Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better for the nation’s favourite manband, eh? They only go and hit the top spot in the midweeks with new album Progress and they’ve done it by selling a staggering 235,584 copies IN ONE DAY. The five boys (fresh from breaking box office records just a couple of weeks ago when they sold over 1.34 million tickets to their stage tour in just 24 hours) are already beating Rihanna’s Loud album (which is in the Number 2 spot)… by 200,869 copies!
A remarkable achievement by any standards, especially since they still have five more days of sales to go before they’re officially declared Number One in the album charts – but also because we finally know how the masses feel about having Robbie back.
How many pub discussions (or in our case, heat office discussions) have there been about Gary, Howard, Jason and Mark’s decision to take back their former bandmate? After all, he publically ditched the group back in 1995 and then proceeded to be pretty darn mean about them. But also, and perhaps more to the point (you know, let’s let bygones be bygones – if Gary can do it, so can we), because Take That The Four-Piece now have a huge new generation of fans who have grown up only knowing the band as a four. The thought of Robbie being a part of Take That is alien to them (yes, the rest of us our old, sorry). But what do you reckon these fans were thinking when from out of nowhere this solo fella, who let’s face it they probably didn’t care that much about, decided to “join” (read: gatecrash) the Take That party (so to speak). Confusing much?
Luckily though, it’s panned out well and the majority of ‘Thatters’ out there seem to have given the band their support. 235K copies sold, 1.34 million tickets sold in 24 hours and it’s still early days for this five-piece. Reviews on Amazon have been mixed when it comes to the new Take That sound but the critics seem to be enjoying it (Flower Bed, SOS, Eight Letters and Wait are my favourites, can not get enough of those) – and more importantly, this album isn’t boring or conventional. It’s fresh, fiery and surprising – in a great way! Most impressingly to me though was that two red-blooded men in the heat office today declared this to be a “really good album”. And they are bloody hard to please at the best of times. That maybe the biggest win of all for Progress.
Below: Olivia (our fab Associate Web Editor) and I meeting the original Take That line up at their Progress 2011 Tour press conference. Whatever your opinion on Robbie returning, there was no doubt there was an energy in the room that day that can only be described as sheer happiness and excitement. He’s pleased to be back, they’re happy to have him back. And if the band are happy, who are we to judge?