‘The X Factor’ Recap: First Live Show, Top 12 Becomes Top 9

Written by Lauren Laffer
‘The X Factor’ Recap: First Live Show, Top 12 Becomes Top 9

X Factor Top 9 - CountryMusicIsLove

The X Factor USA is back and kicked off the live shows Tuesday (10/29) night. With four contestants in four categories, it soon became necessary to narrow the field down to three. Each category would perform and one singing hopeful would be sent home by the mentor of that category.

Demi Lovato’s group of Girls kicked off the night. Florida native Rion Paige sang Lovato’s hit song, “Skyscraper,” and had to scrape the judges jaws off the floor.

Judge Paulina Rubio said “I love this performance. I feel the power that you have, the courage, and I love you for that. And that was amazing!” Simon Cowell praised Paige’s “brilliant” song choice and hoped that she continued in the competition. Her mentor Lovato was equally as impressed, adding “I’m so proud of you. You did exactly what I said in rehersals to engage the audience with your emotions.”

Rion Paige X Factor - CountryMusicIsLove

Following the conclusion of the round, Lovato sent home Danie Geimer. Paige, Ellona Satiago and Khaya Cohen will move on next round.

Kelly Rowland’s group, the Over 25s, went third, and Nashville bartender and former Broadway star Rachel Potter sang Lee Ann Womack’s “I Hope You Dance.” Following a disappointing Four Chair Challenge, Potter knew she had something to prove. Rubio said “You have such a beautiful tone. That was brilliant from beginning to end.” Cowell agreed, adding “The last time we heard you sing, you were horrible, it was hard to watch. I’ve got to give you credit. That song was perfect for you.”

Rachel Potter X Factor - CountryMusicIsLove

Once the round was over, Rowland faced the toughest decision thus far. In the end, Rowland sent home James Kenney. Potter, Jeff Gutt and Lillie McCloud remain in the competition.

Last but not least, Cowell’s Groups took the stage. Restless Road, a group made up of formally individual singers Zach Beeken, Andrew Scholz and Colton Pack, took the stage to sing Katy Perry’s “Roar.” After receiving a standing ovation from their mentor, the judges went on to praise their unique song choice. “Wow, what a way to close the show. That was amazing,” Lovato started, with Rubio adding “You guys have such a great chemistry between the three of you. The song was such a great choice. You guys nailed it.” Rowland agreed, saying “I am totally, totally buying every Restless Road record.” Cowell concluded that “It was a tricky song choice, but it actually works. I’m very proud of you three.”

Restless Road X Factor - CountryMusicIsLove

Cowell was forced to make a difficult decision, but the easiest one went to the group that he believed could “actually win the competition,” Restless Road. The final decision had Cowell sending home Roxxy Montana. Restless Road, Alex and Sierra and Sweet Suspense will move on to the next round.