CMA Entertainer of the Year nominee Jason Aldean’s fifth studio album Night Train steamrolled to a No.1 debut on the Billboard Top 200 chart today with 409,303 copies sold in its first week. This marks the second-highest debut in all genres of music this year and the highest in country since 2010. The total more than doubles the first week sales of Aldean’s previous album, the Triple Platinum My Kinda Party.
"This past week was beyond anything I ever expected," said Aldean. "The Night Train has already been a crazy ride for me. We flew around making tv appearances and stadium announcements all over the country, fueled by little more than coffee and adrenaline…so many fans jumped on board with us, and I couldn't be more thankful. I'm really looking forward to finishing out the tour this weekend and getting back to Nashville for the CMAs next week."
In an industry where artists are rarely able to attain both commercial success and critical acclaim, Aldean is bucking the trend as reviews roll in for the chart-topping disc.
Entertainment Weekly awards the album an A- and calls Aldean's delivery “EPIC.”
"No one else in country music is creating music that sounds anything like these songs. That distinct quality runs like a high-watt third rail through Night Train — and explains why Aldean has electrified the American heartland with his music."
"Country cowboy or big time rocker? Aldean walks the line brilliantly on his fifth album."
"A selection of well-chosen songs…done extravagantly well"
The next stops on the Night Train include Aldean's annual "Concert For the Cure" to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure on Oct. 27 and the 2012 Country Music Association Awards on Nov. 1, where he is nominated for "Entertainer of the Year," "Male Vocalist of the Year" and "Single of the Year."