There’s not a heck of a lot to report on the album chart this week-we are officially in the summer doldrums, although the first serious challenger to Eminem’s four weeks and counting run at the top of the chart arrived in the form of Rick Ross. If his “Teflon Don” can squeeze out 130,000 or so copies (not a stretch considering the rapper is inexplicably popular), he has a chance of sliding Slim Shady out of the perch he’s inhabited longer than anyone else in 2010. The only really notable debut is from the new Korn album, which follows Eminem at #2. However, the venerable nu-metal band’s first week total is barely a 1/3 of what Eminem sells in it’s fourth week. I would imagine that M.I.A.’s album total (barely over 30,000 copies, #9) is a bit disappointing as well.

Not that Eminem should be worrying too much. According to reports, he will score his second #1 of 2010 (and the fourth of his career) with “Love the Way You Lie”, a song that will send the song’s featured artist, Rihanna, to the top of the charts for the seventh time in her young career. “Lie” strengthens it’s position at the top of the digital download singles chart this week, with 352,000 paid downloads.

Elsewhere on the digital downloads chart, it’s a good week for Usher. “DJs Got Us Fallin’ in Love”, a new track that will appear on an expanded version of the already-Platinum “Raymond v. Raymond” album, opens up at #17 this week, while his former #1 “OMG” hangs tight at #10, having already been downloaded nearly 3 million times. It’s also a good week for blue-eyed soul, as two of the biggest moves this week come from Maroon 5 and One Republic. Partially due to the great video for their single “Misery” (which definitely helps, because the song is decidedly average), the former track moves from 33-24 on this week’s chart, while the latter band sees their latest, “Secrets”, move from 53-25. This brings me to my next point.

Want proof that people eventually got tired of the record company practice (starting in earnest around 1994 or 1995) to not issue commercial singles? You can obviously point to diminishing album sales, but you can also point to the fact that many artists who have had huge single success in the past couple of years have been unable to duplicate that feat with their albums. The top 20 downloads chart is full of artists that bear that theory out-Taio Cruz (two huge hit singles) and Jason DeRulo (three hit singles)’s albums (which coincidentally reside right next to each other on this week’s chart), have barely sold 200,000 copies COMBINED. Meanwhile, each of the five singles currently available from this pair of artists has sold close to or more than a million downloads apiece. Proof that, especially when it comes to fly-by-night pop artists who will most likely not have lasting careers, fans aren’t looking for a whole album. Which means (if you haven’t figured this out already) that huge sales of albums by acts like Lou Bega, Aqua and Chumbawamba have come to an end.

Here’s this week’s Top 20 on the digital downloads chart:

1) Love the Way You Lie-Eminem feat. Rihanna
2) Dynamite-Taio Cruz
3) California Gurls-Katy Perry feat. Snoop Dogg
4) Airplanes-B.O.B. feat. Hayley Williams
5) I Like It-Enrique Iglesias feat. Pitbull
6) Cooler Than Me-Mike Posner
7) Billionaire-Travie McCoy feat. Bruno Mars
8) Ridin’ Solo-Jason DeRulo
9) Not Afraid-Eminem
10) OMG-Usher feat.
11) Impossible-Shontelle
12) Find Your Love-Drake
13) Jar of Hearts-Christina Perri
14) Bulletproof-LaRoux
15) My First Kiss-3Oh!3 feat. Ke$ha
16) Alejandro-Lady GaGa
17) DJ Got Us Fallin’ in Love-Usher feat. Pitbull
18) Your Love is My Drug-Ke$ha
19) Round and Round-Selena Gomez & the Scene
20) Hey. Soul Sister-Train

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