Wednesday, May 17, 2006

AI Review, 2006/05/16

Great show. This is the kind of Idol I want to see!

  • Elliott: Sigh. I love Elliott's voice. He certainly brought it out this week and sounded glorious. However, although there was nothing actually wrong with his performances, he didn't really bring it all. There was no special spark, no magic moment, no big oomph. We're at a level of the competition now where that's vital. Last week he came out fighting and it really paid off. This week he seemed to leave that fight at home.
  • Katharine: First song sounded fine, was nothing to write home about. But that second song...ho. lee. shit. When I heard that Simon had chosen 'Over the Rainbow' I thought the man had finally lost his grip on reality. By the end of the song I thought he was a freakin' genius. Katharine's second performance was one of the most memorable moments in Idol ever. It was special, beautiful, superb, magical, and perfect. I honestly didn't know she had it in her. Brava. The third song was a bit of a let-down from that high (unsurprising, since it would have been near impossible to equal that kind of quality) but I thought it showcased her voice fantastically, it was fun, spirited, sexy and great.
  • Taylor: Taylor didn't do as much with 'Dancing in the Dark' as I (or Clive, I'm guessing) would have hoped, but he sounded terrific, way better than the Boss. It was his second and third performances where he really brought it out. Randy's song choice for him was really good and Taylor showed he could bring seriousness, tenderness and meaning. That was beautiful. Finally, he ended his third performance on a total high, having brought the audience with him on an awesome buildup of energy. I loved it, I loved it, I loved it.


As good as he is, simply put, Elliott just was not on the same level as Katharine and Taylor this week. I think Simon was right - his performances were good but not enough to push him into next week. I like him immensely, I think he's had a fantastic run, I think he's done extremely well to get this far, but I don't think we'll see him in the finals.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

AI Review, 2006/05/09

Best. Show. Ever.

Not perfect, but still really, really good. Kudos to the show for having such a super-strong top four. It makes for great TV and wonderful music.

  • Chris: The biggest criticism I had tonight with Chris was that he needs to improve his control over his microphone swinging technique. :) Other than that, both performances were really good. He had some excellent tender-and-sexy moments in his first song. In his second song, I really liked how he brought out a completely different voice for the first part. I think he could have put more into the first part to ramp up interest, but it was still quite good. And I adored how he really pulled it out and rocked it at the end. Exciting to watch. And I'm not just saying that because he's hot as hell.

  • Elliott: I agree with Simon that Elliott went into tonight as the underdog. He has a spectacular voice, but he just isn't on the same level with the other three in terms of the 'it factor'. However...MAN did he fight for it. I was really worried at the beginning of his first song, because it did start out like a bar mitzvah performance like Tommy Mottola said. However, something switched over after about twenty seconds and it just got really good. Beautiful vocals. And then! Did he ever turn it on for his second performance! UNBELIEVABLE. Superb vocals. REALLY put himself into it. It was great. I didn't believe for one small second that he really was 'trouble', but I certainly believed it could be enough to send him into the three.

  • Katharine: Except for the part where she muffed the lyrics, I really liked her first performance. It was exciting, fun, really well sung, and overall a very entertaining performance. And then...came her second song. I agree with Simon, it started out beautifully, and then she completely overdid it, also pushing her vocals into a place where they didn't sound so great.

  • Taylor: I see absolutely no reason why he shouldn't come back next week. Both performances sounded amazing, were performed exactly as they should have been, and my love-fest for Taylor continues.


Tough to call. I went into this week assuming that it would be Elliott's last, but like I said, he fought really hard. Plus, Katharine screwed up. And history has shown that when she screws up, she's vulnerable. I don't think the Paris votes will be going to any one particular person, so I don't think that's too much of a factor in determining who goes this week.

I still think that Elliott is vulnerable, but I also think there's a hefty chance we could see the last of Katharine this week.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

AI Review, 2006/05/02

We're lucky at this point to have an extremely solid group of Idols left. Everyone still in the competition is really good in their own unique way, and that's a terrific thing.

  • Chris: First song was classic Chris - sounded great, rocked it out, put something into it, the whole deal. I didn't feel it was stunningly fabulous, but still very solid. The second song I winced through. I don't know whether he was pushing his voice too much during the song or whether the voice was giving out from overuse, but I started getting really nervous for him that it would crap out entirely up there. Not great.
  • Elliot: A thousand curses. I knew I wouldn't come downstairs from putting my daughter to bed until after the show started, so I set the VCR up to tape. And it did - but thanks to, I don't know, the fact that our clocks are off? That the network started the show a few minutes before 8? Who knows. The upshot was that I completely missed taping Elliott's first performance. So I have no idea how he did. His second song, however, was very nice - he ALMOST hit that spot where he reached out through the TV and into your chest to grab your heart in his hands. And of course he sounded great.
  • Katharine: First song kinda sucked. I agree with the judges, it got away from her and she had a number of off-tune moments. Plus - Against All Odds is a heartwrenching song. When you hear Phil Collins sing it, it just twists you up inside thinking about this poor guy, who had this wonderful love and now it's gone and it's NEVER going to come back to him...heartbreaking. When Katharine sang it, it could've been any old song. Mistake. Her second song, however, was SUPERB. I loved it. That's exactly the kind of thing she should be singing. It was fun, youthful, vibrant, sexy, original, did I say fun? and she sounded glorious.
  • Paris: Her songs weres okay. She sounded wonderful as usual, she did a good 'performance', she looked like a pro. But I felt she was just kind of going through the motions. Nothing grabbed me. I don't know whether this was because she wasn't on top of her game or whether she's simply not at the level of going much further in this competition.
  • Taylor: My favourite of the night. He had two great performances. The first one...well. What can I say. I loves me some Taylor! Could he have picked a more perfect song for himself or WHAT. He is a funky white boy! He sounded great, he worked it out, and I loved it. His second song didn't have as much 'oomph', but it was the first time I thought his attempt at doing something with tenderness really worked. I thought the second song was really lovely.


Objectively I don't know whom to pick as the weakest of the night. It wouldn't be Taylor, but everyone else had flaws - Chris' second performance was problematic, Katharine's first performance was problematic, Paris' two performances were overall good but lacking something, and I have no idea how Elliott's first performance went.

So let's look at the logic instead.

Kellie is now gone. Where will her votes go? I highly doubt that they will go to someone whose main strength is pure vocal talent (Elliott). There's also the unnerving fact that a (possibly significant) component of the Kellie fanbase would never vote for someone Jewish or black. However, I think it's a possibility that some of the Kellie votes could go to Paris. More will probably go to Chris. But I think most of them will go to Katharine.

Except...for Vote for the Worst. The VFTW people are now backing TAYLOR. Not because, as they make it clear, they think he sucks. But because they are all about screwing the American Idol machine and the associated record label, and let's face it, Taylor really is so far from the Idol Winner mold they like to churn out that it's kinda scary. Can you imagine Taylor singing the cheezy schlock they always come up with for the winner's first single? Exactly. And that is why he has VFTW support. With that, ,Taylor could go all the way in this competition.