‘We wouldn’t do it again’: MK1 on the X Factor and their debut single, ‘Let Go’
“It was natural chemistry. We both grew up on different musical influences so when we got together it was like a breath of fresh air,” Sim admiringly says about his musical partner. Since leaving The X Factor – MK1 – duo Charlie Rundle and Simeon ‘Sim’ Dixon- have been mapping out a plan for world domination. After having their dreams of winning the talent show crushed, they are recharged, eager, and ready to climb the musical ranks.
“We had a lot of fun and the platform was amazing for us,” they recall. “We constantly had to be on our toes.” In the end, the experience seems to have been somewhat overwhelming for their dynamic efforts. “I think we underestimated it ever so slightly, but it was a good thing because it provided us with an insight into the industry as a whole.”
The London-based singer-songwriter-rappers, rhymed their way through auditions to become the first urban act to secure a place in the finals on the prime-time show. Moral Majority types found their style likeable, but they insist they would most likely never audition again if they had the chance.
“We wouldn’t do it again but only because we feel what we accomplished on the show was beyond believable. We are really grateful about the position in which we finished, and we also would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to kick start their career.”
The sheer power of the talent show can make or break contestants, and one thing is for sure – it’s never short of controversies, meltdowns, and criticism. As a nation, most of us are riveted with the disputes that arise on and off screen – but how much of it is fabricated? “It is all genuine – everything that you saw was exactly how it went down behind the scenes,” Sim says, “but with us, we didn’t lose touch with who we were. We did not need to create a character for the programme we went on to the show as MK1, and left the same.”
Their departure in week three from the series saw them criticise judges Gary Barlow and Nicole Scherzinger for talking during their final sing-off performance. “Being in that bottom two and knowing you really had to impress the judges – who were going to vote for you to stay was intense so when we saw them talking – we were like, ‘Really? This is our moment to prove to you what we are about.’ The tabloid machinery might have converted them into bitter rejects, but Charlie and Sim are determined to flip that on its head. “We got over that a few days after but initially, it was a bit hard to take.”
There are rules about these reality TV shows, and the regulations state that you will considerably be rewarded for your entertainment, but if you want respect, you’re going to have to show something original. What’s noteworthy about the reappraisal of MK1 is that they didn’t rely on being revived by some major record label. The changes in their careers are born of a conscious decision they have made to pursue what turns them on.
“We tried to incorporate our sound as much as we could on The X Factor, but it was difficult. This record is a song we chose off the album that we feel best represents the overall style of our music,” Charlie says, referring to their debut single Let Go. For the album, they have promised a bit of everything.
But with Charlie’s Cornwall history and Sim’s South London upbringing – will their shared reality ideals clash with MK1’s radio friendly-down with the kids’ image? “Yeah, of course, if we are meant to be a family kind of group,” Charlie admits. “Obviously, we have to try to give the fans what they want, but at the same time – we are musicians writing about the things that we go through. If someone doesn’t like it, it’s not really our issue. We just do what we like and hope for people to like it.”
In moving forward with their ongoing quest MK1 are drawing inspiration from artists including, Dizeee Rascal, So Solid Crew, Eminem — and like other X Factor survivors, they are neutralising any attack coming their way and are aiming a killer blow at those who are intending to write them off.
‘Let Go’ is out now.Tagged in: MK1, the x factor
Recent Posts on Arts
- Friday Book Design Blog: Fitzcarraldo Editions
- Children’s books for October: Meg and Mog, The Demon Dentist and The Whispering Skull
- Friday Book Design Blog: Slightly Foxed and Notting Hill Editions
- Good Indian sales at Sotheby’s London but contemporaries’ slump worsens
- Ryoichi Kurokawa: "Digital art is already classical"
Latest from Independent journalists on Twitter