X Factor USA: Alex and Sierra are an instant favourite with their cover of Toxic

Alex and Sierra audition with Toxic

Young couple Alex and Sierra charmed us with an incredible X Factor audition. They performed a quirky, beautifully stripped back version of Britney Spears’ Toxic.

I was almost put off by their audition – the backstage footage of the two seemed a little saccharine and contrived. It’s still a surprise that The X Factor runs this kind of backstage footage. Sure, it seems like it’s a fly-on-the-wall cam, but in reality most people know that these scenes are staged, which detracts from the message they’re trying to get across. I’m not blaming the contestants, but I do wish the production would drop this kind of fakery.

Anyway, once Alex and Sierra were on stage, things got funny. Simon Cowell asked them if they were brother and sister, to which Alex gave the deadpan reply: “Uh…we kiss. So, that’d be weird.” Their song choice is Toxic by former X Factor judge Britney Spears. The audience are taken aback. They perform an unexpectedly jazzy version of the song, stripped back with just an acoustic accompaniment. Sierra has a smoky, sultry voice and is probably the better singer of the two, but her onstage chemistry with Alex is fantastic and their harmonies really make the song stand out.

Fantastic. Really fresh. Sierra breaks down crying when they receive such rapturous applause. Despite being a little wary of this act when they started, by the finish I became a huge fan. I’d love to hear this kind of treatment of other pop songs.

What the judges said:

  • Demi: I just wanna tell you, I’ve got chills right up and down my legs, because not only are you talented, but you’re so down to earth. You were like freaking out in the middle of the lines, and you were just like so excited. I’m rooting for you. You’re so cute together. There’s magic!
  • Kelly: It’s really beautiful what you have and what y’all just ignited on stage was so nice.
  • Paulina: I love both of you. Your vocals together and just holding hands. It inspires me. I believe in you guys. I believe in love. I’m a believer.
  • Simon: I thought this was going to be quite corny when you came out. But actually, you’re both cool and quirky. I thought it was an incredible version of the song.

Alex and Sierra go through to boot camp now. In the meantime, it’s over to you folks. Do you think they can continue their act through to the live shows?

by Gerard McGarry on September 12th, 2013

Gerard is the founder and editor of Unreality TV. He writes about TV dramas as well as reality TV talent shows and is obsessed by sci-fi and Doctor Who. Follow him on Twitter @gerrybot or Google+

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7 thoughts on “X Factor USA: Alex and Sierra are an instant favourite with their cover of Toxic

  1. Rosado says:

    Alex and Sierra must be a big Melanie Martinez fan. because she sang it the way, and the guitar is her background. Anyone who watch the voice know it!

  2. Greschjkvo says:

    I just saw this and despite not being a fan of “reality shows”, or any TV for that matter….their rendition of this song has made me an instant fan of them. If only to see how they do, I may start watching it!

    1. Brown says:

      Good idea…….or at the least you can follow them on line to see how they do in their careers…….I hope they go far.

  3. Liberty says:

    They are cute together!!!!!!

  4. Naledi says:

    I loved Alex and Sierra version of Toxic. I wish someone could help them produce a full version I think it will be a hit. Can Simone look into this?

  5. Naledi says:

    I loved this version of Toxic. Can Simon help produce a full version? I am sure it will be a hit.

  6. MaryS says:

    This couple reminds me of Sonny and Cher and they will have a great future in the music industries.

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