First, I am not in favor of the format this year. One chance to make the top 10. Then the *wildcards* chosen by the judges (not sure how many...at least 2 I guess). Good people get thrown off too early this way and my guess is that Tim Halperin and Paul McDonald will not make the top 5 and that is a shame. The only good thing is I'm pretty sure Jordan Dorsey and Clint Dung are not going to make the top 5 either.
My critique in order of performance:
Clint was placed in the death spot and that is a good thing because hopefully voters will forget about him. I thought he was overshadowed by the band and by the chorus when it chimed in and I thought he was karaoke. I guess I know where he got his nickname June Bug becaue he hopped all over like one, but I did not find it endearing. Once again he talks about the artist he want to be. I have a Superstition American Idol is not going to be his ticket to fame. The judges liked him. I did not.
Jovany is a guy you really want to like. He sang pretty well but did not move me (sort of like Big Mike last year). Steven and Jennifer thought he was good, Randy not so much. He better count on his looks to get him through this week because his performance was not in the top 5 or even the top 7.
Jordan wants to be a legend. Lets face it...the judges were more than kind to all the contestants tonight but even they couldn't say anything nice about this train wreck of a performance. He had every possible range in the song and all ranges sounded bad. When he took off his jacket and spun around like he was some big sex symbol I almost threw up. He is not remotely sexy. When he realizes that a performance that he thought was marvelous was not received well by the judges, he quickly agrees that jumping around is not who he is as a legend. I think he thought he could outsing Usher and probably still thinks so.
I was so looking forward to Tim Halperin after hearing his very brief Beatles performance in Las Vegas. He too chooses a jumping around song which does nothing to showcase his voice and he is moving too much for cameras to get a close up of his cute face. I'm afraid he will be one of the victims of this format and go home too soon.
When Brett started Light My Fire, I thought he was in deep trouble, but he saved it and it was really quite good. The head shakes (14) were just distracting though. Not the worst performance of the night but not the best either.
James Durbin delivered. Big time. I'm not a fan of that type of music but even I knew it was something special and he kept the screaming to a minimum. He SHOULD be in the top 5.
Robbie Rosen (Anoop 2.0). Boring. He's gone.
Scotty (who I am secretly rooting for) did his country thing well and chose a patriotic song which did bring a small tear to my eye. He looked awfully relaxed on that stool just singing away.
Stefano Falsetto ALL the time...seems like a really nice kid but I'm sick of falsettos and was bored.
Paul MacDonald sang a classic and sang it well. I hope he makes it to the top 5 but I'm doubtful he did enough compared to the other good performances. I had high hopes for him and Tim coming off Las Vegas but tonight he was good but not awesome so I'm worried for him.
Jacob Lusk. Jennifer says Scotty makes a girl from the Bronx like Country. Jacob makes a girl from Kansas like R&B. No wonder Jordan didn't do a classic R&B song. The comparison with Jacob would have been devastating for Jordan.
Casey Abrams is just flat awesome. Yes, he sort of growls but in a good way and his song choice was unique as well as his delivery. I'm not worried about him. He is my early bet to win the whole thing.
Predictions for Top 5? Brett, James Durbin, Scotty, Jacob Lusk and Casey Abrams. Wild Card maybes? Paul McDonald, Tim Helperin and Stefano. Hopefully gone for good: Clint Dung and Jordan Dorsey. Robbie and Jovany maybe could have lasted a few weeks with the old format but I think they are going to be trampled in the voting tonight.
My favorite performance of the night? Surprsingly, given the music, James Durbin.