What a letdown. Weak night tonight. Ugh. There seemed to be a recurrent theme of singing deep, meaningful songs while flashing cutesy happy grins at the audience. What the HELL is with that? If you're singing something raw, play it raw. Geez.
Top of the heap:
- Mandisa: I don't know what it is about this girl, but when she performs it's like her personality just zooms out of her past the stage to smack you in the jaw. Plus, she can really, really sing. I see where Randy and Simon's comments were coming from tonight but she was still great.
- Melissa: Really, really well done. I love her voice, and she brought a good intensity to the performance. The whole thing really suited her style. The only complaint I have is that her movements were a bit too frenetic. But absolutely one of the more professional performances of the evening.
- Ayla: A lot of what Simon said was bang-on. She's improving, she's working really hard, but now what she has to work on is becoming less 'perfect' and more raw. Very nice vocals tonight...although she appears to be a card-carrying member of the "Here's my happy smile while I'm singing something serious" club.
- Kinnik: I actually disagree with the judges on a lot of counts. No, it wasn't the best song to show off her impressive vocals, but I don't think that matters. After last week's performance, I think America was looking for her to show a lighter side, something with fun and personality, and that's exactly what she did. I think it was a smart song choice and a good performance to keep her in the competition another week.
- Lisa: Well sung, good stage presence as usual. However, she was one of the worst offenders of that "Here's my happy smile while I'm singing something serious" club. It was quite distracting.
- Paris: I agree with the judges' comments that the song was too old for her young spunkiness. But you know, if ever there was a week for her to do a song like that and prove that she's got The Diva Voice(TM) while still remaining totally safe, this was it. Now she's established that she can really, REALLY sing and she can move on with showing us her real style. Also, I really admire the commitment that she brought to that performance. Very impressive overall.
Not my faves but I'm sure they'll get through:
- Katharine: Her performance was excellent in spots and really sketchy in others. In some places the oomph and vocals were a delight to watch, and other times my ears were wincing and performance-wise she seemed to be in a bad high school revue. Plus, I found her pre-song interview to be incredibly annoying and all the supposed 'candid' takes of her and Kellie being 'wild and crazy' to be pathetically staged. However, I think America will vote her through to next week.
- Kellie: I really enjoyed Kellie's vocals tonight, I must admit. It didn't hurt that she sang a song I really liked. If I had been listening to that on the radio, it would have been a total winner. However, watching the girl perform - not professional at all. She's wooden and awkward. What drives me crazy is that America will probably vote her through to the top 12 because America tends to love that cutesie/stupid blonde country girl thang. Shudder.
- Brenna: Paula was totally right when she said the magic just was not there tonight. Vocals were strained, performance was tense - she only started loosening up near the end, and it just wasn't enough. Combine that with her UNBELIEVABLE level of conceitedness but without the claws that last week made her so 'bad-guy' appealing to some segments of the population? I think she's toast.
- Heather: I must say that her vocals were tremendously improved over last week. This isn't admittedly saying very much, since her vocals last week blew goat. She did sound quite good this week, though, she was nice to listen to. But the judges were right - the comparison of her performance to Mariah Carey was pretty painful. She didn't do anything different with the song, she just performed it much, MUCH more blandly.