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Arctic Monkeys album is fastest-selling debut in history

The Arctic Monkeys

Story by Jack Foley

THE first album from the Arctic Monkeys has officially become the fastest-selling debut in UK chart history.

Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not sold more than 360,000 copies in its first week of retail, having only been released on Monday, January 23.

The Sheffield band’s LP is currently outselling the rest of the top 20 album chart combined.

And its success has led a HMV spokesman to state that success on this scale has not been seen since The Beatles.

A strong vibe has been building around Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not ever since it was announced that the record had sold more than 100,000 on its first day.

According to early estimates, it sold 118,501 copies on Monday, January 23 (2006), outselling the rest of the top 20 albums combined.

The sales figure of 360,000 means that the record has now broken the previous record set by Hear’Say five years ago.

The Sheffield band first took the musical limelight when they released I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor late last year.

It shot straight to number one, following substantial fan support via the internet, and catapulted them into the mainstream on an unprecedented scale.

Since then, they have barely had time to catch their breath. Follow-up single, When The Sun Goes Down also took the number one spot and they could well find themselves top of both the album and singles charts by the weekend.

What’s more, the band has also received four nominations in the forthcoming NME Awards, including best British band, new band, live band and best track.

And while Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not isn’t as good as debut efforts from Kaiser Chiefs or Coldplay, it has already sold more in one day than the debut efforts from both those bands, as well as Franz Ferdinand managed in one week.

Commenting on the overwhelming demand for the album, Phil Penman, a spokesman for HMV, said: “They’re well on their way to having the first million-selling album of 2006.

“If it continues to sell at this rate, there’s even a danger shops could sell out by the end of the week.”

What makes the achievement all the more incredible is that Arctic Monkeys have had to push for their success the hard way – and didn’t follow the easy route to success like some X Factor/Pop Idol wannabe.