Towards the end of the year, as everybody is winding down and getting ready for the holidays (and all the year-end lists have already been released), the music world tends to slow down. That hasn’t been the case for Harry Styles, though. He just released his new album, Fine Line, and it had one of the biggest weeks of the year, good enough for the album to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.
The album, which came out on December 13, earned 478,000 equivalent album units in the US during the week ending on December 19. That’s the third-biggest week for an album this year, only surpassed by Taylor Swift’s Lover (which earned 869,000 units on the chart dated September 7) and Post Malone’s Hollywood’s Bleeding (489,000 on September 21).
Fine Line‘s first week was superlative for other reasons as well. Styles is now the first UK artist to debut at No. 1 with his first two albums. Fine Line also had the biggest week for an album by a male pop artist in four years. The last one to perform better was Justin Bieber’s Purpose, which debuted on top with 649,000 units, on the chart dated December 5, 2015. Columbia Records is surely also happy with the release, as Fine Line had the best sales week for the label since Beyonce’s Lemonade earned 653,000 units on the May 14, 2016-dated chart.