This week's Official UK Singles Chart
No. 39: FALLER. Nirvana - Heart Shaped Box
Amazing what the release of an album can do isn't it. The release of In Utero means virtually every Nirvana fan ignores the single and buys the album instead resulting in this amazing 30 place fall.
No. 36: NEW ENTRY. Paul Young - Now I Know What Made Otis Blue
Despite a sometimes patchy career and a faltering string of hit singles, Paul Young has evolved into the teeny sensation he was in 1983 to become one of Britain's most consistent soul artists. This new track is his 18th hit and his first since his version of Crowded House's Don't Dream Its Over peaked at No.20 in November 1991.
No. 35: NEW ENTRY. Lisa B - Fascinated
The latest protege of DJ Paul Oakenfold is former model Lisa B around whom he is constructing a brilliant series of dance hits. Glam was the first back in June but it failed to make an impression. Now Lisa B is back with a second single, a cover of a 1988 flop by Company B, gaining instant radio play and an instant Top 40 smash.
No. 34: NEW ENTRY. Beverly Craven - Love Scenes
Despite the difficulty normally experienced in charting hits by female singer/songwriters, Epic records in 1991 had enough faith in Beverly Craven to market her single Promise Me so strongly it became a surprise Top 3 hit and launched her debut album into the stratosphere. Followup singles unsurprisingly failed to chart all that highly and now after a two year gap she is back with yet more of the same with the title track from a brand new album. Chart success is always a possibility, depending really on the mood of the nation who have shown a surprising affinity in the past for making an unusual success of a proper song well sung, of which this is a perfect example.
No. 31: NEW ENTRY. US3 featuring Rahsaan - Cantaloop
The second hit this year for the US3 project, which features different vocalists and styles on each track. The first hit was the ragga hit Riddim which peaked at No.34 in July. [And this is their take on Herbie Hancock's Cantaloupe Island but 1993 James is unaware of this].
No. 29=: NEW ENTRY. Cranes - Jewel
The brother and sister duo have steadily been building up a name for themselves following their first mini-album which they released themselves and subsequently supporting the Cure on tour. This track becomes their debut hit single from their current album entitled Forever.
No. 28: NEW ENTRY. Jamiroquai - When You Gonna Learn
They won't be the last to do so but Jamiroquai become the first act this year to notch up 4 Top 40 hits. The singles from the album are slowly faltering and this looks like being the last, a reissue of their first single which peaked at No.52 when first released last October. One point ot note is the lyrical similarity of all their singles. Alright the planet is in a bad state, but why does it take a whole album to tell us so?
No. 26: NEW ENTRY. Worlds Apart - Everlasting Love
In the race to become teen sensations in the wake of Take That, Worlds Apart have fallen behind slightly. Their first release was a version of Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel which edged into the Top 30 at Easter. Following a flop single they try again with another cover, this time picking on a song that it is hard to ruin. Everlasting Love is one of the more prolific songs in existence, having charted on several occasions. The most well known version is that done by the Love Affair which topped the chart in 1968. Since then versions have charted by Robert Knight, Rachel Sweet and Rex Smith and (despite what it says in British Hit Singles), Sandra. David Essex earlier this year had a version on his album of covers but for my money the funniest version of the classic has to be that done by U2 as they frantically strum away trying not to let the song run away with them and become what it really is - the definition of Hi-NRG music.
No. 19: NEW ENTRY. Stakka Bo - Here We Go
Just for a change we have MTV to thank for this one. So strong was this debut single from the Swedish group that the music video channel which normally gives dance music a wide berth, leaped on it immediately. That of course prompted heavy demand for the track over here which was rush released and now makes a strong debut inside the Top 20. Listening to it you can hear why, with a touch of the Stereo MCs about it the hit potential is obvious. One of the more brilliant pop records in the charts at the moment.
No. 18: NEW ENTRY. Belinda Carlisle - Bigscaryanimal
The first single release from her new album due out soon. Belinda Carlisle can be inconsistent in her single success over here, of her 16 previous hits, only 5 have made the Top 10. The two singles from last years Greatest Hits Compilation Half The World and Little Black Book disappointed at Nos. 35 and 28 respectively and so she will be relieved to see this new single crash straight in to become her first Top 20 hit since Do You Feel Like I Feel nearly 2 years ago.
No. 11: FALLER. Billy Joel - The River Of Dreams
By far his most successful single for years, Billy Joel drops out after an impressive 6 weeks in the Top 10. The single is still top of airplay monitors, ahead of even some of the strongest new releases.
No. 10: NEW ENTRY. Wonder Stuff - On The Ropes EP
Kicking of a frantically busy Top 10 come the Wonderstuff with their first new single for over two years. Together since 1987, the Midlands band have evolved from down and out alternative rockers to present a poppy folksy image which has rewarded them with star status and massive hit singles galore. It's their first hit since Welcome To The Cheap Seats made No.8 in January 1992 and continues the formula of past hits - a well deserved smash indeed,
No. 9: NEW ENTRY. Depeche Mode - Condemnation EP
Regular readers will know I am not a fan of Depeche Mode. Nonetheless credit where credit is due for this track, a haunting, beautiful ballad of the type they do so well which makes an instant and surprisingly strong impression to enter this high, easily beating the No.14 peak of the last hit Walking In My Shoes. Further progress will be doubtful but it is nice to know that at least every band has some magic in them.
No. 8: NEW ENTRY. Haddaway - Life
As the new hits keep on coming, next up is Haddaway with the long awaited followup to his first hit What Is Love. That song has only just vanished from the charts, never making No.1 but still becoming one of the best sellers of the year. The new track aims to repeat this same formula and does so just about. It won't be as big as the last hit but is enough to make him one of the few artists around at the moment who are capable of following up a debut hit, many others this year have tried and failed.
No. 6: CLIMBER. Chaka Demus and Pliers - She Don't Let Nobody
One act that most definitely can follow up are these two. Their version of the Curtis Mayfield track leaps into the Top 10 and still has a lot of life left in it yet.
No. 4: NEW ENTRY. M People - Moving On Up
Mike Pickering et al starting to make it look easy, notch up another instant success. It's the third Top 10 hit of the year for the outfit which started as a loose studio creation and have now evolved into consistent hitmakers. Moving On Up is another piece of classic dance pop to follow One Night In Heaven and beats the No.6 peak of even that track to become their biggest hit ever. Competition to go higher though looks to be fierce. Their appearance also marks another historical occasion. It's the first time ever there have been 4 new entries inside the Top 10.
No. 2: NON-MOVER. Pet Shop Boys - Go West
In one of the most astonishing reversals of fortune this year, the PSBs hold steady despite extensive media coverage and almost frantic buying of their single. It will be interesting to watch next week as the gap between them and the No.1 is very close indeed.
No. 1: FIRST WEEK. Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince - Boom! Shake The Room
Although rap artists are ten a penny these days, serious rap has difficulty gaining a toehold usually. Just occasionally one track breaks through and in the case of this one goes all the way to the top. Nine years after they first made the charts as a pair of teenagers, Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince have a No.1 hit single. Although plenty of No.1 hits have rappers on them, (Culture Beat just gone for example) they are in fact only the third ever American rap act to reach the top of the UK charts following Partners In Kryme and Vanilla Ice who both managed it in 1990. Next week will be crucial though as the Pet Shop Boys are still selling strongly. Either way it will be the last chance they have - Take That have a new single out next week.