Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

White Stripes bigger than Wet Wet Wet

Per Music Week, the “Icky Thump” single is the biggest selling seven-inch single since Wet Wet Wet’s “Love Is All Around”. Icky Thump needed just two days last week to break through the 10,000 sales barrier across two seven-inch formats, …

Tue, Jun 19, 2007, 09:13

   

Per Music Week, the “Icky Thump” single is the biggest selling seven-inch single since Wet Wet Wet’s “Love Is All Around”.

Icky Thump needed just two days last week to break through the 10,000 sales barrier across two seven-inch formats, as it battled to replace Def Jam/Mercury-signed Rihanna featuring Jay-Z’s Umbrella at number one.

That vinyl sales tally – comfortably more than what it was selling on CD and download combined at the start of last week – is unmatched by any other release on seven-inch since the late eighties. Wet Wet Wet’s Love Is All Around, which spent 15 weeks at number one in 1994, was the last number one to sell more than 50,000 seven-inches in total, but its best tally in any one week was only 4,770 units.

This continues a trend that fully kicked in a couple of years ago, when annual sales of seven-inches rose from more than 630,000 units in 2004 to 1.073m in 2005, an increase of 70.1%. Sales steadied at 1.046m last year.

For HMV, vinyl – written off two decades ago as a spent force – is becoming an ever-bigger deal is it looks to continue to stake a claim in a singles market becoming dominated by downloads. “If you go into our store in Oxford Street, you’ll see an enormous racking area in the back of the shop with 20 feet of seven-inches; not just chart, but smaller indie releases, too. There is hardly room for CD singles, just the Top 40″, says Hirst.

You watch, the cassette single will be back next.