In his forty-some year career, John has posted no less than 18 albums in the top 10.

Jack Johnson’s “From Here to Now to You,” which topped the chart last week, slid to No. 5 after selling 37,000 copies (a typical second week decline of 69%).

Country star Luke Bryan’s “Crash My Party” racked up another 36,000 in sales (down 24%), keeping the party going at No. 6.

Prog rock vets Dream Theater’s new self-titled album debuted at No. 7 with 34,000 sold. Its their third top 10 seller in a row, following 2011’s “A Dramatic Turn of Events” (which peaked at No. 8) and 2009’s “Black Clouds & Silver Linings” (No. 6).

Krewella danced their way to  No. 8 “Get Wet,” after selling 27,000, while metal gods Metallica returned to the top ten for the ninth time with their new live companion to the 3D concert film “Metallica: Through the Never. It sold 26,000. 

Finally, rising country singer Justin Moore rounded out the top ten with his “Off the Beaten Path.” it was No. 2 last week and dropped all the way down to No. 10, after selling 25,000 (down 74%).

This past week’s (ending Sept. 29) sales added up to 5.2 million units, a 13% increase from last week (4.6 million), but a hefty 10% decrease from this same week last year (5.7 million). So far, 2013’s album sales equl 205.2 million, down 6% from this point last year (218.4 million).