Are you ready to get more of “Let It Shine“? Through the first two episodes, we’ve found this an incredibly entertaining entry in the singing-show pantheon. We don’t quite care if the judges are too nice or if there are people auditioning for this show with more musical theater experience. What really matters most is that you have people with personality, and also people who can sing reasonably well at the same time.
Just as we’ve done with every other contestant this season, we are going to be reviewing the episode tonight live! Be sure to refresh the page throughout for some further updates.
Jordan Harvey – When it comes to personal preference, he has to have one of our favorite voices that we’ve heard on the show so far. He’s got this voice that could be country, folk, soul, or rock. He reminds us a little bit of Mumford & Sons and The Lumineers in terms of his style and his ability. He also has a face that looks a little like Bill Hader and his “Saturday Night Live” character of Stefon. SUPREMELY enjoyable way to start the show. Our Score: 5. Judges’ Score: 18.
AJ Bentley – He’s a talented guy with a wonderful sort of self-awareness. He knows what sort of powerful her is and what some his strengths are: Dancing and moving around the stage. He’s not a tremendous singer, and he had a fairly safe song that he knew that he could go up on the stage and execute. Yet, you can see some of the talent that is there and why the judges would want him. Our Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 18.
Dion – We feel for the guy. He got the whole pre-audition package and Gary Barlow even visiting him after a rugby rehearsal, but when he went on the stage he almost froze. He felt incredibly nervous, and also a little bit boring. He had a nice voice, but were it not for the package about his sports history there is a good chance we wouldn’t even remember him. Score: 3. Judges’ Score: 13.
Matt Thorpe -Credit to him for going up there and doing a slow song — given that dancing and being an entertainer is part of what the judges are looking for, we’re not seeing a lot of people go up on stage and doing ballads. We were about to give Matt a 5 based on the vocals and emotion that he was bringing out there on the stage, but then he went completely bonkers with the runs and the hand expressions. Even for musical theater, he has to dial it back somewhat. Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 20.
Dan Budd – He does look a heck of a lot like Robbie Williams, and it really does make some sense that he works as a tribute act? He’s a really good singer, and there is some personality that is there in the way in which he performs. The biggest thing to be concerned about with him is that he may not have enough of a personality with he’s not being Robbie. Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 16.
Elijah – He seemed to be a sweet guy, and we love that he took a big risk with a performance of “Greased Lightning.” Here’s the bad news — he wasn’t a good singer, and he wasn’t a good dancer. Everything about this felt corny, and it was uncomfortable at times to watch. Score 1. Judges’ Score: 11.
Kyle Passmore – After a montage of a number of different performers, including a guy who literally had the middle name “Fabulous,” we then got to Kyle. While there was some shakiness in his voice, we like that he came up on stage and really poured his heart into the song. There was an eagerness about him, something that suggested that he had no ego and would get better as time went on. That’s why he was worthy of another shot in the next round. Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 19.
Matt Knight – This dude can dance! By far, he was the most entertaining visually of anyone that we saw on the show this time around. While there were moments when his voice didn’t live up to the dance moves, we’re honestly shocked that he was even able to breathe through all of this. Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 16.
Josh Bailey – On the flip side, Josh was all about singing rather than dancing, and he really delivered on most of that with a slow, emotional performance. We just wish that his performance wasn’t cut off here and there with Matt’s, since it took you out of the world. Score: 4. Judges’ Score: 19.
Hercules Smith – There’s a complicated question around Hercules. As a vocalist, he’s amazing, and he also happened to go up on stage and give one of the most emotional performances of the entire season to date. He’s extraordinary, and we probably came closer to crying here than at any other point on the show. Unfortunately, we don’t know how he fits into the idea of a boy-band stage show AT ALL. For the moment, we don’t quite care about that. Score: 5. Judges’ Score: 16.
Who was your favorite from tonight’s “Let It Shine” audition episode? Let us know in the comments, and head over here to see some other news and reviews when it comes to the show. (Photo: ITV.)