“Rock” invaded the “X Factor” stage this week and yielded some interesting results. I used air quotes around rock due to a couple of questionable song choices by the judges. Apparently, reggae is considered rock in one of the judge’s eyes. Is it me, or is “X Factor” starting to look and sound like “American Idol“? I already find myself in my usual Idol doldrums at this stage of the competition. The theme weeks definitely add to that dilemma. The show really needs to do something to step out of Idol’s shadow. And I’m not talking about implementing a cheesy boxing ring à la “The Voice“. Enough about that, let’s get to the performances.

Last week, Paula once again found two of her acts in the bottom two? Why does America hate groups so much? Because I know the public loves Paula. Hopefully, Abdul isn’t three for three this week. Not only is she an insightful mentor, but I love me some Lakoda Rayne. Check out how they fared and the rest of the Top 10 below. At the end of the post, I ranked all the acts. See if you agree with my rankings and post your own.

The Performances

LeRoy Bell

Song: We’ve Got Tonight by Bob Seger

Is it sad that I know and love this song. I love me some Bob Seger. LeRoy did him justice, but it was sorta of a snoozefest. With two groups already gone, didn’t you feel the judges minus Nicole were throwing him under the bus. I predict a Leroy elim coming soon. He went first plus received negative feedback. “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. I sense it’ll be for LeRoy Bell. How ya like my Ernest Hemingway reference? BAM.


Rachel Crow

Song: (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones

Up until last week, I wasn’t on the Rachel train. That soulful performance made me into a huge fan. Girlfriend kept the momentum going with this week’s show. Vocally on point, plus it was entertaining to watch. Crow is definitely a contend-ah.

Chris Rene

Song: No Woman, No Cry by Bob Marley

By far the worst song choice of the night. For that alone, Rene should be eliminated. Even though, he didn’t stray too far from his wheelhouse this wasn’t Rene’s finest hour. I like Chris, but why is he all of a sudden becoming more of a rapper than a singer. Let Astro do this thing and you go back to that slick sexy thing you exhibited during the judges’ homes for Rihanna. He’s in the bottom two for sure after this dreckitude.

Stacy Francis

Song: It’s All Coming Back to Me Now by Meat Loaf

Good news. It was way better than last week’s atrocity. Bad news. It was still awful IMHO. On paper, it looked like a winner but there was something just off about it. She never really hit her stride. Side note, she did look gorgeous. I want the Stacy Francis I feel in love with back in Boot Camp to return, because I’m over this new one.

Melanie Amaro

Song: Everybody Hurts by R.E.M.

Simon should’ve expected to be called out for this song choice, especially after chastising LA’s Bob Marley pick. I love Melanie, but I’d love her to do an uptempo song one week. Even Mariah, Celine and Whitney do fast songs every once in a while. No offense Stacy Francis, but my eyes and EARS are still hurting from last week’s “Queen of the Night“. For that matter, so does Simon’s. Melanie needs to show her how a real diva-in-training struts their stuff on stage.

Josh Krajcik

Song: The Pretender by Foo Fighters

Was it more or did anyone else experience an epileptic seizure during that barrage of flickering lights? That was some insane shizz. Vocally he was good, but I didn’t feel an emotional connection to the song. I’m a Josh fan but he was middle of the road for me this week.

Astro

Song: I’ll Be Missing You by Puff Daddy

You’d think Astro would have the biggest hurdle with theme weeks. In actuality, he’s got the easiest road. All he needs is some recognizable sample from that specific week’s genre and insert his lyrical madness. Eventually, people will tire of his hip hop swagger and land in the bottom two… just not this week. He’s a shoo-in til Top 6. To me “Jump” is still his best performance.

Lakoda Rayne

Song: Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac

Let me preface this and say I LOVE LAKODA RAYNE. There is a gap in the market and Dani, Kari, Hayley and Paige could sell millions of records if given the right material. They’re Dixie Chicks meets All Saints. Imagine a “Never Ever” and “Wide Open Spacesmashup. “Glee” are you listening??? There were some pitch problems but I absolutely loved their performance. I found myself clapping like a baby seal (Paula) when they were done. Hopefully, with the producers FINALLY giving the girls a backstory, America gets behind these girls. Don’t get it twisted. I don’t think they have a shot of winning, but I’d love for them to reach the finals or Top 6 at least. Being the last group left, they stand a good shot of achieving that.

Drew

Song: With or Without You by U2

Sure, it’s a little predictable but you don’t listen to Jewel hoping to hear Lady Gaga. Drew is Drew and I hope she stays that way. That said, the arrangement could’ve picked up to a crushing crescendo to stretch her out vocally. At least once in the competition, I want to hear an “American Idol” type money note. America loves that. Side note. Tonight, it became clear to me that Drew is the lovechild of Enya and Sinéad O’Connor. Didn’t “Orinoco Flow” come to mind during parts of her performance?

Marcus Canty

Song: Piece of My Heart by Janis Joplin

Hands down, Marcus wins the prize for being the one musical act to meld together his own style with this week’s theme perfectly. Sorry LA, but Bob Marley is not rock and Simon, your argument for an R.E.M. ballad is weak at best. Back to Marcus. Dude gave it all he got this week. I love how the PK (preacher’s kid) said he wasn’t going to compromise his principles and was seen lying on his back going through the legs of a bevy of dancers. LOVE IT. Definitely wasn’t expecting that. For the first time, I finally got the Bobby Brown comparison, LA’s been pushing down our throats.

Rankings

10. Chris Rene
9. Stacy Francis
8. LeRoy Bell
7. Josh Krajcik
6. Astro
5. Lakoda Rayne
4. Melanie Amaro
3. Rachel Crow
2. Marcus Canty
1. Drew

Prediction

So far Paula Abdul is the only mentor to feel the sting of being in the bottom. Due to the fact there is only one group left, either Nicole, LA or Simon will know it also come later tonight. I’m going out on a limb and say that Lakoda Rayne won’t even land in the bottom two. I think the general public is going to empathize with Paula after her Oscar-winning performance during last week’s results show. Plus, I think America got to know Paige, Hayley, Kari and Dani this week and their performance was pretty good. Even if they did land in the bottom two, there is no way the judges, producers or Simon will leave Paula with nothing to do for the next few weeks. Being the last group left has secured Lakoda Rayne safety for at least a couple more weeks.

Hopefully LeRoy Bell and Chris Rene land in the bottom, even though Stacy Francis deserves it after last week’s debacle and murdering Meat Loaf’s ballad last night. What happened to my mascara-running diva? She was so good before. I still think she has a lot more “show” left, so I’m hoping she stays. In the end, the judges will let LeRoy Bell go. Who do you think will go? How would you rate this week’s performances? Post your rankings below.

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