Block Buster!

"Block Buster!" (also sometimes listed as "Blockbuster!") is a 1973 single by Sweet. Written by Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, and produced by Phil Wainman, "Block Buster!" was the band's sole UK No. 1 hit. Released in January 1973, it spent five weeks at the top of the UK Singles Chart,[6] and also made #1 in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Ireland, and #3 in Finland, Switzerland, Denmark and Norway. Outside Europe it peaked at #1 in New Zealand, #29 in Australia and at #73 on the American Billboard Hot 100.

"Block Buster!"
Block Buster! (The Sweet album) coverart.jpg
Single by Sweet
from the album The Sweet
B-side"Need a Lot of Lovin'"
ReleasedJanuary 1973
Genre blues rock[5]
Songwriter(s)Nicky Chinn, Mike Chapman
Producer(s)Phil Wainman
Sweet singles chronology
"Wig-Wam Bam"
"Block Buster!"
"Hell Raiser"
Official audio
"Blockbuster!" on YouTube

Music and lyricEdit

Its Muddy Waters-inspired blues riff is markedly similar to that featured on fellow RCA act David Bowie's "The Jean Genie", released shortly before, but all parties maintained this was a coincidence.[7]

TV performancesEdit

Some controversy arose after the band's performance of the song on the British television program Top of the Pops on 25 December 1973, for which bassist Steve Priest wore a swastika arm band.[8]


Chart (1973) Peak
Australia 29
Austria 1
Belgium 2
Denmark 1
Finland 3
Germany 1
Ireland 1
Italy 30
Netherlands 1
New Zealand 1
Norway 3
South Africa 7
Spain 12
Switzerland 3
United Kingdom[9] 1
United States[10] 73

In the case of Belgium, there are two types of lists. The one for the Flemish speaking part of Belgium (Flanders) saw the song reach number two, for five consecutive weeks,.[11] In the French speaking part (Wallonia) the song climbed to number one, for two consecutive weeks.[12]


  1. ^ Popoff, Martin (2014). The Big Book of Hair Metal: The Illustrated Oral History of Heavy Metal?s Debauched Decade. Voyageur Press. p. 16. ISBN 978-1-62788-375-7.
  2. ^ Swanson, Dave (10 May 2014). "10 Underrated Glam Rock Stompers Worth Getting All Dolled Up For". Retrieved 8 August 2019.
  3. ^ Chapman, Ian (2015). Experiencing David Bowie: A Listener's Companion. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-44223-752-0.
  4. ^ Wroe, Nicholas (12 September 2014). "That's neat: Chinnichap's blitz of 70s hits become a musical". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  5. ^ Sandford, Christopher (1996). Bowie: Loving The Alien. Da Capo Press. pp. 400–103. ISBN 978-0306808548.
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. pp. 282–3. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  7. ^ Nicholas Pegg (2000). The Complete David Bowie: p.110
  8. ^ "Steve Priest | The Sweet". Retrieved 8 October 2016.
  9. ^ "UK Official Charts". Official Charts Company. 2019. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
  10. ^ "Hot 100: The Sweet". Billboard. 2019. Archived from the original on 26 January 2019. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
  11. ^ "The Sweet - Block Buster - Vlaanderen".
  12. ^ "The Sweet - Block Buster - Wallonie".