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Chart Watch Weekly - November 29th 2021

James Masterton's Chart Watch Weekly
It is the “Mummy’s been having some feelings” edition of the Chart Watch newsletter, as Adele’s 30 lands in our lives and becomes (hopefully) the final big superstar release of Q4. It’s your regular Monday roundup that only occasionally doesn’t make it out of the door until Tuesday.
In Chart Watch Weekly this week:
  • Reducing Adele to numbers.
  • America and Australia are subdued by her as well.
  • But there’s one place where she doesn’t dominate all.
  • The Monday midweeks. With bad news for all Christmas haters.

Not Enough Wine In The World
Official Charts
This week's Official Albums Chart is live! With a record-breaking new Number 1 at the top, check out the Top 10 below 👇 and the full Top 100 here 👉
So where on earth do you begin?
30 by Adele arrived this week, crashed straight to No.1 and essentially caused everyone with half an interest in the charts to start vomiting statistics. I could repeat them all here but most have been so widely reported that they are scarcely news.
The most important bit is the top line. 281,856 was her final sales total, one which destroys even the 204,000 that ABBA accumulated a fortnight ago. It is the single highest weekly sale of the decade so far, the first album to exceed a quarter of a million sales in a week since Ed Sheeran’s Divide in 2017. 67% of the total was thanks to physical sales, 16,700 of them of the vinyl edition.
It took the Daily Mail of all people to put an entertaining spin on things (and I’m secretly gutted that they got there first), trumpeting that Adele had lost almost three quarters of her audience, this due to the fact that 281,000 is a mere 35% of the 800,000 with which her last album 25 opened its account exactly six years ago this week.
The truth of the matter is that an Adele album right now is the bellwether. Her last release marked the high water mark of a previous era in music, so it only made sense to regard her latest one as the true indicator of just how big an album could get in the new age of the 2020s. The scenes we witnessed in 2015, with stand up displays at supermarket kiosks stripped bare of copies within a few hours of release, were never going to be repeated. Instead we are in the era of digital plays, direct to fan shipments and Amazon orders. So the fact that she still managed to shift almost 300,000 units in the space of seven days is utterly phenomenal, regardless of what your point of comparison is.
Fill Your Glasses
Official Charts
The Official Singles Chart is live! See this week's Top 10 below 👇 and check out the full Top 100 here 👉
The fascinating part was always going to be just what impact Adele was going to have on the singles chart. As I noted in the main Chart Watch article on Friday, the huge sale of 25 six years ago caused barely a ripple on the singles chart itself. Things were going to be different this time around, but nobody really knew just how different.
In truth the official singles countdown listed above doesn’t begin to tell the full story. For that you need to take a glance at the Official Streaming Chart. Seven of the most-streamed tracks of the week are Adele cuts, meaning she would have utterly dominated the upper end of the official charts, but for the “Ed Sheeran Rule” which restricts artists to three concurrent hits only.
Of the three hits she was permitted, they could scarcely have been any bigger. She narrowly failed to make a clean sweep of the Top 3 (damn Ed Sheeran of all people for getting in the way of that) but at least sets a new benchmark for a woman by landing three of the Top 4. Olivia Rodrigo landed three of the Top 5 back in June.
The streaming boost the arrival of the album meant that sales of Easy On Me rocketed back up to previous levels as the single topped 100,000 sales once more. That’s more than enough to strand it at No.1 until Christmas for sure.
Adele - I Drink Wine (Official Lyric Video)
Adele - I Drink Wine (Official Lyric Video)
Stay Out Of Jail
The week’s other big winners turned out to be D-Block Europe who may only have been one of no fewer than six acts to have albums land in the Top 10, but who crucially made the biggest non-Adele singles chart impact.
Charting at No.8, their cut Overseas duly became their first single ever to make the Top 10, the rap collective’s biggest hit until now being the No.11 peak of UFO in October last year. What this did mean was that they surrendered the record of “most chart singles without a Top 10 hit” which they had quietly landed for themselves earlier this year.
At the weekend I repeated the common assumption that the record now passes back to the Super Furry Animals who have not registered a chart single since 2007 and have been stranded ever since on 21 hits, none of which climbed higher than No.11 (Nothern Lights).
But not so, pointed out one eagle-eyed commenter. The record is actually now held by The 1975 who upon the release of their last album last year saw No.56 hit Tonight (I Wish I Was Your Boy) become their 22nd chart single - none of which have exceeded the No.14 peak of If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know).
So now we do know.
D-Block Europe - Overseas ft. @Central Cee (Official Music Video)
D-Block Europe - Overseas ft. @Central Cee (Official Music Video)
Across The Atlantic
Taylor Swift proved to be a one week wonder at the top of the American charts with the path clear for Adele to make a comfortable return to the summit. She also places Oh My God at No.5 meaning she joins Ed Sheeran in having two concurrent Top 10 hits. With Glass Animals clinging on in there still it means once more half of the places in the American Top 10 are taken up by British acts.
As we’ve noted before, Billboard doesn’t restrict the number of album cuts that can chart, meaning 30 achieves a clean sweep with all 12 of its tracks placed somewhere on the Hot 100. I Drink Wine is the biggest of the rest, but only places at No.18.
Meanwhile the album itself lands smartly at the top of the US charts as well. I particularly enjoyed the revelation that in one bound it has become 2021’s biggest seller to date. Not one act has sold as many albums in the United States in the past 11 months as Adele did in the last seven days.
A Land Down Under
Here's this week's Top Ten singles on the #ARIACharts with @Adele, @taylorswift13, @eltonofficial, @DUALIPA, @pnau, @thekidlaroi, @justinbieber and more.

For all of this week's charts, head to
Predictably enough almost the exact same thing happens in Australia. Taylor Swift and Adele gently swap places with the latter also ending up with two more Top 10 hits - the same as in other territories.
Le Top Singles de la semaine est sorti ! 🎧

Classement complet 👉

Orelsan place 9 titres de son nouvel album dans le top 10 ! 👏
I know we only did the French charts a fortnight ago, but it was hard to resist the temptation to highlight them again given the way they have done something completely barmy. One artist with the biggest new album of the week utterly dominates the Top 10 singles as well - but extraordinarily it is not Adele. 30 debuts at No.2 on the French album charts but it is utterly blown away by the arrival of Civilisation, the fourth album from 39 year old rapper Orelsan who in terms of delivery and personal style is regarded as the French Eminem.
Tracks from his album occupy nine of the Top 10 singles, including every one of the Top 8. This is by far and away the biggest, this week’s No.1 single in France.
OrelSan - L'odeur de l'essence [CLIP OFFICIEL]
OrelSan - L'odeur de l'essence [CLIP OFFICIEL]
Midweek Teases
Adele domination seems set to continue for a second week as 30 is on course to remain on top of the albums chart (something precious few albums manage these days) while Easy On Me seems certain to extend its chart run at the top. As I noted above, there is little chance anything is going to depose it between now and the Christmas chart. I Drink Wine seems set to be the closest challenger as it is due to rocket to No.2 while Oh My God remains in the Top 5.
But this is where it gets scary. As I’m writing it still isn’t December, yet there is every chance that the two perennial big seasonal smashes will be fighting for attention inside the Top 5 as well. The Monday evening midweeks put Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You at No.3 and Last Christmas by Wham! at No.5. Both these remember are subject to permanent ACR restrictions with their streams counting for half those of the contemporary hits although neither would have made it to Number One in any event.
But you will note that last year the dam was broken and both took turns at the top of the charts either side of Christmas week itself. For all the talk about Adele’s potential December domination, her battle with a superstar of a previous generation could well be the main talking point of the next few weeks. Heaven help us all.
Watch out for the wonderfully profane ABCDEFU by Gayle fighting its way into the Top 10 as well, but with a large number of Christmas classics set to also impact the Top 40 this week I think we are about to kiss goodbye to contemporary hit singles until the new year. Nobody has released any new single of note this week. The industry knows that for the rest of the month there is little point bothering.
GAYLE - abcdefu (Official Music Video)
GAYLE - abcdefu (Official Music Video)
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The new UK charts are announced by Radio One from 4pm every Friday, can be seen in full on and, and I’m now back on with my own detailed charts analysis later that same evening.
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James Masterton
James Masterton @chartupdate

From the world famous chart analyst, a weekly roundup of everything fit to print from charts worldwide. Considered coverage of the stories generated by the UK charts along with a summary of events taking place on pop charts in Europe, across the Atlantic, and on the other side of the world.

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