A Present for Everyone

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A Present for Everyone
Busted - a present for everyone.jpg
Studio album by
Released17 November 2003 (2003-11-17)
LabelUniversal Island
Busted chronology
A Present for Everyone
Singles from A Present for Everyone
  1. "Crashed the Wedding"
    Released: 10 November 2003
  2. "Who's David"
    Released: 16 February 2004
  3. "Air Hostess"
    Released: 26 April 2004
  4. "Thunderbirds / 3AM"
    Released: 26 July 2004
  5. "She Wants to Be Me"
    Released: 29 November 2004

A Present for Everyone is the second studio album by British pop punk band Busted. It was released on 17 November 2003 by Universal Island Records and features a sound mixing pop punk and power pop material with traditional pop rock. Five singles were released from the album, including the number-one hits "Crashed the Wedding", "Who's David" and "Thunderbirds / 3AM".

The album received generally positive reviews from music critics. It debuted and peaked at number 2 on the UK Albums Chart and has been certified 3× Platinum by the British Phonographic Industry for sales of over 900,000.[1] A Present for Everyone was Busted's final album until they reformed in 2015 and released their third album.


The album was originally intended to be titled Drum Roll, and was referred to as such in press releases and interviews up until October of that year. Willis said in an interview on Popworld that it was called A Present for Everyone because "it is actually a present for - everyone".[2] The album showed a more mature sound compared to their debut album. Eight of the thirteen standard edition tracks were co-written with Tom Fletcher from McFly, a band which Bourne helped form following Fletcher's departure from Busted in the early days of the band. "She Wants to Be Me" and "3am" were co-written with production team The Matrix, which showed a slight departure in sound for the band, venturing more into pop punk.

"Fake" and "Better Than This" were collaborations between Willis, Guy Chambers and Steve Power, and both were hailed as stand-out tracks on the album in critical reviews. Bourne and Neve guitarist Michael Raphael wrote "Can't Break Thru", while Simpson co-wrote "Why" with his brother Will. "Why" shows a much heavier rock sound, similar to that of Simpson's future project Fightstar, for which he later left Busted to commit to full-time. Simpson later hailed "Why" as his favourite Busted song of all time. "Better Than This", "Why" and "Can't Break Thru" have solo vocal performances from those who wrote them.


  • "Crashed the Wedding" was released as the album's lead single in November 2003, debuting atop the UK Singles Chart and becoming Busted's second UK number-one single.
  • "Who's David?" was released in February 2004.
  • "Air Hostess" was released in April 2004. The track "Shipwrecked in Atlantis" is a continuation of the band's 2004 single "Air Hostess".
  • "3AM" was released as a double A-side in July 2004 and became the band's fourth chart-topper.

The fifth and final single was "She Wants to Be Me", which was released in November 2004 as a 3" CD. It was banned from charting, however, as the Official Charts Company's then-rules prevented songs of that format from charting.

  • "3AM" was issued as a double A-side with "Thunderbirds Are Go" (simply titled "Thunderbirds" upon single release), which was included on the 2004 reissue of the album and the soundtrack to the film of the same name. The 2004 re-issue of the album also includes various other popular Busted singles, and only includes three non-single tracks from the original album.[3] The Japanese deluxe edition of the album includes a bonus DVD containing five music videos and an additional EPK for Japan.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars[5]
BBC Music(positive)[6]
entertainment.ie3/5 stars[7]
The Guardian2/5 stars[8]
Melodic2.5/5 stars [9]
Sputnikmusic1/5 stars[10]
Stylus MagazineC[11]
Ultimate Guitar Archive9/10 stars[12]

Critical reaction to the album was generally positive. On BBC Music, Nikki Smith wrote: "They far outshine their boy band competitors, not just because of their ability to play instruments but also for the sheer energy and enthusiasm that comes through in their music".[6] AllMusic stated: "Though it's way too long at fifteen tracks, the album at least sticks to its template of earnest, slightly bawdy tales of boys and girls wrapped around peppy, ultra-slick, and sickeningly in-the-moment guitar pop."[13]

AbsolutePunk's Broden Terry called the album "one of the better pop releases in recent memory" and added: "I'd recommend giving A Present for Everyone a listen because rarely has music ever been and sounded so fun." In a negative review, Sputnikmusic said, "Leaving behind the more boy band influenced sound of their debut and becoming something closer to a wannabe Blink-182 was a big step for them, unfortunately it doesn’t seem to work, with the overall album just sounding like a neutered Sum 41."[10]

Chart performance[edit]

Despite being highly anticipated, the album debuted at number two on the UK Albums Chart. It was held off the top spot by Michael Jackson's greatest hits album, Number Ones,[14] with the latter winning out by less than 600 copies.[15] A Present for Everyone was the 19th best-selling album of 2003 in the UK,[16] and has been certified 3× Platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) for sales of over 900,000. It has sold over 1,000,000 copies to date.[17]


The band covered a variety of popular tracks as B-sides for the singles from the album. The band recorded covers of "Build Me Up Buttercup", "That's Entertainment", "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing", "O Holy Night", "Teenage Kicks", "Where Is the Love?", "Fall at Your Feet", "Peaches" and "Runaway Train", as well as new tracks "Let it Go" and "Mummy Trade", which appeared as B-sides to "Air Hostess". The band's cover of "Teenage Kicks" was later included on their debut US release, as well as the re-issue of A Present in 2004. "Build Me Up Buttercup" is the second of the band's ongoing collaborations with McFly, following the release of "Lola" in 2004.

Track listing[edit]

A Present for EveryoneStandard edition
1."Air Hostess"Steve Power3:57
2."Crashed the Wedding"
  • Bourne
  • Fletcher
3."Who's David"
  • Bourne
  • Fletcher
4."She Wants to Be Me"The Matrix3:23
  • Bourne
  • Simpson
  • Willis
  • Edwards
  • Spock
  • Christy
The Matrix3:39
6."That Thing You Do"
  • Bourne
  • Fletcher
  • Simpson
7."Over Now"
  • Bourne
  • Fletcher
  • Willis
  • Power
  • Guy Chambers
9."Meet You There"
  • Bourne
  • Simpson
  • Simpson
  • Will Simpson
Graeme Stewart4:47
11."Better Than This"
  • Willis
  • Power
  • Chambers
12."Can't Break Thru"
  • Bourne
  • Michael Raphael
  • Bourne
  • Fletcher
  • Simpson
Total length:45:57




Charts and certifications[edit]


  1. ^ "Busted Announcement". busted.com. 14 January 2005. Archived from the original on 29 September 2011. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  2. ^ "Busted On Popworld, Big Ones interview". YouTube. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  3. ^ "Busted (3) - A Present For Everyone". Discogs.
  4. ^ Terry, Broden (21 May 2009). "Busted - A Present for Everyone". AbsolutePunk. Archived from the original on 14 August 2014. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  5. ^ AllMusic review
  6. ^ a b Smith, Nikki (20 November 2002). "Busted A Present For Everyone Review". BBC Music. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  7. ^ "Music Review: Busted - A Present for Everyone". entertainment.ie. 10 December 2003. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  8. ^ Alexis Petridis, Alexis (28 November 2003). "CD: Busted, A Present for Everyone". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  9. ^ Roth, Kaj (12 January 2004). "Busted - A Present for Everyone". Melodic. Retrieved 17 July 2017.
  10. ^ a b "Busted - A Present for Everyone (album review 2)". Sputnikmusic. 24 September 2006. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  11. ^ Southall, Nick (15 January 2004). "Busted - A Present for Everyone - Review". Stylus Magazine. Archived from the original on 9 May 2012. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  12. ^ "A Present for Everyone Review". Ultimate Guitar Archive. 20 August 2004. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  13. ^ Loftus, Johnny. "Busted: A Present to Everyone > Review" at AllMusic. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  14. ^ "Singer Jackson tops album chart". BBC Online. BBC. 23 November 2003. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
  15. ^ Kutner, Jon (26 May 2010). "1000 UK Number One Hits (no. 964)". 1000 UK Number One Hits. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
  16. ^ a b "End of Year Album Chart Top 100 - 2003". Official Charts Company. 31 December 2003. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  17. ^ Parker, Jennifer (23 October 2014). "McBusted: The Story of the World's Biggest Superband". Google Search. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  18. ^ "Busted: A Present For Everyone". eil.com. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  19. ^ "A Present for Everyone (Import)". amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
  20. ^ "Hits of the World - Eurochart Hot 100". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. 13 December 2003. p. 55. Retrieved 21 July 2012.
  21. ^ "oXebh̃AoドLO". ORICON STYLE.
  22. ^ "Google Translate".
  23. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100".
  24. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2.
  25. ^ "2003-11-29 Top 40 Official Albums Chart UK Archive - Official Charts".
  26. ^ "End of Year Album Chart Top 100 - 2004". Official Charts Company. 31 December 2004. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  27. ^ "Japanese album certifications – Busted – Busted" (in Japanese). Recording Industry Association of Japan. Retrieved 25 July 2012.
  28. ^ Jones, Alan (2 December 2016). "Official Charts Analysis: Little Mix hold No.1 spot with Glory Days". Music Week. Intent Media. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
  29. ^ "British album certifications – Busted – Busted". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 25 July 2012. Select albums in the Format field. Select Platinum in the Certification field. Type Busted in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  30. ^ "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards – 2003". International Federation of the Phonographic Industry.