Never Assume

After a brief shock when the increasingly random First Look chart last Sunday suggested Miracle was on course for a surprise return to No.1, we find the status quo startlingly undisturbed on the charts this week.

Sprinter by Dave and Central Cee remains No.1 for a third, running up another huge sale of over 71,000 in the process. So many in fact that you have to wonder just what data was missing at the weekend to even suggest that Miracle was going to outpace them. In fact the pair are atop an unchanged Top 4 with Who Told You by J Hus and Drake ensuring we have a UK rap duopoly for the second week running.

All eyes are now on what is surely the big release of the week, the Stormzy and Fredo collision Toxic Trait. Could we end up with a unique UK rap Top 3 next time around?

The other main shock of the week was that there wasn't a new entry in the Top 10. The only new arrival, occupying the berth vacated by the ACR-ed David Kushner, is Good Love from Hannah Laing and RoRo which edges up 13-9 for its highest chart placing to date.

Littler Mix

That relegates the week's highest new entry to what some might see as a rather startling No.11. Don't Say Love is the opening gambit of the solo career of Leigh-Anne Pinnock, now going under her first name only in what is clearly a bold attempt at a reposition. She is of course the second member of Little Mix to take flight as a solo artist, under pressure to demonstrate that the entire concept of a "solo star from Little Mix" is a viable one following the way her erstwhile bandmate Jesy Nelson has rather died on her arse. The new single is one of those tracks which was clearly positioned as a smash hit from the outset, hyped to the hills online and with the enthusiastic backing of the Mixer Stans behind it. This was supposed to make the Top 10, and the fact that for now it hasn't is perhaps the most notable thing about it. Word is that there are Perri and Jade solo projects waiting in the wings for their releases to be greenlit but held back by label nervousness about just how viable they actually are. Leigh-Anne was the testbed and too important to fail. No.11 isn't a bad chart position, but hardly in line with expectations for her theoretical name value. The only question is does a fanbase-led track have a sufficiently strong Week 2 in it?

My Heart Goes

The hottest new pop hit of the week is in actual fact the track that is three paces behind. (It Goes Like) Nanana is the first major commercial hit single from DJ and producer Peggy Gou, a native of South Korea but who has spent most of her adult life in Europe and now calls Germany home. Newly signed to a major label deal, this track pushes her to the fore as a mainstream star for the first time after many years as a name to drop. And unlike the Leigh-Ann single this has more than exceeded expectations with a No.14 debut - with better things surely to come as more people catch onto its brilliance.

All Of The Harry

It seems almost impossible to go two weeks without mentioning the man, but his sheer streaming ubiquity makes that nearly impossible. Harry Styles' Harry's House album is virtually the only existing release holding its own on an albums chart Top 10 rammed with new releases (of which more shortly) and its accompanying singles are all making chart progress of their own - this all thanks to fandom going nuts about his current series of stadium gigs. So As It Was, the No.1 hit from a year ago that refuses to die, is back up the charts once more at No.5 while Late Night Talking rises too at No.22. But the biggest chart jump of the week is the album's latest single Satellite which now takes off for real and shoots to No.18.

Old Tay Tay > New Tay Tay

As her recent Reputations tour (coming to Europe very soon) demonstrated, Taylor Swift now regards her entire catalogue as a playset amongst which she can wander. She is gearing up for the release of the "Taylor's Version" of her second album Fearless but is also back in the Top 40 this week with a track that first appeared fully four years ago. Cruel Summer was the second track from her 2019 album Lover, a cut which has in recent weeks gained streaming traction online. Ever one for the opportunity, Swift responded by declaring the track to be an official single for the first time and promoting it to radio stations. As so as if by magic here it arrives as a chart single. Cruel Summer has made the charts once before, registering at No.27 in September 2019 as an album cut in the wake of the release of Lover. Four years later it is now No.28, although you suspect this is going to be little more than a short lived novelty.

By His Side

So what of the albums chart then? Seven of the Top 10 are new entries, among them hits collections from the likes of Texas and Pet Shop Boys. But the race to be No.1 was eventually won by Tom Grennan, his third album What If's And Maybes following its predecessor Evering Road to the top of the charts. That's also prompted a surge of interest in its lead single How Does It Feel, first released in early May to general indifference but which now marches smartly to No.31 to become his ninth Top 40 hit in all.

Almost exactly a year on from her last hit Vegas, Doja Cat is back on the UK charts with brand new single Attention which creeps into the Top 40 at No.37. Her main problem is that her two biggest hits to date have both been in the same kind of style, the sweetly crooned disco-soul of Say So and Kiss Me More out-performing any of the more conventional hip-hop tracks she has put her name to. And that's the category in which Attention falls, a brooding and atmospheric rap hit that makes few concessions to mainstream pop appeal. And if this merely adds to her long list of mid-table and swiftly forgotten chart tracks you will completely understand why.