How does the old saying go? All good things must come to an end, as the run of 12 consecutive weeks of Number One records on the Official UK Singles Chart selling in excess of 100,000 copies each week comes to a juddering halt, agonizingly one week short of the benchmark run in 1998 that you will have read about repeatedly over the past few weeks.
However there is another old saying that when one door closes another must open, for we have a whole new set of benchmarks to deal with this week for, after two weeks away and following two different singles replacing it at the top of the charts, "Blurred Lines" by Robin Thicke, T.I. and Pharrell climbs back to Number One. For those keeping score, it is the single's fifth week in total at Number One, out of the seven weeks it has been on sale so far. Some might argue it is only Number One this week by default, in the absence of any other strong sellers, but "Blurred Lines" still managed to shift over 80,000 copies last week, a good solid total for any chart-topping record and an utterly extraordinary number given that this is a single now nearly two months old and which, according to the Official Charts Company has now sold 916,000 copies.
Speaking of benchmarks then, this now means that 2013 is the fifth calendar year running that a Number One single has had two separate spells at the top, demonstrating that what was once unusual is now perfectly commonplace. In rebounding to the top after a fortnight's absence, "Blurred Lines" duly matches the chart run of Rihanna's "We Found Love" back in 2011, although on that occasion just one other record - Professor Green's "Read All About It" - occupied the top slot during the interregnum. The last single to repeat at Number One after two different singles had replaced it was Bruno Mars' "Just The Way You Are (Amazing)" which had a three week absence from the top in 2010, during which time both Tinie Tempah's "Written In The Stars" and Cee-Lo Green's "Forget You" took a turn at Number One.
With all that out of the way, time to note that the highest new entry of the week is at Number 3 for a man who is now well into the process of resuming a "solo" career after a hugely successful spell as part of a supergroup. The man in question is Sebastien Ingrosso who having waved goodbye to the Swedish House Mafia with a Number One single at the end of 2012, returns to the chart under his own name for the first time in just over a year with "Reload," this the follow-up essentially to "Calling (Lose My Mind)" which peaked at Number 19 in June 2012. There is an air of continuity here, however, as one of the guest stars on "Reload" is John Martin, the vocalist on "Don't You Worry Child" which was the final Swedish House Mafia single.
Recycling song titles seems to be the thing at the moment, for hard on the heels of two hit singles entitled "Gentleman," for the second time in a year we have a Top 10 hit single called "Brokenhearted," the 2013 flavour coming thanks to Lawson who have the second biggest new hit of the week at Number 6. Their second hit of 2013, it is a marked improvement on its predecessor "Learn To Love Again" which became their first single ever to miss the Top 10 when it peaked at Number 13 in February. The occasion for its release is a re-issue (complete with new tracks, of which this is one) of their debut album Chapman Square, set to land in the shops at the end of the summer. "Brokenhearted" also features a guest rap from B.o.B., making this his own highest chart entry since his guest role on Jessie J's "Price Tag" which hit Number One in February 2011.
Also amongst this week's parade of new chart arrivals, Iggy Azalea lands herself a second chart hit as summertime smash "Bounce" lands (so to speak) at Number 13. The track is the follow-up to her debut hit "Work" which eased its way to Number 17 back in the spring.
It is a largely quiet week for new hit albums, although that has at least opened the door to one eagerly awaited new release debuting at the top of the Official UK Albums chart. Step forward Jay-Z's Magna Carta...Holy Grail which duly becomes the second long player from American hip-hop royalty to land at the top of the charts within the last few weeks. It is Jay-Z's first ever Number One album of any kind in the UK (the best he has done to date has been Number 3) and neatly enough drags its semi-title track into the singles chart in its wake, as "Holy Grail" with a certain Justin Timberlake in tow debuts at Number 24.
Other new entries inside the Top 30 of the singles chart go to a returning Katy B with "What Love Is Made Of" at Number 21 and Sneakbo with "Ring A Ling" at Number 27, but the final mention of the week must surely go to the craptacular Spark Productions con cover version of Avicii's "Wake Me Up" which becomes the first such single ever to not only spend a second week on the Top 40 but actually climbs the chart, moving 35-26. All this despite the fact that the genuine original was available for pre-order last week and indeed was doing so well it at one stage penetrated the iTunes Top 20, demonstrating that it is a huge hit in waiting. Meanwhile the idiotic label policy of holding back the UK release of a track freely available all over Europe continues to frustrate consumers and chartwatchers alike.