‘The X Factor’ UK review: James Arthur, Kye Sones shine on Halloween show

This was Halloween night on “The X Factor,” and it’s fair to say that this was a pretty scary night of performances … and that is not a good thing. Many of the performances (especially in the middle of the show) really let us down, and there could be a number of people who end up finding themselves in trouble. (We could also see a major shake-up in our rankings.)

Before we get into the performances, we have to say something here that may be controversial: while we feel for Lucy Spraggan being sick here, should she really get a free pass to next week? If she had come on stage and struggled through a performance, she could have gone home … so basically, you’re rewarding someone for staying home, and this is not really how the world works.

Kye Sones – Finally, Kye took our advice! We really think he’s a likable guy, and in speeding things up and performing a cover of Robbie Williams’ “Let Me Entertain You.” He really threw everything into this performance, had a great tone, and even looked like a genuine male pop star. Will this actually be enough? We don’t know, as we think one of the reasons he is struggling with the votes is just because his personal story and background is not as easy to connect to as some of the male singers that are still left in the competition.

Union J – The boy band has had a few strong weeks now, and this performance of Beyonce’s “Sweet Dreams” certainly had much of what has made them successful. The only issue here was that there was something missing here, and the only thing we can really say is that the song choice did not really give them a chance to wow anyone after the crazy introduction by Kye.

Rylan Clark – We’ll admit that for the first minute of this performance, we actually really enjoyed what Rylan was going with Britney Spears’ “Toxic,” and his vocals were the best of the entire live show. He should have just stuck to that, since it went downhill in every way as he added more songs, leading up to the vocal car crash that was him using his falsetto.

Ella Henderson – First things first, the Little Red Riding Hood costume was awesome, and she also managed to make “Bring Me To Life” sound a little bit like “Rolling in the Deep.” With that being said, this was probably her worst performance of the live show. It was too serious, and the song did not do enough to show off who she is really is.

Christopher Maloney – We love how Christopher responds to criticism of him being cheesy by performing “I Just Died in Your Arms Tonight,” which can be best described as the $100 square of the 10-year aged cheddar that you buy at the specialty grocery store. He’s good at what he does, but this still to us has cruise ship written all over it. The only thing crazier than this? Watching Gary and Tulisa go at it.

District 3 – This was a hot mess, and not in the fun way. We don’t know what it was that went so wrong here, but it was completely all over the place. The vocals were the worst that the group has done during the live shows, and it also felt like “Glee” with the random mash-up that made no sense at all.

Jahmene Douglas – Unfortunately, the bad string continued here with a performance from Jahmene that really didn’t blow us away. Is he still the best male singer this season? Definitely, but the issue here is that as lovely as it was, we’re not really going to remember it compared to some of the others. Also a gem, Nicole Scherzinger’s comment here: “you’re obviously the greatest vocal acrobatic person.”

Jade Ellis – We don’t know why we haven’t connected to Jade most of the season, but it’s true … so much so that we have had her confused with Jade Collins for most of the season. At first, we thought that this was going to be the performance to change that … but the vocals just weren’t very good. She seemed behind for part of the song, and she really never felt completely confident on stage in what was a pretty raunchy performance.

James Arthur – Finally, we were left with James to give us some sort of redemption for a night that really never recovered after Kye opened the show. He performed a song that Kitty Brucknell killed (in a good way) last year in “Sweet Dreams,” and he did something so different with it that we loved it all over again. There’s just something in our gut that James really gets to, and it makes him a complete thrill to listen to time and time again. A great way to end the show.

Who was your favorite from this week’s show?

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