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Shake It Up, Shake It Up
No drama this week I'm pleased to say. Senorita began the week at the head of the chart race and that is where it finishes, meaning Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello enjoy a fifth week at the top of the Official UK Singles chart. The song has already exceeded Mendes' personal record as his biggest hit ever, but this now also brings it level with Cabello's career-best, matching the chart run of Havana which also enjoyed a five-week spell at the top of the charts in 2017. Although all of those were consecutive, Senorita's run has so far been split into two parts.
Senorita tops the charts once more by a comfortable margin of 6,000 chart sales although it continues to sag alarmingly overall. Its total of just shy of 55,000 charts sales is the lowest the single has posted during its eight-week chart run to date, lower even than the 56,000 it opened its account with in second place at the very start of July. It all means a changing of the guard is imminent, and if not next week then almost certainly the week after when unless a miracle surge takes place in the next seven days the track will crash to ACR status.
Speaking of ACR status, the still waters of the last few weeks finally get stirred thanks to two notable long-running hits departing the Top 10 thanks to chart rules. Despite being "resurrected" three weeks ago, the clock continued to tick on I Don't Care and as it crashes to ACR for what is technically the second time (the first didn't "officially" happen as the single was starred-out by the 3Max rule the week it occurred. Yeah, me neither). The Great Wall Of Sheeran is shattered once and for all as the former Number One single plummets 3-21. Beautiful People remains locked in place at Number 2 however, and as a younger chart hit is immune from any forced removals for at least the next three weeks. According to Alan Jones in Music Week who has time to count these things, it means Ed Sheeran has now spent a total of 28 weeks at Number 2 during the course of his chart career.
Also departing the Top 10 in a hurry, Billie Eilish's Bad Guy (7-25 also ACR induced) but perhaps more surprisingly the Ariana Grande and Social House track Boyfriend which turns out to be a one week wonder of the very worst kind with a 4-11 dive.
3 Hours Or 3 Nights. I'm Easy.
With space thus freed, many other hits now have room to breathe. A three-place climb brings Dominic Fike's 3 Nights to Top 3 status after an epic 15-week chart climb. For a single first released back in April, the catchy pop hit has a pleasing summertime vibe to it making its ultimate chart peak arriving in (an admittedly rainy) August entirely appropriate.
The days of dismissing British grime and drill hits as one-week wonders must surely be over. In its second week, Aitch's Taste (Make It Shake) builds on its initial success and rises to Number 4. Or maybe the idea of the white teenager rapping in an unabashedly Mancunian accent has more in the way of curiosity value than your average South London street rhyme.
From The Moment I Saw You
Also on the rise still is the Kygo/Whitney Houston collision on the remix of Higher Love which lifts a further four places to Number 5. That makes it Kygo's biggest-ever chart hit and ensures that the late Whitney Houston matches in death the final hit of her lifetime, Million Dollar Bill also reaching Number 5 in late 2009. Her last Top 3 hit came a full 20 years ago when My Love Is Your Love (the title of her 1999 album) reached Number 2. Although originally only a part of the Japanese edition, her recording of Higher Love is very much a part of her 1990 album I'm Your Baby Tonight. It seems entirely appropriate that it should become a hit in remixed form, following in the footsteps of the title track which charted in America in its original LA & Babyface produced form but became a hit in the rest of the world (including Europe) thanks to a Yvonne Turner remix.
Three singles exiting the Top 10 means three must arrive in their place, although none are brand new singles. Sam Smith leads the charts, How Do You Sleep rising 12-7 to become his second Top 10 hit single of the year following Dancing With A Stranger. The Mist/Fredo collaboration So High leaps 11-8 and is now just one place short of the peak is scaled four weeks ago. That just leaves Ed Sheeran once more to grab the honours, Take Me Back To London having reappeared on the chart a week ago makes a renewed dash for glory and moves 14-10. It first peaked at Number 3 in the week Sheeran's album was released.
Lil To Work With This Week
Smart money seems to be on Lil Tecca's Ransom emulating its Hot 100 success over here, the American rap hit moves ever closer to the Top 10 with a 24-13 climb. As I noted when it first debuted, it doesn't sound completely out of place despite its multi-layered production standing in stark contrast to the beats and bass minimalism of British-produced rhymes.
Two weeks ago we endured the spectacle of a Top 40 devoid of new entries. We escape that penury this week, but only just. The highest new arrival of the week creeps in at Number 40 as Hot Girl Summer ensures that Texan female rapper Megan Thee Stallion opens her British chart career in something almost approaching style. Almost needless to say she is not alone on the enormously appealing track, co-vocals by Nicki Minaj and a surprisingly prominent Ty Dolla $ign giving the track an injection of star power. Keep an eye on this one if it pleases you to do so.
Career Really Over?
That does mean that one single notably fails to reach the Top 40. Katy Perry's much cooed-over new single Small Talk limps into view at a lowly Number 43, admittedly a long way from her smallest chart open ever but notably some way back from the Number 13 that Never Really Over opened its chart account with back in June. That single was supposedly a sign that her overdue comeback was imminent, something you might now have to question if Small Talk fails to progress further. Still, week one mindset and all that, so give it time. Never Really Over more than held its own for several weeks, but didn't exactly progress up the charts either. Perry is a longtime legacy act still trying to carve out her place at the top table. Her material deserves better, but will the streaming generation catch on to this in time?
Over on the Official UK Albums chart, we have what may well be a brief changing of the guard, but a changing of the guard it is. Interrupting Ed Sheeran's reign to general amazement are American hard rock veterans Slipknot. We Are Not Your Kind is only the group's sixth album in over 20 years of recording together, but the anticipation for its appearance was enough to propel Corey Taylor and his rotating cast of bandmates back to the top of the charts. Their last Number One came a full 18 years ago, their second album Iowa grabbing a moment of glory back in 2001. Official Charts Company note that We Are Not Your Kind is the first metal album of any kind to top the charts since Iron Maiden's The Book Of Souls in September 2015 and indeed only the fifth of the 2010s so far. I'll note that with two of those five being Maiden albums and the third being from Black Sabbath, the only vaguely contemporary act among them was Avenged Sevenfold who reached Number One with Hail To The King in September 2013. But even they made their recording debut as long ago as 2001. Rock ain't dead, but its main appeal seems all too often to be confined to those who are at the upper end of the age scale.
Finally, this week's curiosity. Longtime Ed Sheeran collaborator Amy Wadge (she is credited with songwriting duties on both Thinking Out Loud and Galway Girl) enjoys her first-ever foray into the published Top 75 chart with the now year-old Faith's Song. It is one of the main themes from the English-language version of Anglo-Welsh drama series "Keeping Faith" whose second series has been recently screened. Curiously popular at download, the track charted twice last summer and returned to the sales rankings a week ago. This week it sits at Number 74, its 6,000-odd sales almost entirely online purchases - enough in fact to make it the Number 8 single on paid-for sales alone. The single has actually sold over 100,000 copies in the year and a bit since release, an average of 1300 a week if you like.