Not the end of the Road
The question was would anyone given the chance to perform a number one produce a pile of number twos?
Ray – 'Livin' La Vida Loca'
What a mistake to make.
Ray strayed away from his favoured swing style and the results were more than embarrassing.
There’s no denying the performance was bursting with energy and enthusiasm and despite a dodgy beginning the vocals got back to something approaching a reasonable standard towards the end.
He just reminded me of a kid performing in front of his family. His family can be justifiably proud of him but in no way is he a genuine challenger to win.
Robert – ‘'You Are Not Alone'
Not my favourite Michael Jackson and I thought it was a strange choice of song for the soulful Robert.
To be fair him he made a fair fist of it but it wasn’t he ideal vehicle for him to show off his talents and with the competition at its fiercest now, better materials would have given him more scope.
Eton Road – 'I Don't Feel Like Dancin'
I suppose if you did feel like dancing you’d be more likely to be sticking with Tess and Brucie on the other side.
You can’t get more contemporary than the Scissor Sisters so this song really would show us if the boys could live up to the promise that have shown in fits and starts.
To be honest it was a bit of a patchwork quilt of an effort. Early on I felt they hadn’t done enough to put their own stamp on the song and when they did in the later part it felt a bit odd.
I think their problem is that they haven’t actually got a distinct enough style as yet and they need to develop one if they are going to create the sort of following that generates guaranteed sales.
Leona – 'Bridge Over Troubled Water'
If I seem a bit overly critical here it’s because this is a competition and sometimes to differentiate between acts you have to look at he negatives because the positives are more difficult to split.
That’s where I have a problem with Leona because there are so few negatives to discuss.
A sublime performance. I can imagine her doing a Bond theme in years to come. She has the potential to become an iconic artiste, whether she wins this show or not.
Ben – 'With A Little Help From My Friends'
To be honest this was the first time during the evening that I actually felt that the right song had been selected for the correct singer and if Leona had had any thoughts about running away with the competition they’d certainly have been put into check with this show stopping performance from Ben.
This was Ben really showing what he is capable of and this was probably his best effort to date.
MacDonald Brothers – 'Love Is All Around'
That song was starting to get on many people’s nerves when it was number one because it was around for months. I’m starting to feel the same about these guys because they’ve hung around too long for my taste.
There was actually nothing wrong at all with their performance tonight and they weren’t as mind numbingly boring as they’d been in previous weeks. Maybe if they started the competition in this sort of form I’d have more time for them but as things stand there were at least four acts left in the show better than they were.
I’ve not mentioned the presenter this year so time for a bit overdue praise in that direction.
Speculation about The Thornton’s future on the show has been a bit worrying. In football the best referees are the ones you don’t notice and I feel a bit the same about Kate.
The true stars of the show should be the acts and they already have to jostle for position with the egos of he judges so the last thing you need is a presenter trying to put their stamp on the show.
Kate gets the balance just about right and manages to encourage the acts and keep the judges in their place without it ever feeling like she’s trying to steal the show. There are very few presenters who can pull this off and any attempt to replace her would be a massive gamble.
She’s doing a marvellous job and I’m so glad we haven’t any of that “gonna find out after the break” nonsense this year.
There is no accounting for public taste but for my money the worst two acts were clear of the bottom two this week.
Once they were declared safe there was very little doubt who the bottom two would be but both acts would have a right to be aggrieved and I wonder whether in his heart of hearts Louis was really pleased with which of his acts was left facing the exit door.
I didn’t envy Simon having to make the final decision though. I really like Robert but his consistent appearances at the lower end of the voting wouldn’t augur well for him being able to win while I’m still of the opinion that we haven’t heard the best of Eton Road yet.
Simon may have made the right decision in axing Robert but I’m going to miss him and I wonder if tonight’s song choice was the nail that sealed his coffin.