This week's Official UK Singles Chart

Preamble:

Little to say really apart from the relative quietness of the lower ten places which may indicate a plethora of entries next week. 10 newbies this week, a refreshingly healthy 10 climbers, 3 records don't move.

Analysis:

No. 37: NEW ENTRY. The Christians - The Bottle

Gill Scott Heron. Does the name Gill Scott Heron mean anything to you? Clubgoers may instantly shout Space Shuttle but that is about it. For all his pains as an artist he has never ever charted in either the UK or the USA. Along then come the Christians, realising their flagging career needs a boost so they record a version of one of his songs and thus produce a hit. This latest release comes as the Christians prepare to release a new album after pausing for thought, following the failure of the last single What's In A Word failed to crack the 30.

No. 32: NEW ENTRY. Martha Wash - Give It To You

Another name that may mean little to most people until they realise just where they have heard the voice of the veteran soul belter before. Having been in the business since the 1960s, Martha Wash has charted twice: firstly as a member of The Weather Girls on the single It's Raining Men which made No.2 in 1984 and then more recently as the vocalist (uncredited) on Black Box's version of Earth Wind and Fire's Fantasy which made No.5 in 1990 [she actually sang most of the album in fact]. Thus the new tune, a fairly standard piece of jack swing soul becomes her first ever solo credit.

No. 31: CLIMBER. Oui 3 - For What It's Worth

.In an attempt to cure chart hyping, there are a number of strict rules about just how many formats are allowed for a single and how long they can be etc. Ocasionally a record falls foul of the chart compilers due to these rules which seem to be added to almost every month. A new entry a couple of weeks ago, Oui 3 suddenly dropped to 38 last week. The reason was simple - a CD single had been released which contained one track too many. Despite the fact that people were buying it, its sales were excluded from the chart statistics. With the situation resolved and the new pressing of the CD single reinstated the track thus bounces back but the week's hiatus may have cost the records chart potential dearly. "Hold your fire, put down your weapon. Where d'you think you're going with that AK47?"

No. 30: NEW ENTRY. 4 of Us - She Hits Me

Another example of constant striving pays its rewards. Despite extensive airplay for previous singles and critical acclaim for their latest Man Alive album this is the first ever taste of Top 40 action for the Irish Band.

No. 29: NEW ENTRY. Runrig - Wonderful

Famous Scottish rock bands anyone? Well there's Simple Minds and Big Country for a start but how many are familiar with Runrig? Not all that many I will grant you as despite being the biggest sensation ever North of the border (they are No.5 on the Scottish singles chart this week) Runrig have never quite penetrated the market south of the border. For a band to have such a polarisation of regional support on this tiny island is in many ways incredible. Maybe if they stopped recording songs in Gaelic.

No. 27: NEW ENTRY. Marxman - All About Eve

Confusion for unsuspecting DJs possibly? Actually the joke has worn thin as this rather good piece of dance/rap with a social message has been bubbling under for a number of weeks and finally breaks through - in a similar way to the Rapination track a month or so ago.

No. 23: CLIMBER. k d lang - Constant Craving

10 climbers in a week is a rarity these days and even healthier is the progress of this single, a reissue of a track which has been available on an album since last July becoming this week's fastest mover with a 14 place climb.

No. 20: NEW ENTRY. Brian Ferry - I Put A Spell On You

Welcome back old timer as they say. The former Roxy Music star revives his solo career after a 3 year gap. The last time he was around was at the end of 1988 in order to promote a Greatest Hits package, off which the single, a cover of Jim Reeves' He'll Have To Go was his last chart appearance. He returns with yet another cover. This time a version of a track which has had two previous chart outings. Firstly in a version by old Animals keyboardist Alan Price who made it his first solo hit in 1966 and also for veteran soulster Nina Simone who took the track to No. 28 in 1969.

No. 19: NEW ENTRY. Shamen featuring Terence McKenna - Re:evolution

Following the pop successes of the first four singles from the Boss Drum album, the Shamen take the cleverest and most brilliant step of their career. The crowning glory of the album
is this track, an eight minute monologue by free love guru McKenna, accompanied by an ethereal spacey music track. Released as a single in its entirety it really has to be heard to be believed. Personally I think it is so avant-garde they deserve a medal just making a Top 20 hit out of a track which under any other circumstances would be commercial suicide. It
is after all, complete and utter bollocks from beginning to end and you can't even dance to it....

No. 16: CLIMBER. Tasmin Archer - In Your Care

Worth a mention despite its two place climb. Sweet innocent Tasmin who charmed the nation with Sleeping Satellite shocked the nation last week by performing this latest track on Top Of The Pops. Why? Because the lyrics call for her to scream 'Son Of A Bitch' in the chorus which for some reason did not go down well at 7.15pm on the BBC.

No. 13: NEW ENTRY. Jesus Lizard/Nirvana - Puss/Oh The Guilt

A couple of years ago there were two bands formed in Seattle, both playing the same sort of grungy rock that was to take the western world by storm last year. In those early days, being such good mates they promised to one day make a double sided single together. Subsequently Nirvana went on to become the grunge equivalent of the Beatles whilst Jesus Lizard vanished into nothingness. The kept the promise though, and this is the result, a single which has added kudos having been released on Monday and deleted on Wednesday. With some copies of last year's 12 Wedding Present limited editions fetching stupid prices in magazines now it is not hard to imagine this too becoming a collectors item.

No. 12: CLIMBER. Right Said Fred and friends - Stick It Out

Charitable it may be but it is still a bad single. Comic Relief day is a week on Friday but it is hard to see this being at the top to celebrate.

No. 11: NEW ENTRY. Madonna - Bad Girl

Quite why everyone is writing her star off as fallen is beyond me when the most successful female artist of all time releases masterpieces like this. In a song which shows her voice off to the best Madonna racks up another hit, but all eyes will be on its progress next week. Remember Deeper and Deeper which became only her 3rd single ever to miss the Top 5. The only Madonna single never to make the UK Top 10 is Lucky Star which faded at 14.

No. 7: NEW ENTRY. Suede - Animal Nitrate

Current darlings of the trendy press and some others as well it has to be said. The hype machine behind Sueded has done its work as the band some regard as the future of 90s rock, despite sounding as if they are living in 1973 release only their third ever single. The last was Metal Mickey which made the Top 20 back in September. Since then they have not had a record out but have not stopped appearing in magazines and papers. A good bet for top 5 next week?

No. 5: NON-MOVER. Lenny Kravitz - Are You Going My Way

His way was supposed to be No.1 this week but his chance has now obviously passed with the album release this Monday certain to dull sales of the single.

No. 4: CLIMBER. Shaggy - Oh Carolina

The first record for a long long time to climb for 4 weeks on the trot becomes the first Top 10 reggae track for a long long time. An achievement to be applauded as even in this day and age a record with an ethnicity such as this would normally never get this far. [It is about to go further].

No. 2: CLIMBER. Michael Jackson - Give In To Me

I always said it was the best track on the album and the singles buyers appear to agree. Be aware that this is still a phenomenal achievement - No. 2 with a record that has been available on an album since November 1991 and which is the 7th single off that album. Some may point out that the 8th single off 'Bad' also made No.2 in February 1989 but remember that Leave Me Alone was only the bonus track on the CD and not available on Vinyl and Cassette formats on which the majority of copies had been sold.

No. 1: FOURTH WEEK. 2 Unlimited - No Limit

No Limit to the sales either. Contenders next week for the top will either be Suede or Shaggy but it will be a close race.


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