We have very much a changing of the guard on the UK Singles chart this week, as fully half of last weeks Top 10 tracks take a dive to make way for some newcomers.
For the moment however this changing of the guard does not extend to the Number One single as Roll Deep reign supreme for a third week with Good Times. The single duly brings what some might see as some much needed stability to the Number One position, the first track to last longer than a fortnight at Number One since Fireflies had a three week run at the top at the end of January. For those keeping score it has actually been a startlingly long time since any single spent as long as four weeks at Number One - The Fear by Lily Allen the last track to manage the feat way back in February 2009. Roll Deep's chances of equalling that total appear slim however - their sales are on the decline and they only top the chart this week by default with a lowly sale of 49,000 copies.
The first of the new Top 10 arrivals turns out to have been Roll Deep's strongest rival for Number One - Jason Derulo rocketing 12-2 with Ridin Solo. Derulo's previous single In My Head hit Number One back in March and so he seems in pole position to become the second act of the year to do the double at the top of the charts should Roll Deep continue to falter (although one suspects it is more likely to be a new release that claims the crown in seven days time). Incidentally In My Head is one of no less than eight former Number One singles to all still be claiming Top 40 places this week - their numbers bolstered by yet another return for Bad Romance at Number 39. Considering that we have had 11 different Number One singles thus far in 2010 it is a very high strike rate indeed - or maybe that speaks volumes for the staying power of the missing three - Joe McElderry, Helping Haiti and Iyaz.
The highest new entry of the week lands at Number 4 - Stereo Love by Edward Maya and Vika Jugulina. It is typical really, you wait months and months for Romanian pop stars and then two turn up at once. Maya as you may have guessed hails from the same shores as Inna and becomes the second Danubian star to hit the British Top 10 in the last couple of months. His single Stereo Love has already been a Europe-wide smash hit as well as consolidating his star status in his own country and now escapes to these shores to a similarly rapturous welcome. Based heavily on an Azerbaijani accordian melody called Bayatilar, the single rises head and shoulders above most Europop tracks by being both haunting, captivating and well disposed to club remixes - a certifiable worldwide smash hit despite its unashamedly Eastern European origins.
It took a week longer than some had hoped, but Fyfe Dangerfield's TV-inspired rendition of She's Always A Woman finally becomes a Top 10 single with a seven place leap to Number 7. Needless to say the single is now far and away the biggest chart success of his career, Dangerfield's band The Guillemots having never charted higher than Number 20 thanks to 2008 single Get Over It. Meanwhile She's Always A Woman is only the third Billy Joel song to become a Top 40 hit for an act other than its author, although strangely enough all three have been note for note covers with little active interpretation by the acts involved. Westlife took their version of Uptown Girl to Number One in March 2001 (duplicating the chart success of the classic original) whilst Barry White's rendition of Just The Way You Are hit Number 12 in January 1979, beating the Number 19 peak of the original almost exactly a year earlier.
Funny thing - of the three singles breaking the glass ceiling and climbing into the Top 10 from outside this week, two of them do so by exactly halving their previous chart positions. Alexandra Burke is the second of these, moving 16-8 with All Night Long with a chart boost almost undoubtedly helped by the availability finally of the single EP. This means that punters can finally buy the version of the song they have been hearing on the radio and can see in the video, until now only the Pitbull-less album version has been available to buy. In a strange twist however it appears that not everyone has grasped this fact and the iTunes chart in particular is still registering the most sales for the Overcome album cut with the actual single version still languishing some way behind.
Just when you thought it was safe - the Glee Cast had something of an off week last week thanks to a less than inspiring set of song choices in the episode aired the week before last. This week they return to the charts with a vengeance and in the process land themselves their third Top 10 hit of the year. The track doing the honours this time is Total Eclipse Of The Heart, suitably epic production of the Jim Steinman song that gave Bonnie Tyler a transatlantic Number One hit in 1983. Easily one of the most famous and most overblown singles of its era, the Glee Cast version stays true to the raw emotional power of the original and so in the process manages to knock seven bells out of the offensive Eurodance version by Nicki French which hit Number 5 in early 1995. Indeed the Glee Cast version of the song is now the fourth to chart overall, the numbers swelled by Jan Wayne's unintentionally hilarious version which made Number 28 in March 2003.
If Total Eclipse Of The Heart is almost over familiar then the other Glee Cast hit of the week is one that is almost a total obscurity as far as British audiences are concerned. Entering at Number 27 is their take on Run Joey Run, a song which was originally a US Top 5 hit for David Geddes in 1974. In Britain the song was never more than a turntable hit, missing the UK charts altogether and so until now being little more than a dimly remembered memory and a track useful for fleshing out the odd "songs that tell a story" compilation album. With versions of Ice Ice Baby, Physical and U Can't Touch This also peppering the Top 75 this week it takes to 33 the number of Top 75 singles charted since the start of 2010 by the performers of the TV show. Total Eclipse Of The Heart and Run Joey Run are now their 11th and 12th Top 40 singles respectively.
Did you ever think you would live to see the day when a brand new Christina Aguilera song was not the biggest chart story of the week? Her first chart single since late 2008 and marking the forthcoming release of her first album since 2006s Back To Basics, the American star lands at Number 12 with her brand new single Not Myself Tonight. Gone is the joyful retro of her last release, instead this record marks the return of the stripped to the bone electrofunk of her 2002 Stripped album - right down to the unapologetically raunchy video. Herein lies the problem though, it isn't so much that she has done this all before but even worse there is someone else on the scene who is taking the pop-n-raunch concept to ever more daring new levels. Whilst clearly paying homage to Madonna in the video for Not Myself Tonight, Aguilera manages to come across as a second rate Lady Gaga clone - an image that undermines her own talent and will do little to persuade record buyers that she is still contemporary and relevant after four years away from the studio to make babies. Maybe I am being harsh, maybe this is a really good record that nobody has cottoned onto so far, but in chart terms it will be her fourth single in a row to miss the Top 10 and unless her new album contains material that is substantially better, it is a stat she is unlikely to be fixing any time soon.
New at Number 26 is Crush from hot teenager rapper Fugative, or Harry Byart as his mum still calls him given that he is still just 16 years old. His first single Jimmy Shoe was an urban hit last year whilst he charted for the first time with second single Supafly which narrowly missed the Top 40 back in January. His third single takes him to the cusp of proper mainstream attention for the very first time.
Finally for this week, the very bottom end of the Top 40 and the very top end of the album chart are the responsibility of the same act as Keane make a triumphant chart return. The occasion is the release of Night Train, an 8 track mini album that the band recorded on the fly whilst on tour in 2008. Released last week, the album flies to the top of the chart to become their fourth release in a row to make Number One and ensuring their career has a 100% strike rate of chart-toppers so far. The lead single from the album is the diverting Stop For A Minute which sits comfortably at Number 40 - not their biggest hit single ever by any means but at the very least a reassurance that the tastes of the singles and album buying public aren't quite as different as it might sometimes seem.