Episode 9 of X Factor Australia has aired and is now up on the official site! Here is the link. It is region locked to Australia, but thanks to the Chrome Extension Hola, you can watch it anywhere. Many of you may have used this extension to watch X Factor UK a day early via ITV’s website, but it’s even easier for X Factor Australia. No zip code or account is required.
But if you want to just watch performances and (with some videos) judges comments, and don’t care about the introductions, you don’t even need to use Hola. You can just watch the videos embedded below. Read on for my thoughts on episode 9 of X Factor AU featuring judges Adam Lambert, Iggy Azalea, Guy Sebastian, and Mel B.
Up last for the three chair challenge are Guy Sebastian and the Over 22s. He wants something honest, raw. First up is the acapella challenge where guy narrows down over 50 singers to just 13. Chynna and Davey get spotlighted. Guy is sure he has a potential winner in his category. Given that the show is subtitled “next generation” I am sure he doesn’t.
Ruby Mills is up first. She’s the 24 year old fishmonger who had a surprisingly good voice at her audition. Let’s see how she does. Guy asks her how she’s feeling, and she says she’s nervous. She sings When We Were Young by Adele, which is a bold choice to say the least. Very different from her audition. And she isn’t Adele but she’s still quite great in my view. Iggy found it graceful and thinks she’ll be a tough competitor. Adam says it wasn’t perfect, but says she is very likeable, she has swag. Guy found it a little safe, loves her tone, eventually after the crowd chants, she gets to sit in Guy’s first seat.
Calvin Orosa sings Can’t Stop The Feeling and strips it of all fun. But he gets a seat for now. The speed at which they showed his audition means he’s not lasting.
Davey Woder is up next. He hasn’t sung a cover in front of a crowd yet after claiming he didn’t know any at his audition. He has a very interesting personality to say the least. He sings Stand By Me because he is getting married to his future wife in four weeks with this song playing in the background. Guy tells him to take a second to breathe. He has a deep voice, with a nice tone. Can he win? Probably not. The crowd chants “seat” immediately after he finishes singing. Adam was worried about his nerves at first, but says he struck a cord, doesn’t know if he’d give him a seat. Iggy says that the audience reaction should make a difference. Guy loves his honesty when performing, can’t think of anyone like him in the industry right now, but notes that could be a bad thing. Guy says he’s a big risk but he gives him a seat.
Guy’s seats have been filled by his first three contestants. Trojahn Tuna gets sent home extremely quickly. Two other people I don’t remember seeing also get cut.
Omar Terzic got off on the wrong foot with Guy at his first audition. He realizes Guy doesn’t like him. He sings To Love Somebody by The Bee Gees and he’s mediocre at best. If he was stellar it would be fine for him to be cocky, but he’s not. Guy likes his voice, sees red flags. Other judges like Omar, and the crowd chants seat, but Guy hasn’t connected with him. So naturally he’s gone.
Next up is Naisa Lasalosi. He stunned Guy at his audition with his range. He got back from two years on a mormon mission in the Philippines. He sings Love Me Harder by Ariana Grande. He has a great voice, but I’m not a fan of what he does with certain phrasing. Having said that, he’s clearly better than the person in the middle seat, and possibly better than the other two as well. Davey waves goodbye to the other contestants. I like Davey more after seeing his interactions with the other contestants. Adam makes a joke about the “harder harder harder” repetition, says Guy’s decision is getting harder harder harder. Iggy wants him to get a seat. Guy is worried about versatility. Iggy says Davey has to go. Naisa gets a seat. Adam also thinks Davey has to go. But Guy makes the right choice and swaps out Calvin. Iggy really doesn’t think Davey is great.
Zebulen Howell is up next. I wasn’t a fan of his first audition but Guy loved him, as did many of you in the comments. Guy asks him why he deserves a spot, he says it has been his life, people have knocked him back for the way he is and he has people to prove wrong. He sings Stole The Show by Kygo. I still am not a fan of his tone. He’s clearly talented, but not my thing. Adam said there were a few rough spots, wasn’t sure it was enough to bump want of those guys. Iggy says it was absolutely enough to bump one of them. Guy says he has a unique voice, but both times he saw him, it falls apart by the end. Zebulen gets a seat for now. Guy swaps out Ruby Mills. Ugh. I loved her. Oh well. I’ve only seen her twice so I’m not invested yet.
Up next is Miss Powers. She sings for 30 seconds at most. Adam and Iggy loved it. Guy was surprised by that, but finds it too theatrical. Adam takes issue with that word. Iggy and Adam beg Guy to swap but Guy doesn’t. Iggy: “it’s fine. You want a boring category.” LOL.
Dave Stergo is up next. His wife and daughter weren’t able to attend the show as she’s sick. He dedicates his performance to them. We see him sing a song by Kate Bush, whoever that is. It’s a very mixed bag performance. Parts were excellent, parts sucked. Guy said it was beautiful, but finds him more of a covers singer than an original artist.
Two acts are left. Chynna Taylor is up next. She sang Amazing Grace at her first audition and reminded me of Alisan Porter. She sings “My Hero” by the Foo Fighters and changes it up. I love her sound, I love her style, she’s my favorite over. She’s not perfect, there are a few slightly pitchy moments. But it’s way better than the three on seats already. Iggy and Adam stand for her, as does Guy. So the question now is which seat does she take. Davey walks over and pretends to give her his seat before running away. She dedicated it to her husband. Adam could tell it meant something real, felt something real, says that she is what the X Factor is. Iggy says she could win, says Guy has screwed up a few decisions tonight but hopes Guy gives her a seat. Guy says she’s a freak, and she’s in his top 3. No fakeout attempted. Guy says “and now the tough part”. Guy swaps out Naisa. The crowd boos and Iggy screams “what is wrong with this man…we need to get you back on medication my friend.” Crowd chants “bring him back.” Naisa is happy to hear them chant that for him.
Last up is Timmy Knowles, who Guy wasn’t sure about at his first audition. He knows he has to give his best performance ever to get a seat. Iggy clarifies that he still has no girlfriend. He flips a Rihanna song “Love On The Brain”. He has a unique voice, that’s pretty similar to Davey’s but better. Adam found it cool, loved how committed he was, loved the anguish in his voice. Iggy simply says “Guy, put Timmy through”. Guy was underwhelmed, thinks his voice could get lost in the grit, but knows he can be great. Timmy is in his top 3 because he’s honest and sings from his heart. Guy doesn’t want to get rid of Davey despite Iggy’s pleas. Guy gets rid of Zebulen instead of Davey. I can’t complain about that personally. I know Mel will pick him up.
Guy’s top 3: Chynna Taylor, Davey Woder, Timmy Knowles.
We have 9 out of the top 12. But at the end of the night, the underdog judge is revealed to the contestants. Mel B tells the potential underdogs the story of her category and her return. We don’t get to find out which three contestants she saves until Sunday’s live show. In addition, one contestant from EACH CATEGORY will go home in the FIRST live show. I guess that’s what happens when you only have four or five live shows. Ugh. With this lineup of contestants and judges, I really, REALLY hate how much they’re rushing this season.