Though NSYNC were only reunited for a total of 110 seconds during Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards, that was enough to get the long-dormant boy band back into the zeitgeist—and into the virtual wallets of music fans.
Justin Timberlake and his compatriots were among the biggest sales victors coming off the VMAs, which don’t tend to provide the same kind of spike as the Grammys but can definitely still make an impact: The NSYNC hits compilation Greatest Hits shot into the top 30 on the iTunes Albums chart in the wake of the combo’s performance of “Girlfriend” and “Bye Bye Bye” on MTV’s big show.
And while Timberlake’s current album The 20/20 Experience has been a top 10 staple on iTunes since its release, Sunday night’s show clearly boosted preorders of the forthcoming The 20/20 Experience: 2 of 2, which is one of three preorders currently sitting in the top 20. (The others are Miley Cyrus’ Bangerz and Katy Perry’s Prism; Lady Gaga’s ARTPOP rests just outside that space at 21.)
Interestingly, Timberlake also saw the sales of his first solo album Justified pick up significantly—enough to also land it in the top 30. Why people didn’t clamor to download Timberlake’s FutureSex/LoveSounds (currently sitting at a soft 78), also heavily featured in his VMAs performance, is anyone’s guess.
Other victors coming out of Sunday night include Kanye West (whose Yeezus jumped back into the top 20), Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (though The Heist is one of the most consistent performers in iTunes history, so it’s not a huge leap), and Bruno Mars (whose new single “Gorilla” is steadily climbing and will likely be in the top 10 soon).
The rest of the singles chart is pretty much what you would expect. Katy Perry has had a stranglehold on the top position with “Roar” since it dropped, so it’s not shocking that it remains number one. The buzz over Miley Cyrus’ near-nudity was enough to send her new single “Wrecking Ball” to number three, and Drake’s brief blast of “Hold On, We’re Going Home” during the VMAs was enough to get that song into the top 10. I
nterestingly, despite being declared the Song of Summer at the VMAs and being tethered to a hotly-anticipated concert film coming out this week, One Direction’s “Best Song Ever” didn’t get a significant boost on the iTunes chart.
Of course, sometimes not being at the VMAs is as good a marketing strategy as any. Eminem, who did not attend the show but did show up in a pair of Beats By Dre commercials during the broadcast, immediately took the number two position on iTunes’ singles chart following the midnight release of his new single “Berserk.”