In a photo-finish that saw him beat David Guetta's "Nothing But The Beat" (Positiva/Virgin/EMI) by a sales margin of just 150 copies, Paul Weller scored his fourth solo U.K. No. 1 album on Sunday (25) with "Sonik Kicks" (Universal Island). Katy Perry's "Part Of Me" (Virgin/EMI) debuted at the top to become her third No. 1 single in the territory.
Weller first made the album chart as frontman of seminal new wave rock trio The Jam in 1977, who reached No. 1 with their final studio album "The Gift" in 1982. He then formed the Style Council, who reached the summit with their second album "Our Favourite Shop." Since beginning his solo career in the early 1990s, the remarkably consistent and prolific Weller has made No. 1 with 1995's "Stanley Road," 2002's "Illumination" and 2008's "22 Dreams," before triumphing again with "Sonik Kicks," his 11th studio album. It sold 30,000 last week, according to the Official Charts Company, well below the 52,000 opening figure for "Wake Up The Nation," which gave it a No. 2 debut in 2010.
"I could say the album follows on from 'Wake Up The Nation', which it kind of does," Weller told this writer. "But it also sounds very different from that as well. We tried to make it as musically and sonically challenging as possible."
Guetta's album finished the week with a late surge to climb back 9-2 as last week's No. 1, the Military Wives' "In My Dreams" (Decca/Universal), fell to No. 3 with 24,000 sales. Emeli Sandé's "Our Version of Events" (Virgin/EMI) slipped 2-4 and Adele's "21" (XL Recordings) 3-5. Lana Del Rey moved 8-6 with "Born To Die" (Polydor/Universal) and Coldplay 12-7 with "Mylo Xyloto" (Parlophone/EMI).
The Shins posted a No. 11 debut for "Port of Morrow" (Aural Apothecary/Columbia/Sony Music Entertainment) while Bruno Mars bounced back eight places to No. 14 with "Doo-Wops & Hooligans" (Elektra/Warner Music). LMFAO improved 27-15 with "Sorry For Party Rocking" (Interscope/Universal) and Justin Fletcher 21-16 with "Hands Up - The Album" (Little Demon). EMI TV/UMTV's "Now That's What I Call Running" collection climbed back 2-1 on the compilation chart.
Perry first hit the U.K. singles summit in August 2008 with "I Kissed A Girl" and returned there in July 2010 with "California Gurls." She sold 79,000 copies of "Part Of Me" last week and is followed by Jamaican star Sean Paul's No. 2 debut on the new chart with "She Doesn't Mind" (Atlantic/Warner Music. Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know" (Universal Island), featuring Kimbra, ended its five-week aggregate run at No. 1 by falling two places.
There were also top ten debuts for London-born writer-producer-artist Labrinth, at No. 4 with "Last Time" (Syco Music/Sony Music Entertainment), and pop hitmakers JLS at No. 6 with "Proud" (RCA/Sony Music Entertainment). In between, Nicki Minaj's "Starships" (Cash Money/Universal Island) fell 2-5.