Artist News

Cardle wins X-Factor, chart race beings – let there be silence

By | Published on Monday 13 December 2010

And so, despite Simon Cowell last week invading my home town – from where one fifth of his One Direction boy band set up originates – it was Matt Cardle who won this year’s ‘X-Factor’ last night, pretty much as expected.

Once Cardle had been proclaimed the winner, ahead of runners up Rebecca Ferguson, One Direction and Cher Lloyd in that order, it was revealed he’d topped the viewer votes every week but one since this run of the ‘X’ franchise had entered the live show stage.

Mentored during the series by Danni Minogue, Cardle wins a record contract with Cowell’s Syco record company, though it seems certain the ‘X-Factor’ chief will also sign One Direction – the boy band he created from five solo entrants – and may well enjoy more success with them than the show’s actual winner. As JLS and Jedward will testify, in terms of success away from the telly show, who wins the contest isn’t always all that relevant.

Cardle will now try to secure the Christmas number one slot for the ‘X’ franchise next Sunday with his debut single, ‘When We Collide’, a cover version of Biffy Clyro’s ‘Many Of Horror’, a tribute to the Scottish miserablists that is certain to go down really well with their fans, who just love all things ‘X-Factor’.

That fact, of course, also kicks off the various ‘anti-X’ campaigns to get alternative records to the Christmas number one spot, including the ‘Family Guy’ inspired push in favour of The Trashmen’s ‘Surfin Bird’; an attempt by the ‘X-Factor’s first winner Steve Brookstein to get his own back on Cowell, who he still reckons screwed him over; and following confirmation of Cardle’s song choice, a new campaign to get the Biffy Clyro original to the top spot.

And, of course, it marks the start of the Cage Against The Machine campaign to get a brand new recording of John Cage’s ‘4’33″‘ into the Christmas chart in aid of five under-funded music-related charities. On an artistic level this is, we reckon, by far the most interesting of all the alternative Christmas number one contenders, not to mention the most worthy on a charitable level. What could be funnier that four minutes of silence appearing in the Christmas chart, and let’s not forget the simple genius of the Cage Against The Machine name which motivated this particular Facebook campaign in the first place.

You can buy the new version of ‘4’33″‘, recorded with The Kooks, Suggs, Mr Hudson, Dan le Sac, Scroobius Pip, Adam F, Bishi, Crystal Fighters, Dub Pistols, Fenech Soler, Gallows, Guillemots, Orbital, UNKLE, Heaven 17, Enter Shakira, CMU’s own Eddy Temple Morris and many more in the room, not to mention Billy Bragg and Imogen Heap on the phone, from all good download stores, the iTunes link is below. And check out the video about the silent recording on The Guardian’s website.


Whether CATM, The Trashmen or Biffy Clyro can beat Cardle in the Christmas chart remains to be seen. Team X do seem to have stepped up their game after Joe McElderry’s version of the mind bogglingly tedious ‘The Climb’ was beaten to the Christmas number one spot by Rage Against The Machine last year. Cardle’s track arrived online with immediate effect last night and is already topping the iTunes chart and the press release landed first thing this morning. Plus, the decision to let each finalist have a different song ready to go means they rely less on Cowell – never that great at the actual A&R bit of being an A&R chief – picking a one size fits all hit.

Whatever happens, it seems there will once again be quite a bit of interest in this year’s Christmas chart, which was sort of the point of the original RATM campaign, so job done.