It was all but assumed, but Harry Styles now officially owns the No. 1 album in the country and he snagged the title in historic fashion. According to Billboard, Harry’s self-titled debut album topped the Billboard 200 albums chart with 230,000 equivalent album units earned, including 193,000 in traditional album sales. Those numbers are impressive, but at the expense of his former One Direction bandmate they’re also record-breaking.
In grabbing the No. 1 spot, Styles becomes just the second British male artist to debut at No. 1 in the Billboard 200’s 61-year history, joining fellow One Direction alumni Zayn Malik, who topped the chart with own debut Mind of Mine last year, and besting Zayn’s 157,000 units. The 230,000 units also tops the 166,000 copies Sam Smith sold for his debut In the Lonely Hour back in 2014, giving Harry the largest debut for a male U.K. artist in Nielsen Music’s 25-year history, regardless of chart position.
The debut is also historic for Harry’s former band, as One Direction has now spawned two No. 1 solo albums from its group, putting them in rarified air along with the likes of The Beatles and Destiny’s Child as the only groups to have done so. So yeah, it’s safe to say it was a successful first official week as a solo artist for Harry.