Seven are left and in the only part of the week this show has any importance to you and me, these contestants are dreading it! Amongst all the power and love of Aussie music adorning this week’s performance show, nerves are jittering as elimination is only one sour note away (or one aggravated female teen voter away in some cases).
Luke comes on stage (and it wouldn’t be an X Factor show without him) and he introduces the theme for tonight before introducing the judges; Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Mel B, Ronan Keating and Guy Sebastian.
He gives a short interview where he notices that the Australian judges (Nat and Guy) are doing better than the international superstar judges (Mel and Ronan) in terms of contestant numbers. Guy has the most. Natalie gives them some advice; no tough love. This agitates Mel a bit as this comment was directed at her.
Ronan believes that last year, he was able to win with Altiyan despite losing his other two acts early on, so this year he can repeat that with Three Wishez. Mel isn’t worried with Christina, either. Guy tells Luke he is stupid when he suggests Reece could be in the bottom two.
Mel wants Luke to get on with the show; and I am in agreement considering this show’s tendency to run overtime. Luke mentions Square Division, the group who works with the mentors to deliver a good show this week, before throwing to Natalie for tonight’s first performer.
This person has never been in the bottom two; it is Mitchell Callaway performing Throw Your Arms Around Me.
This is a song that is apparently meant to be ‘more him’. I didn’t like it to be honest, it was a bit monotonous. It wasn’t actually bad, but it wasn’t my style. Also, when Mitchell went to the crowd, they were obviously reaching out for him for effect. They looked like a pack of zombies. Yeah, real convincing.
Guy wonders if he fell in love with the song and said he sung it well. He would have liked Natalie to have picked a song with more heart, but thinks he drew a lot of emotion out of it. Mel calls his performance ‘solid’ but didn’t feel he enjoyed it. She can still see the sigh of relief he gives at the end of it.
Ronan loved the song choice but said it was flat to begin with however he pulled it back in, in the end.
Natalie is incredibly proud of him and loved his connection however realises there is a little way to go on that aspect.
So; do you want him to stay after that, or did you feel he was a little flat?
To vote for Mitchell;
SMS ‘MITCHELL’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 31 or, in an Australian first, vote through the new X Factor iPhone App!
Back after the break, and it is time for Guy to introduce his first boy for the night; it’s none other than Johnny Ruffo with a Delta Goodrem classic, Lost Without You.
It is a bit quiet, but I guess you can put that down to the live set up. But is it a bit too quiet? It sounds a little shaky as well. Especially in the chorus, he could have done a little better.
There’s not much in the way of emotion either.
As per usual, the crowd goes crazy.
Mel says he is one of the hardest working guys in the competition and she tells him there were times when his performance was on and when his performance was off. But for her, the performance was spot on in intensity.
Ronan calls it a bit boring; disagreeing with Mel, saying it was ‘very’ flat at times.
To Natalie and she likes how he is fighting every week and loves how Guy is mentoring him, but called the performance ‘inconsistent’. Guy tells him he didn’t expect him to nail every single note, but wanted him to capture emotion. For him, he did it, but for me, he didn’t.
Mel wants to know why he is putting him at risk like this and Guy says it is because he feels other acts are boring and would rather find someone who is risky. Ronan doesn’t agree, thinking the act would not sell internationally.
Well, to vote for Johnny;
SMS ‘JOHNNY’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 32 or vote through the X Factor app.
After the break, it is time for Ronan’s final remaining group, the withstanding Three Wishez with this week’s Aussie classic (and it is truly an anthem) You’re The Voice. If you haven’t heard of this song, you need to remove the rock from above your head!
The group is a bit nervous by the prospect of groups going home week after week.
Their performance is definitely good; and they certainly haven’t killed it as Mel believed they could. In fact, it is probably one of the more enjoyable acts from this year.
The cool suspended platform is also a bold move that heightens the electrical atmosphere clearly present in the room. This should keep them safe.
Natalie was scared when she found out they were going to do the John Farnham classic, but thought they were so good, even complementing Joe, who was exceptionally good this week compared to others. Guy echoes her sentiments; saying they all shone this week.
It was even moreso better knowing Freddie made the rap in the middle of the song up himself. Mel compliments Joe and Sophia before telling Freddie that his rap annoyed her so much as she hated it at all. She doesn’t like the red-suited choir in the background either.
Ronan notes that the judges have always had something negative to say about them because there are three of them up there; but to him, they are amazing! Woo, the audience says.
To save Three Wishez;
SMS ‘THREE WISHEZ’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 33 or vote through the X Factor app.
After the break, it is Natalie’s last over 25 of the night, Andrew Wishart with the Aussie classic, Flame Trees. Apparently it is to include more choreography.
Up on top of his platform, looking as suave as ever, he really looks like the showman! I’m not mad keen on his stubble, but his voice is one of the best I’ve heard tonight! This guy was born to be an Aussie legend; so it’s a pity he’s ended up here!
He gets a standing ovation from his mentor, at least.
Guy tells him that as usual, he is a trustworthy singer. He doesn’t call it perfect, but compliments his voice. Guy is glad that he put everything into the song this week.
Mel feels that was one of his best performances; upped from last week big time! Ronan didn’t believe in something about him up until tonight, where be believed in him!
Natalie compliments his stubble and he calls it the Mitchell Callaway look before acting subjectively due to a ‘lack of sleep’.
Like Andrew Wishart, save him;
SMS ‘ANDREW’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 34 or vote through the X Factor app.
After the break, it is another of Guy’s performers- Declan Sykes! Tonight, he will be performing Fall at Your Feet.
I love the background with all the Declan’s walking beside the central performer. His stripped back version of this song really works for him. It is on par with last week’s performance. There were some weak notes, but most of the time, it is brilliant.
Mel enjoyed it a lot; calling it different from last week but he was ‘in his own element’ and provided a ‘dramatic ending’. Ronan thinks one Declan is enough and tells him that he forgot his words half way through. Geez, I have to re-listen to that. He tells him to ‘strip is back more’, getting rid of the guitar he was playing.
Natalie believes that whatever happens, he will have a huge career out there and loved how he did tonight. She does think he pushed a little too hard on the vocals.
Guy picks up on how no one noticed how he ‘misplaced his entrance’ (not ‘forgot his words’).
Luke compliments Declan for composing himself after his moment of disclarity.
To vote for Declan;
SMS ‘DECLAN’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 35 or vote through the X Factor app.
Up next, it is Christina Parie who last week thought she was going to be in the bottom two. Tonight, she is going to be performing Weir by Killing Heidi.
Sitting on a big pink inflatable chair, this stage set up is already looking to be the best. For such a vocally demanding song, she does well, but falls flat on some notes. I think she may have been a bit overwhelmed at times.
Ronan says she had a tough week last week but he has to judge! He does not want to lose her but feels that her performance just wasn’t good enough saying she is better than that.
Natalie hates to say this, but she agrees with Ronan. She feels that over time, her spark is going despite the fact that the past few weeks have been her best.
Guy also agrees, wanting her fire back. He wants to know why Mel put her on a massive inflatable chair; singing at the same time, but Mel bites back, saying she was fine in rehearsals. Guy still feels she was struggling and while Christina admits it was challenging, she says it felt OK vocally.
Mel thinks there was nothing wrong and says she has dealt with a lot of stress coming out of school to do this and feels she is doing fine considering.
To Vote for Christina;
SMS ‘CHRISTINA’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 36 or vote through the X Factor app.
So, last for the night, but certainly not least, it is Guy’s (who makes a mention about introducing every second act) Reece Mastin performing tonight: Joker & The Thief.
I love the triangle set of lights Reece is performing between and trust me, this performance won’t be his last by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe not his strongest, but definitely all Reece. He also seemed to enjoy it, so that is good to see.
By the end of it though, he looked like he was running out of air! And when he tried to do a dancing solo, it kind of didn’t work, and the flashing camera movements were the only thing adding depth to the scene.
Mel acknowledges that he delivers a blockbuster week in, week out and believes that this week; he spoke with his head down too much and feels he isn’t giving us enough personality. She also didn’t like the dancing bit in the middle. She sums it up by calling it a knockout.
Ronan calls it boring…cue audience boos…before saying it is boring giving him good feedback every week…cue audience cheers. (Guy thinks he says this so people don’t vote to save him)
Natalie compliments Aussie songs (of course she would), before calling him great and Rockstar.
Mel, throughout the night, has been going on about Guy hogging the comment time on the panel and while it is getting a bit repetitive of Mel, she has a point. I think he takes up WAY too much time. Having to blog all these comments, I personally find it difficult keeping up with him. I’d like to measure time spent covering Guy’s views compared to the rest of the judge’s.
So, to save Reece;
SMS ‘REECE’ to 19 77 66 55 or call 1902 55 33 37 or vote through the X Factor app.
So, with that done, Luke asks for the judges opinions, but we won’t find out about that until after the break (why, this show is already running out of time).
After the break, we get the comments (Ronan thinks Johnny will be going home; Natalie thinks Johnny will also be going home; Guy thinks Christina may be going home and Mel thinks Three Wishez is going home because she feels the judges ganged up on Christina despite two out of three of them voting for Johnny to go home) and a wrap up of the phone numbers again and about 8 minutes over time, this baby wraps itself up!
There are plenty of ways Seven could cut this show down (removing Guy would be one of them), but I was happy that Seven at least didn’t continue into Body of Proof as they have been doing over the past couple of weeks; so if anyone were to tape tonight’s show, they would have gotten the whole thing.
The performances were great; but not as good as last week bar Andrew and Three Wishez. The stage designs were the hero of the episode.
Other than that, production qualities were high, rounding off another successful episode.
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Courtney’s Verdict: 8.7/10