New Digital Rules Shake Up U.K. Charts
U.K. singles chart history broke new ground yesterday (Jan. 7) with the publication of the first survey to factor in all download sales, not just those in which a physical CD equivalent is available wU.K. singles chart history broke new ground yesterday (Jan. 7) with the publication of the first survey to factor in all download sales, not just those in which a physical CD equivalent is available within one week of release. The new methodology, introduced by compilers the Official U.K. Charts Company, gave Snow Patrol a top 10 hit with the same song for a second time and also meant that five acts have two singles each in the top 40.
But it did not stop Leona Lewis from earning a third week at No. 1 with "A Moment Like This" (Syco Music/Sony BMG). As Lewis' three-week sales move closed to 750,000, there were two new entries in the top five: "Proper Education" (Data/Positiva) by Eric Prydz vs. Floyd, the Swedish producer's officially sanctioned remix of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall" arrived at No. 2, and U2's "Window in the Skies" (Mercury) followed at No. 4. Also new were JoJo's "Too Little Too Late" (Mercury) at No. 22 and Amy Winehouse's "You Know I'm No Good" (Universal Island) at No. 40.
The new chart rules are the latest development in the incorporation of digital sales data, which was first computed in April 2005, as long as a simultaneous physical version of the track in question was available. Last March, the "one week ahead" law came into place, allowing Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" to become the first "digital No. 1," since it topped the chart purely on downloads, the week before the CD was released.
As the updated rules begin to reflect the enduring popularity of big hits of the past year, "Crazy" (deleted as a CD single months ago) re-entered the chart at No. 30. But the most prominent "comeback" was by Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars" (Fiction/Polydor), a top 10 hit last August that resumed its chart career at a lofty No. 9.
Also re-entering were The Automatic's "Monster" (B Unique/Polydor) at No. 33 and Nelly Furtado's "Maneater" (Geffen) at No. 39. Two more former hits, "Breaking Free" (Walt Disney) by the cast of "High School Musical" and "She Moves in Her Own Way" (Virgin) by the Kooks, re-entered the top 40. Furtado is one of the five acts with two titles in the top 40, along with Winehouse, Razorlight, Girls Aloud and Justin Timberlake.
On the album chart, Take That's "Beautiful World" (Polydor) took the No. 1 honors for a sixth week, as its cumulative sales rose to 1,174,000 copies. Winehouse's resurgent sophomore album "Back to Black" rose from No. 16 to a new peak of No. 2 in its tenth chart week, with Snow Patrol's "Eyes Open" holding at No. 3 after 36 weeks.
On Billboard's pan-European sales charts, the Beatles' "Love" (Apple) is in a sixth week at No. 1 on European Top 100 Albums, while Take That's "Patience" is also in its sixth week atop Eurochart Hot 100 Singles.