November 16, 2011 08:02 PM by Candace Young
Tonight, the top ten finalists will perform live on The X Factor. It’s Rock Week, which Simon Cowell predicts will be a nightmare. Host Steve Jones says life is about to get tougher for the top ten acts and their mentors – Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger, L.A. Reid, and Simon Cowell. Paula has already lost two acts and is down to just Lakoda Rayne representing the groups. Kicking off the night is LeRoy Bell. Keep reading for highlights…
LeRoy Bell, whom Nicole characterizes as a really chill dude, will be singing We’ve Got Tonight by Bob Seger. LeRoy does a very good job with the tune, and keeps it straight up without many changes. L.A. tells him that he looks great, and sounds great, but still isn’t working it like a rock star – he needs more. Paula also compliments his voice, and says what she thinks L.A. means is that there needs to be more of a connection with the audience. Simon says it was good, but there was zero originality in his version of the song – right now he can’t win the competition. L.A. agrees. Nicole disagrees with them and tells LeRoy he thinks tonight was his best yet.
Rachel Crow will be doing a Rolling Stones tune for Rock Week. Simon thinks she’s going to nail it. Rachel takes the stage with back-up singers and dancers and does a purring, sassy version of (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction, strutting and playing to the audience. L.A. asks, “Can you sell records? Can you sell tickets? Yes.” Rachel cheers. Nicole says this was her favorite performance of hers – she made it look easy. Paula tells her she’s one of her favorites and notes how she’s connecting with not only the camera, but the audience. Simon says he can see her winning the show.
Chris Rene is up next on The X Factor. L.A Reid, his mentor, says he’ll be performing a Bob Marley song tonight. Chris does a funkier, more contemporary version of No Woman, No Cry. He looks good tonight too. Nicole says it was very original, but not her favorite performance by him. Paula gets why L.A. chose the song for Chris – she buys into his originality. Simon loved the performance, but thought it was reggae, not rock. L.A. tells Chris he was really happy that he stayed on key and thought he did a great job.
Stacy Francis will be performing a Meatloaf song for Rock Week. Stacy has been bonding with her mentor, Nicole, who thinks she’s a superstar diva. Stacy hits the stage in a glittery dress and sings It’s All Coming Back To Me Now. The performance has a few down moments, but it’s very powerful on the whole. L.A. says she sang the song really well and he’s very proud of her. Paula calls it her least favorite performance of Stacy’s – she just didn’t feel it. Simon says her hair looks better this week, but he thought the song was a horrible choice. He warns she’s going backwards and needs to sort herself out. Nicole says she was real and authentic, and that’s rock enough.
Melanie Amaro will be singing a tune from one of Simon’s favorite bands this week – he thinks the song could make her an artist. Melanie sits on the stage beside a piano and sings Everybody Hurts by R.E.M. She sounds fantastic, but it’s a bit of stretch for her to be edgy. L.A. says he loves Melanie, but that was so not rock. Nicole would have loved it was a little more raw. Paula says she has an unparalleled voice, but she’d like to see her let go. Simon insists R.E.M. is a rock band and thinks the audience will back him up that it was great.
Josh Krajcik is up next live on The X Factor. Josh takes a more traditional approach to Rock Week as the lead singer in a rock band. He performs The Pretender by The Foo Fighters. It’s raunchy goodness. L.A. says he has the authenticity and stage presence – he’s the only person who’s really rocked the house tonight. Paula says it all worked – amazing! Simon calls it bloody fantastic. Nicole says it took her back – that’s how it’s done!
Astro, who is missing his mom back in New York, will be doing a song which became as big in hip hop as it did it rock. Astro takes the stage and raps to Every Breath You Take by Puff Daddy. There’s not very much ‘rock’ to it, but he’s totally impressive as always. Nicole calls it a smart choice, and thinks he’s ready for a five million dollar contract. Paula tells him he’s phenomenal and is ready right now. Simon is impressed that he knows who he wants to be and doesn’t compromise – he has a shot at winning. L.A. thinks he’ll be a major international star.
Lakoda Rayne, representing the last of Paula’s group category, perform You Can Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac. They infuse the song with energy and try to be edgy, but hearts, bows, and lipstick feature heavily, and it’s too peppy to be rock. L.A. likes that they had fun, and it was better, but isn’t sure it was amazing or great. Nicole thinks they found their lane – country rock! Simon thought it was a complete mess – it was gimmicky. Paula says the girls have earned their place on that stage – they did a great job. She thinks they can fill the void left by The Dixie Chicks.
Drew is up next live on The X Factor. She is still smarting from L.A.’s criticism of the previous week that she does the same thing over and over again. This week she sings With Or Without You by U2. It’s a slowed down version and her voice is the feature. Simon stands to applaud at the end. L.A. tells her she has the most original voice, and he loves her, but he’s still in the same place as last week and wants to see more. Nicole agrees she kept waiting for the tempo to pick-up and something different to happen – it was too slow for a rock song and she’s frustrated. Paula also suggests an up-tempo song might be a good idea. Simon says she did something that appealed to her fanbase and that was original.
Marcus Canty is going for sexy and dirty for Rock Week, according to mentor L.A. Reid. Marcus is concerned about being a role model for the church kids back home. Marcus hits the flaming red stage and does his best impression of a rock star as he performs Take A Little Piece Of My Heart by Janis Joplin. He even has rock chick back-up dancers and cool shades. Nicole thinks he rocked his church out tonight. Paula says he is the performer in this competition. Simon doesn’t think the song suited him – it was like him pretending to be somebody. L.A. thinks he rocked.
Visit our sister site SheKnows for more breaking news about celebrities and entertainment!