Thursday, May 17, 2012
Finalist/Chosen One #1: Joshua Ledet
Round 1: "I'd Rather Go Blind," Etta James
I love Etta. I love this song. I only liked this performance...half of it, anyway. The half before he went full-on Mantasia. And his pointless attempt at scatting was just embarrassing. I'm sure I don't have to tell you this, but he got a standing O anyway.
Round 2: "Imagine," John Lennon
Joshua did a decent job with this. He cooled it on the screaming for a change, which is exactly why the judges didn't get out of their chairs.
Round 3: "No More Drama," Mary J. Blige
Although I do get annoyed with Joshua's near-constant yelling, I actually thought this was a pretty good performance. It was very "churchy," and he totally committed to it. My favorite part though was the cut to Shannon Magrane and Hollie Cavanagh trying to jam out to it. Gotta love the white girl shuffle (aka the shoulder jerk / I-have-to-shit face combo).
Critique highlights: I loved Steven's delivery of "You are SO FINE." I guess with only one chick left in the competition, Tyler doesn't have much choice but to start hitting on the guys. And somewhere during his critique of Joshua's third song, it became official: "over the top" replaced "beautiful" as his standard compliment. Randy went over the top by declaring that everyone should just stand up and vote for Joshua.
Finalist/Chosen One #2: Jessica Sanchez
Round 1: "My All," Mariah Carey
[sung to the old Nytol jingle tune] "My All" will help you get your Zzs! I didn't think that was very good at all. I think she showed her limitations by covering an artist that she couldn't just imitate. The judges were apparently watching an entirely different show, because they loved it.
Round 2: "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing," Aerosmith
Could there be more of a suckup or just plain sucky choice? Steven gave Jessica a standing ovation and said he thought she "took a great song and made it greater," but I think she took a terrible song and made it slightly more tolerable. It's definitely a song for someone like her to sing; it should never have been an aging rock band's power ballad.
Round 3: "I'll Be There," Jackson 5
This was just aight for me and the Dawg. Look, Jessica can certainly sing. We all know this. But I have to go back to what I was saying about the Mariah Carey song. I think she's 40% really good singer and 60% excellent mimic. (Even J.Lo said she sounded a little like Michael Jackson on this one.) And that's probably why she bores me.
Critique highlights: After the first song, Randy got a chance to remind everyone that he's worked with Mariah, and then after the second song, he said, "Yo, whoa, I'm like, YO. Aight." (I'm not kidding, that's an exact quote.) I was totally confused by Jennifer's comment that Steven has a hard time giving compliments to people who cover his songs. Really? Didn't he gush all over Lauren Alaina when she did the same song in last year's audition rounds?
Oh, I almost forgot...Steven pretty much predicted that Jessica is going to win. Bwahahahaha.
Finalist #3 / #1 in the Fans' Hearts: Phillip Phillips
Round 1: "Beggin'," Madcon (Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons cover)
Steven set Philly up with this one, saying that he wanted to see if he could stick to a melody, so Phillip answered by totally straying from the melody. As much as this kid's DMB-ness makes me batty, I have to admit that I like him. He just doesn't seem to care about any of this, which is quite admirable. And honestly, I really liked the performance, too. It certainly had shades of the usual PP routine, but it was fun and free of screeching, so he automatically won that round for me.
Round 2: "Disease," Matchbox 20
Rob Thomas has one of the most annoying voices I've ever heard, so any cover is usually an improvement. And this is, but it's very standard Philly fare.
Round 3: "We've Got Tonight," Bob Seger
When Jimmy announced that this was his choice, I couldn't do anything but groan. I was all prepared for some awful slice of cheese, but I was really surprised. I think this was the first time I'd ever really heard Phillip's vocal ability, and he's actually a pretty good singer! Sure, it was a little Seger-ish, but I thought he did a great job. And finally, someone other than Joshua got a standing O.
Critique highlights: What did Steven say after the last song that they bleeped out? I swear he said, "You sang like your dick was hard." That should have gotten him about 40,000 more votes from the lonely housewife contigent.
So, it's been apparent for a while that the judges want a Jesshua Finale, but I think Phillip has too big of a fan base to let that happen. Unless some shady business goes on behind the scenes, Jessica is probably going to get sent back to her home(school), paving the way for a Top Two sausage fest.
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