We’re just than three weeks until the first live show of the X Factor Malta. But until then, there’s more whittling to do. Tonight the Groups category sang for the judges and the audience, as category judge Alexandra Alden decided which of the ten groups would take the final six seats.
The competing groups have it the easiest of all categories as there were only ten groups heading into the Chair Challenge. While the Girls category had 14 acts battling it out, the groups could perhaps feel a little more secure in their chairs. But four acts would still have to go home.
First up was the four-piece girl group Radiate. They were taking a page from the Destiny’s Child look book and came dressed in coordinating leopard-print wardrobe. They quartet performed “Salute” by Little Mix, the most successful girl group to come out of a series of The X Factor. While their vocals weren’t perfect, Radiate delivered loads of attitude, were praised by the judges, and were given the first seat of the night.
Next was the duo Kayati, one of two groups who were preexisting, not put together by the judges at bootcamp. The two friends performed the ballad “Say Something” by A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera. The pair have great chemistry and brought emotion to their harmonies. Kayati also earned a seat.
Then came the first boy band of the evening, Sudden Crowd — who had previously been credited as Sudden Crown. The four-piece group performed a mash-up of “Fix You”, “Thinking Out Loud” and “True Colours”. It felt a bit overwrought, but judge Alex recognised potential and gave them a seat.
Next was Horizon, a male duo made up of two bald, bearded blokes. They performed Swedish House Mafia’s “Don’t You Worry Child”. Despite just being two of them. Horizon made the most of the full stage and delivered an energetic performance. Judge Alex was suitably impressed and gave them a seat.
The female duo Lorelai was next and they performed Zedd’s “Clarity”. The two singers have an operatic background and put a popera twist on the EDM hit. The judging panel felt the two should have stuck to something closer to opera, and judge Alex sent them home without a seat.
Girl group Prism performed a mash-up of Dua Lipa’s “One Kiss” and “New Rules”, (Finnish) Alma’s “Chasing Highs” with Cardi B’s rap from “Girls Like You”, The pastel-clad popstresses had mixed feedback from the judges, but again judge Alex saw some potential and gave them a seat.
Systm12 seemed to have the best group dynamics. Despite having been put together at bootcamp, the three seemed to have formed a close bond and even joked about the group’s dramatic name. They performed 5 Seconds of Summer’s “Youngblood”, giving some classic boyband harmonies. Their strong bond resulted in a strong performance and judge Alex gave them the last unfilled chair.
Next was Xtreme (formally Extreme). The four-piece girl group — featuring X Factor Australia star Elishia Semaan — performed Little Mix’s “Secret Love”. They brought the house down with their performance and judge Alex agreed that they deserved a chair. Time to play swapsies! Boy band Sudden Crowd had to give up their seat.
Girl duo Clelis is the other group to have not been put together at the X Factor. They sang a mash-up of Beyoncé’s “Ave Maria” and Schubert’s original. Judge Alex said it felt too much like the duo were trying to show off, which prompted them to deliver an a cappella version of Khalid’s “Location”. In the end, Alex called for a sing-off with Radiate, which Radiate won. Farewell, then, Clelis.
The final group of the evening was girl group 4th Line and honestly, they look like the group to beat. They served ’90s attitude with En Vogue’s “Free Your Mind”. The song let the group show off their razor-sharp harmonies, their group dynamic and just look amazing in black and gold. “I am so impressed,” said judge Alex, who gave them a seat. Sadly it was girl group Radiate who had to give up their seat.
And with that, the final six acts headed for Judges Houses have been confirmed. 4th Line, Horizon, Kayati, Prism, Systm12 and Xtreme will head off with judge Alexandra Alden to determine which three of them will progress to the hallowed live shows.
Already making their way to the Judges Houses will be Danica Muscat, Jade Vella, Karin Duff, Kelsey Bellante, Michela Pace and Nicole Frendo in the Girls category. We’ll see Aidan Cassar, Claudio Zammit, Luke Chappell, Mark Anthony Bartolo, Norbert Bondin and Owen Leuellen in the Boys category. And also Anna Azzopardi, Anna Faniello, Ben Purplle, Franklin Calleja, Petra Zammit and Vanessa Sultana in the Overs category. Of all these names, only half of them will progress to the live shows, due to start in the new year.
In the meantime, the Judges Houses begins starts next week, and from teaser photos, it looks like they’ll be starting with the Overs and the Girls categories. We also have to say, how amazing does Franklin look, rocking both the athleisure look and Gen-Z yellow?
What do you think of the six selected groups? Who do you think will be successful at Judges Houses? Who should represent Malta at Eurovision 2019? Leave your comments below!