That’s 13 weeks at the top. And for the fifth straight week, the biggest challenge comes from Sheeran’s own “Galway Girl” at number 2. The rest of his chart domination is finally waning – other Sheeran tracks can be found at 6, 16, 22, 26, 29, 38 and 40. Drake settles for a mere three, all going down, so things really are returning to normal. It’s taken a while, though.
One more week would see “Shape of You” match the combined total of “Bohemian Rhapsody” (which was number one twice). But sales have slowly been tailing off down to normal levels, and the midweeks have “Shape of You” finally – finally – dropping to 4. So it looks like this is it. Thirteen weeks. A quarter of the year.
Not the highest new entry, because the album version of the track made number 39 four weeks ago when the promotion kicked off. Then it dropped straight out. It now has a video and a single mix with added Machine Gun Kelly, though he doesn’t get a chart credit for it yet. The song’s a perfectly decent “I am definitely over you and I am going out to party again, and did I mention that I’m definitely over you” number. The video is pretty terrible.
20. Kendrick Lamar – “Humble”
So this is the highest new entry. It’s the lead single from the new Kendrick Lamar album, and yes, it’s got a great hook, but it’s still not an obvious record to make the singles chart. He’s notched up a few hits as a guest, but this is only his second appearance in the top 40 under his own power. (The other was “I”, which also got to number 20 in 2014.) One theory has it that the target here is meant to be Big Sean, since the backing vocals of the chorus are pretty much cobbled together from his catchphrases.
25. Calvin Harris featuring Young Thug, Pharrell Williams & Ariana Grande – “Heatstroke”
The second single from the next album, following “Slide”, which debuted at number 10 in March and… well, instantly dropped back to 23, though it’s been trudging back up the chart since, currently sitting at 12. That’s still a somewhat underwhelming performance for the lead single from a Calvin Harris album, but “Heatstroke” seems to suggest that we are indeed looking at a whole album of Calvin Harris moving away from EDM towards soul. He was certainly in a rut, but whether this is going to pay commercial dividends is another question.
Young Thug is an Atlanta rapper who’s been around for years, but this is his first credit in the top 40.
35. Future – “Mask Off”
As it stands, this is technically an album track, but it’s being used as a meme soundtrack, so it’s been charting internationally. The flute sample comes from “Prison Song”, from the original cast recording of Selma, a 1970s musical about Martin Luther King. Future gets his first hit in his own right, though he did guest on Maroon 5’s “Cold”, which re-enters at 39 this week.
34. Jason Derulo featuring Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla Sign – “Swalla”
Well, that certainly wasn’t subtle. Nicki Minaj can carry this kind of thing off. Not so sure Derulo can, but then he’s never convinced me at anything much, and he’s still going regardless. I think I’m right in saying this is the second singles chart appearance for Ty Dolla Sign, the previous one being one Fifth Harmony’s “Work From Home” last year. The chorus lyrics reference ODB’s “Shimmy Shimmy Ya”, a single back in 1995.
On the album chart:
“÷” by Ed Sheeran is predictably still number 1 for a fifth week.
“Automaton” by Jamiroquai is the highest new entry at 4, which maintains their perfect record of making the top 10. It’s their eighth album, and the first since 2010. The title track actually is something of a departure for them.
“Silver Eye” by Goldfrapp at 6. Their seventh album, and the fifth in a row to make the top 10. (Oddly, their two lowest placing studios albums are the acclaimed debut “Felt Mountain” and the follow-up with the breakthrough singles, “Black Cherry” – though that one did hang around for a while.) Single: “Anymore”.
“Kidz Bop” by Kidz Bop Kids at 7. This is the UK version of a franchise that’s been around in the US since 2000, and basically consists of stage school kids doing toned down versions of pop hits. Think Now albums if everything was a cover by S Club Juniors, basically. Here’s “24K Magic”.
“Emperor of Sand” by Mastodon at 11. From one extreme to the other, with The Rock. It’s their fourth hit album. Single: “Show Yourself”.
“Triplicate” by Bob Dylan at 17. His 38th album, and it’s another covers collection. Number 17 is surprisingly low for a Dylan studio album, particularly as older acts like him tends to be holding up better in the declining market – he hasn’t missed the top 10 with a new studio album since a Christmas record in 2009. Sample track: “I Could Have Told You”
“Let The Dancers Inherit The Party” by British Sea Power at 21. That’s a typical position for a British Sea Power album. Single: “Keep on Trying (Sechs Freunde)”
“Street Rituals” by Stone Foundation at 25. British soul. Sample track: “Your Balloon Is Rising”, featuring Paul Weller.