Could Bright Eyes have a No. 1 record on its hands?
It’s a possibility. “The People’s Key” drops Tuesday and its main competition would be albums from Devotchka, Ginuwine, PJ Harvey, Drive-by Truckers, Rev Theory, Sonic Youth and Mogwai.
None of those are real threats to knock off Bright Eyes.
But a pair of other factors will probably keep it from the No. 1 spot, said Homer’s Music general manager Mike Fratt.
Valentine’s Day shopping has a big impact on music sales, which may push Bright Eyes from the top spot. But the big kicker will be performances and winners at the Grammy Awards on Sunday night, which will influence sales for the week.
“That’s going to have a big impact,” Fratt said. “I see five artists that have the potential to outsell Bright Eyes next week: Eminem, Mumford & Sons, Katy Perry, Arcade Fire and Taylor Swift.”
All will be performing during the Grammy Awards or are expected to take home trophies.
Fratt predicts Bright Eyes’ “The People’s Key” will sell about 27,000 copies, though he admitted his estimate could be low.
In recent years, with declining music sales, the threshold for having a No. 1 album has gotten lower and lower.
With its recent album, “Showroom of Compassion,” rock band Cake set a sales record for hitting No. 1. A record low.
The album sold under 50,000 copies, the lowest figure to date for a No. 1 album.
Past releases for Bright Eyes and Conor Oberst have done well.
Oberst’s solo album “Outer South” sold more than 19,000 copies in 2009 and charted at No. 40. His other solo effort, a self-titled album, sold 28,918 copies in 2008 and hit No. 15.
Bright Eyes’s 2007 album, “Cassadaga,” reached No. 4 on Billboard and sold 58,000 copies. It had the best sales debut for Saddle Creek Records ever.
In 2005, Bright Eyes’ “I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning” debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. It sold 56,000 copies. “Wide Awake” was released simultaneously with Bright Eyes’ “Digital Ash in a Digital Urn,” which debuted at No. 15.
— Kevin Coffey