Australia has crowned a new victor for The X Factor this year. Ladies and gentlemen, presenting… Cyrus Villanueva, The X Factor Australia 2015 champion. Listen to his new single as the newest winner of the X Factor franchise:
Winner Single: Cyrus – Stone
Now that’s how you do a winner’s single! Something you could hear on the music scene right now. It’s pop/R&B with a little bit of gospel and tropical house mixed in. I’m pretty sure I’ll be replaying this song a lot for the next few weeks at least. The Australian pop music scene is on a roll, and it could only get better now with Cyrus as the latest one to join it.
Let’s take a look back at his journey before Cyrus Villanueva, the uni student, became Cyrus Villanueva, The X Factor Australia 2015 champion…
Before he joined the contest, young uni student Cyrus Villanueva has been uploading cover songs on his personal Youtube account. Here’s one of my favorite covers of his:
Auditions: The Weeknd – Earned It
Cyrus wowed the judges and the audience all over the world with a smooth acoustic cover of The Weeknd’s song from the 50 Shades of Grey soundtrack. All four judges gave him a standing ovation and four yeses straight through to the next round.
5-Seat Challenge: Robyn – Dancing On My Own
Chills! To borrow from another singing competition franchise: “I got goosies” all over hearing him saaang the heck out of this song. Look at the other contestants in the same category as him flinching on the side and fearing for their spot in the competition. LOL! I’ve been wanting, nay needing, a studio version single of this rendition since yesterday!
Super House Visit: Corinne Bailey Rae – Is This Love (Bob Marley original)
Is this love?, Cyrus asked, to which I answer: this must be love. Guest judge Rita Ora might have also developed a bit of a crush on Cyrus after this performance. Cyrus seemed very pleased at that prospect.
Live Show 1: Justin Bieber – Boyfriend
On paper this seemed out of left field for Cyrus. However, this was a great way to turn a song that doesn’t really have a great melody into a rousing performance. This was the moment when he became all of Australia’s boyfriend. Even host Luke Jacobz couln’t keep himself from asking Cyrus to be his own boyfriend. LOL!
Live Show 2: Chris Isaak – Wicked Games
For the second lives, Cyrus went back to the keys as he took on his mentor’s iconic 90’s hit. He did his mentor proud with an awesome version of the song. That falsetto! That last line!
Live Show 3: James Bay – Hold Back The River
This has to be one of my favorite performances of his. The water was a cute staging choice, but Cyrus charmed away and looked like he was having fun splashing. I love the One Republic-ish twist on the arrangement after the bridge. I could hear him doing more of the same sound on his future album, and the record label might be in agreement, having seen the next performances.
Live Show 4: Lenny Kravitz – It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over
The judges didn’t love this performance as much as his past performances. Even judge James Blunt criticized the song choice for not being a “real” rock song. (To be fair, Lenny Kravitz is a rock artist, so it fit the theme nonetheless.) Aside from that, Cyrus seemed to struggle with the high notes on the chorus, but he was superb on the verses. And that sexy last note! *fans self*
Live Show 5: Adele – Rumour Has It
Another upbeat song—this time, his take on an Adele hit. It was really cute seeing him dance around the stage. Of course he nailed all of the runs on that middle eight.
Live Show 6: Bob Dylan – Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door
A modern anthem pop take on the Bob Dylan classic. I would love to hear him sing this in concert.
Live Show 7: Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do
This was a good performance, but, to be honest, I didn’t enjoy this as much as the others. I felt that his vocals didn’t really shine in the first half. But when the second half started, it was magic once again.
Live Show 8 (Killer Track): Ed Sheeran – Don’t
Live Show 8 (Curveball): Phil Collins – In The Air Tonight
Of the two performances during the eighth lives, this is the one I prefer more. Great arrangement on this song; it fit great with Cyrus’ sound. Another one that I would not mind hearing on his album.
Grand Final (Audition Song Reprise): The Weeknd – Earned It
Now that sure was sensual. A lot of people were probably jealous of that dancer at the beginning. 😉 I prefer his earlier acoustic version of this song, but it was also nice to hear him sing this with the full production.
Grand Final: Labrinth – Jealous
After a few weeks away from the piano, I was eager to witness his magic on the keys again. And OMG! This was the perfect song to seal his victory in the finals. To be completely honest, I wasn’t familiar with this song before but I’m happy to discover this song through Cyrus.
What Cyrus performance is your favourite? Are you looking forward to listening to his new album soon? Sound off in the COMMENTS below. 🙂