We made it to the live shows!
The X Factor airs tonight at 8:00pm GMT (9:00pm CET, 4:00pm EDT, 13:00pm PDT) on ITV 1 (145min).
How to watch X Factor UK from outside the UK?
You can watch X Factor live, online. ITV streams the show through the ITV Player. However, ITV blocks viewers from outside of the UK. To get around that, you need to use VPN connection. If Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox is your preferred browser, install ZenMate or Hola extensions and set them to UK server. Then open the ITV Player and pick the right channel. The player will ask you for a ZIP code Find an active UK ZIP code HERE. Don’t let the browser send any information about your location. You can also try to find a working ITV stream on MyiPlayer.com, TVPC.com or FilmON.com.
Tonight, the TOP 13 perform live for the first time. Last year’s winner Ben Haenow returns to perform “Second Hand Heart”. Also, Peter Dickson returns as X Factor’s voice over guy. He announced his departure from the show in July and last week American voice over guy Redd Pepper replaced him. I guess the reaction to the new voice over guy wasn’t great and TPTB brought back the much beloved Dickson.
The idea of guest judges was dropped. Also, the judges won’t be scoring the performances.
We start with the montage of the past X Factor success stories and the question: Who will join them from this crop of acts?
Peter Dickson is in top form! Olly Murs is like a mini Dermot, but he has a co-host.
The 4 judges look glamorous. Rita Ora has a terrible haircut.
The contestants are supposed to show us who they are as artists tonight. Monica Michael is back as a wildcard. TOP 13 are called on stage.
Lauren Murray – I’m Every Woman (Chaka Khan – Whitney Houston version)
Lauren finds out her song choice from vocal coach Camilla. The hairdresser takes her hair piece out of her hair.
The performance starts … we have a hair saloon on stage. Lauren sings fine, but with that song choice and that staging, she doesn’t look like a popstar. She can sing, but she is no popstar. She is completely out of her element.
Cheryl liked her confidence. Simon says he loved the performance and compliments the vocals. The dancing was a bit clumsy. Nick says she nailed it, but she doesn’t need the circus around her. Rita says Lauren did exactly what she wanted to do tonight. Sang Whitney, had a terrible staging, looked out of place.
Max Stone – Someone Like You (Adele)
Vocal coach Iain informs Max of the song choice. Next, the choreographer gets to work with Max.
OMG, reggae version of “Someone Like You”! This is bizarre. Should we expect reggae covers of pop hits every week from Max? That’s one way to make sure he doesn’t win.
Nick says the performance was great Nick says it reminded him of holidays. Rita says Max made the song his own. Cheryl says she didn’t like the reggae version of Adele. She did like the vocals. Simon says there is something about Max. Authenticity and all that.
Alien Uncovered – Do It Like A Dude (Jessie J)
Vocal coach Annabel informs them they will be singing “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani. A day later, on Tuesday, they are allowed to do Jessie J. They get to work with a choreographer.
The girls enter the studio through the tunnel behind the judges. The song is pretty in your face. It was Jessie J’s debut single in the UK, but written for Rihanna. I don’t think this performance will appeal to X Factor’s traditional voter.
Simon says everything about that performance was great. He does acknowledge that the song won’t appeal to everybody. Nick loved it too. Rita says the girls represented themselves well. Cheryl is proud of her girls and says they “smashed it”.
Kiera Weathers – Crying For No Reason (Katy B)
Kiera gets to work with wardrobe department. I love the song choice, but it will be tough to pull off live. It’s as bad as I thought it would be. She is nervous and it shows in her vocals.
Cheryl loved the song choice. She says Kiera needs to believe in herself. Simon says she needs to be better than that. He says she needs to become a performer. Nick compliments her outfit. Rita defends the song choice.
Anton Stephans – Dance With My Father (Luther Vandross)
Anton can’t believe he got this far. The choreographer tries to fix his facial expressions.
I’m sure the grandmas watching the show will love this performance. But it’s terribly boring. Anton sings the song fine, but it’s so sleep inducing. The song completely killed Anton’s personality and charm.
Nick is happy Anton is no longer a backing singer. Rita says he created a bond and says this was a great moment. Cheryl says he deserves every second on that stage. Simon mentions Anton’s crazy eyes and huge mouth. Anton says X Factor has already changed his life.
Ché Chesterman – Tears Dry On Their Own / Ain’t No Mountain High Enough (Amy Winehouse / Marvin Gaye & Tammi Tarrell)
Nick tells Che the song choice personally. The choreographer gives him some basic pointers.
The performance is vocally fine, but Che has absolutely no performance skills. I still don’t know why he did those two songs. The performance was a bit too lounge-y for my taste.
Rita loved the vocals. Cheryl loved the vocals and Che’s newfound confidence. Simon says Britain has a lot of talent. He says the vocal was flawless, but Che can’t dance. He also says Che is as surprising as Squiddly and Diddly.
Mason Noise – Sorry (Justin Bieber)
Mason Noise is doing Justin Bieber’s newest single, released just last week. Of course, Nick is up to date with new music releases. Mason has no problems with the choreography.
One thing I have to say, Maison is a better singer than the Biebs. He also has some stage presence. I just don’t know if this will work as an apology.
Rita loved the song choice and hopes we can move on from the 6 chair challenge disaster. Cheryl says he is a potential superstar. Simon could not be happier to see Mason back on the stage. Nick says Mason “smashed it”.
Reggie ‘N’ Bollie – It Wasn’t Me (Shaggy)
Reggie and Bollie will be singing Shaggy’s hit with lyrics that are highly appropriate for a family show. I think it’s a good fit for them. The guys are entertainers and have good stage presence. They are quickly becoming my favorite group.
Simon loved the performance. He thinks they are fun and relevant. Nick says the song is very close to his heart. LOL. He says they are not a joke act. Rita says they give her good vibes. Cheryl adores them and says they have beautiful hearts.
Louisa Johnson – God Only Knows (Beach Boys)
The head of music tells Louisa her song choice and she is not familiar with it. Later they put her on vocal rest. WOW. Huge vocals. This performance is something completely different from everything we’ve seen so far. Must be intentional.
Cheryl says she has star quality. Simon Louisa is 17 and has no idea how good she is. He says we are witnessing the birth of a star. Nick says the performance was incredible. Rita spews a ton of nonsense and praise for Louisa. *CHOSEN ONE ALERT: RED*
Bupsi – You’re A Wonderful One (Marvin Gaye)
Bupsi was not familiar with the song and has trouble learning the lyrics. The performance is average. Bupsi sings fine, but she is not connecting with the lyrics or the viewers. This was totally forgettable. She is cannon fodder.
Nick says this was wonderful. He thinks it wasn’t “nasty” enough. Rita didn’t like the song. Cheryl compliments Bupsi’s look. Simon says she was nervous and says he picked the wrong song for her.
4th Impact – Problem (Ariana Grande Ft. Iggy Azalea)
Their first song choice was “Shut Up And Dance” by Walk The Moon. It wasn’t right for them. Cheryl tells them to pick whatever they want to sing. “Problem” definitely works much better for them. They are like 4 Ariana Grandes. They even do Iggy’s rap.
Simon says the performance was fantastic and praises their vocals and work ethic. Nick says it was “perfect”. Rita also loved it. Cheryl says this competition needs 4th Impact.
Monica Michael – Make It Rain (Ed Sheeran)
We see Monica getting the news that she is a wildcard. Her song choice is awesome. I think the idea for this came from The Voice USA performance earlier this year. Monica gets a choir and a crowded stage. The vocals are great, but I think they could do a lot more to make Monica really connect with the viewers and make an impact – stage-vise and arrangement-vise.
Cheryl says it’s her time. Simon is also happy to have her back. Nick says she is a contender. Rita says she is sorry for sending Monica home.
Seann Miley Moore – Life On Mars (David Bowie)
The vocal coaches want him to sing more soulfully and less dramatically. He struggles to find the right outfit.
WOW. WOW. No wonder they saved him for last. He gets amazing production. Great vocals, but a bit too dramatic, even though it’s clear he is trying to control himself. He is wearing a dark blue suit and a headpiece that he throws away in the middle. Seann is determined to leave a mark in this competition. He is definitely very different from everybody else.
Rita says Seann is an artist. Cheryl calls the performance outstanding and special. Simon loved the performance. He says the vocals were slightly cabaret.
The voting is now open!
Guess who is back? Ben Haenow and he is performing “Second Hand Heart”! He starts the performance in the dark. He is standing above the band and the background is not doing him any favors. Whoever staged this should be fired. The recording is a duet with Kelly Clarkson, but she is not here, so Ben is singing her parts too. This is not a great performance. YIKES. It’s a shame. I like the song, but that performance sucked. Oh and he is releasing his debut album the same week as One Direction and Justin Bieber. I’m afraid he is soon going to join the other male X Factor winners in the flop land.
Time for a recap of tonight’s performances. Looking back, the overs could all go home tomorrow and nobody would miss them. Louisa and Seann were the standouts tonight with several other great performances. It was a typical first live show – a big number of contestants with the majority being like deer in the headlights on the big stage. The problem is, usually the live shows last 10 weeks and during that time the contestants grow and become more seasoned. This year we have only 7 weeks of the live shows due to the Rugby World Cup. But the contestants seem just as green as every year at the first live show. Those missing three weeks will be greatly missed.
Little Mix and Ellie Goulding are performing on the results show tomorrow night.
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