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In the Long Grass

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Just had a glance at UK top 40 for first time in an age.

Given that he's a) not the greatest talent since Beatles b) not dead, HOW can Justin Bieber occupy 3 of top 5 slots, with another track at #15??? confuse

It's not that I'm a non-Belieber, I just fail to see how with all the material available he's shifting enough units to do that. In other words, is there a dearth of quality competition, are the radio stations to blame (although I don't think I've heard one of the songs alluded to anywhere), is there some rigging going on, or is there a whole generation of brainwashed (pre)teens who should take the credit(blame?).

I would ask for answers on a postcard, but that will make me look old as well as sound it.

I really despair for the industry that brought us so much pleasure through persistently allowing more diverse acts, whether you liked them or not (cf TOTP thread).

 



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suss wrote:

Just had a glance at UK top 40 for first time in an age.

Given that he's a) not the greatest talent since Beatles b) not dead, HOW can Justin Bieber occupy 3 of top 5 slots, with another track at #15??? confuse

It's not that I'm a non-Belieber, I just fail to see how with all the material available he's shifting enough units to do that. In other words, is there a dearth of quality competition, are the radio stations to blame (although I don't think I've heard one of the songs alluded to anywhere), is there some rigging going on, or is there a whole generation of brainwashed (pre)teens who should take the credit(blame?).

I would ask for answers on a postcard, but that will make me look old as well as sound it.

I really despair for the industry that brought us so much pleasure through persistently allowing more diverse acts, whether you liked them or not (cf TOTP thread).


The simple answer is the way the charts are constructed.  All tracks now qualify, and a stream is as good as a purchase.     Not sure charts have mattered to anyone nor have any meaning since the start of the decade (or maybe even the century).   

Rock music is to all intents and purposes dead as far as a mainstream is concerned.  Royal Blood had a smash hit #1 album and the most successful single on it made #43.  Even acts like Arctic Monkeys and Kasabian barely make the top 100.  The death of XFM and NME is the death knell in the UK.  There are now zero mainstream outlets for rock music.  

Most teenagers who do like rock, can't be bothered with anything new.  My 16 year old son plays Joy Division, Stone Roses et al on guitar/bass  and buys albums by Velvet Underground (well he did until he realised I had most of them).

I haven't really been interested in the singles since the mid 1990s, especially when we used to have the Christmas #1 sweepstake, but even that isn't worth having now as it will inevitably be the X Factor song.    In fact, if you look back to 2004 when X Factor started that was was probably the end of chart variety.  Since then the charts are either X Factor contestants or those blessed with appearances from Psycho himself. Also add in the death of CD singles and this is what you are left with.

There is a really strange vinyl singles chart  http://www.officialcharts.com/charts/vinyl-singles-chart/ which is dominated by Bowie along with entries from Dylan and Elvis!

There are a lot of angry comments on the official chart site.

http://www.officialcharts.com/charts/singles-chart/

  • Paul Anthony Searle  3 days ago

    FFS sort this chart out! It really is a joke. A Singles chart means SINGLES only NOT album tracks or streams of album tracks. Only bona fide SINGLES should count. I like millions of other chart watchers up and down the country really have given up with this chart now. It's soooooooo non realistic it don't matter anymore. The only ones that seem to like it are those who manage to break the top 40 and NOT the 60 others who fail, largely due to the upper positions being filled with non single tracks, so naturally their singles under perform and get pushed down to the lower reaches or don't chart at all. The chart compilation is sooooooooo unfair now it no longer represents a true level playing field.

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In the Long Grass

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Thanks for the detailed and logical reply. All makes sense and I'm glad to see I'm not the only one despairing.

Hadn't appreciated the distinction between tracks and genuine singles, or lack of distinction in this case, but it does make a mockery of any 'chart'. Also a bit lost as to how consumers are purchasing now as sugestion is that some tracks find greater favour than others, "single" or not. Don't people buy whole albums online anymore??

I'm off to buy a flat cap and change name by deed poll to Meldrew no

 



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suss wrote:

...I'm glad to see I'm not the only one despairing

Don't people buy whole albums online anymore? 


Chart music is pretty irrelevant not only to old people, but also the younh so not worth despairing over.  In many ways,  it is good because rather than having what you like/dislike dictated by some TV show or mainstream radio, people use Spotify suggestions/radio to discover what they really like.  It's a throwback to the days of late 70s/early 80s pirate FM radio which I listened to far more than say Radio 1.  

They do, but that is irrelevant.  If my daughter (and a million other daughters) stream the Bieber album then each track gets a single credit.  Enough streams send the songs into the top ten.  

The concept of buying an album is a bit outdated, just for the old folks.   And with Amazon Prime there isn't even any need to because they have given away the latest Enya, ELO, Take That, 1D and Little Mix albums.   And the new Bowie single for good measure.  You can download all of them gratis.  I'm not sure too many people listen to whole albums anymore.  I do rip albums as one MP3 track which forces me to do it, but I am likely to just flip between lots of tracks on Spotify.

Only album I bought this year is Adele, and only because it isn't going to be on any streaming service.  It only cost £5 for the vinyl LP which may be a handy present, though I don't know if anyone I know has a turntable!

 

PS My daughter does not like Bieber, but plenty her age do



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ArrGee wrote:
Only album I bought this year is Adele

 Actually that ain't true.  Excluding any Oxfam purchases (which are rare these days cos they have hiked their prices) I have bought half a dozen (and FFS is on the radar)..

  • London Calling - Clash
  • Live At River Plate - AC/DC
  • Brothers - Black Keys
  • Chasing Yesterday - Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
  • Meat Is Murder - Smiths

Only Oxfam purchase I can think of was Power In The Darkness by TRB.

 
 


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ArrGee wrote:
suss wrote:

Don't people buy whole albums online anymore? 


They do, but that is irrelevant.  If my daughter (and a million other daughters) stream the Bieber album then each track gets a single credit.  Enough streams send the songs into the top ten.  


Think that's what is confusing me..if people are streaming an album then I don't get how certain tracks hit the charts (singles or not). It seems like some somes find favour other others on an album (as since dawn of time), get streamed, and make the charts, but I don't get how these songs get weeded out in first place as it implies knowing up front what is good/better.

 

 



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suss wrote:

Think that's what is confusing me..if people are streaming an album then I don't get how certain tracks hit the charts (singles or not). It seems like some some find favour other others on an album (as since dawn of time), get streamed, and make the charts, but I don't get how these songs get weeded out in first place as it implies knowing up front what is good/better.


 I suspect that their chart position is on the lines on the track order.  So first track on albums is #1, then some people start to listen to the second track which hits #2 then a few more leave before #3...

...and when they return to listen again, they start at track 1!

It's a shame Adele is not streaming her album, because it could prove the theory.   She could have had it all!  (i.e. #1-#10  next week).



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What is Adele's reasoning for not streaming?

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Jules wrote:

What is Adele's reasoning for not streaming?


Money.   

http://www.nbcnews.com/pop-culture/music/adeles-25-wont-be-available-any-streaming-services-n467486

an interesting article on record sales

http://www.theguardian.com/music/2015/nov/22/adele-25-uk-charts-album-sales-record

"The top 1% of musical works now account for 77% of total artist revenues."

Which may explain why a few artists dominate the charts.  

"...publishing, including getting music into films and adverts, and live concerts have overtaken recording as ways to make money from music, and I think recording is likely to become even less important as time goes on. So those top-line figures about how many artists sell records are increasingly not the best way to reflect the health of the music industry.

So there you have it, the reason for no variety in the charts.  I suppose old geezers like myself ain't helping too much by buying old albums by the likes of The Clash and The Smiths.   Not exactly investing in new talent this year, am i?  Though to be fair, I did see Royal Blood twice.

 



-- Edited by ArrGee on Monday 23rd of November 2015 04:13:52 PM

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I guessed money would come in to it, in a huge way.

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