X Factor accused of No1 spot monopoly

PUBLISHED: 09:15 17 December 2009 | UPDATED: 17:25 25 August 2010

AS another X Factor winner excitedly prepares to take the top spot in the charts, campaigners claim the show has taken the fun out of the race for Christmas number one.

AS another X Factor winner excitedly prepares to take the top spot in the charts, campaigners claim the show has taken the fun out of the race for Christmas number one.

Fresh from his victory on the ITV show last Sunday, Joe McElderry is now facing a challenge for the poll position from an unlikely quarter - 1990s anti-capitalist heroes, Rage Against the Machine.

The band's classic song Killing in the Name Of now has more than 750,000 supporters on social networking website Facebook and is neck and neck with Joe's effort, The Climb, released yesterday.

Swanley-born comic and devout socialist Mark Steel has joined the growing number of voices speaking out against X Factor's domination of the Christmas top spot.

Mark, who regularly appears on quiz shows like the BBC's QI and Mock the Week, said: "The odds are against us but we have [time] to save the world and stop X Factor from creating another putrid Christmas number one.

"Because these people are not only trying to destroy music, they're trying to make us surrender to their unstoppable naked power.

"We watch them package an act until their entire identity has been moulded into a corporate Cowellite auto-crooner, then let them sell the resulting warble back to us as if it's in some way natural. It's like falling for the three-card trick but when the cards are face up. We're going 'Is that one the Queen?' and need someone to scream: 'No, it's THIS one, you dozy morons, that's the three of clubs - you can SEE."

He conceded a little, saying: "People like Joe McElderry and Stacey Solomon are undoubtedly talented and I think they could be encouraged to write and perform their own songs. But it's so sad because the X Factor machine will just strip all the personality from them and turn them into robots."

But DJ Talent - the unique rapper who stole the nation's heart when he appeared on ITV's Britain's Got Talent this year - thinks it's inevitable that the cherubic Joe will get the number one spot.

The Beckenham-born musician, real name Anthony Ghosh, said: "The X Factor has taken over for the last four years because the power of TV and the media is so strong. Of course, it will reach number one.

"It makes it very difficult for other artists to get a look in at Christmas, which is not right and it takes the fun out of it. I mean I have got a song out at the moment, on iTunes, called I Say Britain and I am hoping it will be a hit but I don't know how it'll do, now that the X Factor is taking over."

He added: "I am backing Susan [Boyle] for the Christmas number one. We became good friends on Britain's Got Talent.

"She is a major success story and has done very well."

Brainlokk - aka Daniel Blake - is a 23-year-old MC and is releasing his debut single, Foolish Flavas, next year.

The Abbey Wood musician was supposed to release it this Christmas, but was advised to delay until March, "mostly because of X Factor... it is just not worth it". He said: "Artists these days just don't have a chance of getting to number one at Christmas."

Mr Blake, a friend of Rachel Adedeji, who made it to the final 12 on the show, said: "I think the spirit of Christmas is gone. It's so commercial now."

Of the race for Number One, he said: "It should be more of an open competition. It's just a PR machine at the moment and that's no fun at all. But still, I would like to have a shot at it one day."

The Facebook group Rage Against the Machine for Christmas No 1 is encouraging people to download the single until December 19 and, as we went to press, it was at the top of the iTunes singles chart.

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