After some highly annoying antics by the judges that were, I’m sorry to say, aided by our Ry-Ry we finally got to the point of the show. Have you lost your way in a maze of discussions of binkies, separation anxiety from fiancees, and musings of why Ryan chose to indulge the judges frivolity? I’ll clue you in. It’s the singing, people.
Lee DeWyze – “Fireflies” by Owl City
And I Quote: “I know a lot of people are talking to me about…they have crushes on you.” – Ellen DeGeneres
Okay, call me nutso and feed me to a squirrel, but I really LOVE the song “Fireflies” and actually the whole Owl City CD. The whole tone is light and fluffy electro-pop with a quirky edge and that’s what makes it magic. I’m not exaggerating here. I also love Lee’s voice and personality (at least what has been provided to me by the edits that the American Idol producers have allowed). So…logically, one would conclude that I would love him singing this song. But, I’m reminded of a Full House episode (go with me here) where sweet little toddler Michelle was creating dishes out of the things that she loved and she paired chocolate pudding with something like pizza and the results was, as you can imagine, disgusting to Uncle Jesse and his perfectly coiffed hair. Now, to take a step back, I do think that some parts of the song were good and I still do REALLY love his voice, but I don’t think it was better than the original. Also, the guitar was a little bit rough in the intro, doncha think? All that said, you gotta love the guy, though. Right? Right.
Alex Lambert – “Trouble” by Ray Lamonte
And I Quote: “You’ve kind of gotta imagine Randy in a bikini…” – Simon Cowell
Alex, the dear lamb shank, delivered a fine performance of this song, but his voice was kinda thin or tinny and I don’t think it was a good song choice for him. Is he cute as a button and the underdog that we all want to carry in our pockets? Yes. Was that song phenomenal? Not so much. I like him. I think he deserves a spot in the Top 12. But, I have to say that he underwhelmed me with this rendition of the song. And NO, I’m not grumpy. It’s not me, it’s them! I do find comfort in the fact that Alex discovered hair product this week. That’s all I’m going to say about the mullet. I think we all know how I feel at this point and lest I be like the judges with their repeated analogies (the banana thing was cute at first, Ellen, but now I think we’re over it), we’ll leave it at that. Hey! Kara admitted that she “watches” his performance behind closed eyes, too!
Tim Urban – “Hallelujah” by Jim Buckley
And I Quote: “Just button your shirt and be quiet for a second.” – Ryan Seacrest to Simon Cowell
I have just paused my TV (thank you, DVR!) after Ryan announced what song Tim has chosen for the week. Dear me, this is going to be a train wreck, isn’t it? Okay. Now I’m bolstering my tenuous courage and unpausing.
Whelp, that wasn’t as terrible as it could have been. I still feel like I’m watching a high school talent show performance every time young Tim takes the stage. And dude! PHRASING! He’s also got that weird vibrato thing that has been plaguing Paige, which, you know, isn’t my FAVORITE thing. I will say this for the whippersnapper, he stayed on key much better than the last two weeks. That’s not to say there weren’t some significant wobblers warbled into the microphone, but still. At least a little marked improvement under all that hair that’s been weighing him down. I don’t care what Randy says…Jason Castro did the best job with that song so far to date and Tim was only a shadow performance of his.
(I’m not sure who Kid Kraddick is, but this was the best quality video that I could see…)
[Ryan -“After the break, Andrew Garcia goes with Christina Aguilera”, to which I reply “Of course, he does.”]
So, my good friend Andy revealed in his red room interview with Ry-Ry that he felt the same arranging this song as he did with “Straight Up”. I personally think he was lying, but I have no proof of that. I learned in my counseling classes that you can’t argue with someone’s feelings so we’re going to let him have this one, but I have to say that this rendition of the song made me feel alternately perplexed and uncomfortable in equal measure. I feel like he was fighting the tempo the whole time and possibly hit some bum chords on his trusty guitar? It was just a little under executed and had some pitch problems, even though he did work it out at the end. The ending made me wish he’d worked that kind of a vibe into the whole song. For what it’s worth, I really did want to love it! What’s that? Oh. My lifeboat for escape from the S.S. Andrew Garcia awaits. [For the record – I write my thoughts before I watch the judges and they are TOTALLY on the same page! O.M.Gosh. We’re totally all BFFs!]
Casey James – “You’ll Think of Me” by Keith Urban
And I Paraphrase: I think Randy thought it was safe. You?
I just have one question. WHAT’S WITH ALL THE COUNTRY?! Grr. Also, can I just say that I don’t think Casey was aided in any way by the background vocals. I think he did a solid with the vocals, but the ending was a little subpar for me. And you know what they say – you gotta start well and end well. I think he needs to bring his own vibe to an unexpected song rather than matching his voice with a song. Does that make any sense? Maybe the bubbles from my ginger ale are going to my head. I think I’m going to leave it at that. Don’t be mad.
Aaron Kelly – “I’m Already There” by Lonestar
And I Quote: “It’s just a nice song. Get over it.” – Simon Cowell to Kara Dioguardi after the dumbest critique of the night. Hands down. She said, “But honey, that song, first of all it’s in the third person, and it’s about a man calling home to talk to his kids on the phone. And you’re sixteen years old! It’s not relevant to your life and that was my problem with it. How can you feel a connection to it?”
Apparently to Aaron, country means mumbling the beginning of the song, kind of yelling the middle of the song, and swaying awkwardly throughout the song. The dude clearly had some pitch problems and the start of the song was really muddy, but I have to say there were a lot of nice moments in the middle somewhere. I think his voice is really great for a sixteen year old, but I’m just not really digging him. In other words, if he had a Facebook page, I wouldn’t fan him. That’s all I’m sayin’. I think he belongs on seasons of Idol past, but after last season, I expect more. Period. (Or something less judgmental).
[Pause] I think tonight’s going to be the night that Todrick stops foolin’ around and finally gives me a performance to root for. YOU HEAR THAT, TODRICK? DON’T SCREW IT UP! [Unpause]
Todrick Hall – “Somebody to Love” by Queen
And I Quote: “There were moments where I didn’t know whether to laugh at it or love it…” – Kara Dioguardi
From the look of his boots and jacket (which was wicked cool), Todrick came from the future to deliver this performance. And can I just say, holy background vocals, Batman. This arrangement is weird. Tap, tap. Hey Todrick? Just sing. Sing a song. Take Karen Carpenter’s advice and make it simple to last the whole night long. Don’t worry if it’s not good enough, for anyone else to hear… (okay, so don’t take THAT advice but seriously, dude. Not everything has to be so hard.) He ended well and he has a good voice, but he has yet to hit his stride.
Maybe it just paled in comparison to this:
Just ignore the weird words and symbols at the bottom, m’kay?
Michael “Big Mike” Lynche – “This Woman’s Work” by Maxwell
And I Quote: “He really is nice.” Kara about Simon
Ryan’s twin, Mike, took the stage and created an odd song choice sandwich with a not-quite-right falsetto intro and outro. Am I right? Or am I totally off base here? I mean, to be completely fair, while this had some pitch discrepancies as well, I think he gave the best performances of the night. I just wish I understood it. Of course, maybe my judgment is being clouded by my love and remembrance of this:
Clearly, the judges and I are not so much on the same page now. Maybe I was too rough on Big Mike, but I’m gonna stick with my original comments.
Ryan is cracking me up with his ridiculous darting around the stage goofiness. I love that guy!
Well, with the Top 12 tantalizingly close, we’ll have to cut two more guys. And by “we”, I mean America with Ryan to deliver the bad news to those poor souls. After the guys’ performance tonight, I honestly don’t know who is going home. It’s kind of a toss up. I’d really like to see Lee and Andrew stick around and I think Mike earned his spot. If all is fair, I think Aaron and Tim should go home. But we all know that not all is fair in love and Idol, so it could be one of the others here…maybe Todrick? I’m at a loss this week, I’m afraid.