This week's Official UK Singles Chart

This week's Official UK Albums Chart

Between March 2009 and March of this year, not one single managed to spend more than three weeks at Number One on the singles chart. Now in the last few months we have had two in quick succession. First came Adele who did so with much fanfare at the start of the year with Someone Like You and now hard on her heels are LMFAO who without anyone really noticing it seems, now clock up a fourth week at the very top of the singles chart. Party Rock Anthem is now the longest running Number One single for an American act since I Kissed A Girl by Katy Perry had a five week run at the top in mid-2008 - although yes, we still must acknowledge that co-singer Lauren Bennett is herself British. Reports are that the single has now sold over 400,000 copies, moving it into sixth place in the chart of the year to date.

LMFAO's nearest challenger was once again Bruno Mars who remains locked at Number 2 with The Lazy Song, although still in with a chance of topping the charts for a fourth time within the space of 12 months - just as long as he does it in the next two weeks of course. [One more heave].

Things might possibly have been a little different but for a mixup which meant the biggest new release of the week was unavailable for purchase (on iTunes anyway) until late in the day on Monday, depriving it potentially of two whole days of sales. This may well have been a factor in Where Them Girls At only winding up a Number 3 new entry for David Guetta despite all indications being that it was outselling the competition for most of the time it was on sale. Such wrinkles aside, the single still fulfils its potential as the biggest new release of the week - the first track to be taken from Guetta's as yet untitled fifth album due out in the autumn. Where Them Girls At features guest vocals from both Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj, the latter we are told, only added to the mix at the very last minute. No matter when she jumped on board - Minaj now has the biggest chart single of her career, beating the Number 9 she scaled as part of Jay Sean's 2012 (It Ain't The End) at the tail end of last year.

Also new inside the Top 10 is Jessie J's Nobody's Perfect which may not have become the instant smash hit of its two predecessors but has instead slow burned its way into popular consciousness and jumps 18-9 to give her a third straight Top 10 single. Also in a slow burning groove is Aloe Blacc's I Need A Dollar which jumps five places to Number 10, probably much to the surprise of any Europeans casting a glance over the music scene - the UK having arrived at its appreciation of the single almost a year later than everyone else.

Top 10 is a possibility next week for Pitbull and company with Give Me Everything, working on the presumption it hasn't run out of steam already. The single has now moved 35-25-12 over the last few weeks. Is a fourth week of climbing a possibility? Its parent album is still a month away from release after all.

This week is Eurovision week, with the annual Europe-wide song contest taking place in Germany this coming Saturday. Having it seems tried every tactic under the sun to engineer a British win over the past few years (with everyone from Andrew Lloyd-Webber to Pete Waterman having had a crack at writing our song), the BBC this year have dispensed with the idea of getting the audience to decide who or what should be our representative at the contest and instead have presented the song and its performers as a fait accompli. Enter then Blue for their big chart comeback.

The soulful boy band were one of the biggest names in pop at the start of the last decade, topping the charts three times with a collection of well-written original songs and nicely done covers of 1990s American R&B hits. Hard on the heels of their cover of Too Close and its follow-up If You Come Back came the ultimate accolade , duetting with Elton John on a remake of his own Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word which topped the charts just before Christmas 2002. After a farewell single Curtain Falls in 2004 the foursome broke up, with Lee Ryan and Simon Webbe attempting solo careers with varying degrees of success. The foursome reunited in 2009 as part of the wave of nostalgia for fallen boy bands, their only problem being that nobody really seemed to notice or care - until now.

Suddenly Blue are mainstream stars again this week as their Eurovision entry I Can launches itself onto the singles chart at Number 16 to become their first hit single together in six and a half years. As a comeback track in itself I Can isn't all that bad and neatly sits in the kind of "mature updating of our sound" that Take That pioneered on their own comeback. As a potential Eurovision winner however it ranks as distinctly "meh", lacking any kind of spark or, if you will pardon the expression, X Factor that turns a national entry into a runaway winner. The best we can hope I'm afraid for is a final placing that isn't too close to humiliating and watch the 14 year wait for a victory turn into 15 along the way.

My continuing fascination with the chart story of Birdy's Skinny Love continues to be justified. In its ninth week on sale, the single climbs the chart once more, a further two place rise taking it to Number 17 and once again its highest chart placing to date. Theoretically there is nothing to stop the Bon Iver original (taken from their 2008 album For Emma, Forever Ago) from charting off the back of this cover, yet it remains stubbornly unnoticed by the public at large. Bon Iver's only brush with the singles chart to date is Blood Bank which crept to Number 37 in January 2009.

The release of its video gives a small boost to Lady Gaga's Judas which tumbled dramatically out of the Top 20 last week, the initial rush of interest in its premature release having worn off rather more quickly than you suspect the label would have hoped. Even flirting with blasphemy appears to have done little to restore the chart fortunes of the track even temporarily, and it limps back up three places to Number 20 and still seems destined to become one of her poorest performing singles for some time. I'll keep coming back to this point - this simply isn't like her at all. Second album blues, or has the Gaga bubble burst after just one brief flurry of massive success?

The arrival of Jennifer Lopez' album Love? at Number 6 on the album chart means she can now boast two Top 40 hit singles together with both On The Floor still floating around the Top 5 and what we are told is its next single I'm Into You debuting at Number 40 after becoming the cherrypicked track of choice. She can't claim the biggest new release of the week however, that honour going to the Fleet Foxes who land at Number 2 with Helplessness Blues, the album charting one place higher than their self-titled 2008 debut.

Inevitably this means Adele is still Number One with '21', for those having lost count this is now the album's 14th in total leaving it just one place short of equalling the post-1980 record. Doubtless more on this next week, unless someone steals in there first and leaves us all hanging on for the moment.


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