Another seven days means another week on top of the Official UK Singles chart for Danish stars Lukas Graham as 7 Years whilst continuing to slip also manages to outpace the chasing pack once more.
This week however the single achieves a number of rather interesting statistical benchmarks. For a start this is the single's fifth straight week at Number One, the longest consecutive run at the top of the charts since Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars notched up six straight weeks at the start of 2015. We should also acknowledge Justin Bieber's five consecutive weeks at the top of the charts in November and December last year, although this was naturally across two different singles.
Flying the flag for their countrymen, Lukas Graham now set a new standard for Danish acts, 7 Years now the biggest ever chart hit by someone from their land. Both of the two previous Danish chart-topping acts had singles which landed four week runs - Whigfield with Saturday Night and Aqua with Barbie Girl.
7 Years now sits proud at the top of the table of best-selling singles of the year to date, creeping over the 600,000 combined sales mark during the course of the last seven days. All eyes remain fixed on just what will finally be the single to depose it.
It won't be the Rihanna/Drake duet Work which slips to Number 3 this week, leaving the way clear for Mike Posner's "I Took A Pill In Ibiza" to ascend to second place. The single continues to rise, but it remains 20,000 sales behind that of the Lukas Graham single. I'm going to take a wild punt and suggest it has shot its bolt, barring some kind of mass purchase miracle.
The Top 10 glass ceiling is shattered by two climbing singles this week, Girls Like by Tinie Tempah leading the way with a 15-9 jump. It is the 15th Top 10 hit single for the multi-talented British star, arriving just over six years to the week since his debut Pass Out shot straight to Number One to become the first of his seven table-topping hits to date. The single also give Zara Larsson the honour at last of side by side Top 10 hits, her own Lush Life remaining locked at Number 4 this week. We still await the debut of the track's full video. Let's hope they get it out there before the single peaks.
Also on the rise, Light it Up from Major Lazer which after dipping to Number 14 last week rebounds to Number 10, returning to the Top 10 after an absence of six weeks. The track first appeared to have peaked at Number 9 back on February 4th but it has simply refused to lie down. This is now the single's ninth straight week where it has occupied a position between 9 and 14. Not so much a slow-burner as a long-smouldering hit of the kind that would have been inconceivable a few years ago.
Indeed that is now increasingly the story of the British singles chart, one where with the obvious exception of insta-smashes such as 7 Years, singles are taking a far gentler and much more organic path to success. In years gone by this column would have no need to do anything other than focus on the new hits of the week, yet they are actually few and far between. Instead the story of the lower end of the Top 40 is that of the steady growth of other hits. Fifth Harmony Work From Home is up 23-11, Twenty One Pilots Stressed Out is 17-15 (the third week in a row the single has risen two places), G-Easy & Bebe Rexha Me Myself & I up 25-17, Cheap Thrills by Sia up 32-20, Faded by Alan Walker moving 33-21 and Selena Gomez' Hands To Myself jumping with a tickle 40-32. All of them hits right now but also bigger hits in the making and defying anyone's attempts at predicting their next moves.
Hence the highest charting new releases of the week are actually much lower down the pile. Of three Top 75 new entries this week two of them are untitled album tracks from Kendrick Lamar's new collection of unfinished demos. Untitled 02 - 6.23.2014 is at Number 57 with Untitled 03 - 05.28.2013 at Number 67. The album itself Untitled Unmastered is the highest new entry of the week on its own chart at Number 7. Sandwiched between the two is the returning Meghan Trainor whose brand new single No lands at Number 59 thanks to a low key on-air on-sale unveiling. A conscious effort to move away from the do-wop sound of her debut album, the single sounds eerily like Rihanna, something that might have been an issue but for the fact that Rihanna appears to have stopped making records that sound like Rihanna singles.
As last week's Number One album by The 1975 sags quickly to Number 6 it clears the way for Adele to once more regain her crown as the biggest artist of the moment. 25 thus begins its third spell at the top with its tenth week at Number One in total.
Finally I'll leave you with one of the most telling statistics I've read for some time. Music Week reports this week there are just three singles - those from Tinie Tempah, Mike Posner and Lukas Graham - whose paid for sales exceed their streaming credits. This is down to the continuing collapse of the sell-through market. Just 1.8m tracks were purchased in the UK last week. One year ago the total stood at 2.7m.