November 22, 2015


It’s Official: Justin Bieber Beats Out One Direction as ‘Purpose’ Debuts at No. 1

Getty Images
Getty Images

After months of buildup, it’s official: Justin Bieber’s Purpose outsold One Direction’s Made In The A.M. in its first sales frame, after the two albums were released on the same day earlier this month.

Per Billboard, Bieber’s Purpose, led by the singles “What Do You Mean?” and “Sorry,” starts with 649,000 equivalent album units, including 522,000 in pure albums sales, according to Nielsen Music. That number represents Bieber’s sixth career No. 1 album and best sales week ever, topping the 2012 debut of Believe (374,000 copies).

That 522,000-copy sales week is also 2015’s biggest sales week, topping Drake’s If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late. That ‘biggest sales week of the year’ honor will last exactly one week, thanks to Adele’s 25 bow next week.

Meanwhile, One Direction’s fifth studio album—and first without Zayn Malik—launches with 459,000 equivalent album units, and 402,000 in pure sales. 1D’s previous four albums (Up All Night, Take Me Home, Midnight Memories and Four) all debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart.

Bieber and One Direction will both perform at the 2015 American Music Awards on Sunday night. Before the big show, take our quiz: Is this a One Direction or Justin Bieber lyric?