Music by VICE

Adele's '25' Is on Track to Set the Record for Single Week Album Sales

She's selling on track with projections, which would put her above *NSYNC's first-week record of 2.42 million copies sold.

by Kyle Kramer
Nov 21 2015, 11:03pm

Image via iTunes

It's no surprise to anyone that Adele's new album 25 is expected to sell well. Her single "Hello" has been on top of the charts since the instant it came out, and the video has close to half a billion views after just a month on YouTube. And, of course, her last album, 21, sold more than 11 million copies in the US and 30 million copies worldwide, making it one of the most successful albums of all time—even more impressive in the current era of declining album sales.

Early forecasts for 25 projected sales of 1.5 million CD copies and a million downloads in its first week, and, according to Billboard, 3.6 million physical copies were shipped to retailers for its release. Those pre-release projections for 25 were high enough to suggest the album could top *NSYNC's first week sales of 2.42 million for 2000's No Strings Attached. That album remains the only album to sell 2 million copies in a week since Nielsen Soundscan began tracking weekly sales in 1991.

So now that it's out, do those projections hold up? Yes, most likely, and then some. According to Billboard, industry insiders suggest 25 is on track to sell at least as well as projected, with 900,000 first day sales on the iTunes Store alone. The album isn't on streaming services, which might have an effect on increasing sales, although it does mean that it won't get album sale equivalents from streaming.

Who cares, though. 25 is almost certain to instantly become the top-selling album of the year, surpassing Taylor Swift's 1989 and its 1.74 million copies sold, and one of only 20 albums to debut with a million copies sold in its first week. Could it be the first ever to sell more than 3 million in a week? That's not out of the question. Either way, welcome to history.

Follow Kyle Kramer on Twitter.

no strings attached
triple plat?
more like rolling in the dough