Justin Timberlake may still be trying to take back the night, but he didn't take the top slot of the U.K. pop charts this week.
That pleasure belongs to the L.A.-based sisters-and-a-mister quartet Haim. Their delightful genre-busting debut "Days Are Gone" pulled off a finish-line upset to win the week in England, announcing the band as a bona fide superstar act across the pond.
By midweek, Timberlake's second installment of his "20/20 Experience" album led by just 28 copies, but a late surge by Haim eventually put it ahead by 2,100 copies.
England's Official Charts Company described the standoff to the BBC as "the closest race of the year." Haim also bested a falling Kings of Leon, whose "Mechanical Bull" dropped to third.
Timberlake's raunchier, plodding sequel has received middling reviews at best, while Haim's "Days Are Gone" has been greeted with almost uniform rapturous praise. The Los Angeles Times' Mikael Wood described "The 20/20 Experience" sequel as "handsome but inert," while Haim's debut might be "the freshest-sounding album you'll hear all year."
Haim's U.K. fandom isn't just populist, however. It even stretches to the rafters of government. The band performed to Prime Minister David Cameron on Andrew Marr's BBC show and dedicated their single "The Wire" to him.
Timberlake's original "20/20 Experience" album remains the year's best-seller in the United States by a wide margin.