The X Factor Leaderboard: Who's Your Favorite From the Top 7 Acts? Vote Now!

There are seven acts left competing for the final five slots on Season 1 of The X Factor this week, which means either Simon Cowell or L.A. Reid — or possibly both — will face the cruel ouster of one of their mentored contestants.

Check out my rankings for the remaining singers, then hit our poll to vote for your favorite!

7) Astro (Last Week No. 8 ) | Fanbase must have been activated by his brush with elimination in Top 10 week, but his “apology” for almost refusing to give a “save yourself” performance was missing two crucial words: “”I’m sorry.” No doubt his renditions of “Jump Jump” and “Lose Yourself” were radio-ready, but his utter lack of humor and humility make him a longshot to score a Top 5 slot with the voting public.

6) Rachel Crow (Last Week No. 6) | Proved her vocal might with a blistering Top 11 rendition of Etta James’ “I’d Rather Go Blind,” but subsequent takes on “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” and “Believe” bordered on shrill. Even worse, consistent overpraising by the judges means she’s not learning from her mistakes.

5) Marcus Canty (Last Week No. 5) | “A Song for Mama” was not only his worst vocal to date, it was the worst vocal of any contestant in Top 9 week — complete with cracked falsetto, pitch problems, and ridiculous histrionics. And the public didn’t buy the dudges’ (typo, but I kinda like that word for them) uniform drooling, either,  sending likeable Marcus to the Bottom 3. Needs to deliver the pure jauntiness of his R&B flavored rendition of Janis Joplin’s “Piece of My Heart” while proving he’s in the same vocal league as Melanie, Drew, and Josh. L.A. has his work cut out for him.

4) Chris Rene (Last Week No. 4) | Entered Top 9 week with solid momentum of “Gangster’s Paradise” and a Bob Marley mashup, but turned in a Jeckyll & Hyde performance during Top 9 week with a Let It Be” that exposed a limited vocal and a “Young Homie” that showcased an exciting young talent with serious songwriting skill. Choice of material going forward will make all the difference.

‘The X Factor’ Top 12: Strengths, Weaknesses, and Suggested Song Choices

3) Drew Ryniewicz (Last Week No. 1) | Okay, so aside from her gentle cover of Nelly’s “Just a Dream,” Drew hasn’t really mixed it up from her Enya-on-quaaludes tempo. But that’s not to say that her lilting renditions of “What a Feeling” and “With or Without You” weren’t as haunting and pitch-perfect as any performance on any reality talent competition this year. The question now is whether Mentor Simon will carefully select an upbeat track to showcase this youngster’s copious gifts or if L.A. Reid will taste more blood in the water when Michael Jackson week is over.

2) Melanie Amaro (Last Week No. 2) | Her Top 9 cover of R. Kelly’s “World’s Greatest” wasn’t her greatest achievement, and while the sudden appearance of a Carribean accent and stream-of-emotion babble were a little cray-cray, they certainly weren’t boring, either. In fact, a little unpredictability might have been exactly what the competition’s most vocally proficient contestant needed. Now if only her mentor would let her cover an uptempo pop track. This week’s suggestions? Amerie’s “Gotta Work” or Roisin Murphy’s “You Know Me Better.” Or, um, if she has to follow the theme, how about “Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough” or “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin'”?

1) Josh Krajcik (Last Week No. 3) | The only contestant who truly and aggressively rocked during Rock Week came back for the Top 7 episode with a stunning, piano-driven cover of Rolling Stones’ “Wild Horses.” Could still use a little more help in the styling department — c’mon Nicole, make yourself useful! — but he’s got the kind of talent that transcends shallow concerns.

Who’s your X Factor fave? Take our poll below!

Slezak on Twitter: @MichaelSlezakTV

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Astro's Mom says:

    Astro is the best, if you do not vote for him, then you all need to look in a mirror and see what is wrong with you.

    • ATLgroove says:

      And you need to teach your child some humility. Tell him if he doesn’t want to be there to just quit the contest already. I don’t deny the kid has got skills, but he walks around like he’s so entitled to win.

    • Marcie says:

      Thank you, Jacob Lusk!

    • dlee says:

      Astro is the worst contestant out of the seven and there is no way possible this arrogant, pompous, conceited brat will ever win. Its that simple

    • Sharon says:

      That’s a little harsh, don’t you think? If you truly are his Mom, then of course, you’ll be wanting him to win. What Mom wouldn’t want their child to excel? But many of us can view the competiton objectively, without prejudice, and I’m sorry… while he’s obviously got talent, he’s not the best of the group. Maybe someday, when he’s grown up with the skills to handle disappointment, more people will back him.

      • Astro's Mom says:

        You need a long look in the mirror missy sharon (if that is your real name!). My Astro knows how to handle disappointment from your type. The only reason he was in the bottom 2 was because of his headphones were not the one simon was making money on. He is the most popular and best of all the contestants. This is not even up for argument.

        • Ryan says:

          Sadly, I think Sharon truly believes this is Astro’s mom . . .

        • Cup of Joe says:

          Oh, really?

          That punk-ass kid looks like he doesn’t even wanna be there. Let’s just put the little b*tch out of his misery and off him from the show.

          Makes sense, no? Think about it.

        • Meme says:

          Astro was in the bottom 2 because he really was in the bottom 2. He is young and he will learn, but he is not the best of all the contestants. My children are also performers, but there are some better than they are and they know how to accept that.

        • GingerSnap says:

          Astro’s Mom, if that’s who you are, you’re not helping your son grow up. And you’re delusional if you think he’s the best one left.

        • Sharon says:

          Interesting but thoroughly confused. Simon doesn’t get to vote… the people do so your headphone comment holds no worth. Regarding your comment on “my type”. I have no idea what you mean by that, and I’m sure you don’t know either, really. Yes, your Astro certainly showed America that he can handle disappointment! I was embarrassed by his childlike outburst! Granted, you want him to win. Let’s leave it at that without the nastiness, shall we?

        • wills says:

          If you’re REALLY Astro’s mum you should be posing for Playboy. You HOT! :-) Seriously, Astro is gone and so is Drew and high time.

    • Guy says:

      Seeing how you are his parent it is easy to see where his arrogance comes from

  2. cody says:

    Drew is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!
    Drew is the BEST!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Kim R says:

    For me, Josh is the best & the CD I would actually buy. Melanie has an amazing voice but I think Josh has something the others don’t. :)

  4. Penolda says:

    Oh god, if another white guy with guitar won a singing show… I’mma die. -.-

  5. Rick says:

    I don’t care particularly strongly for any of the remaining acts (I was all for Lakoda Rayne), but if all is just in the world, Drew, Josh, & Melanie will be the Final Three. Astro has his ‘tude, Marcus lacks starpower and is forgettable, Rachel comes off as a bit phony with her perkiness and youth (despite being only slightly younger than Drew) and still isn’t someone who I could see becoming a pop star, and Chris Rene has only had two strong performances, both of the same song (“Young Homie,” of course). I suspect Drew will suffer an early elimination due to the “funeral dirge every week” backlash, so I’m guessing Josh and Melanie will be the Final Two, but of those three, any could potentially hit it big after the show. Astro might too, but I won’t buy anything by him.

    On another note, and I realize I’m weeks too late, but I thought that when they chose the Top 8 per category for the Judges’ Houses, that the judges chose the 32 collectively, and THEN they found out their category so that each judge had some input into the final choices regardless of which category they had. Yet every judge except for Simon said that Tiah and Simone shouldn’t have made it anywhere in the competition and were clearly against them. This makes me think that the judges knew their categories prior to choosing the Top 8 / 32, because Simon seems to have gotten exactly the girls he wanted in his Top 8 to choose from for his Top 4.

    • yeah says:

      yeah agree with everything

      (I think Lakoda coulda actually worked well with the MJ week too, oh well.)

      Drew might still win if she perks it up now and then.

      And as for Marcus you forgot he also has been having the power of going off key really badly on the single notes where that is most damaging.

  6. Ellison says:

    It doesn’t even matter anymore. American Idol and Scotty “LipSync” McCreery have destroyed the American singing competition. Talent is no longer a requirement to win these things, and the American public can no longer be trusted to pick winners. That’s why the singing competition shows that have started since that time (Platinum Hit, X Factor, Sing Off, etc.) have been flops.

    • shaun says:

      Yeah,because we all realize it takes no talent to get on such shows or in the case of Sing-Off there’s no talent in creating a track with just voices.Get off your high horse!!

  7. Topkat says:

    Josh has an amazing strong rock voice. His version of “Wild Horses” gave me the chills. No need for the theatrics here because there is REAL TALENT that doesn’t need to be covered up by dancers, pyrotechnics & other light show smoke & mirrors!!! REAL TALENT STILL LIVES ON! Go JOSH….

  8. Deej says:

    “Enya-on-quaaludes tempo”

    Truer words were never typed

  9. Sharon says:

    Michael, I agree with you wholeheartedly except I’d switch Marcus and Chris… All told, I’m disappointed with X-Factor. Rock week resulted in nothing more than the contestants singing whatever they wanted. Rock should be rock… not slow, melodic or rap songs. They need to be challenged, hence the different genres but most of the contestants stay within their boxes and don’t explore their potential. Josh rocked the competition and I’m keeping my fingers crossed he makes it all the way…

  10. Chrissy says:

    I don’t get the love for Drew. She’s had one really great performance and the rest have been repeats or not that great. Her voice is okay but she needs to show more range.

  11. Danielle Notaro says:

    I hear what everyone is saying about Drew on slow speed-but really-the tempo for Astro is the same every week as well.

    • Tim says:

      Indeed, plus Drew sings like an angel. Astro, well, talks well I suppose.

      • Astro's Mom says:

        Yes Astro does speak well, thank you for saying so.

        • Cup of Joe says:

          Sweetie, that’s what’s called a euphemism.

          What Tim meant that’s he’s a musician – and I’m using the term loosely – that lacks any ounce of musicality.

          Learn to read between the lines, hon.

        • Meme says:

          Can Astro sing? I would like to hear that.

        • aruba19 says:

          “pop” goes the Astro….

          Astro bounces around just for fun
          The audience bounces with ‘im
          Shows you what a boy can become
          Without a sense of rhythm……

          He talks a streak without singing a note
          But the point is moot folks.
          Unless he sings let’s hand him his coat
          And then give the boot folks.

    • Astro's Mom says:

      Yes Astro is the same every week. Every week he is wonderfull, and gives the best performance. Thank you for saying so..

      • Miranda says:

        Yes, I particularly loved his ode to the Animaniacs last week. Not since maestro Yakko’s listing of all nations have I been so spellbound by a list put to music…then Astro came along, he sing-songed, and it was pure bliss. Bravo Astro!


      • Cup of Joe says:

        Wow, you fell for it twice in a row. Are you really this clueless?

        Danielle meant that Ass-tro-hole lacks variety in his “musical” repertoire. In short, he ain’t great.

        Like I’ve said, learn to read between the lines. That way, you wouldn’t look that much of a deluded idiot.

  12. scorpo says:

    HA, once again, I have been proven right. Whoever, Michael puts as his # 1 is the person everyone votes for in the poll. He could put Lakoda Rayne as #1 next week, even though they are out, and everyone would still vote them in as #1. It is ok to think independently and vote for who YOU like. For anyone who disagrees, look at the past posts, the vocals are not that radically different each week so the leaderboard should stay pretty consistent.

    • Shindig says:

      So, uh, what if the person just happens to be the most popular of people who go to this blog? Honestly, Josh has been the most interesting of everyone, th eothers are falling behind. Melanie is bland. Drew is bland. Chris sang Young Homie..again. Astro did..stuff, again. I forgot everything Marcus sang. Who’s that Shirley Temple tribute they keep bringing back out?

  13. Phoebi says:

    Imo you’re underestimating Astro and Rachel, or maybe just overestimating Marcus and Chris. No way Marcus survives this week.

    • Cup of Joe says:

      Maybe Rachel, but Astro… he’s just turned off a lot of viewers. If their personal faves get voted off, I doubt they’ll jump on the Astro wagon.

      I agree with Marcus. With respect to Chris, I’ll give him until Top 4.

  14. Oscar says:

    Rachel Crow is the best act of the show and her should win she’s AMAZING !!!

  15. Yobbi says:

    Yes, drew josh and Melanie are great singers, but I really think Marcus should win this competition. He has a great voice, and is hands down the best performer. When it comes down to it, if I could buy a ticket to any of their concerts, I would absolutely buy a Marcus Canty ticket. I’d fall asleep in all the other three’s 2 hour performances

  16. Jacqueline says:


  17. GingerSnap says:

    So here’s my problem. I’m tired of the Nonthreatening WGWG winning AI and it’s why I’m done with that show. Gosh darnit, I was hoping for something different from The X Factor, but dammit, Josh is the best perforer there! Instead of something different, it’s MOTS, only older. And I can’t argue with the results because he’s the best.

  18. Joshfan08 says:

    If you love Josh Krajcik (and I have for many years because I’m a hometown fan who has seen him live many times!) experience is one of the best a contestant can have! Everyone talks about “when this guys album comes out I’m snatching it up right away!” The Josh Krajcik band has 2 albums!!! Ghosts is one of
    my favorite cd in my entire collection and the song Ghosts which is a hidden track on the song Faces is hauntingly beautiful, one of my favorites! If you love Josh Krajcik check out the Josh Krajcik Band! Everyone should know this guy is more than a voice and a beard! His songwriting definately rivals that of Astro and Chris Rene combined!!

  19. cc says:

    Mel Amaro Rocks!!!
    She easily transforms into the original source material and pipes it like no other on the show!
    She rocked the ‘Earth Song’ like it was written for her and it got better and better…..
    That’s all folks!

  20. J Samson says:

    MJ week just crowned the best of the contestants on X FACTOR >>>>
    You watched it and jugded it.
    The Best from the Rest is:


    None came even close to her performance…..pure vibes…..

  21. steve Johnson says:

    I agree totally. Mel is the Best. Josh is like Joe Cocker only a little finer. He blew it on MJ week.

  22. I am final, I am ssorry, it not a right answer. Who else, what can prompt?