Everybody Come Down
lbum chart notes: The reissuing of the Rachel Stevens album gets to #13. 'Featuring all new artwork and the dance mix of 'Some Girls''. Something suggests that that just can't be a good thing. They play 'Sweet Dreams My LA Ex', and it sounds an awful lot better than it used to.
Anyway, the Album Chart doesn't matter this week, because:
a) The Futureheads are in the singles chart;
b) The Red Hot Chilli Peppers Live In Hyde Park is #1.
So they get Chad off RHCP and he starts talking about how great the fans are and how crazy it is etc. etc. and so I got to the toilet instead because THE FUTUREHEADS ARE IN THE TOP FUCKING FORTY and listening to 'Give It Away' is just utterly inappropriate in said context.
New Entries Outside The Top Twenty: Graham Coxon #31 (further post/punkery with squawky vocals and stuff. If you didn't like him before, then God knows this'll never change your mind); Mania #29 (fantastic single finds out the pitfalls of only being sold to The Right People—more later); The Futureheads #26 (Yes, you can guess my reaction to this. And, again, more later); and The Charlatans #24 (jangly… bollocks).
THE UK TOP 20: NOT QUITE FEATURING THE FUTUREHEADS, BUT STILL - #26! GET IN!
20) BLACK EYED PEAS – Let's Get It Started
We've been here before, haven't we?
19) FLIP & FILL – Discoland
Yeah… Anyway, a Regular Reader Of This Column (I think he's called Simon) was rather disappointed with the 'Golf' edition, and has requested pictures of the cricket instead. And, seeing as how England have just won the second Test against the West Indies (Note For Americans: I'm not going to bother explaining this to you. Cricket is to you as the enduring popularity of Creed is to us), here's a picture of Andy Flintoff:
18) EST'ELLE – 1980
So yes, it's a slow week, but that does at least mean another week inside the top 20 for this…
17) MORRISSEY – First Of The Gang To Die
and this too. We've got a problem in so far as I said so bloody much last week that I'm going to have a right bastard of a time finding new things to say today…
16) McFLY – Obviously
Eamon (if you remember him) has a new single out sooner or later, and the video features Milk of 'Jason Downs ft. Milk' fame. From what I could tell, though, Milk doesn't actually feature in the song in any capacity.
That's how fucking slow this week is.
15) LOU REED – Satellite of Love 2004
I am attempting to procure the Mania song—don't remember why I didn't buy it, but for some reason I didn't. Which was bloody silly of me, really.
14) JENNIFER ELLISON – Bye Bye Boy (NEW ENTRY)
For those who can remember better than me: Were Transvision Vamp this shit? I mean, I can remember Republica, and they were better than this, and Pink… well, even she's a bit better than this. It's sort of like when a pop star character in a film does their single that will go on to top the charts in the film, and everyone in the film goes "WOW! THIS! IS! A! HIT!" despite the fact that it is quite patently utterly fucking toss.
13) SHAZNAY LEWIS – Never Felt Like This Before
This is still very boring. 2 new entries, Busted and D12. Keep the Cristal on ice, eh?
12) MARIO WINANS ft. ENYA & P DIDDY – I Don't Wanna Know
On the other hand, the relative lack of anything else to care about means that I can notice a rather scary bit in Diddy's verse where, having revealed that "I know why you crying," he grumbles "Stop crying" at his woman. Coupled with his dangerous U2 obsession (drawerful of tapes marked 'Desire'? I mean, it's better than bloody 'Beautiful Day', but so is, er, this), you worry for the man.
That's how fucking slow this week is.
11) NINA SKY – Move Ya Body
I'm slightly behind on the chart this week, which is why I haven't got round to talking about the Futureheads or Mania yet. Gimme a little bit of time.
10) JAMELIA – See It In A Boy's Eyes
It's in the middle of Usher at the moment.
9) BRITNEY SPEARS – Everytime
Her voice isn't particularly good at high notes, is it? You can take the piss out of it quite easily. Almost as much as the "UGH!" sound that Kasabian make. Though I'm probably the only person here that does that.
8) O-ZONE – Dragostea Din Tei
Announced by Wes as being from 'Moldavia'. IT'S MOLDOVIA, YOU MUFFIN. THIS IS NOT VICTORIAN ENGLAND, COS IF IT WAS YOU'D BE IN A SODDING WORKHOUSE.
Then again, so would I.
7) USHER – Burn
So—THE FUTUREHEADS ARE #26! Yes, even if it is just a big campaign by the Warner’s street team and there's not really anything else happening this week, everyone's favourite bunch of lightly dishevelled post-punk proto-pop mighty Mackems have got into the top bloody forty, and they were far too nice to point out to Wes what a twat he is when he talked to them down the phone beforehand in the manner of someone who has any kind of fucking clue who they are. YOU SHALL NEVER FULLY UNDERSTAND MY STRUGGLE, or something. Yeah. Sorry.
Anyway, the song that's put them there is 'Decent Days And Nights', which when heard on the album occasionally sounds a little too much like an obvious single (insofaras anything the 'heads ever do sounds like an obvious single), but that's because it makes sense and has a proper chorus and so on. "If you work it out, tell me what you find! We can have a few, decent days and nights!" It's angular and jumpy and very fast and very frantic and crammed and stuff and they all sing and it's just really good for more or less all the reasons The Futureheads are really good. It's not as good as their cover of 'Hounds Of Love', though.
6) J-KWON – Tipsy
I'm really not in much of a writerly moody this afternoon, and cos I'm behind again the Shapeshifters have just come on, so I could really give two shits about J-Kwon's shandy habit.
5) RACHEL STEVENS – Some Girls
This is still really good, but I'm thinking of clever things to say about the Streets and still can't find anywhere that has the Mania single. Which is really annoying because it's very good. It has whistling and everything.
4) D12 – How Come (NEW ENTRY)
Oh fuck off. Eminem has a go at Royce Da 5'9. Then D12 have a go at Royce Da 5'9. It would appear the past fortnight was a golden era.
Mania. 'Looking For A Place'. What one would have hoped the Shaznay Lewis thing would have sounded like, a whistly, swingy, sassy piece of pop, skipping-rhyme-rhythms in the chorus, which later get reprised in the form of whistling. It should have charted much higher than #29… except it didn't make the playlist at Radio 1 and didn't get on Top Of The Pops or CD:UK. If you knew about them, you'd have found out via the Observer Music Monthly or the 'proper music press' or Popworld or something, the preserve of the 'proper pop fan'. God, it's easy to get all fucking cod-having-a-clue about this, but… I dunno. Apparently Mania didn't give a shit about chart positions. Which is fair enough, I suppose. Because, as the Observer Music Monthly or the 'proper music press' or Popworld or the broadsheet newspapers or Heat or your mum or whoever might have pointed out, no-one buys singles anymore but hey that's all going to change later this year, because! DOWNLOADS are being included! Yes! Because the download and the internet is the future! Do you see? I could draw the line from Coca-Cola 'supporting' the Official UK Top 40 and MyCokeMusic.Com but it's a bit fucking obvious, isn't it? And they'll be able to ratify where the sales for the charts are permitted to come from, which is kind of like only counting the records that are bought at Woolworths. So that's all a bit depressing, and I'm not entirely sure how the fuck I got there…
'Looking For A Place' is a really good single though.
3) SHAPESHIFTERS – Lola's Theme
They did Top Of The Pops this week, which was being held outdoors in Gateshead. They closed the show, because presumably TOTP were the only section of the music media that didn't think 'Dry Your Eyes' would be number one. And at the end, Cookie addressed the crowd, thanked them ever so much, then shouted "TOP OF THE POPS LOVES YOU!" Those who didn't have a tear in their eye… well, they'd probably got fed up after the previous hour or so.
2) THE STREETS – Dry Your Eyes
Mike Skinner, of course, wasn't invited to Outdoors Top Of The Pops, because he's the new Gary Jules. It's odd, isn't it, how he hasn't actually been interviewed to promote this single. Yes, CD:UK has a 'performance' of 'Dry Your Eyes', but that was recorded months ago now. Mike Skinner has yet to be invited to take part in CD:UK Hotshots Review, where he'd get to watch the new Goldie Lookin' Chain video with, oh, the mulletty one out of V and Anastacia, and then Cat Deeley would go "Goldie Lookin' Chain, there, so, Mike—what do you think about the Reading Festival this year?" They like him when he lives up to the 'chav' thing, when they can get him to leer into the camera while wearing dodgy sportswear or whatever and go, "yeah, he's the voice of our youth and also a poet because he articulates the feelings of the people we daren't talk to unless it's to tell them how really, really good Natasha Bedingfield or whoever is"… they're not so sure about this. The idea of someone who exists some way out of the pop mainstream having this number one single worries them. How are we going to ask him what his favourite banana is? He might be on drugs! BAD DRUGS! Yes, he can have the number one album, because the album charts are for serious people and when we talk about albums we talk about proper music and the two charts aren't the same thing, and we like it when people that we can compliment on having botoxed teeth are successful in the albums chart because we can say they're a serious artist and so we have cred… when it happens the other way? They’re not so sure about that one.
If you get what I mean, and I rather suspect you don't, but hey…
1) BUSTED – Thunderbirds Are Go!/3 A.M. (NEW ENTRY)
It's 'Crashed The Wedding' with strings b/w Busted going a bit emo, shittily. Actually, 'Thunderbirds Are Go!' ain't that bad, except for when it sounds like they're singing "fondue birds argot," and you expect some kind of witty treatise on Abigail's Party but it never comes. There've been plenty worse number ones this year, though. And they bloody well made one of them…