And for another week the previous Number One single slips out of the Top 3 (indeed the Top 5 on this occasion) so we've got something new at the top again. And a minor invasion of minor indie acts at the bottom of the Top 75 too.
01.(NE) No Doubt - Don't Speak
If I'd been following the progress of Tragic Kingdom up the album chart for the previous few weeks, this probably wouldn't have come as a great surprise to me. Of course, back then you could let airplay for a forthcoming single sell the album in a way that's harder nowadays. The real breakthrough for them in the UK after 'Just A Girl' had scraped into the Top 40.
02.(NE) Warren G - I Shot The Sheriff
Second time in a row he'd scored a Number 2 single with an updated cover version, following the previous year's attempt at 'What's Love Got To Do With It'. The fact that these two tracks are at the end of the album suggests even he didn't think they were any good.
03. (2) No Mercy - Where Do You Go
04.(NE) 911 - The Day We Find Love
Spike, Lee & Jimmy crack the Top 5 for the first time with their fourth hit, though in the harsh late 90s boyband climate they were lucky to be given that long. This was of course a drippy ballad, possibly timed for Valentine's Day.
05. (6) En Vogue - Don't Let Go (Love)
Yet another week in the Top 5 for this.
06. (1) U2 - Discotheque
07.(NE) Daft Punk - Da Funk/Musique
One of the most droppable names in early 1997, and another case of a single being held back until after the album, which you'll recall had entered in the Top 10 a couple of weeks earlier. In fact, 'Da Funk' was originally released on 12" in 1995, but only became a proper hit now. Nobody ever mentions 'Musique', which was a new non-album track.
08.(NE) DJ Kool - Let Me Clear My Throat
The YouTube video is full of comments from people accusing somebody called Mac Miller of ripping this off. Of course it's based on '900 Number' by the 45 King, which older Brits will also know from Chad Jackson's 'Hear The Drummer Get Wicked' and of course the sax was already a sample in the original.
As for this track, I'm not sure whether it's brilliant or terrible. Probably both.
09.(NE) James - She's A Star
The big comeback hit from one of the major pre-Britpop indie acts who survived. Never a song I was that keen on really, although it has a certain stately quality.
10. (8) Blueboy - Remember Me
11. (5) LL Cool J - Ain't Nobody
12. (3) Mark Owen - Clementine
13. (7) Apollo 440 - Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Dub
14.(NE) Space - Dark Clouds
An act whose success was more shortlived, and I doubt anyone really remembers this particular song now.
15.(11) White Town - Your Woman
16.(13) Texas - Say What You Want
17.(16) Barbra Streisand And Bryan Adams - I Finally Found Someone
18.(12) OTT - Let Me In
19.(17) Spice Girls - 2 Become 1
20.(15) Backstreet Boys - Quit Playing Games (With My Heart)
21.(10) Eels - Novocaine For The Soul
22.(NE) The Wonders - That Thing You Do!
Title song of the Tom Hanks movie about a Sixties US pop group. Written by Fountains of Wayne, of whom more later.
23. (4) Depeche Mode - Barrel Of A Gun
24.(14) Michelle Gayle - Do You Know
25.(26) Whitney Houston - Step By Step
26. (9) Mansun - Five (EP): She Makes My Nose Bleed
27.(23) Gabrielle - Walk On By
28.(25) Skunk Anansie - Hedonism (Just Because You Feel Good)
29.(21) Amen! UK - Passion
30.(27) George Michael - Older/I Can't Make You Love Me
31.(18) Placebo - Nancy Boy
32.(28) Tori Amos - Professional Widow (It's Got To Be Big)
33.(33) Toni Braxton - Un-Break My Heart
34.(NE) Bennet - Mum's Gone To Iceland
An unlikely signing to the heavy metal label Roadrunner, this indie band so nerdy they make Weezer look like Def Leppard. I of all people wouldn't call that a bad thing though.
35.(34) Madonna - Don't Cry For Me Argentina
36.(NE) Corona - Megamix
Last throw of the dice for the dance act who already seemed very 1994.
37.(20) The Orb - Toxygene
38.(NE) Alfonzo Hunter - Just The Way
Very ordinary smooth 90s RnB. Obviously not much of a crossover success.
39.(32) Newton - Sometimes When We Touch
40.(NE) Suzanne Vega - No Cheap Thrill
Making her last Top 40 hit with a song that I quite like. Though I'd probably understand the metaphors better if I knew more about card games.
41.(NE) Eat Static - Hybrid
42.(29) Blur - Beetlebum
Out of the Top 40 already in its fourth chart week.
45.(NE) Legend B - Lost In Love
46.(NE) Black Box - Native New Yorker
48.(NE) Silver Sun - Last Day
I actually bought the cassette single of this. Which wasn't a great idea in retrospect, but at least I have for the track on CD elsewhere. Fine power-pop.
52.(NE) Tha Kid Chris - Feel Tha Vibe
53.(NE) Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Into My Arms
55.(RE) Mark Owen - Child
56.(NE) Veruca Salt - Volcano Girl
57.(NE) Tiger - On The Rose
59.(NE) Edward Ball - Love Is Blue
Indie veteran Ed "not to be confused with a billiard" ball made a stab at being a pop star around this time, and with anything on Creation Records being taken seriously as a commercial prospect, he nearly made it too.
63.(NE) Dweeb - Scooby Doo
64.(NE) Urusei Yatsura - Strategic Hamlets
68.(NE) Neneh Cherry - Feel It
Not a song I actually recall hearing at the time, but worth a mention for Michel Gondry's imaginative video.