Paul McCartney’s new album sparked the best week in vinyl LP sales since modern records began in 1991, with 1.842 million units shifted in the seven-day period through Christmas Eve.

The 12-inch LP, first introduced in 1948, has seen increased sales every year for the past 13, and has outsold compact discs on four separate weeks since September – the first time that’s happened since 1986. Some 1.671 million CDs were sold in the week ending Dec. 24.

Billboard reported that McCartney III sold 32,000 units, the highest figure for any current release and also the third-largest for a specific album since 1991. Just short of 40 percent of all sales were recorded by independent outlets, with the total of 733,000 marking the best week for vinyl in the indie sector in 29 years.

Vinyl sales have been led by classic rock in recent years, although younger artists from different genres are changing the balance. Amazon’s best-selling vinyl list for Dec. 28 placed McCartney III at No. 17, with Harry StylesFine Line at No. 1 – although the rest of the top 10 included the Beatles, Creedence Clearwater Revival and Pink Floyd.

Victrola CEO Scott Hagen recently reported the results of a consumer survey run by the turntable-making company which suggested that 55 percent of people had a vinyl player in their homes – and, of those, 70 percent had recently used it.

“The ability to stop and sit and listen to an album from beginning to end, that’s something that always has been and always will be relevant,” Hagen told The Manual. “[T]he world that we’re in needs this kind of format — it needs us to slow down and enjoy a really nice meal once in a while, a good bourbon or cocktail now and then, and to sit down and just listen to music sometimes.”

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