Wednesday night saw the annual Brit Awards ceremony take place in the UK, and inevitably the sales impact of the event, broadcast live on television, informs pretty much every single chart story this week. However, not even the Brit Awards can stop the awesome force of the boy band. Nothing but nothing was going to stop One Direction from topping the Official UK Singles Chart this week - and so it proved. Having surged into a lead which saw it outsell its nearest competitor by a margin of 2:1 by midweek, even a slight slackening of its sales could not damage the prospects of One Way Or Another (Teenage Kicks) and sure enough it sits proudly at the very top of the UK singles charts with a sale of over 113,000 copies which makes it easily the fastest selling single of 2013 to date.
The cleverly thrown together cover version (as the title suggests, a mash-up of two New Wave classics, One Way Or Another as originally recorded by Blondie and Teenage Kicks by The Undertones) is released in aid of the semi-annual Comic Relief charity telethon and duly joins a long line of singles, comic or otherwise, which have topped the charts in aid of the appeal, although One Direction have the first Comic Relief Number One since Barry Islands In The Stream hit the summit in March 2009, the 2011 charity single Gold Forever by The Wanted having stalled at Number 3. For 1D themselves it is their third Number One single under their own steam, hard on the heels of Little Things which hit the top at the tail end of last year. Curiously enough it is also the third time they have been at Number One on a charity single, the group having participated as then-contestants on the 2010 X Factor charity single Heroes and then as special guest stars on the class of 2011 release Wishing On A Star.
Mind you, there is still no escaping the Brit Awards even on this single. They performed it at the ceremony after all:
Inevitably the exposure afforded by the 2013 Brit Awards ceremony benefits not only the winners themselves but also those acts whose performances highlighted the evening. It is into the latter category which Justin Timberlake falls as his show-stealing rendition of Mirrors sends the eight minute epic soaring up the singles chart, taking a flying 28-4 leap to match the Top 5 peak of Suit & Tie from a few weeks back. Mirrors remains a pre-order taster for the album - it is its predecessor on the chart which is still technically his current single, Suit & Tie rallying briefly this week to Number 14.
The availability of downloads of the live Brit awards performances from several of the night's acts has given new lift to even some older singles - notably Taylor Swift's I Knew You Were Trouble which jumps 6 places back to Number 6 to return to the Top 10 a week after it seemingly departed for good.
The title of "biggest winner" almost certainly goes to Ben Howard, recipient of the gongs for Best British Breakthrough Act and Best British Male Solo Artist, all this despite his 2012 experience being characterised by rave reviews and rather sluggish sales. Needless to say, all that changes this week. After performing his track Only Love at the ceremony on Wednesday night, the track charges to Number 9 to beat with some ease the Number 37 it scaled when first promoted as a single in May last year. His album Every Kingdom, originally released in October 2011 crept to Number 6 shortly after release but this week it makes a flying leap from the lower reaches to Number 4 in its best performance chart performance to date. [And boy, has there ever been a multiple Brit Award-winner who was such a flash in the pan?]
Mumford And Sons, after winning a Brit in 2011 for Album Of The Year ended the week as double winners as they took home the Best British Group trophy. The result is a 46-12 leap for the single I Will Wait to duplicate the chart peak it scaled in October last year and a climb to Number 2 on the album chart for Babel although its rise in sales is less spectacular given that it was already at Number 5 last week. The album topped the charts first week out also back in October
British Single Of The Year was Adele's Skyfall which duly rises 39-25 this week and theoretically should climb even further with the movie itself now available on DVD and Blu-Ray plus a performance at the Oscars ceremony (for which she missed the Brits altogether) which may well propel her sales still further next week.
The Number One album this week goes to another Brit awards star - none other than Emeli Sande who won both Best British Female and British Album Of The Year for Our Version Of Events, an album which duly returns to the top of the charts in its 54th week on release and for the seventh time in total since its release. The highest new entry of the week, however, has no Brit Awards connection at all. Step forward Push The Sky Away by a returning Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, a new entry at Number 3 to give the Australian-born star his highest charting album ever, beating by one place the Number 4 peak of his last release Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! in 2008.