X FACTOR RECAP: The Top 16 Perform Live!
Tonight on The X Factor, it's our first episode with the new hosts: Mario Lopez, Mario Lopez's dimples and Khloe Kardashian. Whether you missed the episode or just want to see all of the performances, read on for a full recap!
The theme is a super vague "Made in America" and first up is Paige Thomas, wearing a cringeworthy sci-fi outfit. I get it, Paige wanted to go for the edgy glamour. But she's a pretty girl normally - you'd think someone along the way would have told her sticking a robot porcupine on her head wasn't the way to go. She works it on "What is Love" by Haddaway, though, and gets praise from all four judges for her confidence and flash. "You know what, Paige, the whole point of this show is to find an artist who could work in the real world," Simon says. "You nailed it."
From the teens, Arin Ray is up next with a shaky vocal on "You Keep Me Hanging On" (originally by the Supremes) and it's kind of like he's trying to perform the way he saw Chris Brown in concert do once. It's not horrible or anything, but it never really seems to be a genuine star performance - it's a good imitation, I think, at best. He gets underwhelming judges' comments except from his mentor Britney, who obviously tells him he was "a little genius."
David Correy, from LA's Over 25s, follows with "My Love Is Your Love" by Whitney Houston. I personally really like it - he gets the crowd involved and while the crowd on The X Factor is undoubtedly the easiest group of people on the planet to get to cheer (do those teenage girls ever take a breath?) he's able to fill up the stage with personality and his vocal isn't half bad.
Sister C's segment leads off with footage of Simon telling them they're not likable to the audience. I don't think about them one way or another, but something tells me that's Simon's passive-aggressive way of telling them he doesn't like them. Either way, they do fine on "Hell on Heels" - the lead singer keeps having to look at the floor because she's wearing shoes she's clearly not used to, so that's kind of amusing, but other than that I'm just a little bored by it.
Jennell Garcia chooses "Home Sweet Home" (the Carrie Underwood version, I'm assuming). Jennel hasn't really made an impression up until this point, but this performance is really solid and although she let Demi's stylists turn her hair into what ends up looking a bit like a costume wig, I'm really impressed and she definitely nailed it and Demi tells her that she feels like crying.
Diamond White is up next, and she's chosen Train's "Hey, Soul Sister." I don't hate it, but it's not a song that really showcases Diamond's voice as well as she probably could have on something else. Still, for a 13-year-old she comes across as a real natural on the stage. I think LA calls her "Diana," but whatever. He likes it and so do the other three judges.
Vino Alan takes the stage. He gets a rough start on "Gotta Be Somebody" by Nickelback (seriously). The judges give him a less than warm reception, but Vino takes their criticisms well, especially Simon, who says that Vino is more of a soul singer than a rock singer. I like Vino, but that performance was just kind of there. Also, the folks from Nickelback are Canadian and the theme is "Made in America" so...there's that.
I've made no secret of the fact that I'm not very knowledgable about rap - still, Lyric 145 delivers a performance that's really entertaining on DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince (aka Will Smith)'s "Boom! Shake the Room" with a bit of "Gangnam Style" thrown in for good measure. Okay, so it's "not hip hop," LA Reid says over and over, but it was fun.