A more comfortable winning margin compared to last week sees I Took A Pill In Ibiza by Mike Posner home and dry for a second straight week at Number One on the Official UK Singles chart, this despite some early indications that it would actually be toppled. In the end it was our old friend the audio stream which saved the American singer-songwriter, his status as the most played artist of the moment more than enough to offset the lag in sales which means Posner's single was only the second most-purchased track this week.
The sales winner was in fact Say You Do, the latest offering from tropical house producer Sigala and which was actually ahead of the pile as of the midweek update but which struggled as the week went on. Charting at Number 46 last week on streams alone the single rockets to Number 5 on the main chart to give Bruce Fielder his third Top 5 hit single in a row. This new track features a rather larger cast than usual, offering a guest credit to both DJ Fresh and hired singer Imani. The contribution from the drum and bass producer gives this new track a slightly edgier vibe than the blissed-out offerings of Sigala's previous hit, the single this time free of vocal samples but still taking inspiration from the past - in this case the chanted hook which originates from Mariah Carey's 1996 hit Always Be My Baby.
It may not have made Number One but Say You Do does at least break a rather fascinating chart run, the first single in seven weeks to enter the Top 10 from a position outside the Top 40 - Pillowtalk by Zayn the last track to achieve what was once commonplace when it entered at Number One back in February. Not that we should be surprised, it is the third Sigala hit single in a row to rocket into the Top 10 after charting lower down the table.
To point this out may be stating the obvious, but it bears repeating for those casual readers who drop in from time to time. The turn of the century days of breathless constant singles chart turnover, already regimented by the digital download era, are now dead and buried thanks to the similarly braking effect of audio streams which are at present moving at a glacial pace even compared to the steadily dying sales market. Just last week some deep thinking chart nerds of my acquaintance noted that the total weeks on chart of the Top 40 singles totalled a phenomenal 345 weeks. Ten years ago the total was 157. Twenty years ago this week it was just 112.
All of this remains to the benefit of singles destined to do what they used to do in your grandparent's generation - and slowly and steadily climb the chart. This week Cheap Thrills by Sia rises 16-8 to give the Australian star her first Top 10 single since Elastic Heart almost a year ago. Now in its sixth week as a Top 75 single the track is her highest charting hit since "Chandelier" entered at Number 6 in July 2014.
Turn of the millennium star Craig David made one of the most unexpected comebacks of the decade at the start of this year when his collaboration with Big Narstie When The Bassline Drops worked its way to Number 10 after another slow and steady chart run. This week he proves this was no one-off, teaming up with Blonde on Nothing Like This which is the highest charting new release of the week, landing at Number 17. For Blonde (Bristolian producers Jacob Manson and Adam Englefield) it is a single they are hoping will give them their third straight Top 10 hit single hard on the heels of I Loved You and All Cried Out. All three singles should theoretically find their way onto the duo's first album when it arrives, although for now there is no announcement forthcoming of a planned release.
The slowest of slow burners for now surely has to be Roses by Chainsmokers which finally becomes a Top 40 hit this week with a 41-33 climb. The second chart hit for the producers following 2014 novelty Selfie, the single was actually first made available at the very start of the year and reaches its latest peak this week after eight weeks as a Top 100 single.
Over on the Official UK Albums chart there was also the midweek prospect of a rather surprise changing of the guard at Number One, veteran Manchester act James looking set to top the charts with a studio album for the first time in their long career. In the end new release Girl At The End Of The World has to content itself with a Number 2 debut, still their highest charting release since 1999 release Millionaires also worked its way into second place. Their only Number One album to date remains 1998 hits collection The Best Of which grabbed a week of glory for itself when released in April that year.
Reigning chart champion Adele (of course it is her) presides over an album countdown which features quite the parade of veteran acts. As well as James (chart debut 1986) there are also new entries for Iggy Pop (chart debut 1977) with Post Pop Despression at Number 5, Underworld (chart debut 1994) with Barbara Barbara We Face A Shining Future at Number 10 and finally Primal Scream (chart debut 1987) with Chaosmosis at Number 12.
Gwen Stefani's last album The Sweet Escape came out in 2006 but she makes her chart return this week with new release This Is What The Truth Feels Like at Number 14. She is another act who can trace her chart history back some years, in this case to the charting of the No Doubt album Tragic Kingdom in 1997 although the group's self-titled debut was first released five years earlier in 1992.
Next week there should be 'no doubt' about the destiny of the Number One album as the pre-release hype of Zayn Malik's Mind Of Mine should presumably have been enough to propel it to the top upon finally dropping this week. But we should surely never assume anything…