Tuesday, April 28, 2009

American Idol 2009 April 28 - Top 5 - Rat Pack

Rat Pack and Jamie Fooooooooooooxxxxxx!

Wow, he's incredible. He's just so amazing, as a performer and as an actor. What a great way to start the show

Oh, no, Kris is in the crappy #1 pole position. This is horrible. HORRIBLE. He's my current favorite. Did you see him in the latest USA Today article? It basically says that he could be sneak in and surge past Danny and (because of the way voters switch allegiances once their faves lose) possibly take on Adam directly.... Where has USAToday been? For Pete's sake, in terms of American Idol fanatics and voting tendencies, there has clearly been an unprecedented ground-swell favoring Kris. He might not overtake Adam, but there's no doubt that his suppressed fame in the beginning rounds had no effect whatsoever on the general public.

I want to be clear about this: I want a "Kris v Adam" final almost as much as a I wanted "David v David" final last year.

Think about it! They're just so.... dissimilar! It'd be wonderful... Any red state voter should be pushing for this final, because it would give them their first chance in a year to vote for someone who's actually popular.

01/06. Kris Allen - Thinking of You
Wow, Jamie wants to work with Kris? That's intense! So he chose a ballad that must have made Anoop jealous. Hmmm. Okay, I have to admit, the boy looks good in that tight suit. Ooh, uptick in the tempo. Hmm Not a confident falsetto high note. Oh this is a wonderful transition. Oooooh, perfect Rat Pack money note. Now that was a sultry, sexy, hot performance. Not sure what to say other than "He totally wants to win". I typically start at 50 for the first person, but don't be surprised if that's one of the high scores right now. Paula said he went from "adorable boy next door" to "gentleman"... I just say "dang if Simon says Kris is wet, then let's see him wet".

02/07 Allison Iraheta - Someone to Watch Over Me
Amazing. I was blown away. This was incredible. She finally shows depth, and agility. This girl simply cannot be just turning 17! She looked and sounded so beyond her years. If she decides to do someone other than rock, she'll still excel. Score 55. Simon, what are you smoking?

03/08 Matt Giraud - My Funny Valentine
Jamie gives great advice. A lower key register will give Matt's vocal range a chance to shine. Hmmm, it also gives him a chance to warble off pitch here and there. And there. And here. Well, Jamie was right, the money note was really good. Score 40. OK, Simon, you really must be smoking something. There's no way he could have topped Allison tonight dude.

[Honesty: I had one too many free Bud Lights at the Scottsbluff Nebraska Hampton Inn convention center lounge, while waiting for the show to begin.]

04/09 Danny Gokey - Come Rain or Shine
Well, this is nice. This is only the second week (and the second week in a row no less) that Danny has really shined in this show. He finally is showing some creativity and artistic guts. I like the sound and the interpretation and wow, love the glasses. Hey Danny, I have a picture of my Dad carrying me around as a baby and he wore those same glasses back in the day. Score 54.

[Commercial break: I laughed alot but whoa that Minute Maid boost commercial was simply inappropriate for this show. There are kids watching this thing, people!]

05/10 Adam Lambert - Feeling Good
Adam, dressed as Steve Martin, gets to saunter down those steps like he's walking into the prom. The theatrics is way over the top. Even Frank and Deano couldn't have done this song this way. Is it really a Rat Pack number? No matter. It was a beautiful, falsetto-ridden, lavish and lush song with tremendous clarity. The second to last measure, which lasted 3 minutes longer than Bill Clinton's impeachment trial, was spectacular... And needed three bathroom breaks.... Score 51.

I don't think I've ever score an American Idol episode this close. They're all very good and I don't think anybody really choked. There were some really good moments here.

What do you think?

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

American Idol 2009 Apr 21 - Top 6 + 1

Wow, so here we are, getting ready to review this week's edition and I can't figure out what to title this blog entry. It's supposed to be "Top 6" but then last week the judges saved Matt Giraud. We still have 7 contestants. But this week, eek, they eject two contestants. It's gonna be a rough night tomorrow night!

Before we begin, I was reviewing my top list with friend Sally of Castro Valley to see which of our contestants matched. We seem to agree that the top 4 remaining are Adam, Kris, Danny and Allison. I have to say, though I really like Allison, I have my doubts about her longevity here. She's just too much, methinks, for America at large. But I wonder what the Apple iTunes sales are looking like, because I know that she's one of my favorites to download.

So, here we go. Let's get on with it.

Hmm, they're removing the intro stuff.

1. Lil Rounds - I'm Every Woman

Hmm, sounds only just fine. Not great. She has a good sound as always but I really don't get the feel about what she's all about. She just sings things so directly or karaoke. It wasn't original again or even interpreted, really - that's the problem. Ouch, Simon doesn't mince words. I will give her a score 50, since she's the first person.

2. Kris Allen - She Works Hard for the Money

Interesting, they're interviewing Kris. Why didn't they interview Lil? They put her in the lousy #1 spot and then didn't let her talk except to sound all talkback.

Oooooo, nice interpretation! Very 70s and still avoiding the whole disco thing. One odd note at the start. Mmm this is a delish interpretation. Very original. It's all folksy and artsy. This is one to download. Awesome. Loved it! Score 88.

3. Danny Gokey - September

This is good. Not as predictable as a typical Danny song. I do like his voice, but he does have a predictability about him... Including a predictable offkey note. And he's just not the disco dancer. He really energizes the song with that raspy voice. It's alot more interesting that I expected. And didn't miss a note this week. Score 68. Huh, is she deaf? Kara said he doesn't ever have pitch problems. Allow me to replay his previous performances, please.

4. Allison Iraheta - Hot Stuff

Wow, she's starting it all slow. Where is this going? Nice transition. She's turned this into a real hot rocking song. This is a totally listenable rock song now. Very very good. Love that paused money note! I could see Aerosmith doing this rendition. Loved it. Score 89.

5. Adam Lambert - If I Can't Have You

Oh, surprising. He's doing it as a ballad. I love it when he does slow songs. Not expected at all for this song. Wow, he's so imposing on that stage vocally. You just don't wanna go against him directly. Of course he has to throw in the falsetto screams in there. Wow, that was impressive. Score 87. Paula is crying?

6. Matt Giraud - Stayin Alive

Well Matt's got a nice sound this week - unlike last week. Nice use of his really good falsetto. He's doing some reasonable dance steps. Hmm, odd climb to the money note but finished it nicely. He sings it well for the most part, but it wasn't the original version. Score 60.

7. Anoop Desai - Dim All the Lights

Anoop is doing what he does best, which is sing ballads slowly. Hmm a couple of pitchy notes there. Not enjoying the look either - he looks like a wedding singer in London. It's a ok rendition, but my goodness his strength is really a sleepy one for me. Score 64.

So, in order of how I liked them in descending order:

04 Allison
02 Kris
05 Adam
03 Danny
07 Anoop
06 Matt
01 Lil

But the first three are essentially a tie and I'm just trying to break the tie. OK, time to vote!

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

American Idol - 2009 Apr 14 - Top 7

OK, last week I was a little rude. I might just edit and add back the comments that I had entered for the others. But I really was impressed by that version of Mad World. It wasn't merely despondent like the version that Adam based it upon; it was forlorn, creepy, and unhinged. Thank heavens!

Well tonight, inexplicably, we have Quentin Tarantino as the guest judge. Not sure why he's such a music master, but at least he knows movies and soundtracks. Hmm, he was a guest judge in season 3. I didn't watch it back then, so I'll pretend he knows what he's doing here.

1. Allison Iraheta "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing"
Ooh a very nice sweet and tender start. A little spotty in the chorus, but she's got that rocker sentimentality about her. The problem for me is that I *love* the David Cook version last year. So this is tough for me because I have to compare against that one. But it's really a good performance. I give a 50, because she's first and compare everyone against her.

2. Anoop Desai "Look Into My Eyes"
He only sings ballads? It's clear and a nice simple delivery. But it's not about to grab anyone by the collar and make them go out and buy the song. Hmm, a slight country sound to it. is he still going for some country voters? All notes are on key. I give it 55. I'd give it more but it was sorta limp for the most part.

3. Adam Lambert "Born to Be Wild"
I think I like Adam most when he's restrained, so this movie genre seems to be a risk. Hmm it's sort of a Queen-version of Adam. Sound-wise, he's right on to me.It's almost Zep-like in his falsetto. What's not to like about the sound? I just wish he didn't wring out every single melodramatic cliche during his performances. Score 70. Simon did say something that resonated with me. Great sound but a Rocky Horror look.

4. Matt Giraud "Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman"
He's just so Justin sometimes. I guess that wins votes. Nice lovely start. He really should do the whole Billy Joel piano-man thing. Doubt he could do Elton. Huh, what was that? That was a very weird middle. Nice falsetto money note to maybe mask that really odd middle section. Score 35.

5. Danny Gokey "Endless Love"
Looks better without his glasses. Yes please restrain those hands. One weird note at the beginning. I like the approach he's taking. He's sort of doing the "dude singing to his wife at the wedding" sound to me. It's a nice sound but there's no way you can do anything with this song - it's just boring. Score 48.

6. Kris Allen "Falling Slowly"
I'm not familiar with this song. Sort of pitchy first three notes. Nice cleaned up look for a change. Interesting, he's going for a more emo sound and look. Ooh nice falsetto. Dull song to me but he's making it work. At least he does his Kris yell during one part. Hmm, almost a slightly David Cook sound. Is it Cook night? Randy's wrong I think tonight because Kris sang a lower register than he has before. Score 60.

7. Lil Rounds "The Rose"
Now this is one of my favorite songs of all time. She karaoked Tina last week. Hmm, she's now impersonating Bette. She can't seem to do a diva song without an impersonation unfortunately. Where are these notes heading? She's doing a slightly more gospel sound to the piece but no it's not working. And there's no gravitas if she's doing it gospel. Hmm more than a few wrong notes. Oh Lil, where's the Lil from the first part of the year? No she messed up the money note. :( Score 20.

Rankings, top to bottom
03 Adam
06 Kris
02 Anoop
01 Allison
05 Danny
04 Matt
07 Lil

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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

American Idol - Top 8 - Apr 7, 2009

Total Knockout - Adam + 7 Wannabes Tonight.

Amazing. Adam was the only one that mattered tonight. It was that far in a different league.

The performers came and went in the following order...

01 Danny Gokey

02 Kris Allen

03 Lil Rounds

04 Anoop Desai

05 Scott McIntyre

06 Allison Iraheta

07 Matt Giraud

But the only one that mattered was this one:

08 Adam Lambert - Mad World
I'm loving this. Wow, This is spooky and slightly crazy and it's just so 80s meets emo. This is wonderful minimalist pop. I think Bronksi Beat could have done this. Very very hot. Simon gave a standing ovation! Wow. That has to be one of the best interpretations on Idol I've seen. Slightly off on the closer but dang good.

I might deign to give my opinion on the others... But why bother? It was that good...

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