Monday, March 23, 2009

…reacts to American Idol Top 11

I had to miss this episode because of work, so all I had to go on were grainy videos of their performances and the inane ramblings of thousands of commenters on various American Idol fansites. Since I didn’t hear what the judges said, I have no idea how I’m supposed to feel about these performances, so I’m heading into this recap lost and confused, which seems appropriate actually, because that’s usually how I feel about everything. Therefore, my thoughts on this past week’s show are mercifully short and sweet (or short and VICIOUS, if we’re talking about the Hokey Gokey), but also full of insight and truth. Or whatever.

It’s no secret that country is my least-favorite genre, ESPECIALLY in the context of this show, so pardon me in advance if my opinions are based solely on how much I hate the songs. I try not to be that way most of the time, but what can I say? Country music makes me cranky.

Completely unbiased (or not) reactions after the jump.

Michael Sarver gets a big ‘ol meh from me this week. He sang Ain’t Going Down ‘Til the Sun Comes Up and there were lots of words and lots of audience pandering and lots of harmonica. I thought the harmonica player may have upstaged Michael, and that can’t be good.

Allison was great, as usual, but I’m basing that on nothing because I’ve never heard this song before (Blame It on Your Heart) – and frankly, I’m not interested in hearing it again. I continue to love her voice and her moxie, and her interviews keep improving.

Kris Allen is causing a massive personality breach in me, and I don’t know how I feel about it. I know he’s two Bible thumps and a pair of rotten, stupid, awful, moronic fake glasses away from being Danny Gokey – but ya’ll… HE’S SO CUUUUTE!! Normally, no amount of lip-licking and camera-to-eye-intercourse could keep me from hating someone who calls themselves a worship-leader, but Kris Allen totally breaks down all of my cynical, agnostic and bitter barriers until I have no choice but to embrace him fully. I’m even dreaming about him now, which means I am equal parts smitten and DOOMED!

It helps that his song, To Make You Feel My Love, is one of my favorite songs OF ALL TIME, so basically he’s doing everything right in my book.

Lil Rounds, poor thing, hit a wall tonight and that wall is painted in bovine black and white and smells of hay. Country is NOT her thing. I appreciated that she tried to keep it country in her rendition of Independence Day, but I think she would have been better off taking it down the R&B road. Also, Independence Day is one of those country songs, out of many, that make my physically ill.

Adam Lambert is a little bit crazy, it’s true, and while I normally support that kind of behavior, especially on a show that is rapidly approaching its inevitable twilight years, I can’t say I enjoyed this performance very much. First of all, Ring of Fire is actually a good song (it’s Johnny Cash and Johnny Cash transcends country music so I’m not confused by the fact that I like his music) but I thought the arrangement was just wrong. I’m not saying his idea was wrong, in fact it’s been tried before, but it just didn’t land on the right side of the bed on this particularly night. I thought too much of the song was lost – there were moments I totally forgot it was Ring of Fire, which probably wasn’t the intention. I’m tempted to give him an A for effort, but an EEEK!! for how he insists on leering at me like that. It was sexy for a minute – now it’s creepy.

Scott MacIntyre did something different with his hair, so give it up for that, but the singing is still under par. I’m starting to find him boring – not personally really, but vocally. He has the same performance every night, it seems: the same quasi-inspirational, tear-jerker of a song delivered from behind the piano. He needs to branch out. Oh, and Wild Angels? BARF!

Alexis Grace picked Jolene, which has been sung to death on this show. I wasn’t a fan of Brooke’s rendition last year, and this one was probably worse. I didn’t get the feeling that she knew what she singing about – she seemed absent and uninvolved. The vocal wasn’t a train-wreck by any means, but the performance was forgettable.

You know, Danny Gokey isn’t even trying. Jesus, Take the Wheel? Really? He is shameless. I'm embarrased for him. He looks like the Michelin Man. He isn’t doing anything to force me to take him seriously. He is pandering and predictable and poisonous. I’ve never wanted to punch someone so badly in my life. He’s a good singer, though.

Anoop’s performance of You Were Always On My Mind made me want to wave a lighter in the air like I just don’t care. Loved it. He makes me hate country just a little bit less.

Megan Joy has managed to smack her stink on yet another song. It’s weird, though, because her spastic dancing and giant boobs worked well with Walking After Midnight, although I could never have predicted it. I still like the way she sings and as long as she can pick songs that work with her style (more or less), I think she’ll be fine. She’s going to hit a landmine soon, though – her cleavage won’t save her on a sappy ballad or a disco hit.

Matt Giraud probably had the best performance of the night with his rendition of So Small (another song I can’t stand, btw). Unfortunately, I’m already invested in my favorites, and I’m not sure if there’s any room for him in my heart. More performances like that, however, and I may be forced to re-evaluate.

Favs: Kris Allen, Anoop, and Allison
Honorable Mention: Adam Lambert, because I am morbidly fascinated, and Matt because he was awesome.
Decent: Alexis, Lil, Megan, Scott, Michael
HATE: Gokey


I missed the results show too, but my sources tell me that Alexis got the boot, and I am SHOCKED! And then I’m not, because she didn’t have a chance of winning. I think she probably split the rock-chick demo with Allison and came out on the losing side. It sucks that she’ll miss the tour, which is turning out to be quite the Stag Party. Lil and Megan better tighten their braziers and hoist up their garters – representing for the ladies.

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