Rod Stewart and Gabrielle Aplin go head-to-head in this week’s albums

20-year-old Gabrielle Aplin takes on veteran chart star Rod Stewart in the race to top this week’s Official Albums Chart. But who's in the lead?

20-year-old Gabrielle Aplin takes on veteran chart star Rod Stewart in the race to top this week’s Official Albums Chart.

Rod Stewart and 20 year old singer/songwriter Gabrielle Aplin are battling it out in the race to be this week’s Number 1 album.

Time, the follow up to Rod’s Christmas album, Merry Christmas, Baby, is narrowly ahead of Gabrielle Aplin’s English Rain (Number 2) by 6,600 copies at this midway stage. If Rod can maintain his current lead though to Sunday’s final whistle, Time will be his first Number 1 album since his 1979 Best Of collection, Greatest Hits Vol 1, which topped the Official Albums Chart nearly 34 years ago!

English Rain is the debut release from Gabrielle, and features her Number 1 hit The Power Of Love – the hauntingly beautiful cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s 1984 classic, which shot to the top of the charts back in December of last year after featuring on the John Lewis Christmas TV ad.

US indie rockers Vampire Weekend look set to repeat the success of 2010’s Contra with new offering, Modern Vampires Of The City, also looking set to debut at Number 3. Former ABBA vocalist Agnetha Faltskog debuts one place behind them with A (4), her first new album in nearly 10 years. This week’s Official Albums Chart Update Top 5 is completed by reigning chart topper Caro Emerald’s The Shocking Miss Emerald (5).

New entries

There are three other new entries on today - Scottish rockers Primal Scream look set to go Top 10 on Sunday with their tenth studio album, More Light (7), while post-punk heroes and favourites of late Radio 1 DJ John Peel, The Fall, are new in at Number 28 today with their 30th album, Re-Mit.

And finally, the 25th anniversary edition of R.E.M’s iconic 1988 album, Green, is heading for a Top 40 placing at Number 36.

The Official Albums Chart Update Top 40 is as follows:

1 TIME ROD STEWART
2 ENGLISH RAIN GABRIELLE APLIN
3 MODERN VAMPIRES OF THE CITY VAMPIRE WEEKEND
4 A AGNETHA FALTSKOG
5 THE SHOCKING MISS EMERALD CARO EMERALD
6 HOME RUDIMENTAL
7 MORE LIGHT PRIMAL SCREAM
8 OUR VERSION OF EVENTS EMELI SANDE
9 BAD BLOOD BASTILLE
10 ALL THE LITTLE LIGHTS PASSENGER
11 TO BE LOVED MICHAEL BUBLE
12 LES MISERABLES MOTION PICTURE CAST RECORDING
13 DIDN'T IT RAIN HUGH LAURIE
14 THE TRUTH ABOUT LOVE PINK
15 18 MONTHS CALVIN HARRIS
16 GRAFFITI ON THE TRAIN STEREOPHONICS
17 UNORTHODOX JUKEBOX BRUNO MARS
18 NIGHT VISIONS IMAGINE DRAGONS
19 GOLDEN LADY ANTEBELLUM
20 THE MINUTES ALISON MOYET
21 WILLPOWER WILL I AM
22 THE 20/20 EXPERIENCE JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE
23 NOTHING BUT THE BEAT DAVID GUETTA
24 DELETED SCENES FROM THE CUTTING ROOM CARO EMERALD
25 BABEL MUMFORD & SONS
26 THE HEIST MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS
27 JAKE BUGG JAKE BUGG
28 RE-MIT FALL
29 NUMBER 3 SCRIPT
30 HEART OF NOWHERE NOAH & THE WHALE
31 SOME NIGHTS FUN
32 DISCOVERY DAFT PUNK
33 THE LUMINEERS LUMINEERS
34 HALCYON ELLIE GOULDING
35 PARAMORE PARAMORE
36 GREEN REM
37 SAVE ROCK AND ROLL FALL OUT BOY
38 RIGHT PLACE RIGHT TIME OLLY MURS
39 TAKE ME HOME ONE DIRECTION
40 RED TAYLOR SWIFT

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