Mumford & Sons have smashed Justin Bieber's 2012 sales record in the US.

The banjo band's second album Babel has become the biggest chart debut of any album this year in the United States after it sold 600,000 copies in its first week and debuted at No 1.

According to the Nielsen SoundScan report, the Londoners easily beat Bieber's album Believe which sold 374,000 in its first week of release. 2012’s other top first-week sales were Madonna's MDNA (359,000) and Pink’s The Truth About Love (280,000).

Mumford & Sons get banjoed in Toners of Baggot Street last week

Mumford’s success is also reflected in the singles charts, with current single I Will Wait hitting No 1 on the Rock Songs airplay this week.

The group's debut album, Sigh No More, spent six weeks at No 1 in America’s Rock Albums chart and has been a presence on the chart since its US release in February 2010, selling a total of 2.5 million in the United States.