With a debut sales total that ranks as the franchise’s best in nearly five years, the NOW 50 compilation officially dethrones the “Frozen” soundtrack from the top of the Billboard 200.

Fueled by songs like Pharrell’s “Happy” and Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse,” the collection opens to an impressive tally of 153,000. Not since NOW 31, which moved 169,000 in July 2009, has a NOW album opened so well.

The strong total gives NOW a convincing win over “Frozen,” which adds 99,000 to its cumulative count this week. It claims number three on the chart.

While the weekly total (and chart position) was the best of his career, the soft 69,000 opening figure for Hunter Hayes’ “Storyline” keeps the album distantly removed from the top. Number three on the Billboard 200, the album was, however, the week’s best-selling country LP. It gives Hayes his second chart-topper in the genre.

Sarah McLachlan follows with “Shine On” (42,000), while Tech N9ne Collabos’ “Strangeulation” closes out the top five on the strength of 36,000 sales.

Others in the top ten: Pharrell’s “G I R L” (24,000, #6), Luke Bryan’s “Crash My Party” (24,000, #7), Atmosphere’s “Southsiders” (23,000, #8), Santana’s “Corazon” (22,000, #9), Lorde’s “Pure Heroine” (19,000, #10).

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