Music Article

Out of the Zone

Why Britney's new album went unnoticed -- EW looks at why the new mom's remix album bombed on the Billboard charts

Hear about Britney Spears' new baby? Definitely. Hear about her new album? Um... Released Nov. 22 without the usual PR blitz, B in the Mix: The Remixes sold only 14,000 copies in its first week, debuting at No. 134 on Billboard's album chart. A rep for Spears' label, Jive, insists the former Queen Bee of Teenage Pop hasn't lost her touch. The disc of clubby remixes ''was scheduled as a limited-edition fan piece,'' she says, adding that Brit's working on a full-length album for 2006. In general, remix albums rarely find a mass audience (R. Kelly's recent remix record, Remix City Volume 1, debuted only at No. 72). But B in the Mix lacks a photo of Britney anywhere on the cover or CD booklet — a conspicuously low-profile rollout for an artist whose 1999 debut album has sold more than 10 million copies. ''It doesn't seem like the best way to sell a Britney CD,'' says Carl Mello, senior buyer at New England's Newbury Comics music chain. ''Though it's a good way to milk the catalog for a few extra dollars over the holidays.'' And someone does have another mouth to feed.

Originally posted Dec 02, 2005 Published in issue #853 Dec 09, 2005 Order article reprints