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Calvin Harris has another number one
Calvin Harris gets tenth number one single. Eminem gets record-breaking ninth successive number one album.

Calvin Harris and Sam Smith climb to the top of the singles chart. Eminem breaks a chart record with his surprise album release.

After last weekís tight battle at the top of the singles chart, things were a little more clear-cut this week. Calvin Harris and Sam Smith took an early lead, albeit a fairly small one, and held on throughout the week. Promises, therefore, becomes Harrisís tenth number one single and his second of 2018. He has now completed 150 weeks in the top ten. Sam Smith remains three behind Harris with seven number one singles.

After just a week at the top Benny Blanco, Halsey and Khalid slip to number two with Eastside. Readers of James Mastertonís chart commentary will ave seen last week that this is only the third UK number one to include a point of the compass in its title. The other two both featured west in the title - Benny Hillís dreadful Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West) in 1971 and Pet Shop Boysí excellent West End Girls in 1986.

George Ezraís Shotgun stays at number three. Loud Luxury and Brando are at number five with Body for a third week.

Last Friday, with a distinct lack of the hype that used to presage a major release, Eminem put out a new album. As tends to be the case with these releases, it was initially only available in digital form. After all, it is fairly easy to add a new album to download and streaming sites, but sending thousands of physical copies to shops without anybody noticing is rather more difficult.

Inevitably, heavy streaming of the album would, before the rules were changed, have led to all of the albumís tracks being in the top forty today. However, as regular readers will know, the Official Charts Companyís solution to this is to limit the number of songs by a single artist allowed in the chart rather than making any attempt to distinguish between streams of the whole album and streams of selected tracks.

The result of this rather bodged solution is that we have three Eminem songs in the top ten, and none anywhere else in the chart. Just to add to the shambles, his record company released a video for one of the tracks, Fall, later in the week, effectively making it an official single. At the time, the song (which features Justin Vernon of Bon Iver, reportedly contrary to his wishes) was not one of the three highest placed songs from the album and was thus excluded from the daily updates.

Following its designation as an official single Fall accumulated sufficient sales and streams (audio and video) to become the third highest Eminem entry at number nine. It is beaten by Lucky You (not a demolition job on the glorious Lightning Seeds song, thankfully) at number six and The Ringer at number four. The songs bring Eminemís tally to 32 top ten hits.

The Official Chart Companyís failure to distinguish between streams of a whole album and streams of individual tracks means that many streams contribute to both the singles and albums charts. The highest non-Eminem new entry this week, coming in at number 22, is an extreme example of another kind of double-counting. LSD is a collaborative project involving Labrinth, Sia and Diplo. That hasnít stopped them crediting their single, Thunderclouds, to LSD featuring Sia, Diplo and Labrinth, thereby ensuring that they each get a new hit single to their name as well as a first top forty hit for LSD. Stand by for One Direction announcing their comeback and releasing a single cfredited to One Direction featuring Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson and the other one whose name Iíve forgotten.

Dean Lewisís iTunes biography describes him as an ďAustralian-born adult alternative singer/songwriterĒ. That could be to distinguish him from child singer/songwriters or as a warning that his lyrics should only be heard by people over eighteen. It goes on to describe how his debut single, Waves, was a huge hit in Australia, a strange description for a song that didnít make the top ten. This week he makes his debut in the UK top forty as Be Alright enters at number 35.

Andrew Bazzi, known simply as Bazzi, made his top forty debut earlier this year with Mine. He follows that up this week with Beautiful at number 36. The song features Camilla Cabello who also gets her second top forty hit of 2018. Her biggest hit remains last yearís chart-topping Havana.

AJ Tracey hinted at his liking for stupid names by teaming up with Not3s for his single Butterflies earlier this year. Now he has his first solo top forty hit with a song called LO(V/S)ER which, apparently we are meant to pronounce as Lover / Loser. Why didnít he call it that then? Actually, having heard it, Iím more inclined to ask why he released it at all. Anyway, it enters at number 38.

The 1975 re-enter at number 40 with their bizarrely-titled TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME. Panic At The Discoís High Hopes continues its steady climb. It is up four places to number 21.

On 7 September 1968 the New Yardbirds, a band formed by former members of The Yardbirds, played their first live gig. Shortly afterwards they changed their name to Led Zeppelin when their erstwhile bandmates objected to their use of the word Yardbirds.. At one point in their career they had eight successive number one albums, a record shared with Abba and, until today, exactly fifty years after that gig, Eminem.

Eminemís debut album, The Slim Shady LP, had a rather modest chart run when it was released in 1999, entering at number twelve and dropping out of the top forty just four weeks later. It returned to the top forty for an extended run later that year before another top forty run saw it reach number ten in August 2000. That was to be its only week in the top ten but every album since then has topped the chart. This week Kamikaze enters at number one to make it nine chart-topping albums in a row. The run includes the greatest hits set, Curtain Call, which is at number 23 this week.

The top three is completed by two film soundtracks. Mamma Mia - Here We Go Again slips to number two while The Greatest Showman falls to number three. Ariana Grandeís Sweetener is down one place to number four.

Bristol band Idlesí Wikipedia page insists that their debut album, Brutalism, was met with critical acclaim. The British public seemed less enthused; the album didnít reach the top 100. Album number two, Joy As An Act Of Resistance, fares rather better. It enters at number five.

In an age when artists tend to be known either as predominantly singles-based or albums-based Passenger (born Michael Rosenberg) falls firmly into the latter camp. He has had one hit single, the mega-hit Let Her Go, but his four top ten albums in five releases puts that achievement somewhat in the shade. Album number six, Runaway, continues that top ten success as a new entry at number six.

Last weekís ďOh, are they still around?Ē album came from Interpol. This time itís the turn of The Kooks whose sound is a lot closer to indie pop than Interpolís more rock-influenced output. The Kooks, named after a David Bowie song, enjoyed singles chart success with hits such as Naive, She Moves In Her Own Way and Ooh La in the middle of the last decade. Their first three albums reached the top ten with the fourth, Listen (2014) and a Best Of set (2017) making the top twenty. They return to the top ten this week with Letís Go Sunshine at number nine.

To the surprise of, well nobody really, the release of Eminemís new album is accompanied by some controversy. Not for the first time he is being accused of homophobia. Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons is among those to have criticise him for using a homophobic slur. These allegations donít seem to have done much damage to his career in the past and it still seems to be the case today.

When Eminem launched his career at the end of the last century, the number of openly gay performers was still fairly low. Most of those were either performers who had been around for a long time before coming out (such as Elton John or Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys) or those who had taken a political stand from the very beginning. Now, the revelation that a particular singer is gay generates little excitement. The only real exceptions, Sam Smith take note, occur when said artist suddenly starts to see himself as a trailblazer for gay men.

This welcome change in attitude even extends to young artists such as South African-born Australian Troye Sivan who came out publicly while only eighteen. Sivan made his UK chart debut in 2015 with his EP Wild which reached the top ten in the albums chart. His first full-length album, Blue Neighbourhood, released a few months later, missed the top forty. This week he enters at number ten. with his second full album, Bloom. The album, a decent collection of songs, includes a duet with Ariana Grande.

While most musical acts who have won Britainís Got Talent have had fairly modest careers, Collabro - winners in 2014 - have at least managed a run of hit albums. Their fourth album, Road To The Albert Hall, enters at number nineteen. It contains various songs from musical theatre including Donít Cry For Me Argentina (surely nobody will ever record a better version than Julie Covingtonís original) and Grease. The original version of Grease was by Frankie Valli of the Four Seasons. A medley of songs from the Four Seasons jukebox musical, Jersey Boys, is also included on this album.

For most artists, a five year gap between the second and third albums might be considered something of a risk, even if the first two releases had both been nominated for the Mercury Prize. However, it doesnít seem to have done Anna Calvi much harm as the singer / songwriter / guitarist enters at number 22 with Hunter.

In the musical world, the Essex town of Basildon is probably still best known for Depeche Mode and Alison Moyet. Both of those acts enjoyed their heyday long before the days of the internet and, therefore, long before the terms YouTuber and vlogger were coined. Both those terms, however, can be applied to Basildon-born Emma Blackery who has used YouTube to promote her work. She enters at number 24 with her debut album, Villains.

Many music fans will insist that ďproper bandsĒ are formed. They will, therefore, react negatively to a statement that a band were ďassembledĒ in 2016. Why not just admit it and say they are a manufactured band? That feeling of unease will only be exacerbated by the fact that the members of this band, going by the rather silly name of Why Donít We, come from towns in the USA thousands of miles apart. Nevertheless, their album, 8 Letters but their band name has nine letters unless the W only counts once), lands at number 25.

While on the subject of weird names, we move on to Alexis Ffrench who sounds like he belongs in a PG Wodehouse novel. He is actually a composer and pianist who has released ten albums since 2006, including a Joe Bonamassa-like four in 2009l. Of his first nine albums, precisely none reached the chart. However, itís tenth time lucky as Evolution is at number 30.

In a normal week Alexis Ffrench might expect to be the clear winner of the weekís award for patience. This week, though, he has competition. Somerset band Pineapple Thief have failed to reach the top forty with any of their first eleven albums. They only fail to be the undisputed winners of the title because two of those albums spent a week each in the top 100. They make their top forty breakthrough this week with Dissolution at number 36.
Published on: 2018-09-07 by Suedehead2 || 22267 Views
Comments (6)
7 Sep 2018 - 17:50
this is erosion
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It's Beautiful that features Camila, not Loverloser!
7 Sep 2018 - 20:12
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Oops, slight cock-up there!
12 Sep 2018 - 13:24
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Welcome back. I hope all is okay with you.

I just want to point out that you've said that The Kooks and Troye Sivan both have new entries at number 10. I've checked, and The Kooks actually enter at nine!
12 Sep 2018 - 16:54
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