This week's Official UK Singles Chart

Preamble:

After the burst of energy last week which saw one of the most upwardly mobile charts of the year things seem to slacken off this week. Some things it seems never change though - like the number one single for instance. 10 new entries, 6 climbers and 2 non-movers.

Analysis:

No. 34: NEW ENTRY. Enigma - Age Of Loneliness

The third hit from Enigma's Cross Of Changes Album. Age Of Loneliness actually has a more chequered history than most other Enigma tracks, appearing in its original form as part of the soundtrack to the film 'Sliver' last year bearing the title of Carly's Theme (now reduced to a subtitle of the track). Despite the fact that the soundtrack contained hit singles from Shaggy, UB40 and Aftershock the track was only released as a single in Australia. It finally makes its debut here but in many ways confirms my thoughts about the last single Eyes Of Truth in that the major hit singles aside, Enigma tracks only work within the context of the album as a whole and lose much of their impact when taken in isolation. Nevertheless three Top 40 singles in a row is an achievement when you consider that three of the four singles taken from MCMXC AD did not even reach the Top 50.

No. 32: NEW ENTRY. Snoop Doggy Dogg - Doggy Dogg World

A third hit for Snoop Doggy Dogg, and one which makes a slightly better showing than his last hit Gin and Juice which could only reach No.39. Further progress for this is unlikely though.

No. 29: NEW ENTRY. Sounds Of Blackness - Everything Is Gonna Be Alright

I suppose the title should not come as a complete surprise coming from a group whose first hit was called Optimistic. It's the third hit this year for the gospel choir, following in the footsteps of I Believe which made No.17 in March and the theme to the World Cup Gloryland which staggered to No.36 last month.

No. 27: FALLER. CJ Lewis - Everything Is Alright (Uptight)

CJ Lewis well on his way out now but interestingly enough his version of the Stevie Wonder classic peaked at No.10, beating the original by four places. Stevie Wonder songs have been covered many times in the past but CJ Lewis is the first to take his cover to a higher chart position than the original.

No. 25: NEW ENTRY. Morrissey and Siouxsie - Interlude

The one new hit of the week that is attracting the most attention in the inky press, this duet was actually slated for release a number of weeks ago but was put back until this week. Interlude was first recorded in the early 1960s by American singer Timi Yuro. She never had a hit in this country but made the US Top 10 in 1961 with Hurt. It becomes Morrissey's second hit this year following The More You Ignore Me which made No.8 in March. It's an even greater achievement for Siouxsie, better known as the lead singer of Siouxsie and the Banshees. It's the first time she has had a Top 40 hit since Face To Face from the film 'Batman Returns' made No.21 in July 1992 and is incredibly only her 14th Top 30 hit in a chart career that stretches back to 1978.

No. 22: CLIMBER. Sophie B Hawkins - Right Beside You

In a sluggish week Sophie B Hawkins rises above the rest of the crop and charts the biggest rise of the week. The slightly distorted summer market that has lead to several hits sleeping their way up the charts may be a good omen for this to give her a Top 20 hit next week.

No. 21: NEW ENTRY. Tony Di Bart - Do It

Just to show there is no such thing as an unbreakable trend, Tony Di Bart follows up the No.1 hit 'The Real Thing' with his second single which actually charts lower first week out than the aforementioned track. It was easy to see how his last hit achieved its brief week of glory in May but the commercial potential of this track is harder to spot.

No. 18: NEW ENTRY. Eternal - So Good

One band on a roll at the moment are Eternal who notch up a fourth straight hit, hot on the heels of Just A Step From Heaven which reached No.8 in May. If anything this single is one of their best yet, more of a straight pop song than any of the others and the sort of track that is best appreciated on the car radio on a blazing hot day with the top down. In effect they have timed it to perfection.

No. 17: NEW ENTRY. Sean Maguire - Someone To Love

Soap star alert.... soap star alert. The long tradition of soap regulars leaving to pursue a 'musical career' continues with the debut hit for Sean Maguire, better known as Aiden in the BBC series 'Eastenders'. This single is now the sixth from a star of Eastenders to chart following previous hits from Nick Berry, Anita Dobson, Letitia Dean and Paul Medford (duetting), Michelle Gayle and at a pinch Wendy Richard who to be fair charted back in the 1960s, long before her part in Eastenders. Thus far Eastenders has produced more chart stars than any other soap - more even than Neighbours.

No. 16: NEW ENTRY. Soundgarden - Black Hole Sun

With all the radio support this single was getting it was inevitable it should make a strong debut. Easily the most commercial single the US band have released to date, Black Hole Sun beats the No.20 peak of their last hit Spoonman to land their biggest hit ever.

No. 11: NEW ENTRY. Tinman - Eighteen Strings

The latest underground dance hit to explode into the charts is this mainly instrumental track from Tinman, using a guitar figure that is startlingly similar to Smells Like Teen Spirit. Closer examination reveals it is actually a slightly different sequence of chords, but not enough to dull recognition. Credit To The Nation didn't worry about such niceties and sampled the riff completely last year.

No. 10: NEW ENTRY. Oasis - Live Forever

The biggest new hit of the week comes from Oasis, the current darlings of the trendy music press whose chart career thus far has followed in the footsteps of bands such as Suede, growing in stature with each successive release as their following gets larger and the records actually get better. It's their third hit overall, following Supersonic which made No.31 in April and Shakermaker which charged up to No.11 in July. I was always puzzled by Shakermaker though and in particular how they got away with making a record that lifted I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing almost note for note....

No. 8: CLIMBER. Youssou N'Dour featuring Neneh Cherry - Seven Seconds

Summer is always the time for sleeper hits and they don't come more sleepy than this. Youssou and Neneh finally make the Top 10 in what is incredibly their ninth week on the chart. If a record is going to become a Top 10 hit it usually does so within a matter of weeks of charting for the first time. Nine weeks is the longest climb up the chart by a Top 10 hit since Jennifer Rush's The Power Of Love climbed from No.15 to No.2 in October 1985 after 17 previous weeks in the lower reaches. The only track in recent times to come close to this is I Touch Myself by the Divinyls which reached No.10 in its eighth chart week.

No. 3: FALLER. All-4-One - I Swear

Things shift up at the top but only slightly. All-4-One are deprived of an outright record as the longest running No.2 hit ever and remain tied with Pat Boone who also notched up seven weeks. Not that it matters in the long run - the track has already outsold virtually every No.1 hit so far this year and is almost certain to be one of the Top 10 bestsellers of the year.

No. 2: CLIMBER. Let Loose - Crazy For You

Let Loose also benefit from the astonishing durability of sales shown by many records at the moment. This is their ninth week in the charts and they are still upwardly mobile. If Crazy For You goes down as the bands biggest hit ever it will be no bad thing for what is a classic piece of pure pop.

No. 1: TWELFTH WEEK. Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around

The megahit still lodges firm though, overtaking Slim Whitman's Rose Marie to spend more weeks at No.1 than any other record ever save three. That is in terms of total weeks though - consecutively speaking only Bryan Adams has ever spent more than 12 straight weeks at the top and the Wets don't seem to have run out of steam just yet...