Since we were gifted with such an abundance of performances, I thought it best to break the singers into several groups…
Danny Gokey—“I Hope You Dance” is an odd choice, but I assume it was picked from a pre-approved song list, considering how many repeats we heard last night. At any rate, Danny is proving that he can sing the phone book and sound good (as the judges continuously said of the dearly departed Carly last season). He will handle themed weeks quite well (and I say “will” because Idol is blatantly and mercilessly pushing him, providing extended performance airtime, a rare Simon smirk, and inappropriate arm swinging and chair writhing from Paula).
Adam Lambert—So his rendition of “Believe” didn’t sound quite right. Who cares? If you can make a Cher song seem haunting and relevant, I’m on board.
Kristin McNamara—The killer falsetto and powerfully sustained high notes Kristin pulled off on “Because Of You” allowed me to overlook the shaky, raspy parts and the fact that her freakishly large mouth still makes her look like a muppet while singing.
Matthew Giraud—Much, much better than expected. That piano brought him to life, so he better stay behind it. But was his “Georgia” worthy of a standing O? No.
Jamar Rogers—His take on “Hey There Delilah” was surprisingly contemporary and vocally interesting. He’s winning me over.
Jasmine Murray—We only got to see her sing the last few boring notes of “Tattoo,” but I still have complete faith in this girl.
Kenny Hoeffpauer—It took me two watches to figure out he was singing “I’m Yours,” but his voice is really, really intriguing. Why haven’t we seen more of him?
Ju’Not Joyner—I adored his soulful take on “Hey There Delilah.” Put him through!
The Flailing Disappointments:
Lil Rounds—STOP SHOUTING. I want to love her so badly, but she needs to find the soul, subtlety and vocal nuance that will make her shine, not the token belting she’s been dishing out.
Anoop Desai—It is “My Prerogative” to pretend this song was never sung and judge him solely on past performances. Wait, he sang Boyz II Men before…are we in for nothing but dated 90s R&B? Say it ain’t so, Anoop.
Scott Macintyre—Was I the only one that thought Scott sounded like the local piano bar singer? I don’t get it, but I’m sure he’ll hit the Top 36, vibrato and all.
Michael Sarver—I can see why people would love him, but he’s just not my cup of tea. Kudos on the O-Town though, Sarver.
Jorge Nunez, Kendall Beard, Stevie Wright, Mishavonna Henson, Ann Marie Boskovich and everyone who forgot their lyrics. Oh, and where has Von Smith been?
Tatiana Del Toro—There was one good note in her entire performance; the rest was as over the top as her incessant whining. I hope the judges are just keeping her around for the drama of a weeping elevator ride of rejection tonight…
Nathanial Marshall—I actually enjoyed his acoustic “Disturbia.” Then he pulled that flourish bow and I went right back to despising him. Grow up?!
Norman Gentle—This is just becoming absurd. Maybe I’d relent if he had the vocals to back up his not-so-funny antics, but he can’t even sing!!!!!!!
Though I’m not looking forward to more recaps of weeks past during the Elevator of Doom episode tonight, I cannot wait for the unveiling of the Top 36. One more week until it’s really on!