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Barlow: All the finalists can sing
Gary Barlow has revealed his relief that there are no novelty acts in this year's X Factor.
The Take That frontman, who is mentoring the groups, said this series features aspiring singers, who are serious about winning the ITV show, unlike Rylan Clark and Jedward of previous years.
"There are no joke acts at all. There are some interesting characters but for the first time in a long time, everyone who is through to the final 12 can really sing," he said.
Gary, whose acts include boyband Kingsland Road, girl group Miss Dynamix and trio Rough Copy, joked that Kingsland Road could do with a Robbie Williams-type personality in the band.
"Everyone needs a Robbie in the group. It adds to the flavour," he quipped.
"I don't know who's who yet. It's probably best if they don't try to emulate people of the past because I want them to walk into the future."
Having had dismal success with his acts in the past, he reckons he can break his losing streak with his groups.
"I'd love to win. I feel I've got an amazing category here. We're in with a shot," he said, adding: "I'm ready. I'm feeling alright this year - we've had a lot of fun."
The 42-year-old musician also admitted he missed his fellow judges - Sharon Osbourne, Nicole Scherzinger and Louis Walsh - after they worked on the panel for the initial rounds of the show.
"We had a great time in the auditions, lots of laughter. I've missed all the other judges during the summer so it will be great to be reunited with them on stage this weekend."
The live X Factor shows begin on ITV on October 12.