Of all the Number One singles over the past year or so whose ascent to the top had a sense of inevitability about it, there are few which were as much of a dead cert as Nico & Vinz' Am I Wrong which this week does indeed sit at the summit of the Official UK Singles chart. Having spent five weeks on the full Top 100 chart by virtue of streaming sales alone, the much-anticipated full sales release of the track (brought forward, it has to be said, from an originally planned early September) sees it fly with ease to the very top of the charts. You will see much made of the fact that the pair are the first wholly Norwegian act to reach the top of the UK charts for over 28 years - dating back to A-Ha's one and only Number One single The Sun Always Shines On TV in 1986. Other acts - notably Aqua and A1 - have featured Norwegian born members amongst their number and reached the top, but Nico & Vinz are the first to boast 100% of their membership from the land of Fjords.
However possibly of more note is the fact that by virtue of its pre-release charting Am I Wrong makes a record-bending jump to the top of the charts, registering a 52-1 climb. That is the second biggest climb to Number One in UK chart history, bettered only by the 73-1 climb of Boys And Girls by Pixie Lott in 2009 which had accidentally appeared online for purchase a few hours early. Only five singles have ever jumped to the top of the charts from outside the Top 40, the other three being David Guetta's Getting' Over You (41-1 in 2010), Hey Baby by DJ Otzi (45-1 in 2001) and Someone Like You by Adele (47-1 in 2011). There have been other singles which have climbed higher, again thanks to unexpected distribution leaks, but they have done so from outside the published Top 75 chart from which the record books take their reference and so are essentially lost to history.
The spectacle of singles making massive jumps to Number One may be something that becomes more common, particularly as labels warm to the idea of pre-releasing singles to streaming sites before their actual 'release'. Back in 2006, we had a similar flood of flying leaps due to eligibility rules in place at the time which allowed singles to chart on download sales a week before the then still-important physical release. None of these, however, did so from outside the Top 40, the biggest climb being the 23-1 rise of Welcome To The Black Parade by My Chemical Romance.
The highest new entry of the week is Love Runs Out which arrives at Number 3 dutifully becomes the second chart single of the year for OneRepublic and instantly betters the peak of its predecessor If Lose Myself which peaked at Number 8. It is the latest single to be taken from their Native album and one which was apparently initially earmarked to be the first before Ryan Tedder got cold feet as to whether it was strong enough to lead the promotion. The single is now the fifth Top 10 single for the American group and their third to reach the Top 3.
The top end of the UK Singles chart is undergoing something of a stagnation at the moment, either due to a summer lull in new product or the effects of streaming data causing the biggest hits to linger longer, you decide. Oddly enough the two new arrivals this week do so at the expense of two of last week's new entries with Melissa Steel's Kisses For Breakfast reversing 10-21 whilst Bars & Melody become the very embodiment of a one week wonder with a 5-31 chart reverse.
One of my twitter correspondents Phil Annets notes that this lack of movement along with the unprecedented level of turnover at the top this year is resulting in huge numbers of former chart-topping singles currently gumming up the listings. 16 of this weeks Top 40 hits are current or former Number One hits, with eight more currently lower down the Top 75.
Theoretically, Ariana Grande's Break Free is selling enough following a midweek release to qualify for a Top 10 placing, but it is ineligible to chart for now under instant grat rules with Problem the only track from her forthcoming album My Everything entitled to be listed under those terms.
The only other new single of the week is Tough Love which finally gives hotly tipped British singer-songwriter Jessie Ware her first ever Top 40 hit. The lead track from her forthcoming second album of the same name it is actually her third single to chart after 110% and Wildest Moments both missed the Top 40 in 2012, those tracks featuring on her debut release Devotion which made the album chart Top 5 despite the absence of hits.
Those looking for a fun story may care to note the small battle Ed Sheeran is having with himself on the singles chart. His biggest selling track of the moment is still Sing which slides 14-15 this week. His next single officially is the track which made such waves when a chart-ineligible instant grat download Don't and which is now starting to assert itself, climbing 35-23, yet it is still being outsold by ever-popular album track Thinking Out Loud which hauls itself to a new peak of Number 18.
All of this is really background noise as Sheeran's X album remains supreme at Number One on the Official UK Albums chart. That's now seven weeks in a row, four short of the 11 scaled by Adele in 2011 and just one place behind the British Solo Male record of 8, currently held by James Blunt with Back To Bedlam from 2005. His continuing supremacy is still down to a lack of any hot new challenger more than anything else. This week's new releases all disappoint, former Busted and Fightstar singer Charlie Simpson reaches Number 10 with his solo debut Long Road Home, Pixie Lott's self-titled album lands at Number 15 and despite a Number One single to their name, Magic! fail to tempt enough of the dwindling band of album buyers to do better than a Number 19 entry with Don't Kill The Magic.