A quality chart last week it may have been but event disappoint again as many deserving tracks fail to sustain sales beyond those initial seven days. Such is chart life at present I suppose. 12 new entries, 5 climbers and 4 non-movers.
No. 38: NEW ENTRY. Melanie Williams - Everyday Thang
Remember this lady? She was the voice behind Sub Sub's Ain't No Love (Ain't No Use) from last year, one of the most enduring dance hits of the year. Following her split from them she has set out solo and now scores a Top 40 hit with her second single.
No. 36: NEW ENTRY. Dannii Minogue - Get Into You
Clearly getting her singing career back on track is going to take a fair effort for the younger of the Minogue sisters. She made No.10 in July 1993 with her version of This Is It but the followup This Is The Way could only make No.27 the following October. The new single is more of the kind of record she turns out as standard and has little prospect of reaching the heights of earlier releases. Still, at least she is making records - older sister Kylie hasn't released anything since December 1992.
No. 35: CLIMBER. Michael Bolton - Lean On Me
Michael Bolton doing a small yo-yo and refusing to wipe the chart clean of his presence. At his age he ought to be ashamed of himself.
No. 29: NEW ENTRY. Therapy? - Die Laughing
More bash and grind from Therapy?, here with their third hit of the year. Each one so far has been smaller than the previous one, Nowhere making No.18, Trigger Inside a mere No.22 and this new single likely to disappear as fast as it came as well.
No. 28: NEW ENTRY. Brand New Heavies - Back To Love
The second single in recent months for the BNH following Dream On Dreamer which became their biggest hit ever when it made No.15 in March. Back To Love may not scale quite those heights but is at least their fifth Top 30 hit...
No. 26: CLIMBER. Roxette - Crash! Boom! Bang!
The gloomy prognosis of last week proves wrong as Roxette keep their 100% record of Top 30 hits with this quite assured climb. It still may well be the chart zenith for the track.
No. 25: NEW ENTRY. Crowded House - Fingers Of Love
When they make records as gorgeous as this you can possibly understand the claims for them to be 'The Best Band In The World'. The fourth single from the current album becomes the fourth to make the Top 30 and the ninth in the band's career. It comes hot on the heels of Locked Out which peaked at No.12 in February.
No. 24: NEW ENTRY. SWV - Anything
SWV quite deservedly scored what may well be the biggest hit of their career last Autumn with Right Here which made No.3 and was one of the bestsellers of the year. Their first chart hit since is unlikely to scale those same heights, reverting back to what is quite hardcore swing, complete with rap in the middle. A middling club hit possibly but unlikely to set the charts on fire.
No. 22: NEW ENTRY. Blur - To The End
Critics and fans alike have fallen over themselves to praise the new Blur album Parklife, as witnessed by the success of Girls and Boys, undoubtedly one of the singles of the year which made No.5 in March. The followup takes on a different vein altogether, a quite moving ballad which Damion Albarn's voice just about manages to carry off. It's not the most commercial thing the band will ever release though and it's chart placing may be helped not a little by the presence on the flip side of the Pet Shop Boys' remix of Girls and Boys which caused such a stir when it was first aired the public demand alone persuaded Food records to make it available to more than just DJs - not often that that happens let me tell you.
No. 16: NEW ENTRY. Manic Street Preachers - Faster/PCP
I seem to end up saying the same thing each time the Manics release a record, how the subtle sophistication of the records they make reveals there is possibly a greater intelligence at work. Interesting now then that following the disappointing No.36 peak of Life Becoming A Landslide back in February this new single eases back on the soft rock and moves more into the post-modern punk sound of earlier work such as You Love Us. Loud and raucous it gives them their sixth Top 20 hit ever.
No. 15: NEW ENTRY. Kym Mazelle and Jocelyn Brown - No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)
Funny this. The original version of No More Tears is almost certainly one of the most glorious disco records ever made. First recorded in 1979 by Barbra Streisand and Donna Summer it became a US No.1 hit and made No.3 over here. Kym Mazelle and Jocelyn Brown are arguably two of the greatest disco divas around at present. Kym has charted in her own right and collaborated famously on hits by Rapination and duetting with Robert Howard on Wait which made No.7 in February 1989. Jocelyn Brown has also had solo hits and featured on records by Incognito and Right Said Fred, whilst being sampled by many many dance hits over the years [she also sang on It's Raining Men but that doesn't count for anything for 1994 James]. The song itself also popped up in a version recorded by k d lang and Andy Bell on the soundtrack to Coneheads in a performance that gained much airplay last summer but was criminally never released as a single. Given this extraordinary pedigree can somebody explain why this new version is so anodyne and lifeless?
No. 14: NEW ENTRY. Ace Of Base - Don't Turn Around
Their career in resurgence, Ace Of Base score their fourth Top 20 hit to followup the enduring success of The Sign earlier this year. Don't Turn Around has a long chart history, first appearing in 1986 as the b-side of Tina Turner's Typical Male single. In 1988 a reggaefied version was released by Aswad and it shot straight to No.1 in April that year. Ace Of Base's version borrows from the Aswad arrangement but transform it still further from being the simple pop song it was originally into a mournful ballad, dark and mysterious. Whether it is as big as past hits is open to question but it gets my vote for simply daring to reinterpret the track so drastically. Are you listening Big Mountain?
No. 10: CLIMBER. Guns 'N' Roses - Since I Don't Have You
Belieing the slow start, GnR charge into the top reaches to make this 1950s cover their 11th Top 10 hit - far more than any contemporary Heavy Rock act.
No. 9: NEW ENTRY. Dawn Penn - You Don't Love Me (No No No)
She may look like your maiden Aunt but that is because this haunting reggae ballad was first penned (no pun intended) by the singer back in the 1960s. Only now has she recorded and released it [not quite, she had recorded the song back in the 1960s but this revival was thanks to her appearance at an anniversary show for her original label Studio One records] and on the back of a hideous amount of radio support, charges straight into the Top 10. For some reason I am sorely tempted to mark this down as a possible No.1 hit but then again would I ever be that reckless?
No. 7: NEW ENTRY. Absolutely Fabulous - Absolutely Fabulous
It is ostensibly a comedy record but few comedy records claim to possess as much dancefloor credibility as this one. The TV show 'Absolutely Fabulous' probably needs little introduction here, having been sold around the world following its growth from initial cult success on the BBC. Now its stars, Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley team up with the Pet Shop Boys to make this dance track, interspersed with sampled dialogue from the TV series along with various posturings from Edina and Patsy of which 'Techno Techno Bloody Techno Darling!' is possibly a highlight...
No. 2: CLIMBER. Big Mountain - Baby I Love Your Way
The climb by Big Mountain of the song from 'Reality Bites' means that the top two records in the charts are taken from film soundtracks, the first time this has happened since November 1992 when I Will Always Love You and End Of The Road were at No.1 and No.2 respectively.
No. 1: SECOND WEEK. Wet Wet Wet - Love Is All Around
For the moment though Wet Wet Wet hang on to a commanding lead near the top of the charts. One record due to appear close to the summit next week holds the best chance of deposing them though... but those details can wait a few days...