Singing chimney sweep Kye Sones was among the acts who wowed the The X Factor judges on Saturday night as auditions continued in London and moved on to Newcastle.
The 30-year-old has been tipped as a potential front-runner in the competition, sailing through to boot camp after delivering his own spin on Rita Ora’s hit RIP – in front of the singer who was a guest judge at his audition.
“You could sell albums,” Tulisa told him, adding, “I could listen to you all day long.”
And Gary Barlow added, “You’re not just a singer, you’re an artist. This is someone who knows exactly how he should sound and what he should be singing.”
Several of this week’s hopefuls also faced guest judge Mel B – who caused a stir on last Saturday’s show with a string of catty comments – however this time around the Spice Girls star was kinder, especially to 20-year-old Lucy Spraggan who made her mark with a humorous self-penned song about a drunken night.
“I absolutely loved you,” Mel told the 20-year-old. “You don’t know how great you are, that’s what’s endearing as well, you’ve got a little bit of vulnerability about you. Be confident, you are brilliant.”
Tulisa was also taken by the song, saying, “You have completely and utterly got me sold, that song is going straight on my iPod.”
Others who impressed the panel included James Arthur, who revealed his troubled home life – and that his parents had spoken to each other for the first time in 22 years in order to support his bid for the show – before offering his acoustic rendition of Tulisa’s hit Young.
“When you’re up there I just see you get lost in that world,” Tulisa said afterwards. “It’s just you, the microphone, the guitar – the best audition of the day.”
“I see why your mum and dad put their differences aside,” Nicole Scherzinger added. “I came on the show because I am looking for an artist who inspires me and that is what you did today.”
And Louis Walsh agreed. “I think from now on your life is totally going to change,” he said.
Also making it through was model Rylan Clark – who claimed to have been in Take That and Westlife tribute bands but ended up dividing the judges after singing Des’ree’s Kissing You from the soundtrack of Romeo and Juliet.
“You are really fun and I want to see what else you got,” Rita Ora said. “I’m a Rylan fan.”
But Gary Barlow wasn’t so sure. “I love your personality,” he said. “But I hate your voice, and it was a really strange song choice.
And 16-year-old Sophie Stokle from Hartlepool was among those who failed to make it through despite an enthusiastic rendition of Jennifer Hudson’s Love You I Do.
“I wanted to try and be encouraging,” Gary said, “but vocally it was really really bad.”
And Nicole told the teenager, “You have power and projection but you were missing the pitch and tone. You do need all those things too.”