Some semblance of normality returns to the Official UK Charts this week, and not just because after last week's five-day survey we are now back on track with a seven day (Friday-Thursday) sales period for good. Last week's charts turned out to be odder than many at first realised, thanks to a technical glitch at Spotify which meant they failed to supply streaming data at all, wiping out a full 80% of the usual market. As labels fumed about the loss of 'sales' it gave rise to all manner of conspiracy theories as to whether it was some kind of sulk about the arrival of Apple Music data to the listings. Needless to say this time around things are back to normal although this is the second week running that Apple Music have failed to submit data for Thursday, suggesting they are at present missing some important deadlines.
Enough with the technical black magic, let's note instead that there is Black Magic of a different kind at the top of the Official UK Singles chart this week as girl group Little Mix fly to the top with a hugely anticipated new single. Fast approaching the fourth anniversary of their X Factor win, the four women are set to release their third album and are now at the point where they either fade away gracefully or cement themselves as chart stars for the long term. On present evidence, they appear to be well on course for the latter, not least with the highest profile since their TV show win thanks to Perrie Edwards' inadvertent role in causing personnel shifts in One Direction. Accompanied by a big budget video, Black Magic becomes their third Number One single with ease, returning them to the top of the charts for the first time since their first single 'proper' Wings topped the charts in September 2012. [This single essentially Want To Want Me Part II - inspired by Girls Just Wanna Have Fun in a similar fashion. But it is similarly Little Mix's best pop hit ever].
This all means a frustrating second week at Number 2 for Years & Years with Shine although the trio have a large consolation prize in the shape of a Number One album as their debut release Communion blasts through the competition to sit comfortably at the top. The second highest new entry of the week on the Official UK Album chart is Fifth Harmony's Reflection which doesn't make quite as large an impact and debuts at Number 18.
Back to the singles chart and new at Number 4 is Show Me Love by Sam Feldt featuring Kimberley-Anne. One of the more intriguing deep house tracks of recent months, this blissed-out summer groove is a slowed down re-sing of the song first taken to Number 6 by Robin S over 22 years ago. First released in January 1993 the original took time to catch fire here but eventually reached its chart peak on a second chart run three months later. It returned to the Top 10 in a new remix almost exactly four years later, hitting Number 9 in March 1997.
Not so long ago his music was all but guaranteed a run at Number One. So far this year, however, Avicii has stepped back into a comfortable but otherwise unspectacular Top 10 groove. The latest addition to his hit tally is Waiting For Love which charts at Number 6. Sticking frustratingly to a formula once again, the track is to all intents and purposes a re-tread of his last hit The Night" which also peaked at Number 6 at the start of this year. Waiting For Love boasts a production co-credit for Martin Garrix whilst the vocals are supplied by an uncredited Simon Aldred, better known as the lead singer of British indie-pop band Cherry Ghost.
Ed Sheeran's Thinking Out Loud continues to do the Top 40 hokey-cokey with a 42-35 jump this week. The single is now 56 weeks old, every one of which has been spent inside the Top 50. That is now equal to the 1967 chart run of Release Me by Engelbert Humperdinck which means as long as it is at least the 50th best selling single in the country next week Thinking Out Loud will undisputedly be able to claim the longest continuous chart run in history.
Speaking of ever-present singles though, there are one or two others slowly but surely moving up the all-time list of total chart weeks. Rather Be by Clean Bandit jumps to Number 68 this week to spend its 77th week on the Top 75, now equal with Use Somebody by Kings Of Leon as the fifth most charted single of all time. Not far behind though is Pharrell's Happy at Number 72 this week which is its 74th week in total, putting it at 8 on the all-time list. John Legend's All Of Me charts at 75 this week, this now its 73rd chart week, level now with Pompeii by Bastille.
The record holders are still some way out in front. Extraordinarily My Way by Frank Sinatra is still the champion, with 124 weeks, all but two of which were spent in the old Top 50 chart. Just behind is Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol on 111 weeks (a total that would be higher but for the fact it was disqualified from the chart by rules then in place in the second half of 2006).