The latest BPI figures reveal that sales of albums in the UK dropped by almost 14% to £43.6m year on year in the first six months of 2012 but continued the trend reflected in an IFPI report at the beginning of the year, with digital climbing by 17.3% in the same period. Digital sales now account for just under 35% of all albums sold despite overall album sales dropping by 12.7 % in comparison to the same period in 2011.
BPI Chief Executive Geoff Taylor said, “We’ve had another solid quarter of digital growth in sales volumes – both in albums and on singles, where the top 10 were exclusively sold as digital downloads. Album unit sales are down quite significantly year-on-year, but it’s important to remember that these unit sales figures do not take into account the growing importance of music streaming and subscription services”.
Taylor continued, referring to the release calendar for the rest of the year: “The second half of 2012 is looking very promising for music fans, with big releases anticipated from The Killers, Plan B, Joss Stone, Mumford & Sons, Robbie Williams, Muse, David Guetta, Van Morrison, Pet Shop Boys, Dido, One Direction and The Vaccines.”
Go ahead and guess what the biggest selling album of the first six months of 2012 was? Yes, repeating its performance for the first half of 2011, no-one else got a look in for Adele’s ’21’. Remarkably, there are still thousands of people out there each week thinking “You know what? I haven’t heard that Adele album enough, best sort that out and get on iTunes”. These figures reflect the Brits this year, where the only person to relish their breakthrough ‘Adele moment’ was, er, Adele.
Emeli Sandé was the second-biggest album seller of 2012 with ‘Our version of events’, whilst Lana Del Rey’s (pictured) Born To Die clocked in at No.3. We checked the other day and ‘Video Games’ is still quite good proving that David Cameron’s endorsement isn’t the kiss of death (at least not to everyone) but alas, its not enough to bring down the monster selling ‘21’, which has also casually conquered America along the way, scooping up Grammys and passing the nine million sales mark before the end of May this year.