Emeli Sandé set up for blockbuster return

Emeli Sandé set up for blockbuster return

Emeli Sandé’s long-awaited second album will not be windowed on streaming services, as Virgin EMI aims to make “lightning strike twice” following the runaway success of her debut album.

Sandé’s 2012 debut, Our Version Of Events, was a sales phenomenon; the biggest-selling album of that year and the No.2 seller in 2013.

It has sold a grand total of 2,294,100 copies, according to the Official Charts Company.

Our Version Of Events pre-dated the streaming revolution, moving just 30,610 streaming units to date.

The follow-up, Long Live The Angels, arrives on November 11 and, while other high-profile releases from the likes of Adele, Taylor Swift and Coldplay have limited their initial availability on services such as Spotify, Virgin EMI president Ted Cockle said Long Live The Angels would be “available everywhere from day one”.

“We don’t want to frustrate any of our business partners, or any of her potential audience,” he told Music Week. “So it will be available everywhere.”

The impact of streaming has transformed the retail landscape since Our Version Of Events but Cockle said the label was confident the new album is on track for equally impressive success.

“It is enormously difficult to ensure that lightning strikes to that degree a second time around,” he said.

“The UK has been littered in recent years with tougher second records, but we feel confident that our opening songs are great, the depth of the record is great and the reaction from everybody in virtually every territory means we’ve got the most spectacular run of TV appearances being locked down for months to come.

We’re fuelling up for the long haul in order to emulate as close to what she enjoyed before as is possible.”

Cockle has been encouraged by the reception for lead single Hurts from both the public and at radio, where the track reaches a new peak at No.8 on the airplay chart.

It’s sold 43,942 copies to date. Roc Nation’s Jay Brown coming on board as part of Sandé’s management team has also helped ensure huge interest in the US, where Our Version Of Events peaked at No.28.

Cockle also praised Sandé for working with long-term collaborators such as Naughty Boy, rather than “chasing after the biggest names”.

“They’re intensely personal songs,” he said. “Often at the moment we’re hearing the publishing splits coming out of the speakers before the song. So it’s lovely to be hearing lyrics that are only written by the person that’s been affected by them.”

As our P1 story reveals, retailers are hoping Long Live The Angels can help fill the Adele-sized hole in this year’s Q4 release schedules. And Cockle said he was feeling optimistic as release date approaches.

“The landscape is pretty tough,” he said. “But we’re going out there with as much swagger as we could possibly hope to go out there with.

We’re feeling as confident as it is possible to do before the market actually tells you anything.”

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