This week's Official UK Singles Chart

Preamble:

The stillwater that has overcome the chart in the past couple of weeks finally breaks, enough to set records moving and prepare for the events of the next few weeks. For the meantime though, the chart sees 11 new entries, 5 climbers and three non movers.

Analysis:

No. 37: NEW ENTRY. Shades Of Rhythm - Sound Of Eden

Having been around in one form or another since 1986, this British production group return (sort of) after a break of 2 years. In late 1991 they were part of the dance breakthrough of the charts, which saw the entire Top 40 almost dominated by faceless dance acts. For Shades of Rhythm it was Ecstacy which did it for them, making No.16 early in December. It wasn't their first hit though, they had made the Top 40 earlier in the year with Sound Of Eden which peaked at No.35 in July 1991. Thus it is now in remixed form and preceding a new album the track returns to the charts, possibly about to eclipse its previous placing, or maybe to vanish without trace next week.

No. 35: NEW ENTRY. Duran Duran - Too Much Information

If a year ago you had said that Duran Duran would be one of the most successful bands of 1993 you would have been laughed at. All has changed now as the original teeny band of the 1980s forge a long overdue adult respectability for themselves. Too Much Information is the third hit from the Wedding Album following the Top 10 success of Ordinary World and the Top 20 hit Come Undone. Too Much Information faltered on its release last week and only made No.43 but this week pushes forward to ensure that their 1990 hit Serious remains the only chart single of their career to miss the Top 40, it having peaked at No.48 in November of that year.

No. 34: NEW ENTRY. Guru featuring N'Dea Davenport - Trust Me

In dance circles, N'Dea Davenport is becoming one of the most prolific guest vocalists around, but has yet to make a record in her own right. She has had several UK chart hits before, on all of the Brand New Heavies' hits, the biggest being Never Stop which made No.19 in April 1982. This new track is from the new album from Guru, formerly one half of rap artists Gang Starr and one of the few tracks not to have a jazz flavour.

No. 30: NEW ENTRY. Texas - So Called Friend

Only the third ever Top 40 hit for Texas, a Scottish band with an enormous following in their heartland but only translating that into national success with the odd hit. Their biggest hit came with their debut with I Don't Want A Lover which made No. 8 in February 1989. Since then their only other Top 40 was their cover of Al Green's Tired Of Being Alone which made No.19 in May 1992. This new track is unlikely to change much, being typical of much of their output, but it is always good to see one of the classier rock bands around make the national charts. [A track which would wind up as the theme to 'Ellen', although that will have passed everyone in Britain by].

No. 29: NEW ENTRY. Bjork - Venus As A Boy

Many thought this would miss out altogether when it entered at the notorious graveyard of No.41 last week. A climb this week though gives the second single from her debut solo album a well deserved Top 40 place, beating the No.36 peak of Human Behaviour back in June.

No. 28: FALLER. Mary J Blige - Real Love

Another smallish hit for Mary J Blige but possibly enough to establish here name over here at last. US chart watchers will note that Britain is now five singles behind her American chart success.

No. 26: NEW ENTRY. Zhane - Hey Mr DJ

More US Dance/Soul from new duo Zhane, charting here due to a phenomenal interest in the single when first made available to the clubs. Most US dance singles come out on import before they are officially released but never sell many copies. Hey Mr DJ sold more than most and pushed its way to No.92 before being officially released. That position is not counted for official stats though of course - the official singles chart only goes up to No.75, positions below that are paid little attention due to the forced removal of singles if they fail to increase sales beyond a certain amount.

No. 25: NEW ENTRY. Motorhead - Ace Of Spades

When Lemmy quit Hawkwind to form Motorhead in the late 1970s, few could have predicted the following that the band would get to become to date the only thrash metal band to have ever had a UK Top Ten hit. Part of this was due to Lemmy's skills as a musician, writing songs that conformed to proper structures and being more than three and a half minutes of noise. Ace of Spades, although not their biggest hit ever, is certainly their most famous, originally making No.15 in December 1980. It's return to the charts is prompted for the most part by an dance remix, incredible in its cheek, stripping away most of the instrumentation to leave just Lemmy, the lead guitar and adding a dance beat. Needless to say it works a treat [controversial!] and Motorhead get their first Top 40 hit since 1981 and rescuing one of the most charismatic characters in rock from the obscurity of appearing in self-deprecating TV ads for pensions.

No. 24: NEW ENTRY. Moby - Move

The second hit of the year for Moby, to follow up I Feel It which made No.38 in July.

No. 23: CLIMBER. Stone Temple Pilots - Plush

Buoyed up slightly by a surprising amount of radio play, the Stone Temple Pilots climb a place whilst their album vaults up the album charts to No.35, their American success on the verge of being repeated here.

No. 22: FALLER. Ace Of Base - Wheel Of Fortune

All That She Wants is still the best selling single of the year, despite being challenged by Mr Vain at present, but the followup tumbles from its peak of No.20 proving that in this day and age you are only as good as your last hit - even if it is a No.1

No. 18: NEW ENTRY. James - Sometimes

Before 1991 James were just another band, struggling to break free of the college circuit despite a few minor hits from their latest album. Then they re-recorded an old concert favourite Sit Down and within weeks it had made No.2 and is now a classic pop record and one of those long lost records that never made a deserved No.1. Their last album Seven consolidated that success, despite accusations from some quarters that the band had descended (if that is the word) into stadium rock. The first single from the new album bodes well of things to come and becomes instantly their 4th Top 20 hit. Sound, the first single from the last album made No.9 in December 1991.

No. 13: CLIMBER. New Order - World (The Price Of Love)

The commercial potential of World is not wasted as the track makes a spectacular 14 place leap to eclipse the No.22 peak of the last single. Chances are it may well climb again next week to give New Order their sixth Top 10 hit ever. They've never had 2 Top 10 hits from one album.

No. 12: NEW ENTRY. DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince - Boom! Shake The Room

Once they were two teenagers rapping about teenage angst. In 1986 that gave them a No.21 hit with the tongue in cheek Girls Ain't Nothing But Trouble since then the TV series 'Fresh Prince Of Bel Air' has made the Fresh Prince one of the most accessible rappers in pop - when they actually make records that is. The new single is their first for two years, and makes a strong start and is set to rival Summertime as their biggest hit ever [and how]. That track was their only other UK hit and made No.8 in August 1991.

No. 10: FALLER. Mariah Carey - Dreamlover

The single slides a place whilst the album ends UB40's marathon 7 week stay at the top to become her first UK No.1 album ever.

No. 8: CLIMBER. 2 Unlimited - Faces

A small climb for 2 Unlimited, potentially spoiling a very consistent chart record. With The Magic Friend being the only 'failure' at No.11 all their hits have peaked at either 1, 2 or 4.

No. 5: NEW ENTRY. Nirvana - Heart Shaped Box

Well a new single and a new album from the most famous grunge band of all could hardly fail to impress could it. At a stroke Heart Shaped Box becomes their biggest hit ever although further progress is extremely unlikely with the new album released this week as well. What does it sound like? What do you think it sounds like?

No. 1: THIRD WEEK. Culture Beat - Mr Vain

Whilst the music press trumpets about the significance of it being the first No.1 hit since the mid 1950s not to be released on 7-inch single the record itself sells by the shedful and is well on its way to becoming the biggest hit of the year so far. Further life at the top will be interesting to see, given the number of big single releases due within the next few weeks. Watch out for Top Ten entries next week from the Pet Shop Boys and Kate Bush.


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