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X Factor USA Recap: Josh Krajcik Does Rihanna, Chris Rene Performs Original Song

Josh Krajcik

The final five X Factor USA contestants are so close but so far from the $5 million prize and no one wants to go home now. They’ve got just one performance show standing between them and the semi-finals so they need to make every performance count. Luckily, they had the chance to make an impression on the judges and most importantly America as they fought it out during two separate performance rounds.

The first round focused on the top five performing dance songs while the second round introduced a little twist in the game. The contestants were told to scrap their original second songs and given just 24 hours to pick new ones to perform on the show. With such a short turn around, could they possibly deliver a performance worthy of the semi-finals?

Here’s a rundown of how it all happened:

Round 1

Melanie Amaro: Melanie’s been singing ballad after ballad and even with the dance theme, she’s found a way to sing another one. Mel takes on Adele’s smash hit “Someone Like You” and turns it into a dancefloor burner. She gives great vocals on the sadly abbreviated performance and impresses the judges. “The only thing that bothered me about it is that it was really good,” L.A. Reid said. Nicole Scherzinger thought she looked and sounded like a rockstar diva and Paula Abdul’s only complaint was that “it was too short.” Simon Cowell loved Melanie’s performance and thought she could score a hit record with her dance version.

Marcus Canty: After spending two weeks in a row in the bottom two, Marcus really needed to deliver a knock out, kick booty performance. Gosh, this was not it. He performs Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody” and overall, it was perfectly fine but for the high stakes, Canty really should have came out swinging. The judges ate it up though: Nicole adored it, as did Paula and Simon–even after he took out Drew in the final showdown last week.

Rachel Crow: Rachel’s taking her fate in the palm of her hands by choosing her own song this week. She chooses Bruno Mars “Nothin’ On You” and is just beyond adorable while performing it. She was even more adorable after when L.A. complained about a part of the lyrics. She had a quick and snappy comeback but remained sweet while quipping with the judge. Love!

Josh Krajcik: Josh knows the way to our hearts: performing a song by one of our absolute favorites, pop princess Rihanna. Josh turns her current Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 “We Found Love” into an adult contemporary wonder as his raspy voice soared over the track. L.A. and Simon completely sucked at life by ripping Josh’s performance apart, saying the singer is lucky to have another chance to sing.

Chris Rene: More Rihanna? Yes, please! The pop starlet is having the best night ever as Chris takes on the T.I. and RiRi track “Live Your Life.” The performance was decent-ish but when did Live Your Life become a dance track? Yet another theme fail by Chris. The judges are clearly still trying to make Chris happen by swooning all over the performance.

Round 2

Melanie Amaro: Melanie is taking on not one but two divas as she performs the Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey song “When You Believe.” The voice on this child is just stunning. She gives a near-perfect rendition of a song that shouldn’t be touched by many and–as they should–the judges loved it. L.A., as always, throws in a back-handed insult by calling it “safe” but if that’s as bad as it gets, we’re sure Mel will take it.

Marcus Canty: Marcus got soulful with a performance of the Donny Hathaway classic “A Song For You.” His rendition was pretty standard but it was a solid vocal performance. “One of your best performances that I’ve witnessed,” Paula said. “I thought it was good but I’m not jumping out of my chair to be honest,” Simon said. He did add that Marcus was likable, which is super important on these shows.

Rachel Crow: Rachel chose to sing the Michael Jackson song “Music And Me” and we can’t help but think of just how awesome this performance would have been if little Rach had more than 24 hours to prepare. Despite the short notice, Rachel still did a good job. “I love that you picked that song for yourself,” L.A. said. “You’re every girl’s best friend and every parent’s daydream,” Paula chimed in. Good remarks and an overall, solid night for the tween.

Josh Krajcik: Josh is in it to win it! For his second performance of the night, he chooses “Something” by the Beatles and completely slays the song. His performance is the perfect mix of aggression, passion and vulnerability–all with fan-freaking-tastic vocals. “When you sing that way, that’s what I love,” L.A. said before throwing in a completely lame comment about the performance being what he called “ever so slightly karaoke.” Whatever L.A.! “Adjectives don’t describe your brilliance anymore. They just don’t measure up,” Paula said of Josh’s spectacular performance. Simon seemed to love it and says Josh needs to strip away the crazy props and do what he does best–just sing.

Chris Rene: If an original song got him into the competition, another original song can keep him in it, right? Chris sure is hoping so as he whips out the original track “Where Do We Go From Here” for his last shot at the semi-finals. Perched on and chair and strumming away at his guitar, Rene performed the song a moved the crowd and judges. “Sky’s the limit with you, baby” Nicole said. “That was a stroke of genius,” Simon added.

Predictions: Marcus Canty’s time is up

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Comments

  1. Hey everyone… i’m a big fan of “Melanie Amaro”, and I want her to win this thing….. I was very up set that Drew got sent home.However one thing i want to say is that Nichol, fail to realised that she started from a low profile, she just didn’t burst out with fame….. thumbs down for her…. and Paula….but thumbs up for Simon……

  2. great show last night- everyone did really really well. while josh & melanie have amazing voices i would never buy their album & for the 2nd week in a row i’m voting chris rene!

    • I respect Chris for singing an original song, but his voice is usually awful and, as usual, that was the case last night. Surprisingly, he hit a few notes in his original, but the lyrics and song were about as simplistic as you can possibly get and it would NEVER sell to anyone over 20…

      • lovinpeace77 says:

        I’m over 20 and I would defn buy his album!
        No question Melanie and Josh can sing BUT there’s something about Chris Rene…he touches my soul with his voice, lyrics and spirit…he’s got my vote!!

  3. Blahblahblah says:

    Such terrible reviews all across the internet on last nights episode. The one that bothers me the most are the criticisms towards Chris. Especially the above comment where he wouldn’t appeal to people over 20…lol how about the exact opposite? He appeals to all genres, heavily. Hell he moved Stevie Wonder for crying outloud. I’m sure you’re a big Rachel Crowe fan and can’t wait til she has a hit show on the family channel and does something “Selena Gomez’-ish”. Get real with comment like that. Also his voice and delivery on his original were heart felt and REAL. Real good, really.

    • sadie smith says:

      Agree, I love Chris Rene. He is a talented guy, singer/rapper/songwriter, likeable and has stage presence. I am rooting for him as he gives hope to people with addiction. He is proof that you can overcome it.
      I love Drew also but unfortunately Paula did not let America decide. Her dislike for Drew made her kick her off the show. Cruel and ungrateful to Simon who gave her the job. Paula’s contract at AI was not renewed due to her histrionics.

  4. Maybe I’m too old, but give me great vocals every time. Melanie and Josh are not only great vocalists, meaning they can hit the notes, but they also have soul, I can feel it. The others have interesting backstories and should have a future singing their music, but I want the true vocalists. Rachel is very good, but not quite great yet. She should do something with Disney. I’m less sure about Marcus and Chris.

    • I can not stand Rachel, she is an amateur at best, she should be in an 8th grade talent show. Marcus is better than her. Marcus is not the best but is entertaining.
      I will be happy with either Chris, Melanie or Josh winning. Not sure I would buy a Melaine song though, but would buy a Josh song or Chris song today. Love that Chris sings his own songs, unlike Astro, I can understand Chris’s songs. He is not the best vocalists (that would be Melanie) but is the most entertaining to me. He has the look, personality and the sad story behind him.
      Again, Josh, Chris or Mel to win. If Rachel wins I will not watch next time. Put her on disney or on broadway.

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Paula should have kept her mouth shut and let the audience votes decide who stayed on (between Marcus and Drew). The judges need to be voting for and supporting all the contestants – not just the ones they mentored. It was very obvious that she was voting against Simon instead of for a contestant. Especially when she had the audacity to say she based it on their “save me” songs. Marcus missed so many notes I felt sorry for him. He knew he did poorly, that’s why he did a “begging” speach at the end. And Paula fell for it. Shame on her.

  6. Did anyone else notice that Nicole looked to LA Reid in a way that said I want to vote for your guy in my loyalty to for , but Rachael was better – so she took the Corard way out – When she turned to Paula – I think Paula put in Nicoles head to lemost gorgeous women on the planet – but she makes a piss poor judge by copping out and letting the crowd make the decision – they had to know that Marcus did a tad bit better last night – But Rachael crushed him tonight – so Nicole’s cop out because she became confused about the difference in her relationships with other judges more so than being a fair and onest judge, by doing so she killed Rachael Nicole was more interested in doing right for LA rahter that judging correctly, on what she had just heard. Nicole knew she did the wrong thing by her actions after hearing the nationwide vote from the previous night. Rachael isn’t the best singer in the group but her overall performance was better and her voice was more quality consistant than Marcus’s was throughout the show. Marcus could move around the stage and excite the crowd better but his actual singing was much less quality then Rachael’s.
    LA Reid,s vote for Marcus is what he had to do to be loyal to Marcus as one of his team members. But you could tell that by his comments to both Rachael Blew him away much more than Marcus’s did. One must wonder what power La has over Nicole, has he ever produced any of her work, or does she just dislike Simon that much. Nicole could not bear up over the politics within the judges – so she runs away emotionally, a cowards way out – that doesn’t make for a good impartial judge. Instead of voting fairly she eliminated the wrong person – Rachael is tallented and will have a great career, I guess this was a hard lesson for her to learn that rightness and fairness isn’t often exemplified in others – The competition betweeen judges motivates this kind of unfairness – just review the judges comments after the 4 teams were established, from that point on it was about their inner arguing and making poor comments about performers who were not on their paticular team. They got so petty that they told the performers that they did a good singing job, but their coragraphy, their outfits, the poor choices of songs their team leader did caused them to judge the actual talent unfairly – they were obviously simply trying to put down the other judges – but at the same time they made comments to the performers that were not real, How can you say one moment that your singing was great, but your teal leader was horrilbe – The performers get lost in the real meaning of the show. Wow does that take the focus off the talent and put in on the judges – No wonder real truth is absent from this show – and it has become a show of and for the judges rather than the talent. I don’t personally care much for Simon’s ego, over the top pride, but I think he knows how to judge better than any of the others. Someones turned the XFactor shown from a talent show/contest to a reality show staring and mostly about the judges.

  7. josh krajcik not good singer for me not may tip melani amaro shes church singer not sing shes screams
    CHRIS RENE NO DOUBT THERE BEST TALENT VERY UNIQUE CONGRATULATIONS PRETTY MUCH A TRUE ORIGINAL ARTIST OF THE PUBLIC WILL BE IN YOUR SIDE CHRIS RENE VOTE FOR CHRIS RENE.

  8. CHRIS RENE BE SEEN BY MILLIONS OF PEOPLE IS BIG STAR STEVIE WONDER NAME OF VERY SUCCESSFUL TURNED TO SAY THAT HIS MUSIC YONG HOMIE IS THE BEST THERE IS NO BETTER SPINATION PRIVILEGES HE ENJOYED A CALL FROM STEVIE WONDER IN TOP 5 ONLY FO CHRIS RENE.CHRIS RENE IS GRANDSON OF LEON RENE FAMOUS COMPOSER OF MUSIC AND FOUNDER OF RECORD LABELS.VOTE FOR CHRIS RENE.

  9. CHRIS RENE AS OLWAYS TAKES THE STAGE BUST THERE ARE NO COMENT HES BRILIANT SAIMON COWELL SAID NOBADY CANT TOUCH CHRIS IS TRUE ARTIST VOTE FOR CHRIS RENE.

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  1. […] final five X Factor USA contestants are so close but so far from the $5 million prize and no one wants to go home now. They’ve got just one performance show standing between them and […]

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