Killing Music in the Name of Profit?

I’m told that the final of television ‘talent’ show The X Factor will be hitting our screens tomorrow evening. According to my diary I’m already scheduled to watch paint dry in that timeslot- it’ll be more riveting.

However, in response to the yearly banalfest which leads to an X Factor single reaching the Number 1 spot on the Christmas charts, courtesy of some gormless warbler enlisted to line the pockets of Simon Cowell, a group has sprung up on Facebook calling on fans of decent music to pop out or go online to purchase the single ‘Killing In The Name’ by American band Rage Against The Machine.The Facebook group, which currently has a membership of nearly 600,000, states: “Fed up of The X-Factor’s latest karaoke act being Christmas No.1? Me too… So who’s up for a mass-purchase of the track ‘KILLING IN THE NAME’ from December 13th (DON’T BUY IT YET!) as a protest to the X-Factor monotony?”

It appears that the bizarrely-coiffed Cowell is none too pleased at this challenge to his dominance of the pop charts. The Guardian reports him as saying: “If there’s a campaign, and I think the campaign’s aimed directly at me, it’s stupid. Me having a No 1 record at Christmas is not going to change my life particularly. I think it’s quite a cynical campaign geared at me that is actually going to spoil the party for these three.”

I didn’t realise the music-buying public owed Cowell or his underlings free-rein to dominate the charts or enjoy a ‘party’ at the expense of seven-year-olds forking out their pocket money after being hypnotised by an ITV show with its flashing lights, sparkly outfits and fake hair.

For your entertainment, here is the original Rage video (NSFW), plus the predictable ‘Downfall’ parody of the X Factor v Killing battle (NSFW). And remember, wait until Sunday before you buy ‘Killing In The Name’ if you want to help it get to Number 1 for Christmas.

  • RepublicanStones

    Rather have Zack and the boys there instead of some gormless idiot who will merely line the pockets of high trousers.

  • kensei

    This will work as well as trying to get Jeff Buckley to the top last year. But even a top ten entry would be funny.

  • Rory Carr

    I see that Sainsbury’s in a television slot are promoting an album by The Priests who, strangely enough, are a trio of, er, Catholic priests who will be singing such standards as Silent Night and the rest.

    It struck me that with the new found popularity of Catholic priests since the publication of the Nolan Report they missed a golden opportunity to issue an album consisting of cover versions of such golden oldies as Maurice Chevalier’s Thank Heaven for Little Girls and, better yet, Al Jolson’s (Climb Upon My Knee), Sonny Boy.

    Perhaps if the record companies take up this suggestion I might be entitled to royalties for my inspirational input. Do you think?

  • Forecast

    From an NME report on the campaign, RATM’s label is Sony:

    In case you’re unaware of the corporate link, Sony BMG have exclusive rights to Simon Cowell’s artists. His own label, Syco, is owned by Sony. He’s hardly likely to be soiling his high-waisted trousers over the prospect of a few thousand extra download sales of ‘Killing In The Name’. He’s probably got shares in the company.

    Hmmm, more trickery from the bleached tooth one??

    (Oh and apparently he is gay as well)

  • Forecast
  • Neil

    I’m in the fb group and will buy the Rage single next week. It’s a more liekly winner than Colin Murray’s attempts to get ‘we’re all gonna die’ in for last year’s no. 1.

  • random_quotes

    “I’m told that the final of television ‘talent’ show The X Factor will be hitting our screens tomorrow evening.”

    If you haven’t seen the show, how do you know they all fall into the “gormless warbler” bracket?

  • greagoir o frainclin

    Alexandra Burke and Leona Lewis are two notable talents that were discovered but I can’t name any of the rest who won it over the years. This formulaic, repetitious over-hyped show is really awful.
    yearsAnd as soon as this is over Britain’s got the Talent will be kicking off again…..oh and as well as the Dancing on the Ice. Thank goodness for the off button on the TV.

  • Danny Boy

    I kind of hope Simon’s megalomania is real, for entertainment value. Just about everyone I know on Facebook has joined the group but not one of them has ever mentioned it being ‘aimed directly at’ Simon Cowell or anyone else. People are just resentful of how unavoidable X Factor coverage has got, and think that screaming ‘F you I won’t do what you tell me’ while opening their presents will reinstate the childish magic of Christmas.

  • DR

    Bah Humbug

  • Pigeon Toes

    “Alexandra Burke and Leona Lewis are two notable talents that were discovered ”

    Really? Seriously?

  • Nollaig a chara

    Simon…. ‘Fuck you i won’t do what ya tell me’

  • The Raven

    Oh my goodness! Is this an actual *music* post here on Slugger…???

    Naturally, the debate about plastic pop rolls on beyond just the Christmas number one. It’s often said that every Westlife supports ten Foy Vances, or every Robbie supports a myriad Lisa Hannigans.

    But I’m going to take this opportunity to note that our own dear Duke Special has had to hawk himself here to try and get some dosh together to market his future music.

    See, the homogenisation of music means that wee Peter gets signed up by a label like V2, a label which long nurtured upcoming talent, such as Bloc Party, Aimee Mann, and Elbow.

    But then it gets bought by the bad guys at Universal, to whom individuality is nought but a threat, and to be stifled instantly. The Duke gets dropped for poor sales – never mind the fact that Universal’s marketing is so shit that he ends up doing it all himself.

    So bravo, little be-dreadlocked one. You have more talent in one of your piano-playing pinkies than most of the so-called chart-toppers these days. Go on folks – help a local kid out – buy something from Pledge.

  • Doctor Who

    This RATM single is from Sony BMG, the distributor for Cowell´s Syco company. The cnut Cowell is also a share holder in Sony, don´t be taken in by this.

    The Raven, good post. It kind of highlights the bullshit that the record companies are saying about not breaking new bands because of file sharing hiting the industry. They have only ever been interested in artists making them big profits, simply making them a profit is not good enough for the greedy bastards. Their business model has failed emphatically yet we still have the music industry sponsored and draconian Digital Economy Bill looming over our heads.

  • The Raven

    Indeed. What Duke and others on Pledge are doing is the outworking of crowdsourcing and long may it live.

    If anyone wants to find some new music, go to myspace and start jumping the links between bands. Go to their sites and buy direct.

    Follow Stuart Bailie’s blog here Ok, so maybe it isn’t inspiring journalism, but Bailie follows some good acts.

    Go forth. Buy independent. Buy local. And help make sure that Eoghan Quigg isn’t the only act teenagers can name from Northern Ireland.

  • Thanks for taking the time to post such a detailed and informative article. It has given me a lot of inspiration and I look forward to more like this in the future.
    Nail art

  • Comrade Stalin

    Alexandra Burke and Leona Lewis are two notable talents that were discovered

    The X-Factor show is not about “discovery”. The entire charade is orchestrated and planned all the way through and the likely winners are no doubt known before the damn thing starts taping.

    As for the music industry, it died at least 25 years ago. The origins of its death can probably be traced all the way back to the Monkees, the first manufactured band. Since the 1990s pretty much every single track in the charts has been produced either by a manufactured band or a well-established existing figure.

    As such I find it hard to shed a tear when the record companies complain about their revenue being killed by digital file swapping. These people have been shovelling up overpriced, overproduced crap for decades, artificially holding the price of CDs high and stiffing artists at the same time. They’re on their last legs and frankly I won’t be sad to see them gone.