WHILE viewing figures for last year’s X Factor fell, the popularity of the tour showed no sign of dwindling with the Brighton Centre sold out.

The X Factor Live Tour has become one of the UK’s most successful annual arena tours, having played to more than three million people since it began 13 years ago.

Third placer Kevin Davy White opened the show with a bang with Whole Lotta Love. His seductive, rich voice was spinetingling tonight, particularly during Fast Love, and he shredded the guitar with wild abandon. In terms of pure musical talent, he stole the show but, as we know, the best singers rarely win this competition.

Runner-up Grace Davies was a revelation, her crystal-clear voice paired beautifully with twinkling piano notes during original song Roots.

Other highlights included Matt Linnen’s gravelly vocals and Lloyd Macey’s West End-ready rendition of Fix You.

Winners Rak-Su couldn’t have had more enthusiasm as they burst on to stage to ear-piercing screams from the lively crowd. Their original songs Dimelo, Mamacita and I’m Feeling You were performed with all the charm and swag we have come to expect from the four-piece.

There was plenty on-stage dazzle with backing dancers, pyrotechnics and confetti battering the senses at times, but with Rak-Su and Grace's original material and Kevin playing guitar, the show felt surprising fresh, hopefully marking a new direction.

Group performances got the crowd going and gave The Cutkelvins and Sean and Conor Price a chance to shine.

Host Becca Dudley got the crowd hyped up with the opportunity to choose their winner. It was no surprise that Rak-Su were crowned victorious. We have all become used to X Factor contestants fading into obscurity soon after the show ends but this year a few have the potential at least to stick around.