Earlier this week, Fontaines D.C. looked set to bag their first Number One with their acclaimed second album ‘A Hero’s Death‘. Now, Swift has announced her surprise eighth record less than 24 hours before its digital release last month, and it has since become the biggest selling record of 2020.
Having sold 37,060 copies in its first week in the UK alongside 24,050 streams and 12,152 album downloads, Swift topped last Friday’s albums chart (August 31), becoming the first female artist to score five UK Number 1 studio albums in the 21st century.
Swift’s UK record label, EMI, has now brought forward the ‘Folklore’ CD edition to August 4 in an apparent bid to secure the top spot for a second consecutive week. This comes after the Official Chart Update revealed on Monday (August 3) that Fontaines D.C.’s ‘A Hero’s Death’ was leading the race, and that ‘Folklore’ had slipped to Number Three.
According to Music Week, some copies of Swift’s album are now being stocked by retailers, while pre-orders have been shipped. These physical sales from yesterday (August 4) have already topped up Swift’s figures for Friday’s chart, bolstering her chances of keeping the Irish post-punk outfit from Number One.
Swift will also release cassette and vinyl editions of ‘Folklore’ on September 18 and November 27 respectively.
In a four-star review of ‘Folklore’, which boasts contributions from Bon Iver and The National‘s Aaron Dessner, NME wrote: “The glossy production [Swift’s] lent on for the past half-decade is cast aside for simpler, softer melodies and wistful instrumentation. It’s the sound of an artist who’s bored of calculated releases and wanted to try something different.”
NME’s four-star review of ‘A Hero’s Death‘ concluded: “In aiming to examine the self rather than please others, Fontaines D.C. have exerted a knack for writing anthems that are at once self-excoriating and intimately relatable. As the title track finishes with a clatter, Chatten drives one final wedge between his old and new selves. “That was the year of the sneer,” he spits. “Now the real thing’s here.”
Fontaines D.C. will be embarking on an extensive UK tour in 2021.