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2 March 2018

This chart shows even tracks before their release!

Exciting stuff this week: the highest new entry is not even officially released on streaming yet when I write this!

This Friday, Finnish singer Alma released a mixtape called Heavy Rules (Universal). The first single from that collection is called Dance For Me, featuring Danish singer , which premiered on Annie Mac’s BBC1 Radio show as ‘Hottest Record’. This high profile pre-release airplay of the electro-pop song was enough to make it this week’s highest new entry at #37, as one of the fourteen newbies this week.

If you think last week’s number #96, Irish act Tadgh with Who Do You Think You Are (self-released), was a fluke, entering through airplay in Spain before its release, think again. The monitoring system for the European Border Breakers Chart is fine-tuned. So hipsters, beware, check this chart first!

Much hyped British indie act Superorganism release their eponymous debut album this Friday. While still charting with Everybody Wants To Be Famous at #6, and Something For Your M.I.N.D. at #44, they see even a third entry appear at #42: Reflections On The Screen (all Domino). This so-called ‘instant gratification’ track for everyone who bought the digital album in advance already gets airplay in twelve countries outside their home country Great Britain.

More exciting stuff entering this week: for instance, at #46 Danish producer Emil Wilk enters with Slow Emotions as M.I.L.K.(Universal) via Norway. He combines live instrumentation with electronic dance pop. More electronics at #49 where French duo The Blaze comes in with Heaven (Sony) through plays in Denmark, Great Britain and Sweden. If you have the chance, please check the cinematic video for this song, which shows an idyllic scene of a community of friends and family. Three notches lower at #52, a lush ballad appears by British singer-songwriter Lewis Capaldi, who teamed up with Colombian-Canadian chanteuse Jessie Reyez: Rush (Universal) gets support in Germany and Finland. And at #62, the Dutch language is no hindrance for French listeners as Nafthaly Ramona enters with her urban track Merry (Sony). The Dutch video blogger and DJ is singing in slang about a ‘merry’, meaning a car from the Mercedes-Benz brand…

And then… applause for the first Lithuanian entry in this chart ever! At #78 we welcome Severija with Zu Asche Zu Staub (BMG), meaning ‘forget it’. Severija Janušauskaitė is an internationally renowned Lithuanian actress and singer with a low pitched voice. The song appears as the main theme in the to date most expensive German TV series ‘Babylon Berlin’, in which she appears as a cabaret singer during the Weimar republic period in the 1920’s. The airplay comes from Germany, Spain, Poland and Slovakia.

A couple of funky releases now. At #79 French soulful rock band Theo Lawrence & The Hearts debuts with Never Let It Go (BMG). The Paris band crosses over to Sweden and Luxembourg. At #80, British singer Youngr samples the Michael McDonnaldclassic I Keep Forgetting, which also proved a hit for Warren G and Nate Dogg in the 90s on their song Regulate. This version from the son of Kid Creole, Remember (Universal) is picked up in Finland, Latvia and The Netherlands. And at #86 British electronic duo Hazers enters with Drive (Warner) via Germany.

What’s left is the catchy pop of German chanteuse Kim Petras at #87, whose Heart To Break (Bunhead) is liked in the Czech Republic, Spain, Great Britain and Sweden. She already worked with British singer Charli XCX and American producer Dr. Luke. At #88, British classical cello player Sheku Kanneh-Mason comes in with Sardana (Decca) through French airplay, although the title refers to a type of circle dance typical of Catalan culture. Irish hiphop is en vogue at the moment, just think of the success of Reijjie Snow, so now Dublin trio Hare Squead enters with Flowers (Sony), thanks to Sweden. And the British dreams for Amsterdam based indie popper Pip Blom continue: her third hit in this chart, I Think I’m In Love (self-released), enters at #99. Her dreams are quite big, and although the ratio is 100 to 1 in chart points at the moment, she wishes to dethrone Liam Payne, the current number 1 with For You (Universal). Let’s see what next week brings!

Menno Visser, @menjodepenjo
Music journalist and radio programmer from The Netherlands