Just a week after losing the competition for the U.K.’s Christmas Number One single to Rage Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name,” The X Factor winner Joe McElderry exacted a small measure of revenge against the Los Angeles rockers as his song “The Climb” beat out “Killing” for the distinction of New Year’s Number One single. McElderry was able to defeat the grassroots Facebook campaign that helped lock up the Christmas Number One for Rage on the charts, and has now outsold “Killing in the Name” by 196,000 to 130,000 in the past two weeks, the NME reports.
While being named the New Year’s Number One appears to carry less significance than the Christmas Number One, the big sales week for McElderry put his single in line to possibly contend for the year’s bestselling track in the U.K., which is currently Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.” Rage prevented McElderry from being the fifth consecutive X Factor winner to top the Christmas charts. As Rolling Stone previously reported, Simon Cowell produces X Factor, a reality competition show similar to American Idol, and is rumored to be leaving AI to join the U.S. version of X Factor in 2011.
As RS wrote last week, Rage Against the Machine promised their British fans a free concert to thank them if “Killing” was named the Christmas Number One, and praised the founders of the Facebook campaign for making their song the “rebel anthem” of “the people in the U.K. tired of being spoon-fed one schmaltzy ballad after another.”
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• Tom Morello Supports Rage’s “Killing in the Name” in U.K. Christmas Sales Battle