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Hello and goodbye: Australian acts no match for Adele on the 2015 charts

It's likely that in six weeks at the end of 2015 Adele sold more albums than all the Australian albums on the charts that year put together.

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Adele's new beginning

Having released the best-selling album of 2015, 25, Adele talks about closing a particular chapter of her life.

To be fair, Adele sold more albums in that 42 day period than anyone else sold all year. She was that big, that popular, that all dominating.

The end of year summation of albums and singles sold in Australia in 2015 shows Adele's 25 easily outpaced all comers with a debut at number one in early November, a position she's not lost since, and current sales around 500,000. That is seven times the sales for the album currently sitting at number two, Justin Bieber's Purpose, which was released a week before Adele's album and was the fourth highest selling album of 2015.

To solidify her place in the world, or maybe to rub it in to those in her wake, Adele's previous album, 21, which was released in 2011, beat 66 other albums – including the local critical and social media favourites Chet Faker and Courtney Barnett – to finish as the 34th highest selling album of the year. That album has sold, in five years, more than 1 million copies in Australia.

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But back to the Australians. While the headline result for the Australian Recording Industry Association is that 19 Australian albums figured in the top 50 charts and 35 made the top 100 - "Australian artists have enjoyed a very successful year on the ARIA Charts," said the official release - the brutal truth is that only three made the top 20 (Lee Kernaghan's Spirit of the Anzacs, which was the only one in the top 10; Sia's 1000 Forms of Fear; and Vance Joy's Dream Your Life Away) and their combined sales would probably count for one week, maybe, of Adele's.

Michael Buble's almost decade-old Christmas album outsold all three of those albums, and a questionable remixing of Elvis Presley, with an orchestra added very posthumously to his hits, beat Sia and Vance Joy in the top 20.

What's more, the next three biggest local releases were compilations of comedy skits (The 12th Man's The Very Best of Richie) and cover versions (Triple J's Like A Version 11 – which isn't even all Australian acts so its "local" status is debatable) and an album released in 2014 (Hilltop Hoods' Walking Under The Stars). And of the remaining Australian albums in the top 100 of 2015, 19 original albums were chased by three Christmas albums and seven greatest hits/compilations/live albums, including another Like A Version.

Those facts are the flipside, or a necessary correction, to the sunshine and joy of the industry body. But even a dose of cynicism or realism shouldn't obscure the fact that in the same year that Australians returned to watching locally-made films, locally-made music still had a sustainable market. And for a great variety of music styles too.

Sia's big-veined pop and Vance Joy and Angus & Julia Stone's more modestly delivered fare shared space with the psychedelic dance of Tame Impala, the hip hop of Hilltop Hoods and Seth Sentry, AC/DC's retro rock, and the teen-rock of 5 Seconds Of Summer. Likewise, Cold Chisel and the Ruben's classic Australian sound and Parkway Drive's neo-metal were selling well alongside Tina Arena's adult pop, Boy & Bear's mid-size pop, the Veronica's resurrected pop, Alison Wonderland's dancefloor favourites and electronic/R&B pop from Flight Facilities, Troye Sivan (who had both an album and an EP in the top 100) and Chet Faker.

All this without mentioning the Christian hitmakers, Hillsong United, the patriotic country of Kernaghan and the queen of witty independent music, Barnett.

The singles chart for 2015 doesn't offer quite as many Australian appearances with 14 attributed to domestic artists, six of those belonging to three artists – Sia, Vance Joy and Chet Faker. Sia's Elastic Heart was the highest placed Australian at 14, a baker's dozen behind the dominant force, Mark Ronson/Bruno Mars' Uptown Funk, which was released in late 2014 and is still in the top 40 in the first week of 2016.

Some way behind that song, and Adele's Hello which made it to the top 5 despite, again, only emerging in the last weeks of 2015, was ARIA winner Jarryd James with Do You Remember.

ARIA Top 100 Albums 2015 6/01/15 - 04/01/16

1 25 Adele
2 X Ed Sheeran
3 1989 Taylor Swift
4 PURPOSE Justin Bieber
5 TITLE Meghan Trainor
6 IN THE LONELY HOUR Sam Smith
7 CHRISTMAS Michael Buble
8 SPIRIT OF THE ANZACS Lee Kernaghan
9 MADE IN THE A.M. One Direction
10 HOW BIG, HOW BLUE, HOW BEAUTIFUL Florence + The Machine
11 IF I CAN DREAM Elvis Presley With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
12 HOZIER Hozier
13 FIFTY SHADES OF GREY Soundtrack
14 1000 FORMS OF FEAR Sia
15 BEAUTY BEHIND THE MADNESS The Weeknd
16 DREAM YOUR LIFE AWAY Vance Joy
17 CHAOS AND THE CALM James Bay
18 WILDER MIND Mumford & Sons
19 FROZEN: THE SONGS Soundtrack
20 THE VERY BEST OF RICHIE The 12th Man
21 COMPTON Dr. Dre
22 A HEAD FULL OF DREAMS Coldplay
23 TO PIMP A BUTTERFLY Kendrick Lamar
24 TRIPLE J'S LIKE A VERSION 11 Various
25 WALKING UNDER STARS Hilltop Hoods
26 FURIOUS 7: ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK Soundtrack
27 PITCH PERFECT 2 Soundtrack
28 CURRENTS Tame Impala
29 THE VERY BEST INXS
30 + Ed Sheeran
31 TWO STRONG HEARTS John Farnham & Olivia Newton John
32 21 Adele
33 UPTOWN SPECIAL Mark Ronson
34 BUILT ON GLASS Chet Faker
35 STAGES Josh Groban
36 GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: AWESOME MIX VOL. 1 Soundtrack
37 THAT'S THE SPIRIT Bring Me The Horizon
38 KYLIE CHRISTMAS Kylie Minogue
39 SOMETIMES I SIT AND THINK, AND SOMETIMES I JUST SIT Courtney Barnett
40 ROCK OR BUST AC/DC
41 WANTED ON VOYAGE George Ezra
42 THE CHRISTMAS ALBUM Human Nature
43 DARK NIGHT SWEET LIGHT Hermitude
44 IRE Parkway Drive
45 DRONES Muse
46 SOUNDS GOOD FEELS GOOD 5 Seconds Of Summer
47 THE PERFECT CRIME Cold Chisel
48 JUKEBOX Human Nature
49 I'LL TAKE EVERYTHING James Blunt
50 DARK SKY ISLAND Enya
51 THE BEST OF COLD CHISEL - ALL FOR YOU Cold Chisel
52 SELECTED WORKS: 1972-1999 The Eagles
53 EMPIRES Hillsong United
54 PRISM Katy Perry
55 V Maroon 5
56 THE VERY BEST OF FLEETWOOD MAC Fleetwood Mac
57 IF YOU'RE READING THIS IT'S TOO LATE Drake
58 CYRUS Cyrus
59 ELEVEN Tina Arena
60 GLITTERBUG The Wombats
61 GREATEST HITS Fleetwood Mac
62 SMOKE + MIRRORS Imagine Dragons
63 IMMORTALIZED Disturbed
64 AMERICAN BEAUTY/AMERICAN PSYCHO Fall Out Boy
65 STRANGE NEW PAST Seth Sentry
66 TRIPLE J'S LIKE A VERSION 10 Various
67 BLUE NEIGHBOURHOOD Troye Sivan
68 ANGUS & JULIA STONE Angus & Julia Stone
69 THE BOOK OF SOULS Iron Maiden
70 HOOPS The Rubens
71 FOUR One Direction
72 RUN Alison Wonderland
73 PITCH PERFECT Soundtrack
74 HONEYMOON Lana Del Rey
75 MY EVERYTHING Ariana Grande
76 SONIC HIGHWAYS Foo Fighters
77 NO FIXED ADDRESS Nickelback
78 THE VERONICAS The Veronicas
79 WILD Troye Sivan
80 SOL INVICTUS Faith No More
81 ESSENTIAL MICHAEL JACKSON Michael Jackson
82 LISTEN David Guetta
83 PEACE IS THE MISSION Major Lazer
84 GREATEST HITS Queen
85 25 YEARS - THE CHAIN Fleetwood Mac
86 ANGELS AND ALCOHOL Alan Jackson
87 THE ORIGINAL HIGH Adam Lambert
88 BADLANDS Halsey
89 AM Arctic Monkeys
90 30:30 HINDSIGHT Jimmy Barnes
91 OUR CHRISTMAS WISH The Ten Tenors
92 LIMIT OF LOVE Boy & Bear
93 ALL TIME GREATEST HITS Neil Diamond
94 DOWN TO EARTH Flight Facilities
95 MOTION Calvin Harris
96 MOLLY (SOUNDTRACK FROM THE TV SERIES) Soundtrack
97 GREATEST HITS Red Hot Chili Peppers
98 NEVERMIND Nirvana
99 GREATEST HITS N.W.A.
100 A.L.L.A. (AT LONG LAST A$AP) A$AP Rocky

ARIA Top 100 Singles 2015 6/01/15 - 04/01/16 (In this chart period)

1 UPTOWN FUNK Mark Ronson Feat. Bruno Mars 
2 CHEERLEADER (FELIX JAEHN REMIX) Omi
3 SEE YOU AGAIN Wiz Khalifa Feat. Charlie Puth 
4 TAKE ME TO CHURCH Hozier 
5 HELLO Adele 
6 LEAN ON Major Lazer Feat. MØ & DJ Snake
7 LOVE ME LIKE YOU DO Ellie Goulding 
8 SHUT UP & DANCE Walk The Moon 
9 WHAT DO YOU MEAN? Justin Bieber 
10 FOURFIVESECONDS Rihanna, Paul McCartney & Kanye West 
11 DOWNTOWN Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Feat. Eric Nally, Melle Mel, Kool Moe Dee & Grandmaster Caz 
12 CAN'T FEEL MY FACE The Weeknd 
13 SUGAR Maroon 5 
14 ELASTIC HEART Sia 
15 THINKING OUT LOUD Ed Sheeran 
16 SORRY Justin Bieber
17 WHERE ARE U NOW  Skrillex & Diplo Feat. Justin Bieber
18 BAD BLOOD Taylor Swift Feat. Kendrick Lamar
19 HOLD BACK THE RIVER James Bay 
20 THE HILLS The Weeknd 
21 FIGHT SONG Rachel Platten 
22 DO YOU REMEMBER Jarryd James
23 LIKE I'M GONNA LOSE YOU Meghan Trainor Feat. John Legend
24 WANT TO WANT ME Jason Derulo 
25 LOVE YOURSELF Justin Bieber
26 YOU DON'T OWN ME Grace Feat. G-Eazy 
27 BILLS LunchMoney Lewis 
28 ARE YOU WITH ME Lost Frequencies
29 HOW DEEP IS YOUR LOVE Calvin Harris & Disciples
30 PEANUT BUTTER JELLY Galantis 
31 STYLE Taylor Swift 
32 GHOST TOWN Adam Lambert
33 PHOTOGRAPH Ed Sheeran
34 LAY ME DOWN Sam Smith
35 LET IT GO James Bay
36 WASN'T EXPECTING THAT Jamie Lawson
37 FIRESTONE Kygo Feat. Conrad 
38 MARVIN GAYE Charlie Puth Feat. Meghan Trainor 
39 DEAR FUTURE HUSBAND Meghan Trainor 
40 FLASHLIGHT Jessie J 
41 WILDEST DREAMS Taylor Swift 
42 LOCKED AWAY R. City Feat. Adam Levine
43 HOTLINE BLING Drake 
44 RUNAWAY (U & I) Galantis
45 THE NIGHTS Avicii 
46 FIRE AND THE FLOOD Vance Joy
47 HEY MAMA David Guetta Feat. Nicki Minaj & Afrojack 
48 SUGAR Robin Schulz Feat. Francesco Yates 
49 SHAKE IT OFF Taylor Swift 
50 DRAG ME DOWN One Direction
51 GOOD FOR YOU Selena Gomez Feat. A$AP Rocky 
52 WATCH ME (WHIP / NAE NAE) Silento 
53 DO IT AGAIN Pia Mia Feat. Chris Brown & Tyga 
54 START AGAIN Conrad Sewell 
55 BLANK SPACE Taylor Swift 
56 STITCHES Shawn Mendes 
57 FIVE MORE HOURS Deorro X Chris Brown 
58 DESSERT Dawin 
59 OCEAN DRIVE Duke Dumont 
60 BLACK MAGIC Little Mix
61 THE FIX Nelly feat. Jeremih 
62 WORTH IT Fifth Harmony
63 HEADLIGHTS Robin Schulz Feat. Ilsey 
64 WHIP IT! LunchMoney Lewis Feat. Chloe Angelides C
65 NEVER FORGET YOU Zara Larsson & MNEK 
66 COSBY SWEATER Hilltop Hoods 
67 THAT'S HOW YOU KNOW Nico & Vinz Feat. Kid Ink & Bebe Rexha 
68 POWERFUL Major Lazer Feat. Ellie Goulding & Tarrus Riley 
69 UP Olly Murs Feat. Demi Lovato 
70 SUN GOES DOWN Robin Schulz Feat. Jasmine Thompson
71 KING Years & Years 
72 GEORGIA Vance Joy 
73 YOU KNOW YOU LIKE IT DJ Snake & AlunaGeorge 
74 ON MY MIND Ellie Goulding 
75 WAITING FOR LOVE Avicii 
76 TALK IS CHEAP Chet Faker 
77 LAY IT ALL ON ME Rudimental Feat. Ed Sheeran 
78 BLOODSTREAM Ed Sheeran
79 TIME OF OUR LIVES Pitbull Feat. Ne-Yo
80 EARNED IT The Weeknd 
81 I DON'T LIKE IT, I LOVE IT Flo Rida Feat. Robin Thicke & Verdine White 
82 LIPS ARE MOVIN Meghan Trainor 
83 PRAY TO GOD Calvin Harris Feat. Haim
84 TROUBLE Iggy Azalea
85 SOMEBODY Natalie La Rose Feat. Jeremih 
86 AIN'T NOBODY (LOVES ME BETTER) Felix Jaehn 
87 STAY WITH ME Sam Smith 
88 WINGS Delta Goodrem
89 ONE LAST TIME Ariana Grande 
90 TAKE ME OVER Peking Duk Feat.
91 PERFECT One Direction
92 JEALOUS Nick Jonas 
93 I'M AN ALBATRAOZ AronChupa 
94 CHANDELIER Sia 
95 GET STUPID Aston Merrygold 
96 TRAP QUEEN Fetty Wap 
97 MASTERPIECE Jessie J 
98 HULA HOOP Omi 
99 THE TROUBLE WITH US Marcus Marr & Chet Faker 
100 THE BUZZ Hermitude Feat. Mataya & Young Tapz 

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