If the One Direction guys wanted to prove they can carve out success apart from their work as a group, they're doing a fantastic job of proving it so far. Harry Styles became the second current or former member of the group to earn a No. 1 album, with his self-titled record Harry Styles topping the charts in its first week of sales.
Styles didn't just hit the top of the charts, he broke some ground while doing so. The British singer sold 193,000 traditional albums in the first week of sales, the biggest sales week for a U.K. male artist's debut since tracking began in 1991. Harry Styles surpassed the previous record in that category set by Sam Smith, whose album In the Lonely Hour moved 166,000 units and hit No. 2 on the chart in 2014.
All told, Styles' album launched with 230,000 equivalent album units in the first week, easily besting the week's No. 2 album, Welcome Home, by Zac Brown Band.
With the big debut, Styles achieved another milestone for a male artists from the U.K. Styles joined former One Direction singer Zayn Malik as the only two U.K. male artists to debut an album at No. 1, a feat that includes all 61 years of Billboard 200 history. Harry Styles had the more successful week of the two projects, as Mind of Mine checked in with 157,000 units and 112,000 traditional sales when it debuted in April 2016. One Direction joins elite company now that several members of the group have produced No. 1 solo albums, with their achievement putting them alongside Destiny's Child and The Beatles.
Some familiar faces in the hip-hop world remain in Billboard's top-10 albums, with Kendrick Lamar's Damn (117,000 units) and Drake's More Life (58,000 units) coming in at No. 3 and No. 7 on the chart respectively.