DIXIE SAYS: American Idol paid a colossal fortune for the John Lennon/Paul McCartney songbook… and we are already back to choosing songs via birth years and zodiac signs? Now that’s good business sense… Where were the coaches and trainers when these kids were picking their songs? It was basically “80’s Night” again (minus little David who was born in 2001) and this was the best they could come up with?
There seemed to be a lot of “step out of your box/why aren’t you in your box” from the judges’ box. Perhaps they are all Gemini’s. Here are my reviews:
Ramiele Malubay “Alone”
rewinding Paula’s critique of Ramiele at least five times, I still couldn’t
come to terms with those glove things Paula was wearing. It’s hard to believe
someone would wear those, unless of course, a gun was pointed at one’s head.
Although I’ve yet to see a decent performance from Ramiele, tonight’s lifeless,
strain-y, pitchy, out of tune gig was above and beyond the call of bad. The
Ghost of Carrie Past came creeping around as Ramiele dared to break Golden Idol
Rule #1; never ever sing a song in which a previous contestant had a “moment”
unless you can top it. Apparently, she’s sick? Perhaps it’s gastric
reflux from yet another disastrous high-waisted outfit. Please go home,
pint size jumble.
Jason Castro “Fragile”
Happy Birthday, Jar Jar! The guitar is back and I’m glad. The tone of his voice is so pure, but the big, earnest doe-eyed expression is getting old and his facial expressions are distracting. I’m not sure if they are getting worse, or if I’m just noticing it more. His fan base will keep him in the competition for weeks to come, but if he really wants to compete, laid back, peace lovin’ Jason will definitely need to turn it up a notch like he did for “Hallelujah”. Party on, dude.
Syesha Mercado “If I Were Your Woman”
vocals tonight, especially in the beginning. There were a few shrilly spots at
the end and a little bit of blah in the middle, but all in all, I think it was
Syesha’s best work to date. I don’t see how anyone could hate this. Oh well,
Simon I guess. Her ‘baby cry’ is cute, but I’m over it. Please don’t ever do it
again. This performance should be enough to buy her another week.
Chikezie Eze “If Only For One Night”
Am I the only one who saw Simon’s half-moose signature while Randy was giving his critique? I still really like Chikezie and I’m still rooting for him, but this year, it’s going to take more than Luther/Ruben evoking-vocals to stay in the competition. The performance didn’t really go anywhere and unfortunately, he lost control/focus a few times. Definitely not his best, so Chikezie should plan on hitting the seal.
Brooke White “Every Breath You Take”
I’m not sure who I want to slap more- Brooke or the judges. First of all, when covering a Police/Sting song, please stick to the original unless you can bring it with a kick-butt arrangement ala David Cook. Instead, she turned an intense Stalker Theme Song into a kum-baya ditty and it just didn’t work. Secondly, that was a horrendous screw up at the beginning, but the judges tried their hardest to put a positive spin on it. She made a mistake on the very first note? Oh, that is brilliant! What a bright move! Let’s praise her for her professionalism! You know, it really isn’t enough that all the judges plus Ryan gave her props for her mistake, I think we should ALL stand up and give her a round of applause. Actually, let’s name a star after her! Please pass me the barf bag. Because she got back into her pretty little box this week, I’m sure Brooke will be safe.
Michael Johns “We Are the Champions”
I could listen to him talk for hours! After hearing Mr. Johns sing “Bohemian Rhapsody” during Hollywood week, I knew he could nail this Freddy Mercury vocal no problem, and he did! Michael gave his all and it was awesome! Besides being completely in tune, completely in the ‘vocal pocket’ for the entire song, his stage presence was commanding and powerful. Combine that with a crazy light show and I do believe we witnessed a ‘moment”. My second favorite of the evening.
Carly Smithson “Total Eclipse of the Heart”
Yes, Carly’s voice is eons better than any of the other female voices left in the competition, but she continually looks like she has to work so hard for every single note. It comes across as uptight and desperate, and perhaps that is why she hit the seal last week. In my opinion, convicted felon Jessica Sierra did a much better job with this song in Season Four. “Holding Out For A Hero” would have been a much better song choice for her, plus I love that song and rarely get to hear it. Vocally, Carly did a fair job with the exception of that last run of bum notes. Ouch, said my ears, but that is not typical for her, so she gets a pass. I really wish the stylists would insist that she wear an outfit with sleeves; I’m so sick at looking at those ill suited tats.
David Archuleta “You’re The Voice”
Hated it. Sounded like a bad Lion King knockoff. Loved that Simon revealed that David’s handlers (aka DAD) picked the song for him. I expected Simon to pull out the “self indulgent” card, but his theme park reference pretty much hit the mark. It was so “Up With People” that it was comical. Besides the fact that I thought the boy was going to run out of air during the performance, it was unspectacular and even a little shaky in places. Also, I really want those stupid stage-hugging girls to simmer down and shut up. If I was willing to fly to California to attend the taping of the show, I would bring a tear gas grenade. Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter what this contestant sings or how he sings it. He will undoubtedly be safe.
Cook “God Bless the USA" Oh, you little Patriot, you! And yes, very, VERY
clever Kristy! What Simon meant is that if you don’t vote for her, it means you
hate America and you hate the troops in
Iraq, and oh, you probably hate God too. On top of it being a superb song choice, Kristy managed to sing it fairly well and appear completely comfortable and much less horsy on stage. She was able to recapture the magic of “Amazing Grace” and most definitely bought herself another week.
David Cook “Billie Jean”
Glad to see they acknowledged Chris Cornell’s arrangement upfront. Regardless, this is a singing competition, not a musical arrangement competition, correct? Loved, loved, loved this performance!! A. May. Zing. For me, this act only reinforced his total and complete awesomeness. He is without a doubt the leader of the pack and the most musical of the bunch. Did I mention that I loved it? What I didn’t love was that David Cook baby picture! That hideous, skull-y thing nearly scared me to death. Yes, I am one of those evil persons who don’t think that ALLbabies are cute. And David’s picture pretty much proved my case. I say we save some time and crown him the next American Idol NOW.
Predictions? Let’s see… Ramiele, Chikezie, and Kristy hit the seal…. And
fingers crossed, Ramiele goes home. But I have a sinking feeling that it might
be Chikezie. Stay tuned.