X Factor 2011: 16 acts performed, but were they any good? Dean 'Midas' Maynard reviews the first live show...

Amelia Lily

After a week of interviews, rehearsals and make overs (yes they've all had one), it really was time for the X Factor 2011 final 16 to face the "live show" music...

I have to admit that I was excitedly nervous, especially as my Midas Act, Janet Devlin and wildcard Sami Brookes were performing. There are some pretty darn good acts in the mix this year. Seeing how they cope under the pressure does bring on the nerves.

The honour of opening the first live show went to Amelia Lily, who oozes confidence and a maturity way beyond her 16 years. She blasted out a cool and sassy performance not without similarity too stateside Kelly Clarkson. This competition is tough however, throwing surprises in the mix. The standard of girls this year does mean that anyone of them could go! I think it may not be as comfortable as everyone thinks.

First up for the overs, was an oven ready Johnny Robinson. You know exactly what you are going to get from him but I like him, not so much the voice, but him I like. A quirky, bubbly character who would light up a room and make you smile. If he stays he's guaranteed to become this years dressing up doll! Lady GaGa would love him.

What I like about my job is being proved wrong and girl band Rythmix did just that. Their harmonies were tight, they looked like a band and I think they could do well, although I think Gary Barlow saying they are the best girl band ever on the show was a bit over the top... he has clearly forgotten the Conway sisters.


Rounding up a few of the next few acts. Frankie Cocozza was better that expected, still think his voice is not as strong as some of the other lads in his category. But he is trendy and would find his place in the current music scene.

Sophie Habibas has a very strong voice and I think she could take on anything with ease BUT we still don't really know her and time could be running out.

Jonjo's performance and song choice was not good. The audience's reaction said it all, although Gary saying that he had helped made Louie's vote off decision easier, was a little harsh. They need mentor guidance and clearly Louis had let the guy down this week.

2 shoes borrowed the car from Sheila's wheels for their take on a Girls Aloud classic, it's no secret that I like these girls, they are fun and very good singers. I hope that Tulisa gives them another chance next week.

James Michael started well but it very quickly went down hill and I'm sorry James but it was the worst performance of the night. For Tulisa to give the praise she did, will not help, the British public are not silly, we know when something is not good and that was not good.

8 down, 8 to go...

Misha B was up next and gave one of the performances of the night, strong vocal and she looked great... just please stop rapping in every song.

Boy band Nu Vibe looked like 5 lads who were trying to hard to make it look like they were all good mates, it didn't work for me, although Ashford Campbell was a positive stand out.

My Midas wildcard Sami Brookes was up next and I think Sami showed everyone why she deserves to be on that stage. What were you thinking Louis? Very strong vocal and if she leaves the competition Gary Barlow has threatened to leave the show. Think she may be safe then!


Marcus Collins' song choice did not suit him at all and his energy and attitude saved the performance. I know he can sing, he just needs better songs.

The Risk showed that they a serious contenders in this competition by nailing their song. I also commend the wardrobe department who were obviously thinking about the credit crunch and decided to recycle some of the wardrobe from previous series. Coloured trousers. It's been done. JLS anybody?

The last boy of the night was by far the best performance in his category. Step up Scouser Craig Colton.

Craig sang one of my favourite songs of 2011, Jar of Hearts by Christina Perri. His first live moment in the spotlight was faultless, a strong, emotional vocal and sung how the song was meant to be performed. Brilliant. Brilliant. Brilliant.

Kitty Brucknell was last up for the overs. Now giving her her due, she did come across a little better this week. Wonder if someone has had a quiet word? The performance however, was forgettable and her vocal could not handle the epic Queen song she took on.

Last up on this eventful first live show night was Midas Act Janet Devlin. Her performance was in one of my friends words "spellbinding". I agree. Her voice, image and personality is so different from everybody else in the competition. But that's why she stands out. Win or lose the X Factor this girl is set to be a huge star.

Huge credit must go to Kelly Rowland, who gave out constructive advice to all the acts throughout the show. I really like her.

So, the twist. Four will leave on Sunday. Who will it be?

Well, from the overs Jonjo looks in trouble, the groups will be between Nu Vibe and 2 Shoes (sorry girls, hope I'm wrong) James Michael will leave from the boys and Sophie Habibas or Amelia Lily will exit from the girls.

Right now where did Johnny Robinson leave my silver suit...

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