We last stumbled across the mad crazy world of Cheryl Cole back in 2012. At the time she was still reeling a little from her disastrous foray into America via her brief cup of coffee as an X Factor USA judge whilst at the same time attempting a rebranding of sorts, going by the name of "Cheryl" to disassociate herself from her now ex-husband. Although her last record came out under this new shortened form of her name, it clearly wasn't quite as successful as she hoped.
It is therefore as "Cheryl Cole" once more that the former X Factor star makes her chart return this week, ironically less than a month after her surprise marriage to a man she'd known for five minutes, a move which neatly thrust herself back into the headlines just in time for the promotion of her brand new record. Say what it is about Ms Tweedy/Cole/Fernandez-Versini for all her obvious limitations as a performer she has an amazingly consistent chart record. Every single one of the opening singles from her solo albums has stormed straight to the top of the charts and the lead release from her fourth is no exception to the rule, Crazy Stupid Love mostly blasting all competition out of the way to sit comfortably at the top of the Official UK Singles chart.
The single is, therefore, her fourth as a solo artist, following on from Fight For This Love in 2009, Promise This in 2010 and Call My Name in 2012. This puts her into some quite exalted company, joining only Rita Ora and er, Geri Halliwell as a British female with as many as four Number One hit singles. Added to that she also topped the charts four times as a member of Girls Aloud to give her a total of eight chart-toppers to date although you may see some outlets credit her with a ninth, but to add her contribution to the Helping Haiti charity single in 2010 to her personal achievements is pushing things a little.
Co-star on Crazy Stupid Love is Tinie Tempah who lands the fifth Number One single of his own career and the second of 2014, hard on the heels of his own presence on DVBBS and Borgeous' Tsunami (Jump) back in March. Cheryl Cole's new album Only Human will be released in November, neatly coinciding with her return to the judges' chair on X Factor UK. Surname niggles aside, she has this all planned out to the minute.
Not that this wasn't a closer run thing that it might have appeared midweek, for the Cheryl Cole single did not reign supreme at retail for most of the week and it was only its early head of steam which meant it emerged as the eventual chart champion. Harrying her all the way were Canadian stars Magic! whose worldwide smash hit Rude had climbed as far as Number 50 based on streams alone last week and which this week charges to Number 2 after finally returning to the online stores for purchase (originally released last year, it had been restricted to pre-orders for the last few weeks in preparation for this re-release). The current US Number One, Rude is a cheery reggae-pop track which whilst may be an unexpected musical style given the origins of its performers is not without precedent. 21 years ago ragga star Snow landed a worldwide smash (and UK Number 2 hit) with Informer whilst just like Magic! hailing from Toronto, Ontario.
Also new to the Top 10 this week is another single which has made waves on the US charts before escaping here - all the more surprising given that the artist in question is British. The stardom of Charli XCX has been a long time coming. 21-year-old Charlotte Aichison recorded her first album in 2008 at the age of just 14 and began her adult career with a series of singles from 2011 onwards, all taken from her second album True Romance which was belatedly released last year and limped to Number 85. Her first brush with the mainstream however finally came last year when she appeared alongside Icona Pop (according to the single credits anyway) on Number One single I Don't Care (I Love It), returning to the Top 5 earlier this year as the guest of Iggy Azalea on Fancy. After a brief false start with promotional single Superlove which limped to Number 62 at the end of last year, Charli XCX is now a solo star in her home country for real as Boom Clap storms to Number 6. Originally intended for the aforementioned True Romance album, the song was reportedly offered to Hilary Duff and rejected by her management. The single now appears as the lead release from the soundtrack of The Fault In Our Stars although oddly not the first charted single from the film, that honour going to the otherwise unavailable online Ed Sheeran track All Of The Stars.
The phenomenon of dance records failing in their first incarnation and then becoming commercial hits a little way down the line in a slightly remixed form is nothing new. It has been happening for decades after all. However "decades" is not normally the length of time that has to pass before a club record becomes a hit - yet that is just what we witness just outside the Top 10 this week. Always by MK featuring Alana first began burning up dancefloors over 20 years ago during the summer of 1992. It took over two years to chart, limping to Number 69 when released in a new set of mixes in January 1995, a further re-release of the now legendary track two years later also failing to provoke much in the way of commercial interest. That might have been that, but for the fact that the work of Marc "MK" Kinchen began to receive renewed interest last year following his remix work on Storm Queen's Look Right Through which topped the charts in the UK last year. As a consequence Route 94 has produced a new remix of Always and it is this new version which means the single finally, belatedly and perhaps deservedly becomes a chart hit at last, entering at Number 12 with a flourish.
Two places below are Neon Jungle with their fourth chart single becoming sadly their smallest to date with a Number 14 peak for Louder bringing their run back to back Top 10 hits to a close whilst the Jungle theme continues at Number 18 thanks to the arrival of the charts of the cult hit of that name by American rock band X Ambassadors in collaboration with British folk musician Jamie N Commons.
The Official UK album chart sees Ed Sheeran remain supreme once more with X for an impressive fifth week, as noted the longest continuous Number One run by any album since 2011. Just below him the Dolly Parton revival which began last month with her well-received Glastonbury Festival performance continues, her Blue Smoke- The Best Of hits collection rises to Number 2 to further consolidate its status as the highest charting album of her career. The highest new entry of the week languishes at Number 6, Trouble In Paradise the much-delayed second album from La Roux, landing over five years after their (or rather these days, her) debut peaked at Number 2.
La Roux famously topped the charts in 2009 with Bulletproof but Elly's latest single Uptight Downtown has failed to impress so far and charts at Number 63 this week. Faring little better is another British female star who has previously enjoyed Number One hit singles. Former X Factor star Cher Lloyd returns to the chart for the first time in two years, but new single Sirens tops out at Number 41.