Gilbert’s X Factor contestant, Josh Metzler, has seen a number of ups and downs — dismissed as a soloist, reintroduced as a five-boy band and ultimately voted off again.
“It was insane,” Metzler said about being put into Playback. “I had faced the fact that I was going home. It was a whirlwind of emotion to get called back on stage.”
The callback came after Metzler had been told that he wasn’t making it to the next round. But about 20 minutes later, a number of other contestants were called back and told they would be placed into groups.
“I was hesitant at first,” Metzler said about the formation. “But then I realized that we’re five guys with the same dream. They’ve become four of my best friends.”
The group was created and coached by Simon Cowell, formerly of American Idol fame.
“I grew up watching American Idol,” he said. “American Idol was the reason I started singing. It’s unreal to watch your icon give you advice on your performance.”
And while Cowell is known for the creation of a number of all-male ensembles, including Britain’s pop sensation One Direction and multinational operatic quartet Il Divo, Playback was intended to be a different type of group.
While Metzler acknowledges the similarities between the teenage One Direction and Playback, it isn’t One Direction’s American clone.
“There are two rappers in the group; it has a more edgy hip hop feel,” Metzler said, but they also hope to keep their naïve, fun nature.
Adapting from a solo perspective to a group mentality wasn’t too hard, Metzler said. His time on a different reality TV show last year, Majors and Minors, put him in a group setting frequently.
“As a group, they gave us one piece of advice: Don’t forget that one bad vocal can ruin it for everyone,” Metzler said about the show’s producers. “It was a lot of pressure knowing they’re depending on me as much as I’m depending on them.”
Despite the pressure, it can also make things a little easier too, Metzler said.
“I like how in a group, you can depend on someone else,” he said. “If you’re not comfortable with one part, someone else can help you with it or take over that part. It took a lot of stress off.”
The elimination round was delayed from last Thursday to this past Tuesday because of a rescheduled game due to a rain delay.
And while it’s the end for Playback and Metzler on this season’s X Factor, it’s not necessarily the end for the band, which had amassed more than 24,000 Twitter followers as of Thursday.
“I definitely do see us staying together,” Metzler said. “I think we have something special and that’s something Simon saw.”
The exposure the group got on the show might be enough to turn some heads in the music industry, Metzler said.
“There are billions of opportunities out there,” he said.
Who knows, between Playback’s fame and Metzler’s drive, there’s bound to be more in store for this Gilbert native.
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