American Idol Review – Final 11

THEN THERE WERE 11  

I had very mixed feelings sitting down to watch Idol last night. On one hand, the show saw fit to honor The Beatles, one of my all-time favorite bands, with a second night of songs by the contestants. Heaven knows the Lennon-McCartney Songbook is large enough that they could pull this off for several more nights.   

On the other hand, I was still somewhat still fuming that Country Kristy was still in the competition after completely destroying “Eight Days a Week” last week. I couldn’t wait to see what great Beatles song she decimated this week.Unfortunately, we found out that a second night of the Beatles was perhaps, one night too many as the contestants didn’t do quite as well as they did last week. Of course, there were a couple of exceptions.What follows is how I think they fell out, in order, from best to worst. And it wasn’t quite as easy as it was last week, on either end, believe me.

1) Carly – Pure, powerful, rich voice, showed she can do great things with a beautiful, simple song. “Blackbird” is just Paul and his guitar, keeping the beat with his foot. Doesn’t get any simpler. Very happy to see her do something besides a rock song.

2) Rocker David – Might have put him first but didn’t care for the squawk box. Took yet another song from a different era and brought it right up to today and “made it relevant” as Paula likes to say. Can easily imagine hearing his version of “Day Tripper” on the radio today, just like last week’s “Eleanor Rigby“.

3) Young David – Overcame last week’s debacle of forgetting the words. Did a great job this week with “Long and Winding Road“. A little on the safe side, but still, hit every note spot on and it sounded near flawless. You can’t ask for more than that.

4) Brooke – No where near as emotional as last week’s “Let it Be“, but this week’s “Here Comes the Sun” isn’t the same type of song. The judges gave her a bad rap. I don’t think she was nearly as bad as they said. She sang it well enough but was clearly out of her comfort zone. Didn’t like all that yellow. Put her back in front of the piano where she’s at her best and let her do her thing.

5) Syesha – Lot’s of ballads tonight. Syesha took one of the Beatles most famous ones on in “Yesterday” and sang it well. Not her best, but certainly not her worst. Kept it very simple with just a couple of runs in it.

6) Ramiele – Vast improvement over last week’s BORING “In My Life” with a sparky version of “I Should Have Known Better“. She still needs to pick something a little livelier and stay away from the ballads for a while. She has a beautiful voice, but the ballads don’t do anything for her because she hasn’t figured out how to make them work for her yet.

7) Dreadlock Jason – Probably his best performance in weeks. Still, a very uninspired version of a somewhat uninspired song, “Michelle“. On the bright side, Jason got to learn some French.

8- Amanda – Opened up the show with “Back in the U.S.S.R.” I don’t know how this girl continues to find songs that suit that Janice Joplin eats sand and broken glass voice of hers, then pulls their hair and makes them shriek even more. Eventually, she’s going to have to slow one down. As Simon pointed out last night, she’s going to start to get boring if she doesn’t. Even Janice had a ballad with “Me and Bobby McGee“.

9) Chikeze – After last week’s phenomenal performance of “She’s a Woman“, this week was something of a letdown with a very strange version of “I’ve Just Seen a Face“. Chikeze mixed two or three different types of music that really didn’t seem to blend together very well, and then just for kicks, threw in some bad harmonica playing to segue. It just didn’t work on any level.

10) Aussie Michael – Took a great song, “A Day in the Life” and did what he could to ruin it. The biggest problem was that the song really didn’t lend itself to be shortened to a minute and a half, as some songs do. He rushed it, especially the 2nd verse, and it showed. The Beatles have PLENTY of very short songs to choose from. I understand that he wanted to dedicate this to a friend who had passed, and that’s nice, but it might hurt him.

11) Country Kristy – What will save Aussie Michael is that Country Kristy is still in the competition. Granted, she was not nearly as bad as last week, but she was still bad this week. This week’s song destruction: “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away“. The verses didn’t go with the chorus, the chorus was all over the place, she took great liberties with the song, but in the wrong places. It just sounded bad.

GOING HOME: COUNTRY KRISTY