So consider this. Say you were the performer of one of the more eagerly anticipated new single releases of the year to date, a song which had already proved its sales chops in many other territories around the world and which featured on vocals the talents of a lady who herself was a proven draw. Looking at the competition -a four week old single which had already had an extended run at the top of the charts and which with a sale edging closer to half a million copies is surely due to slow down at some point - you'd have to feel fairly confident at your chances of making it to the top of the charts in its place this week. It surely stands to reason. Especially when early sales flashes suggest that you have the edge in the chart race and are on course to make it to Number One.
At precisely 7pm on Sunday evening this week your hopes would have been utterly dashed, because even after all this time and despite having to make up ground during the week, nothing can stand in the way of Clean Bandit's Rather Be spending a fourth week at the top of the Official UK Singles chart as it finishes 8,000 copies ahead of the competition. The single can now claim the longest continuous run at Number One on the UK charts since Blurred Lines also remained on top for a 28-day stretch in during its first run at the top in June last year.
All of which is to the detriment of Zedd's Stay The Night whose march to the top of the charts comes to an abrupt halt for now with an entry at Number 2 on the chart. Nonetheless, this still marks something of a triumph for the German electro-house producer, this single far and away his highest charting hit to date, coming as it does exactly 52 weeks since his debut single Clarity made its Top 40 debut, a single which would eventually peak at Number 29 a fortnight later. Singer on Stay The Night is Hayley Williams (or "Hayley Williams of Paramore" to give her the full credit her label have clearly insisted upon), this the second time she has guest starred on someone else's single outside of her work with her own group. Her last extra-curricular work was as the featured vocalist on B.o.B's Airplanes which topped the charts for a week in the summer of 2010. A brace of Top 3 hits is more than she has managed as lead singer of Paramore to date, their best showing being Number 14 hit Ignorance in September 2009.
Much has been made of the interminable delay in releasing Stay The Night in this country, the single having already been a sizeable success in many other countries after first appearing in September last year. This naturally led to the Top 40 appearance last week of the spoiler cover version by DJ Stay The Night, giving rise to speculation as to just how many potential first week sales of the track were lost to the cover. The label will however doubtless point out that the single has still made Number 2 in Britain, easily eclipsing its performance in other countries and suggesting that maybe there was method in their madness after all.
The 1966 song Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) was a Number 3 hit for Cher in the year of its first release, although it is Nancy Sinatra's competing cover from that same year which has gone on to be the more famous recording. In the last ten years or so the song has become something of a fascination for modern-day producers, its tone and lyrics borrowed in all manner of creative ways. First came the Audio Bullys who remixed Sinatra's original vocals for their own take on the track, matching the Number 3 peak of Cher's original in 2005. Then last year will.i.am appropriated the lyrics and melody for his own flapper-vibe single Bang Bang which also rather spookily peaked at Number 3. Now, less than a year later the song is back, this time as the basis for David Guetta's new single Shot Me Down which storms the singles chart at a cycle-breaking Number 4 as the Frenchman's first new material in well over a year. Singer on the track is Skylar Grey, here making her first chart appearance since her memorable year in 2011 when she performed on Top 10 singles by Diddy Dirty Money and Dr Dre following her authorship of Eminem and Rihanna's famous hit Love The Way You Lie. The Number 4 peak matches her own best chart performance to date and is Guetta's own biggest hit since he topped the charts with Titanium in early 2012.
After frustratingly seeing her first album On A Mission stall at Number 2 on release in 2011, Katy B makes good with the follow-up, topping the album chart with consummate ease with new album Little Red. The album's availability appears to have given a brief sales boost to her current single Crying For No Reason which rebounds back to the Number 5 position it debuted at a fortnight ago.
Le Youth's last hit single Cool (based around a sample from Cassie's Me & U) was one of the sleeper club hits of last summer, spending two months in the Top 40 without ever climbing any higher than Number 26. This week the Californian producer takes a huge step forward with a Number 11 entry for his second single Dance With Me, a track which first surfaced in demo form as long ago as the summer of 2012 but which has now been polished into a certified chart smash. Much has been made of the way the single borrows from the lyrics of TLC's 1999 hit No Scrubs but the single is as much rooted in 80s funk as it is 90s R&B with samples from the likes of Cameo and Kool and the Gang fighting their way through the mix at intervals. Indeed the single is such a hybrid that it features songwriting credits for no less than 19 different people which surely has to be close to a record.
Amongst an impressive array of other new arrivals on the Top 40 chart this week (no less than 10 different singles enter the countdown at various points) are two of the more extraordinary hit singles of the year so far. New at Number 15 is the novelty hit Proper Moist, a hit single for cockney comedian Dapper Laughs who may not be much of a household name at present but whose live following has proved enough to propel his club track into the Top 20 [this minor chart entry coming many months before he ended up as part of a strange social media-inspired moral panic leading to cancelled gigs and something approaching a witch hunt of the poor chap]. Meanwhile it is fan power of a very strange kind which results in the Number 33 entry for Roll Of Honour by the Irish Brigade. A hugely provocative song written to commemorate Irish terrorists who died in a 1981 hunger strike, the single has been propelled into the charts by Scottish football fans campaigning against a new Scottish law which seeks to clamp down on the more unpleasant singing and chanting which takes place amongst certain sections of crowds. Originally Top 20 midweek, the single thankfully sank as the week went on, but we still have the rather strange sight of a song propping up the charts in support of what some feel is their right to sing offensively sectarian songs at football matches. At least the people buying It's Raining Men did so with a sense of humour.