Only one single so far this year has sold more than 125,000 copies inside a single week. That track was DJ Fresh's "Hot Right Now" which topped the charts 12 weeks ago. Having now sold something of the order of 380,000 copies it is the ninth biggest seller of 2012 to date and is still meandering its way down the listings, ranking at Number 57 this week.
The singer on that particular single was chart newcomer Rita Ora, and three months on she capitalises on the exposure it gave to her by charging straight to the top of the singles chart with her solo debut "R.I.P." which once again manages an impressive sale of over 104,000 copies. The track is penned by Drake who initially offered it to Rihanna only to find her passing on the opportunity. Her loss is Ora's gain as the Yugoslavian-born Londoner becomes the first act this year to top the singles chart twice. The guest rap on "R.I.P." is provided by Tinie Tempah who thus lands himself his third Number One single and his first for two years, with both "Pass Out" and "Written In The Stars" having headed to the summit back in 2010.
Just below, Alex Clare's unexpected hit single "Too Close" advances one place to a new peak of Number 4, as does Train's "Drive By" which consolidates its position as their biggest hit to date by settling at Number 6. After their 2001 hit "Drops Of Jupiter (Tell Me)" returned to the chart for a sympathetic Top 40 run a few weeks ago it is now the turn of 2010 release "Hey Soul Sister" to make a chart comeback. Despite a long run in the sales rankings and widespread acclaim, the catchy single never quite lived up to expectations and peaked at a rather disappointing Number 18 just under two years ago. After re-entering the Top 40 last week at Number 38 the single charges up the listings once more and this week sits at Number 25. All this attention has had a beneficial effect on the chart fortunes of Train's current album California 37 which rises back up to Number 15 this week, three weeks after it peaked at Number 10 upon release.
The second highest new entry to the Top 10 is "Live My Life" which gives the Far East Movement their third chart hit single and their second biggest to date. Their previous hits have all come at regularly spaced intervals, with "Like A G6" hitting Number 5 in 2010 and "Rocketeer" peaking at Number 14 in 2011. Their contractually mandated 2012 hit single features an unlikely guest cameo from Justin Bieber who thus lands his second Top 10 hit single in the past few weeks, following on from "Boyfriend" which to its credit has not vanished as quickly as it might have done, clinging on this week to a Top 20 position at Number 17. Bieber actually has three Top 40 singles to his name this week as one-off digital single "Turn To You" creeps in at Number 39. Not confirmed to appear on his forthcoming album, the track was a midweek charity release, ostensibly to mark "Mother's Day" weekend, a slice of marketing that misfires as far as this country is concerned given that we celebrated Mothering Sunday according to the religious calendar a few weeks ago and the American commercial creation of "Mother's Day" means little over here.
Watch "Live My Life"
Whilst "R.I.P." might have passed her by, Rihanna does at least arrive in the Top 10 in her own right with "Where Have You Been" as was widely expected rising 21-8 to land her another major hit single. In all it is her 21st Top 10 hit single since her 2005 chart debut.
Meanwhile performances of older hits by contestants on The Voice UK continue to spike sales of some rather unusual slices of back catalogue. Sitting at Number 26 this week is "Sweet Disposition" from The Temper Trap, originally a Number 6 hit back in 2009. A little way below at Number 44 is that old standby "Iris" from the Goo Goo Dolls, making its second chart resurgence off the back of a TV talent show after it shot to Number 3 in October last year thanks to a timely X Factor performance.
Its lead single "Silenced By The Night" may have stalled rather and only this week makes a belated bid for chart glory at Number 46, but there is no holding back the new Keane album Strangeland which storms to Number One this week. In a model of consistency which ranks amongst the best in chart history, Keane have topped the charts with every single one of their five studio albums to date, a run which dates back to the release of their debut Hopes And Fears back in 2004. Only four other acts have had as many consecutive Number One albums and indeed Keane are the first since The Beatles to do so with their first five studio releases.