Sam Smith & Kim Petras Make ARIA Chart History With ‘Unholy’

3 October 2022 | 1:19 pm | Gavin Ryan

Smith’s second #1 single in Australia.

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Debuting at #1 this week is a duet between Sam Smith and Kim Petras called Unholy, also landing a top spot in several other countries in the first week too. 

Unholy (Capitol) becomes the 1119th #1 Single in Australia (1940 to 2022), the 554th for ARIA (1983 to 2022), the 135th song to debut at #1, the thirteenth chart-topping single for 2022 and the fifth NEW #1 in the past six weeks, much faster than the start of the year, while the song has also landed first week in Sam's native England, along with Ireland, New Zealand and Greece (so far), while it also debuted at #4 in Kim's native Germany

The song is the first single from a forthcoming fourth studio album for Sam Smith, and it becomes the fifth duet for 2022 to hit the top (there were four in both 2020 and 2021), while for the Capitol record label this is their 61st #1 (since their first in 1946) and the label's first for this decade, as their last was with 5SOS's Youngblood (May 28th, 2018), while it's also now the second #1 single for Sam Smith after his September 18th, 2017 two week run with Too Good at Goodbyes from just over five years ago, giving him now three overall weeks at #1 in Australia, while for Kim this is her first entry, first Top 10 and also first #1 single. 

This is the first time that the word 'Unholy' has appeared in a #1 song title, also it's a first time chart entry for the word too, with the closest and highest placed previous song being Holy for Justin Bieber (HP-4x6, Oct-Nov 2020), while it's also the first time at #1 for Sam Smith as a non-binary artist, plus as Kim Petras is a transgender person, it's also the first time for such an artist to take the #1 spot in Australia, while 40 years ago the first big hit for Culture Club and Do You Really Want to Hurt Me was issued in early September 1982 in the UK, hitting #1 on Oct. 23rd, 1982; while here it was at #1 from Dec. 26th, 1982 for six weeks, showing how far we've come in the past forty years from when the first openly gay man/cross-dressing act took the top spot {thankx to hijinx for the lead} (BTW David Bowie never hit #1 during his early career's different guises or gender reversal roles, his first #1 here was with Sorrow (2 weeks from Feb. 4th, 1974) from his covers album Pin Ups).

The racy video clip for Unholy only dropped at midnight on Friday (Sept. 30th), so it could help the song remain at #1 for a second week, unless the new Ed Sheeran track issued on Friday called Celestial takes the top spot next week. But for now, this new #1 song for Sam Smith also becomes the 217th chart-topping song by a British Act, while for Kim she becomes the first ever solo German Female Artist to hit #1 in Australia and the tenth German act, with the eleventh #1 song by a German artist, with the last being exactly 20 years ago, as on September 30th, 2022 Scooter spent two weeks at the top with their techno-cover of the Supertramp song The Logical Song.

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So after two weeks at #1 the David Guetta and Bebe Rexha track I'm Good (Blue) drops down one spot to #2 due to the massive #1 entry, while the first of four non-movers within the Top 10 this week is at #3, OneRepublic with I Ain't Worried. Nicki Minaj and her Super Freaky Girl drops down two places to #4, and in its seventh chart week it has created a chart palindrome for its positions, as it has gone 4-2-2-1-2-2-4, something of a rarity, after which is a one place dip to #5 for Eliza Rose and her B.O.T.A. (Baddest of Them All) track. 

Harry Styles toured Ireland this past week which is why he has the top two albums in that country this week, while his track As It Was remains at the summit in the U.S.A. for a 15th week, and here the song has cracked half-a-year within the Top 10 (and Top 6) by not moving from #6, after which are the further stable tracks within the ten, Heat Waves for Glass Animals at #7 (WI10-86) and Under The Influence for Chris Brown at #8. Swapping places at #9 and #10 are Steve Lacy's Bad Habit (up one to #9 and now ▲Platinum in sales) and down one to #10 are Nicky Youre and dazy with Sunroof


Post Malone and Doja Cat's I Like You (A Happier Song) is back up one spot to #11, while the song hits a new peak of #3 in the U.S.A. this week, plus Doja is one of three acts to have two songs (of a sort) within the Top 20, as her namesake song Doja for Central Cee is also up one spot to #15 (thanks to his national tour at the moment). Elton John is the second act with two songs lying within the twenty (both dropping), while Lizzo is the third artist, as she dips one spot to #14 with About Damn Time and her follow-up single 2 Be Loved (Am I Ready) leaps up twenty-one chart-rungs to land just above Damn at #13, while the song also scores new peaks in Canada (49 to #40), England (28 to #21), Ireland (21 to #17) and debuts in New Zealand (#35).

Beyoncé lands her second Top 20 single from her Renaissance (Act 1) album as the track Cuff it jumps up ten places to a new peak of #19, while the song is still within the New Zealand Top 10 at #6 (NZ.LW-5) it also reaches new chart heights in England (20 to #14), Ireland (17 to #12) and rebounds in the U.S.A. (HP-13, 85 to #61) and re-enters in Canada (HP-7, CA.TW-61). This is followed by two songs that climb within the Top 30, LF System's Afraid To Feel is back up one spot to its former peak of #22, while thanks to her tour finishing in Perth this last week the Billie Eilish track Happier Than Ever is up two to #30.

The recent tourist Billie also sees her namesake track BILLIE EILISH for Armani White jump up seven places to a new peak of #35, while two new tracks climb into the Top 50 this week, the first being last week's lower fifty entry at #97 for US singer Omar Apollo and his first chart entry Evergreen (You Don't Deserve Me at All), taken from his April 2022 debut set Ivory, which this week jumps up fifty places to land at #47, while the song debuted at #62 in the U.S.A., #60 in Canada, #54 in England, #38 in Ireland and his highest placement of #17 in New Zealand. After which is 17-year-old Houston, Texas native D4vd with his first chart entry Romantic Homicide, which has climbed 78-55-48 in its three weeks within the Top 100, while the song has so far peaked within the Top 10 in The Netherlands (HP-6) and entered at #23 in New Zealand last week (NZ.TW-26).


The only song to leave the Top 10 this week is last week's highest entry for BlackPink and Shut Down, which falls down thirteen places from #5 to #18, while they also decline with their older entry Pink Venom' (18 to #41). Elton John's two Top 20 entries both dip this week, with Hold Me Closer with Britney Spears down one spot to #12 and his Dua Lipa duet Cold Heart (PNAU Remix) falls three places to #17, while Kate Bush hits a new milestone with her returned 1985 single Running Up That Hill ( A Deal with God), which logs its 18th week within the Top 20, surpassing the seventeen weeks the song originally achieved during its entire Top 100 run in 1985 on the AMR Chart, the song falling three places this week to land at #20. 

Ed Sheeran has no songs within the Top 20 this week, as his Shivers track drops four places to #23, and his Bad Habits track is down one place to #26, while they both might rebound slightly next week, as I mentioned earlier that he issued the new track Celestial on Friday (Sept. 30th), which is not featured on his latest album = (equals). Doja Cat's ELVIS track Vegas and Joji's Glimpse Of Us both drop five places each to #25 and #31 respectively, followed by Lewis Capaldi's latest entry Forget Me dropping eleven spots to #32.

With a new Beyoncé track flying into the Top 20 this week, her older entry Break My Soul falls down seven places to #40, while Dua Lipa's Levitating track is one-week shy of its two-year chart anniversary and falls three spots to #42 and into the Top 50 (41 to 50) section for only the second time, as the song was in this position three weeks ago, while there's a five-place slip to #45 for the Mac Miller and Temper Trap track Love Lost


* #21 - Star Walkin' ('League of Legends' Anthem) by Lil Nas X (Columbia) is the theme for the 2022 League of Legends World Finals which took place this past week, with the artist also performing during the finals online. This new entry has placed highest in Australia (so far), while it also came in at #38 in New Zealand and #27 in Norway, and this new entry becomes the US rapper and singer's seventh Top 50 placement in Australia. The previous theme from these games was for Arcane and Enemy by Imagine Dragons (LW-63, HP-15, Jan. 2022).


Clarity by Vance Joy

Bad Habit by Steve Lacy

HP = Highest Position

LW = Last Week

WI10 - Weeks in Top 10

*ARIA Chart info is based on sales for the week from the 23rd to the 29th of September 2022.

Written, Compiled and Researched by Gavin Ryan.