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Stormzy holds on at the top of the singles chart
Stormzy gets a second week at number one in the singles chart. Pink spends a second week atop the albums chart.

Stormzy stays at number one in the singles chart and Pink gets a second week at the top of the albums chart.

After going straight to the top of the singles chart last week it is no surprise that Stormzy’s Vossi Bop gets a second week at number one although the race was closer than might have been anticipated. Vossi is now just one week behind Mmm as the most popular bop as measured by weeks at number one. With a new song featuring the combined talents of Ed Sheeran and Justin Bieber released today (Friday), it looks like Hanson will continue to hold that particular record for a good while yet. Stormzy’s response to that may well be “I Don’t Care”.

At the start of the week Lil Nas X’s Old Town Road looked to be in with a chance of returning to number one. However, Stormzy increased his lead as the week went on leaving Mr and Mrs X’s Lil boy at number two.

Lewis Capaldi’s Someone You Loved climbs back up one place to number three. His main competitor for the bronze medal spot this week was himself. He enters at number four with new single, Hold Me While You Wait. His number one album (there’s a prediction for you) Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent is released next Friday (17 May).

Billie EIlish climbs back up one place to number five with Bad Guy after falling down the chart slowly over the last few weeks.

Underwear model Shawn Mendes enters at number nine with If I Can’t Have You. A previous song of the same name, written by Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb was a hit for Yvonne Elliman in 1978 and for Kim Wilde in 1993. The Bee Gees recorded their own version and put it on the b-side of Stayin’ Alive which left the chart shortly before Elliman’s single entered it.

Many acts over the years have wrestled with the problem of how to follow up a big hit. Sometimes it doesn’t prove to be a problem at all while other artists release a string of new singles with limited success. Rapper Logic has fallen into the latter category since his 2017 hit 1-800-273-8255, so he has decided to live up to his name and think logically. His solution is to recruit one of the biggest names in the rap business, Eminem, as a featured artist and it has paid off. Homicide is a new entry at number fifteen. As it wasn’t played on Radio 1’s chart show, I can only conclude that it is a bit rude and that there is no sanitised version.

There have been several top forty hits called Hello. Two of them - by Lionel Richie and Adele - topped the chart while the title has also been used by Martin Solveig and, gloriously, by The Beloved. Hardy Caprio has decided to go for the German equivalent, Guten Tag, literally Good Day but commonly used as a greeting. It provides him with his third top forty hit by entering at number eighteen. It is a second top forty hit for featured artist DigDat, previously seen in the chart with Air Force last year.

Among the many sources of names for chart acts is film titles. The film chosen is frequently a well-known one although that is not always the case. Vampire Weekend, of whom more later, named themselves after a film made by their singer in his days as a student. Aaron Davies, on the other hand, named himself Bugzy Malone to match (almost) the title of the film that launched the career of director Alan Parker and helped to make Jodie Foster a household name. He enters at number 34 with M.E.N. II, a song which is probably not about the Manchester Evening News even though he does come from Manchester. Malone has six previous top 100 singles to his name but this is his first time in the top forty.

The low number of non-soundtrack albums released in the last two years that have managed to spend more than a week at the top of the albums chart has been noted here a few times. That number goes up again this week as Pink’s Hurts 2B Human holds on for a second week at the summit. It comes just a few weeks after the last album to do so, Billie Eilish’s When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go. That album stays at number three this week. The Greatest Showman soundtrack is at number five.

In the first chart update released this week, on Tuesday because of the bank holiday on Monday, Vampire Weekend were narrowly ahead of Pink. Their lead was never likely to last and so it has proved. Father Of The Bride enters at number two.

Any attempt to describe Vampire Weekend’s music risks doing them a disservice. Starting by saying that it mixes African influences as explored in the past by Peter Gabriel and Gracelands-era Paul Simon with some traditional Scottish and Irish music it already begins to sound like it should be an incoherent mess. Thankfully, it is nothing of the sort and Ezra Koenig and the rest of the band (with some additional contributions from Danielle Haim and Mark Ronson) have managed to put together a fourth excellent album. They are rewarded with a chart placing beating the number three peak of their last two albums Contra (2010) and Modern Vampires Of The City (2013).

It is not unusual for me to be unenthusiastic about any of the new album releases in a given week. Last Friday I was blessed with two quality albums and they both have an Ezra connection. As reported above, Ezra Koenig and his Vampire Weekend colleagues have reached a new high this week with their new album at number two. The other quality album comes from a singer who styles himself Ten Tonnes.

Ethan Barnett may have chosen his moniker to delay the moment when people made the connection with his big brother George Ezra Barnett. Once you know the connection it is impossible not to compare the two and to spot the family likeness in both appearance and voice. While Ethan may not have quite the same vocal range as his brother he has still recorded a great debut album even if the title, Ten Tonnes, is somewhat lacking in imagination. Sadly, hopes of a top ten hit have been dashed as it enters at a rather disappointing number 31.

Ten Tonnes is not the only act hailing from Hertfordshire to have a new entry this week. Punk band Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes (formed in 2015, roughly forty years after the original punk bands), enter at number four with End Of Suffering. Their first two albums both reached the top twenty with the more recent of them, Modern Ruin (2017), getting to number seven.

The most successful incarnation of the band Renaissance, scoring a hit single with Northern Lights and its parent album Song For All Seasons, featured Annie Haslam on vocals backed by five men. Some people, then, might think that those men (whose names were forgotten long ago by those who can still remember Haslam’s name) that an album called Renaissance Men is a belated tribute to the forgotten five. It isn’t. It is, nonetheless, the name of the first new album for ten years by rock band The Wildhearts and it is a new entry at number eleven.

When measured by peak chart positions Lucy Spraggan’s career appears to have been fairly successful so far. She has had four top forty albums, one of them making the top ten and all four getting into - or very close to - the top twenty. He total number of chart weeks tell a slightly different story with only 2013’s Join The Club managing as much as a second week in the top 100. It remains to be seen whether her latest release, Today Was A Good Day, repeats the pattern. As a new entry at number twelve it has certainly matched her previous releases in week one.

This week’s prize for an apparently oxymoronic Wikipedia description are Swedish band Aman Amarth whose oeuvre is described as melodic death metal. We are also informed that most of their lyrics deal with Viking history. Well, I suppose it makes a nice change from the usual subjects. This week they get their second UK top forty album with their eleventh release Berserker at number 35. Whether the album is any berserker than the previous ten is something I will leave others to judge.

American band Big Thief rather immodestly called their 2016 debut album Masterpiece. Consumers clearly begged to differ as it failed to make the charts either in the UK or their home country. The same fate befell the follow-up, Capacity in 2017. This week they enter uncharted territory as U.F.O.F charts, albeit only at number 41.

Take That (or what’s left of them) are currently on tour. That has helped their Odyssey album climb ten places back up to number 28. The man who did so much to help Robbie Williams’ post-Take That solo career, songwriter Guy Chambers, released an album of his own last Friday. It has fallen some way short of the top forty.

There are four re-entries in the top forty. Two of them are hits compilations - Oasis’s Time Flies at number 38 and Eminem’s Curtain Call at 34. THey are joined by Olly Murs’ You Know I Know at number 36 and Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours at 40.

Published on: 2019-05-10 by Suedehead2 || 62619 Views
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