The X Factor 2 – The Top 4 Semi-Final – Recap and Videos

The contestant choice performances were personal best performances for all of the contestants, except Carly (I’ll be getting to her in a minute).  More proof, that if the contestants had more control over their performances, the season could have been entertaining.

Carly choked a little tonight, I think. She’s obviously feeling the pressure of a possible win being nearly in her grasp. As a result, she was trying way to hard to deliver a stunning “moment”.   Both of her performances felt forced. And it didn’t help that she chose two iconic songs that don’t benefit from the diva vocal treatment.  If she continues to spiral, she’s not going to win.

Tate, on the other hand, performed with a ton of confidence tonight.  It’s the difference between an adult who can handle–maybe even thrive–on pressure and a young teen who can’t.

The heavy duty pimping of Emblem3 (comparing them to the Beatles, LA? REALLY?) will ensure them a spot in next week’s final. But they are never ever ever going to win X Factor. But that’s fine. Simon will promote them after the show’s over anyway. Remember, One Direction came in 3rd their season of XFUK.

Fifth Harmony really impressed with their self-chosen number, but I’m afraid Simon threw them purposely under the bus when he suggested they reprise their Judges Houses song.  The return of the magic was not to be.  And here’s a tip girls: Singing in Spanish does not give you an edge!  Pack your things, kids.

Demi, without a team to pimp, was basically tonight’s truth teller.  Britney. always a woman of few words, was even more zombified as usual as she robotically repeated her catch phrases “I’m so proud of you” and “that was not your best performance.”   Simon is crazy if he pays her another 15 million dollars (or more) to sit at the judges table next season like a plastic Barbie doll.


Here come Khloe and Mario. Blah blah blah blah. Oh! No judges decision this week. Hooray. The act eliminated this week will be decided by AMERICA.

The judges are introduced. Demi lost her remaining act last week, but she’ll be hanging out with the judges anyway. The leaderboard! Tate Stevens is on top. The slate is wiped clean. LEADER BOARD BLACKOUT. We won’t know who came in first until the winner is announced next week.

Simon believes viewers will vote tonight for who performs best. So, I guess they won’t be voting for YOUR acts then, Simon! Ha ha.

The Top 4 take the stage. Blah blah blah. No performances until after the break!

Contestant Choice songs are first!

Tate Stevens – LA Reid – Over 25’s – “Bonfire” by Craig Morgan – Tate dedicates his to to his buddies. Yep. A song about trucks and getting drunk. Hooray. Is that a wallet chain Tate is sporting? He’s working the stage pretty well, dragging the mic stand from place to place. He sounds super-confident tonight. No wonder he’s performing first. Tate may be performance-slot proof at this point, however. OMG. LA rocking out with his cowboy hat. It’s amazing the difference it makes for the contestants when they are allowed to do their own thing. Britney says, “I don’t think it was your best.” Tate is laughing. Demi says, “I have to disagree. That was a freaking amazing performance. It totally brought me home.” Simon says, “You could have chosen something mushy and treacly. But, you brought the song you wanted to record. It was one of my favorite performances. It wasn’t you being controlled by somebody. You look like a man who believes he can win the competition.” LA says, “I’m glad I learned to listen. It was the most fun I’ve had.” – Text Vote to 9301 – 1-855-843-9301

Ugh. There is gonna be a ton of filler tonight.

Carly Rose Sonenclar – Britney Spears – Teens – “Your Song” by Elton John – Carly was really upset to slip to second place AND lose her BFF Diamond last week. Not necessarily in that order.  Its her dad’s favorite song.  She performs the Ellie Goulding arrangement.  This is one of my favorite songs too, and if I’m being honest, I’m a little bored tm Demi.  She’s added the requisite vocal runs and tricks, she ends with some big notes. Oh lord. SHE’S GOT A FREAKING CHILDREN’S CHOIR SINGING WITH HER. Not feeling this one bit. Not one bit. Sorry, but to me “Your Song” isn’t some big diva number. It’s quiet and intimate. NO.  LA says, “Risky, but you’ve done things with that song I’ve never heard done before.” Demi says she’s not playing favorites, “It’s still very predictable. I think this was my favorite song that you’ve ever performed.” She spars with Simon a little, calling him “old”. Simon says, “I’m going to ignore my little brat! That was a beautiful version of a beautiful song. It wasn’t your best performance, I think your nervous.” Britney says, “I’m so proud to be your mentor.– Text Vote to 9302 – 1-855-843-9302

Emblem3 – Simon Cowell – Groups – “Baby I Love Your Way” by Peter Frampton – Like Carly, Emblem3 chooses a song their parents like. Honestly, why, when they have the chance to pick something contemporary, do they pick an ancient song? Are they attempting to steal some of Tate’s fan base? Well. This is different. Peter Frampton, by way of Sublime? At least they aren’t all boy banded out for once. This isn’t bad actually. Much better when they’re forced to appeal to 12 year olds. Simon should just let them do what they want. The boys have to work on tightening up those harmonies, though. LA tells them that they finally had their 5 million dollar moment. Britney says, “That performance felt really special. You’re way more than a boy band.” Demi says, “That’s exactly what I was talking about. That’s what makes me love them.” Simon says, “This reminded me of your very first audition. You chose a fantastic song. If this doesn’t get you into the final, nothing will.” – Text Vote to 9303 – 1-855-843-9303

OMG. Khloe is out in the audience with a bunch of girls. Some teenager says Simon is her Idol. Yeah, sure.

5th Harmony – Simon Cowell – Groups – Anything Can Happen by Ellie Goulding – They will sing harmonies and move around, addressing the judges criticisms last week. Oh. They have PROPS too! It’s someone’s birthday party! Jazz hands too. Whee! There is a ton of reverb on their harmonies, but they are singing them. It’s hard to judge the vocals when they’re so processed, but one of dem girls hit a solid high note. This might be their best performance to date. Too bad they’ll likely be hitting the road this week. LA says, “That performance was the very best vocal performance you’ve ever done! I didn’t like the waiters, I thought it was inventive.” Britney says, “I loved everything about it.” Demi says, “The dresses, everything, it was so cute. You pulled out the sparkle you guys need.” Simon says, “You’ve come in to this competition as underdogs. It will take a miracle. But after that performance, anything now can happen.” These kids have been pretty solid the last few weeks. – Text Vote to 9304 – 1-855-843-9304

Now, the semi-finalists sing “songs that will get us into the finals” whatever that means! The contestants and mentors chose the songs together, supposedly.

Tate Stevens – “Fall” by Clay Walker” – Yada Yada his wife again. He knows what gets him the mommie votes! OMG. Tate is crying during a romantic 15th anniversary dinner with his wife. YOU MOMMIES BETTER VOTE FOR ME OR MY BABIES WILL STARVE. BING. Hello a crap load of votes. Sorry. He’s losing me here. Hasn’t he sung a song like this nearly every single week? He’s got a nice voice, but this is so generic. I preferred his first performance. He brought life–a unique personality–to it. Britney says, “That was a direct hit.” Demi says, “Your wife must feel like the luckiest girl in the world. You deserve this. You did amazing.” Simon says, “That was a great song. There is as much chance of you going back to your old job as me flying to the moon.” LA says, “You’re consistent. Tonight was not exception.”

Next year audition cities are: Carly recorded her initial audition in “My Studio.” Hm. The audition cites are Los Angeles, Charleston, SC, New Orlean, LA, Long Island, NY. Denver CO. Tomorrow, you can begin auditioning online at

Carly Rose Sonenclar – Britney Spears – Teens – “Imagine” by John Lennon – Carly’s dad gives Carly a pep top. She’s unsure about singing such an iconic song. She SHOULD be nervous. She’ll start off her performance at the piano. Another song I positively adore. Holy shi*t. Why is she screaming her way through this song? The needless embelishments. Even more than “Your Song”, when it comes to this John Lennon classic, LESS IS MORE. Again, I just didn’t feel a connection to this powerful song. I’ve been a Carly fan all season, but I’m not feeling her tonight. LA says, “It’s a difficult song…you always now how to bo in and find that note.” Demi says, “Amazing. Awesome.” Simon says, “I would have kept you at the piano. IT was like 5 things happened in that song. It made a beautiful song fussy” SIMON IS CORRECT.” “I’m not sure that song needs those big notes.” AGAIN IT TOTALLY AGREE. Britney says, “It’s time for you to go beyond this stage and compete with the biggest stars in the world.”

MORE FILLER with Khloe backstage interviewing Tate and Carly.

Emblem3 – “Hey Jude” by The Beatles – Simon Cowell – The Groups – ARE YOU KIDDING ME. KILL ME PLEZE. How do they expect to cut “Hey Jude” to less than 2 minutes? This is ridiculous. OK, so this did not turn into the train wreck I feared it would. But “Hey Jude” as a boy band dirge? PLEASE NO. That was dull dull dull. LA says, “You actually are teen heart throbs like the Beatles.” WTF? Britney says, “That was an + performance. Take a bow” (and they do) Demi says, “I don’t know if you can compare them to the Beatles yet…but I think you guys have the potential.” At least the boys agree.” Simon says, “I just feel so proud of what you achieved tonight. You have nailed it on both songs.”

5th Harmony – “Impossible” by Shontelle – This is a repeat from judges houses.  This time, they will sing part of the song in Spanish.  I can barely tell the difference between the English and the Spanish. Heh. Singing in two languages doesn’t really add anything special to the performance. I’m not sure repeating a song performance will work in their favor. It’s definitely not as memorable as their first number.  In any case, the girls are heading home tomorrow.  LA says, “I think the song choice was lazy.” Britney says, “I would be really surprised if you guys were here next week.” Demi says, “It’s going to come down to your fan base. I hope that they pull through for you, but I am a little worried for you.” Simon says, “It was the right thing to do. It was a reminder of why I fell in love with you in the first place.”  Yes Simon. IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU. This song is also X Factor UK winner, James Arthur’s winners single. Hm. “You’ve been one of the strongest acts tonight. I really pray that America gets behind you. You deserve a place there.”

About mj santilli 33868 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!