After taking a week off from live blogging American Idol last week (who wants to watch that when we can watch power outages in Las Vegas?) I’m back watching American Idol on time delay and giving my raw impressions as I watch the performances. I welcome comments and feedback.
There may be spoilers if you haven’t watched the show. I’m just warning you per internet etiquette.
Tonight’s theme is the year they were born. Mostly 80s music? This is making me feel old already.
1. (1987) Ramiele Malubay: “Alone” by Heart. The audience is annoying with their waving arms. That first run she sang was off key. She’s off key quite a bit. Did Carrie Underwood sing this back during her season? I believe she did and it was much, much better than this horrible performance. The audience needs to stop the boos. I completely agree with Randy: “pitchy”.
I still think the “American Idol” logo looks naked without the oval around it. It lacks punch.
2. (1987) Jason Castro: “Fragile” by Sting. Typical Jason: stool, dreads, guitar, breathy vocals. He has one way of singing and he does it well but it doesn’t grab me and I wouldn’t enjoy an entire album of this. “Gee whiz Jason, shave the peach fuzz above your lip until you can grow a real mustache”. What is Paula Abdul wearing for gloves? Zsa Zsa cast offs? Jason seems like a nice kid but he has the personality of a wet dish rag.
3. (1987) Siesha Mercado: “If I Were Your Woman” by Stephanie Mills. Surprise! I totally expected “So Emotional” by Whitney Houston. I’m not familiar with the track but I thought she sang it well. She’s no Jennifer Hudson but I thought she did a very good job and she was on pitch the entire performance. I enjoyed it.
I’m happy that they’re including the Cathy Dennis “Oh whoa whoa whoa whoa” on the music beds this year.
4. (1985) Chikezie: “If Only For One Night” by Patti LaBelle and Luther Vandross. First couple of notes were a little shaky. Not a bad performance, the end was impressive, but unfortunately it’s not suited for mainstream radio. I agree with Randy’s comments in that it sounded very dated.
You would think that the top rated show on the American networks would be able to make the judge’s mikes sound good. What’s up with the hum and the hiss? They need a better sound designer.
5. (1983) Brooke White: “Every Breath You Take” by The Police. Whoops, false starts are always disconcerting but she recovered well. I don’t know how she plays piano with rings on, I always have trouble with my wedding band when I play piano. Maybe the rings are interfering, I heard a few clinkers in the instrumentation. I want to like this but I’m starting to think she’s a one trick pony like Jason and that’s unfortunate because I really want to like her.
The lack of consistency in the American Idol on the bumpers is not good for brand recognition. Can you tell this lack of oval bothers me?
6. (1978) Michael Johns: “We Will Rock You/We Are The Champions ” by Queen. He does Freddy Mercury fairly well. Perhaps he should try the ‘stache, but that’s my spin on it (big fan of the ‘stache). I’m happy that he knows his vocal limits and didn’t try to sing above his natural register. I enjoyed both his vocal performance and his presentation. Good job.
7. (1983) Carly Smithson: (she gets MAJOR points for mentioning Kylie Minogue in her pre-game interview) “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler. I’m always a fan of Carly but this performance isn’t really doing much for me. I almost think she’s trying too hard. I agreed with Randy and Simon, she didn’t seem entirely comfortable while performing.
8. (1990) David Archuleta: “You’re The Voice”. I don’t know this song. It was a typical David Archuleta performance. He nailed the pitch, the performance was good. O.k., it was written by John Farnham. Google says David Foster and Jeff Pescetto did something with it in 1990. I agree with Simon to an extent in that it sounded like a Theme Park Performance, but I think it would be a high-end theme park like DisneyWorld.
9. (1984) Kristy Lee Cook: “God Bless The U.S.A.” by Lee Greenwood. At least she’s staying within her genre without going hoedown on us. I still say she’s Carmen Rasmusen without the yodel. She still has some pitch issues that are not characteristic of country music. I think she played it safe this week. Her arm movements looked rehearsed and unnatural.
10. (1982) David Cook: “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson but as performed by Chris Cornell. I hate his hair, it reminds me of a bad beauty parlor cut on an older Italian woman. Vocally he’s on target but he’s a bit of a one trick pony. He’s a cheap version of Daughtry. Predictable.
Who do I think should go home? Chikezie.