Given the lead they had over the competition last week, it is no surprise to see JLS still locked in place at Number One on the singles chart. Their sale of 67,000 copies is well down on last weeks total but enough to ensure they were easy winners over their closest challengers. Beat Again is co-written and co-produced by Steve Mac, making this his 19th Number One hit as either writer or producer. His last chart-topping production was as long ago as 2007 when he helmed Leon Jackson's When You Believe. It is his first Number One single as a writer since All This Time made Number One for Michelle McManus, winner of the second and final incarnation of X Factor predecessor Pop Idol.
The single beaten to the top is not, as most people expected, the Black Eyed Peas single but instead Supernova from Mr Hudson which crashes in as a new entry at Number 2. It is the first big hit for the group but they are by no means newcomers, having first charted as long ago as March 2007 (when they were still known as Mr Hudson and the Library) with the Number 53 single Too Late Too Late. They spent the following summer appearing as curtain-jerkers at many festivals, winning enough followers to pick up an award as best newcomers. With the imminent release of their second album, they are set to rocket to some long-deserved stardom, largely due to the extra credibility lent to them by lead singer Ben Hudson's close association with Kanye West. Mr Hudson were the guest stars on Paranoid on the rapper's last album and indeed co-produced the track Street Lights. The favour is returned as the hip-hop star lends his vocals in a guest performance on Mr Hudson's own smash hit single. The combination is nothing less than mouthwatering. 80s influences are once more to the fore as Supernova sounds for all the world like the greatest single the Thompson Twins never wrote, at least for the first verse at which point the 21st century hip-hop beats and Kanye West's autotuned vocals kick in to make this the most captivating four minutes you will spend this week. If the JLS juggernaut runs out of steam any time soon, Hr Hudson and Kanye West are more than ready to take their crown away.
The only other new arrival to the Top 10 is Beyonce who climbs four places with Sweet Dreams to become the second single in as many weeks to shatter the glass ceiling and go from Top 20 to Top 10 in one easy move. The track is now the fourth straight Top 10 single from the I Am... Sasha Fierce, this run only interrupted by the brief chart run of Diva back in May when it reached Number 72 on the back of some brief interest on these shores due to its release as a single in America.
It hasn't been a bad week for Jordin Sparks. She may not quite have been able to go Top 10, but goes close on both singles and albums charts. Her second album Battlefield is the highest new entry of the week on the long player lists, entering at Number 11. As we mentioned last night on Chart Bite, this easily beats the Number 17 peak of her self-titled debut released last year. As if in sympathy Battlefield's title track takes another leap up the singles chart to also rest at Number 11. It is now no less than the third time the single has supposedly peaked at this position. It was last here two weeks ago, and first hit Number 11 on June 27th on its second week on the chart. Since then it has never been out of the Top 20, despite dipping as low at Number 20 at one point and has to date sold over 124,000 copies.
Battlefield is by no means the only long-running hit which rebounds on the singles chart this week, all thanks one suspects to "Now Bounce", many of the tracks on the just-released Now That's What I Call Music Volume 73 getting small boosts in sales as people cherry-pick their favourite tracks from the collection online. It is a curious phenomenon, to say the least, as many of the singles involved have been on the chart for some time and have sold in healthy quantities already - so it is not as if they were hard to find before this week. Never underestimate the effect of being on the front page of iTunes I guess, with the tracklisting for the compilation just one click away when you enter the store. Although the release of each volume of Now... always gives its contents a sales boost, it tends only to be in the summer when the market is slightly softer than normal that you notice the effects so directly, the moves for older singles this week the biggest since the release of Now 70 almost exactly a year ago.
Some of the biggest movers are In For The Kill by La Roux (the years third biggest seller) rising 23-17, Not Fair from Lily Allen which rises 43-28 (its first Top 40 appearance in a month) along with other Top 40 re-entries for Jai Ho from the Pussycat Dolls (67-31), I'm Not Alone from Calvin Harris (46-34). Halo from Beyonce (48-38) and even a relative underperformer in the shape of Waking Up In Vegas by Katy Perry which moves 50-40 six weeks after it originally peaked at Number 19. The effect is all the more obvious when you note that Untouched by The Veronicas - one of a handful of tracks on the compilation not available for individual purchase - walks in the opposite direction and dives 20-27.
One track on the rise that has done so under its own steam is Never Forget You from the Noisettes which climbs to a brand new peak of Number 21. The bubbly 60s flavoured track appeared to be on its way to becoming a great lost single when its initial chart climb to Number 31 was rudely interrupted by the Michael Jackson invasion, during the course of which the single dipped as low as Number 41. For the last fortnight, however, the track has staged something of a comeback and hopefully still has more life in it yet. We've done it before, but I can't resist showing the video again just to remind any casual readers just how good the single is.
The one remaining brand new Top 40 entry this week is a pleasing second chart hit for the still very much underrated Frankmusik. The electropop star made his chart debut back in April with Better Off As Two which peaked at Number 26. As good as that first single was, this follow-up is an order of magnitude better, a sparkling pop hit that is guaranteed to leave you with a huge smile on your face for the exact length of time it will take you to recue the track for a second listen. I'm kind of worried that this rather understated chart entry means that he is destined for the moment to remain a cult act. It is down to you, people of Great Britain, to prove me wrong. [This, alas, was his final chart hit before the label lost interest. And it is a crying shame].