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U.K. MIDWEEKS: MANICS VS. STEPS

Manic Street Preachers and Steps are battling it out to claim this week’s U.K. Official Albums #1 with the former currently leading the way. Over on singles, Ed Sheeran looks set to replace himself at the top.

The Manics’ 14th studio album, The Ultra Vivid Lament (Columbia), is #1 at the midweek stage with a margin of 3k. Steps, whose What The Future Holds Pt. 2 (BMG) is the most downloaded album of the week so far, sits at #2.

The first album in nine years from The Stranglers, Dark Matters (Coursegood), is new at #3 and The Vaccines are heading toward their fifth consecutive Top 5 album with Back In Love City (Super Easy) at #4. Drake’s Certified Lover Boy (Island) has dropped to #5.

Universal’s reissue of Metallica’s self-titled fifth set—which includes a companion covers album featuring the likes of Miley Cyrus and Elton John—starts at #6.

Kacey Musgravesstar-crossed (UMG) is new at #7, and a deluxe edition of prog-rock group Marillion’s 1978 release, Fugazi (Parlophone), starts at #9.

On the U.K.’s Official Singles midweeks, Sheeran’s new single “Shivers” (Atlantic) is 10k ahead of his long-running #1, “Bad Habits,” and looks set to steal the top spot on Friday.

Elton and Dua Lipa could land in this week’s Top 5 with “Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)” (EMI), which sits at #4 today. Glass Animals’ viral hit, “Heat Waves” (Polydor), is up two places to #8 and Central Cee’s self-released “Obsessed With You" is new at #11.

“Way 2 Sexy” by Drake featuring Young Thug and Future (which samples British duo Right Said Fred’s ’91 hit “I’m Too Sexy”) is at #14 midweek.

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