Wednesday, April 16, 2014

American Idol Season 13 - Top 7 Perform

Hello Idol watchers!  Interesting "twist" this week with the song selection having the contestants pick each other's songs.  So, clearly they all picked songs they knew each other liked since they've been all living together the past few weeks.  Though, this only seemed to REALLY work out for maybe 3 of them while the others drowned in a sea of mediocrity.  I've been saying it for a few weeks now and it's not really hard to see who the final 2 SHOULD be at this point.  I'm even starting to lean towards who may end up winning the whole thing.  But, we'll get there in due time.  Unless there are any other celebrities we need to give shout outs to in the crowd or former X-Factor judges that need to give critiques, I think we're ready for the recap, right?  Let's go!

Competition Performances
  1. Caleb Johnson: Kings of Leon's "Family Tree" - Caleb pretty much nails every song.  There's not much else to say.  Though, I did like this song choice.  I like Kings of Leon from what I've heard, but I never have heard this song in particular which was to Caleb's benefit.  It had a catchy chorus and he rocked it out.  I don't see a version of season 13 where Caleb is not in the finale.  Though, I think his issue is the fact that he was already PEAKED when he came into the show.  Sure, we see different versions of intensity and performance each week but it's still Caleb doing his thing.  Where certain other contestants have shown growth and may be earning additional votes along the way.  We shall see! 
  2. Jessica Meuse: Miranda Lambert's "Gunpowder and Lead" - Oh Jessica, how I always defend you.  STAGE PRESENCE!!  You must learn STAGE PRESENCE!!  She technically sang the song well.  I actually thought the beginning was better when she slowed it down before going into full on Miranda Lambert mode.  She could feel her TRYING to connect with the audience (did everyone see her crouch and sing?), but she also sported a fake smile during the whole performance too.  I agree with Keith, you gotta own that song and get "P.O.'d!"  It didn't happen.  I really like her voice, but this is becoming a larger problem.  Maybe to her benefit there are a lot more dudes left in this competition than girls.  So, there's a chance she might be safe this week.
  3. CJ Harris: John Mayer's "Gravity" - Plus, it's probably getting to about time when C.J. needs to pack his bags.  I thought this was a better week tonally for him, but I think we know his time on this show is limited.  The group performance was pretty painful too.  He has his limited set of songs that he loves to sing and sings them well.  This clearly is one of those.  Though, I was still kind of bored at the same time.  I was pretty much bored all night except for a few shining performances (especially in the bookends of the night).
  4. Dexter Roberts: Luke Bryan's "Muckalee Creek Water" - I may have mentioned that I'm totally over the Luke Bryan country bandwagon that's been going on the past few years.  Sure, he had a few good songs, but now he's entered a stage of churning out bland tune after bland tune just so he can sport his skinny jeans and flash that winning smile to the ladies.  I mean, this guy is really selling out stadiums this summer?  Is that for real?  Anyway, this song is more of the same crap and if this is something Dexter likes that's all I need to know to be uninterested.  That said, I agree with Keith that the song basically has no melody to sing causing him to over sing to impress.  I wasn't impressed. 
  5. Alex Preston: Ed Sheeran's "The A Team" - I think we have to accept that Alex is who Alex is.  He's a certain type of performer and a great musician.  He's not going to be selling out arenas and be a massive superstar but he certainly is a great singer and an awesome guitar player.  There's space out in the world for him.  And, based on the competition this season, there's still space in this competition for him.  I just don't think there's space in the finale for him.  That said, this was a really good performance and I love that song.
  6. Sam Woolf: David Gray's "Sail Away" - Speaking of songs and artists I love, David Gray and "Sail Away" come to mind.  Then again, Sam Woolf has already gone to the David Gray catalogue of hits in this competition.  And "Sail Away" isn't the type of song that's going to win over many new voters.  With recognition of a note change here and there, this was basically a carbon copy David Gray performance right down to the rasp and the vibrato of certain parts.  Does he want to be David Gray?  Sure sounded like it.  And it was an utter snooze fest too.  Keith said it best that they're trying to get him to have life experience within weeks and that's not going to happen.  Time is not on his side! 
  7. Jena Irene: Radiohead's "Creep" - Yet another song I love performed by a contestant I like more and more each week.  Nice suggestion by Caleb, and she knocked it out of the park.  I hope he knows he's just fueling Jena's path to the finale to go toe to toe with him!  Not only did she sing it great, she brought pure emotion to the lyrics.  I almost thought she actually broke down into tears at one point, but it was just the performance.   She's getting more and more confidence each week and I think that plays in her favor.  And, I'm slight leaning towards her being the victor this year over Caleb.  We'll see!  But Jena, don't take your mom's advice, please don't get that skull tattoo on your arm!  I promised my wife I'd mention it here in the very off chance you're one of the few people that still read this recap every week! 
  1. Alex and Sam: Passenger's "Let Her Go" - Cute as even Demi Lovato had a chance to say. (Really, what was that all about?  Are they trying out a replacement for J Lo next year or something?)  I don't think the happy upbeat tempo matched the lyrics of the song, but it's a little thing they cooked up just noodling on their guitars in the off-hours.  So, good for them.  
  2. Jena and Caleb: Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter" - Awesome.
  3. Dexter, CJ and Jessica: Lady Antebellum's "Compass"- Trainwreck.  I loved how Dexter and CJ made an effort to go into the crowd and touch some hands and Jessica was like, "No thanks guys, I'm going to stand here right in front of the judges and then walk back to center stage!"  Sure, it was partly the choreography, but I'm sure she wasn't complaining! 

Elimination Pick
Tough week.  There are a few people it could be.  I predict it will be a male contestant, which isn't really going out on a limb I realize!  

Untouchable: Jena, Caleb
Totally Safe: Alex
The Girls still like him, but he's vulnerable: Sam
Not so safe: Jessica
It's about that time: Dexter, C.J.

Bottom 3 Picks: Jessica, Dexter, C.J. Wildcard: Sam

Elimination Pick: C.J. Harris - He had a decent performance but I think it's one we've seen a few times now.  He was in the bottom last week and I don't think he did much to win over more votes.  

This all said, it wouldn't surprise me if Dexter, Samor Jessica gets the boot either.  The only reason I spared Jessica was because she is one of 2 females left.  Time will tell as we all fastforward to the 23 minute mark of the results show tomorrow!  

We are getting close to baby #2 time here at home, so I'm going to start throwing out the disclaimer that your season 13 coverage may be interrupted for a little bit.  I'll still try to post something when I can, but certainly not as detailed.  If the little Miss stays on schedule, I should still be here for a recap next week.  Top 5 week could be a whole different story!  Hope you enjoyed my ramblings and I'll most likely see you next week! 

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