The episode starts with Robbie and the Groups. Robbie treats them to tennis and a bbq. The next day for performances, Robbie brings in his guest judge David Walliams. LMA Choir, A Star, Misunderstood, and Vibe5 make it through to the live shows.
Next up is Louis Tominson with his Boys category in Ibiza. After meeting up on the beach for a group hug, they’re off for some dune buggying and dinner.
Louis said, “Naturally, this situation is intimidating. I think the most important thing is that you’re proud and you’ve left nothing.” Louis said his biggest memory was being put together in the band because it was an exciting adventure to start together and getting to know each other while going through “this crazy journey”.
For performance day, Louis brought in his guest judges, Liam Payne and Nile Rodgers. Louis joked with Liam, “We’ve been here doing this before, haven’t we?” Liam replied, “I’ve been sent home from here before!”
Dalton was up first. After Nile joked that he wanted everyone to stop with the “legend” stuff because it makes him feel old, Dalton introduced himself as an ordinary kid from Jamaica that had been told “no” his whole life. Dalton gave a strong performance with a high note that blew the judges away. Afterwards, Louis said, “I got chills, man.” He continued, “What was so incredible about that, aside from the unbelievable vocal, was the whole story that you just told us before that and it came to life in that performance. You achieved exactly what you wanted and I believed every single word.” Louis called it near-perfect in vocals. Louis said he finally got the emotional connection from Dalton that he had been missing.
Next was Armstrong. Louis commented on how nervous Armstrong seems. Louis asked Armstrong to describe his song without giving it away and Armstrong replies about being “all in”, which is a sign that something wild is about to happen.
Armstrong does a slowed down version of the Friends them, turning the poppy, cheerful number into a soulful song with a whole different vibe.
Louis said, “What you’ve just done should make you really, really proud. Your song choice is very, very clever. It’s amazing, really.” Louis discusses with Nile and Liam how there’s a risk factor taking Armstrong to the live shows because of the nerve factor.
Next up is Thomas Pound whose message was be who you are, be different, be you. Louis said, “Let’s see that fight in the performance then.” Thomas sings “One Night Only” and gets Tommo’s toe tappin’! Louis said, “Thomas, your unapologetic personality is so infectious. I just couldn’t stop smiling, man.” Louis literally trying to contain the smile….but nope. There it is.
Next was J-sol. It wasn’t his strongest performance (in fact, he recently posted on Instagram about his struggles with the song that night). Louis said, “That to me, that song right there, is a great advert for the type of artist you could be and I think you did yourself proud, J.”
Anthony Russell is up next. His voice cracked once in the song in an otherwise good performance and seemed to be beating himself up a bit after. Louis said, “Just before we start, lad, I know what you’re thinking and you’re thinking about that one little note that happened about 20 seconds ago….that one little note means nothing to me, I don’t think it means anything to Nile, I don’t think it means anything to Liam.” Nile then tells a story about how he did “Let’s Dance” with David Bowie and how David wanted to change how he sang “tremble like a flower” because he went out of tune but Nile said that one bad note can feel like raw emotion.
The episode ends with Brendan still left to perform. X Factor episodes air on ITV at 8:35 pm on Saturdays and 8 pm Sundays and on Sundays and Mondays at 8 pm on AXS in the US.