Never before has an entire album been represented in the single charts at the same time, let alone in the top 20. The problem, if it is a problem, stems from how the charts are collated. As every song from the album is available for download (there were 164,000 downloads from the Divide album) it means that every song has had a chance of making the charts and that is what has exactly what’s happened. When you also factor in streaming, which also counts, you can see why Ed has dominated the charts. (Divide generated 79,000 album streams by the way.)
The Official Charts Company do not seem that concerned that Ed Sheeran has taken over the top 20 in the charts this week, as Martin Talbot, the chief executive, said: “The Official Singles Chart is a reflection of the tastes of the nation and, for that reason, the chart is dominated by Ed this week, because of the volumes of both streams AND sales that it has generated”.
On contacting Talbot, he also said how Stromzy had seven tracks in the top 40 the previous week.
“Of course, it brings attention to the UK’s Official charts – that’s what they are there for, after all, to generate interest and discussion. And we will review chart methodologies (as we continually do) to see if there is something we could or should change. But we shouldn’t (and won’t) rush to any kneejerk actions.”
Although it does raise concerns around the integrity of the charts, this is an amazing achievement for Sheeran and shows his popularity in the UK.
For further information on how charts are put together check out:
Changes to Official Charts Explained