Adele 's sophomore record '21' has become the UK's fifth biggest selling album of all time, replacing Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' in the heavyweight list. The 23-year-old's second offering has now sold 4,274,300 copies, 500 more than Jackson's seminal album for 1982.
It is still selling at a rate of around 20,000 copies a week in the UK, meaning it could climb the list and potentially break into the Top 3. In a statement, Mark Talbot of the Official Charts Company said, "To add to her many landmark records, Adele's achievement in overtaking Thriller in the all-time sales list is truly remarkable.Thriller has long been recognised as one of the most iconic albums of all time - there is no doubt that 21 can be spoken of in the same breath". The multi-Grammy Award winner released the record in January 2011, spending 23 weeks at No.1 and outselling Pink Floyd's 'The Dark Side of the Moon', the Dire Straits 'Brothers in Arms' among others. It's perfectly conceivable that the London songstress will outsell the current fourth placed album, Oasis' 'What's the Story Morning Glory?', though it remains unlikely that '21' will reach the heady heights of Abba's Greatest Hits record 'Gold', or The Beatles 'Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'. Way out in front at No.1 is Queen's 'Greatest Hits', which has gone 11 times platinum having sold nearly 6 million in the UK alone.
It is understood that Adele will be taking a brief hiatus in 2012, though could return with a third album early next year.