Since we last convened here a fortnight ago, the two albums that have had the biggest impact globally are George Ezra’s second album, Staying At Tamara’s and former White Stripes leader Jack White’s third solo album, Boarding House Reach.
The chart fortunes of Ezra’s album varied considerably, and were largely based on whether or not introductory single Paradise had been a hit or not. After a slow start, Paradise climbed as high as No.2 in The UK, setting up Staying At Tamara’s to become Ezra’s second No.1 in his home country.
The album also debuted at No.2 in Ireland, No.6 in Austria and Switzerland, No.7 in Australia and The Netherlands, No.8 in New Zealand, No.10 in Germany, No.22 in Canada, No.23 in The Czech Republic and Flanders, No.40 in France, No.43 in Sweden, No.50 in Wallonia, No.54 in Slovakia, No.57 in Italy, No.68 in The USA and – although it was conceived and written during a month long sojourn in Barcelona, when he was indeed Staying At Tamara’s - No.99 in Spain.
Like Ezra, Jack White debuted at No.1 in his home country – and as he was born in Detroit, Michigan, the country in question is The USA. White’s previous solo albums, Blunderbuss (2012) and Lazaretto (2014), also topped the US chart. All three albums also opened at No.1 over the border in Canada. Elsewhere, Boarding House Reach debuted at No.5 in Switzerland and The UK, No.8 in Austria, No.10 in Flanders and The Netherlands, No.11 in Australia and Poland, No.15 in Greece, No.16 in The Czech Republic, No.17 in Germany and Ireland, No.19 in Finland and Spain, No.25 in New Zealand, No.31 in France, No.32 in Italy, No.40 in Denmark, No.42 in Wallonia and No.77 in Slovakia.
Released a week after the above, The Weeknd’s surprise EP, My Dear Melancholy – six new songs with a playing time of a little over 20 minutes – arrives 16 months after his enormously successful third album, Starboy. With more to come next week, it debuts at No.1 in Norway and Sweden, No.2 in Ireland and New Zealand, No.3 in Flanders, The Netherlands and The UK, No.7 in Germany, No.22 in Wallonia and No.24 in Italy.
London indie band The Vaccines open at No.4 in The UK with their fourth album, Combat Sports. But while there is still love for them at home, overseas territories are becoming more resilient to their charms, with the album initially opening at No.44 in Flanders, No.74 in Ireland, No.89 in Wallonia and No.137 in The Netherlands.
Finally, with Ed Sheeran’s tour of Australia and New Zealand a recent memory – he has just moved on to The Philippines and will be in Japan in a few days – his Divide album continues to see off allcomers at the top of the Antipodean charts. It is No.1 in New Zealand for the 34th time and in Australia for the 26th time.