'Pop Idols' Battle On U.K. Charts
Gareth Gates has now outdone Will Young, the singer that beat him to the "Pop Idol" crown on the U.K. TV series -- at least in terms of weeks at No. 1 on the U.K. singles chart. Gates' "Unchained MeloGareth Gates has now outdone Will Young, the singer that beat him to the "Pop Idol" crown on the U.K. TV series -- at least in terms of weeks at No. 1 on the U.K. singles chart. Gates' "Unchained Melody" has now outlasted its fellow S/BMG release "Evergreen"/"Anything Is Possible," starting a fourth week at the top yesterday (April 14). Young's single spent three weeks there last month, and is likely to remain the bigger seller, with current sales of more than 1.5 million copies.
The new singles chart hosted an improbable return to the chart -- and a new U.K. peak of No. 2 -- for former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne, as guest vocalist on "Lazy" (Skint), by long-serving British dance outfit X-Press 2. The group had its first chart entry, with "London X-Press," in June 1993; Byrne has never made the U.K. singles survey as a solo artist. His one top-10 hit with Talking Heads, "Road to Nowhere," reached No. 6 in 1985.
The new top-10 also had a strong influence from perennially popular U.K. club act Faithless. The group's new single "One Step Too Far" (Cheeky/Arista), featuring vocals by producer Rollo Armstrong's sister Dido, arrived at No. 6. "My Culture" by 1 Giant Leap, the team of Duncan Bridgeton and Faithless contributor, Jamie Act, entered at No. 9 on Palm Pictures. It features guest vocals by Robbie Williams and Maxi Jazz, who raps on most of Faithless' material.
On the U.K. album chart, Celine Dion's "A New Day Has Come" (Epic) started a third week at No. 1, with Sheryl Crow's "C'mon, C'mon" (A&M) entering at No. 2. Badly Drawn Boy's "About a Boy," the soundtrack to the movie of Nick Hornby's best-selling novel starring Hugh Grant, debuted at No. 6.
Across Europe, Shakira's "Whenever Wherever" (Epic) started a seventh week on top of Music & Media's Eurochart Hot 100 Singles tally, while Britney Spears' "I'm Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman" (Jive) climbed 15-2 in its seventh week. Dion's set is No. 1 for a second week on the European Top 100 Albums chart, where the highest new entry was the Pet Shop Boys' eighth studio set, "Release" (Parlophone), at No. 5.