CHART OF DARKNESS: And so into a country that finds no middle ground, you either want Alex Turner's children or wish to murder him, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not becomes 2005's 51st best selling album four weeks too late. Thinking about this again, we suppose what marks ver Monkeys out from the legions of the once-hyped is that the music press didn't need them - they're not being talked up as forebearers of the latest mod revival or providing respite from acres of boy bands as per previously hyped bands, they're the the next step up saleswise on the Strokes-Franz-Kaisers timeline. Anyway, we did all that theorising last week, and the more we do the more we dread having every word copied and pasted many, many times into an email should they become the national punchline in about October. At least they've kept Richard Ashcroft - "legendary", says the TV advert, as if he were Johnny Mathis (Very Best Of new at 18) - off the top. Daniel O'Donnell's scary sounding From Daniel With Love is new at 5, Kooks at 9 must be a clerical error, A-Ha we'll come back to but Analogue is at 24, 2006's Arcade Fire Clap Your Hands Say Yeah outdo Funeral at a stroke by entering at 26, Fall Out Boy show a legion of pop-punk outfits getting emo transfer tattoos - Yellowcard at 59, for instance - where they went wrong by entering at 30, Kubb make an unwelcome top 50 debut at 41, Cat Power remarkably nearly outsells the virtually given out at chain store doors Lee Ryan at 45, Jenny Lewis outsells Rilo Kiley at 63, and the Go! Team finally make a top 75 debut. New paragraph!
Every so often at about this time of year you get a chart that harks back to the days when new entries would be at unremarkable placings and records would naturally climb. What that does however mean is the joy felt when it emerged that the latest Notorious BIG grave digging had failed to top the charts is halted already as it pipped the Arctics very late in the week. In answer to your question, You're Beautiful was the last song to climb to number one. The Ordinary Boys celebrate their singer losing them every last shred of dignity, relevance and the ability of the public to take them at all seriously by seeing Boys Will Be Boys climb 21 places - when was the last time a record climbed that much within the top 40, then? Feel Good Inc's download introduction cheat only gave them a 19 place jolt when the physical product came out - to 9, while the actual highest new entry is the biennial fixture that is A-Ha's 'long awaited' comeback, the attitude to which was summed up on CD:UK the other week when their impressively sized fanbase voted Analogue to number one in the MiTracks countdown as a demonstration that their songcraft and ability to change with the times will outlive mere nostalgia, and in response all three presenters recreated the Take On Me riff. First top ten hit in nearly 18 years. Morten should wear a balaclava and see how they like it then. Pharrell pops by almost unnoticed at 15, Young Jeezy finally ticks himself off the growing register of R&B stars that mean nowt in Britain (where are you then, Slim Thug?) at 16, Starsailor meh in at 24, "but what if the Killers were sold like Son Of Dork?" curio Protocol are at 27, LMC's doomed attempt to cover You Get What You Give is at 30 and the aforementioned Fall Out Boy manage to enter the top 40 on downloads and sales of the undeleted first release of Sugar We're Going Down two weeks ahead of its re-release. Well done, Mercury. The scary bald bloke and Infadels friends are at 43 - and finally someone's thought of making a video at La Tomatina - Be Your Own Pet fail by six to equal the length of Let's Get Sandy in seconds by charting at 51, Moby (53) and Alex Parks (56) are greeted with clarion calls of "are you still here?" and Music Power by Porno looks a worrying prospect at 72.
FREE MUSIC: Drowned In Sound jumps on the podcast bandwagon
HEY YOU GET OFFA MYSPACE: MC Lars: post-emo Beasties pisstaker, regular at Truck and very much not to be judged by keeping company with Bowling for Soup, American Hi-Fi, Fightstar, Test Icicles and Simple Plan. Unfortunately promised new album track "Ahab, retelling Herman Melville's class Moby Dick in under four minutes to a Supergrass sample" not up as yet.
BLOG ROLLING: Rocking Vicar, the mailout we like to call Holy Mojo!, has kicked off its own blog
EVERYBODY GET RANDOM: The Doctor Who Christmas Invasion featured a specially commissioned song by respected film and TV composed Murray Gold, which we mention as it's been drawn to our attention that Gold, assuming that's him on vocals, sounds remarkably like Colin MacIntyre AKA Mull Historical Society (who, if you're at all interested, has dropped the MHS pretence and is recording a new album under his own name)
FIRST IN FIRST OUT: Back in the studio: Dinosaur Jr, according to Lou Barlow, who probably hasn't summoned up the courage to ask J Mascis yet. Splitting: Grandaddy, purveyors of fine leftfield popisms these past nearly 14 years and in The Sophtware Slump made the still great unrewarded technology-centric warped Americana album of the last ten years. Nobody mention how rubbish the last EP was, OK?
SECRET LIVES: Not strictly STN target market, this, but what else can you do with Fearne Cotton's Myspace page apart from appease the thousands of 'fearne cotton tattoo' Google search hits that appear on our stats every week? No body ink further details here, but she types in a way much as you'd expect, is 'friends' with Test Icicles and, in a surprising turn of events, can paint a picture of Peaches as well as the next man/woman:
IN OTHER NEWS: Back in our history we travelled nearly 55 miles just to co-present a one-off show on Brentwood RSL community station Phoenix FM, produced by Paul off Mr Red Penguin. He's probably forgotten, or more likely doesn't know who we are, but that's not for now. What is is that they've got another 28 day local broadcast underway, listenable through their website, and Chris T-T and Les 'Fruitbat' Carter have shows on the station. As does Steve Davis, if you're at all keen on French prog.