Pearl Jam Back Atop Mainstream Rock Airplay Chart for First Time Since 1998 With ‘Dark Matter’

Pearl Jam returns to No. 1 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Airplay chart for the first time in 26 years and two weeks, reigning with “Dark Matter” on the March 16-dated survey.

The song becomes Pearl Jam’s first No. 1 on the chart since “Given To Fly” led for six weeks in January-February 1998.

That lengthy break between No. 1s is the longest in the Mainstream Rock Airplay chart’s 43-year history. The record was previously held by Kenny Wayne Shepherd, who went 20 years and 11 months between the six-week reign of “Blue on Black” (credited to The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band) in 1998 and his featured turn on Five Finger Death Punch’s cover of the song (alongside Brantley Gilbert and Brian May) in 2009.

In terms of distance between No. 1s by lead acts, the record prior to Pearl Jam belonged to The Offspring, via its nearly 18-year respite between the rules of “Gone Away” in 1997 and “Coming for You” in 2015.

Pearl Jam now boasts four total Mainstream Rock Airplay No. 1s. In addition to “Given To Fly” and “Dark Matter,” “Daughter” reigned for eight weeks beginning in December 1993 and “Better Man” led for eight frames starting in January 1995. “Dark Matter” ties “Given To Fly” for the group’s fastest flight to No. 1: four weeks each.

In between “Given To Fly” and “Dark Matter,” Pearl Jam charted 20 Mainstream Rock Airplay 20 entries, paced by the No. 2-peaking “World Wide Suicide” in 2006 and “Mind Your Manners” in 2013. Of those 20 tracks, 11 hit the top 10.

Concurrently, “Dark Matter” holds at its No. 10 high on Alternative Airplay and jumps 26-22 on Adult Alternative Airplay. On the all-rock-format, audience-based Rock & Alternative Airplay chart, the song returns to No. 1 for a second week (after leading the March 2 survey) with 6.9 million audience impressions, up 8%, March 1-7, according to Luminate.

On the most recently published Hot Hard Rock Songs chart (dated March 9), “Dark Matter” ranked at No. 2. In addition to its radio airplay, the song earned 876,000 official U.S. streams and sold 1,000 downloads Feb. 23-29.

“Dark Matter” is the lead single and title track from Pearl Jam’s 12th studio album, due April 19.

All Billboard charts dated March 16 will update on on Tuesday, March 12.

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