I had to record American Idol last night and watched it super-late again. When I tried to pull up the recording, at first it didn’t appear. I about had a complete and total meltdown… a total fit. it’s been a rough little while in the WhiteEyebrows world, and this certainly didn’t help… at all!
Then, as if the heavens opened and someone smiled down upon me, the recording magically appeared and magically worked!
Can I just say that I am so incredibly excited for Neil Diamond night!! I think Neil Diamond is perhaps one of the most incredible singer/songwriter and all-around good guys who exist. Why are all of today’s super-talented people complete freaks? Why can’t they just be normal like Neil Diamond and Paul Simon? Sure his music can be a little one-dimensional and void of different flavors, but it is still classic.
Now to the review…
First, you sang Forever in Blue Jeans. I have one word to say to you: weenie. It’s the most weenie version of the song I’ve ever heard, for sure. Everything about it was weenie, from arrangement with the little weenie violins playing the melody to your really weenie clothes and dreadlocks.
I’m Alive: Is it just me or is David Cook actually becoming more Emo with every song he sings? At first I thought it was just a mild emo thing… the hair and pale face were slight hints, but he’s only recently started doing the more weird head jabs, the off beat jerky guitar strums you more commonly see with the more alternative/emo musicians. (like that freak from dot dot dot on the first season of “Next Great American Band” — yes, I admit I indulged once or twice)
If you need education on what I’m talking about, here you go:
One thing is for sure, he knew he was a hack after that song was over. His face said right out loud, “I’m a sell-out hack.”
I’m a Believer: Brooke? What was this pitiful thing? You didn’t make any believers with that song!
First, you should have ditched the guitar. It just hindered you having a good time with the song and really singing the devil out of it into the microphone. I thought it was a crutch for you, and I don’t think we have to be constantly reminded how talented you are at all those instruments. Overkill.
Second, you really chose the wrong key… it started out too low for you.
Have you absolutely plateaued on this show already? I think maybe…
Sweet Caroline: Will someone please teach this boy what to do with his right hand? I will give him credit for trying, though, unlike Brooke. I’m going to say that this was one of the better performances of Round 1. I think he took the delightfully vanilla flavor of this song and injected some fudge ripples into it.
Oh, and yes, again he forgets lyrics. This kid will never be a live performer if he can’t keep 10 lines of a song in his head…
Hello Again: I thought this was a great song for her, and it sure does mean something different, and a bit more, coming from a female voice. I really liked all the modifications to the melody and the runs she did. I thought it really gave the song some life. Just like how her purple dress did, too. America, pay attention to this one. She isn’t throwing in the towel yet. If David A’s version was Fudge Ripple, hers was Fudge Brownie!
Round 1 Conclusion: I say this one goes to Syesha with David a close close second. Almost a tie.
Now for a word from my AA sponsor, Paula:
Oh gosh we’ve never had to write stuff down… I don’t know how to write. I thought you sang twice already… actually did you sing 3 times? I’m not sure. Oh gosh, being a judge is so hard… I have to actually have real thoughts.. hmm oh well.
I really dig this special shotgun judging format. Simon is the only one who said anything coherent, and Paula doesn’t take 10 minutes to tell everyone how beautiful they look. Keep it.
September Morn: Did Jason just sing the same song twice? Freak. He chose the two “gayest” (i hate that word, but I mean it in it’s most derogatory yet sensitive sense here) Neil Diamond songs. And does this boy know anything about climaxing a song? About dynamics? One of the greatest climaxes Neil Diamond ever wrote is in this song and he just threw it away. Bleah! That was terrible.
And “I was choking” is your best excuse? That was the best you can do? Really?
All I Really Need Is You: Now this was the first song that I felt was fully owned by a contestant. There were some great moments in this one. The song went somewhere, and asked us to feel something. It wasn’t only current, but it didn’t sound like hokey-pokey-folksy-prodding-along Neil Diamond.
Strange, but you even notice that he dropped the stupid little emo tricks i was complaining about before.
I agree with Simon, brilliant!
[flashvideo filename=video/top5-davidcook.flv /]
I Am, I Said: Now this is a song I can believe from Brooke. It made it all the difference for her to be singing about Arizona rather than New York. Now if she was just singing and not playing the piano, she would be able to communicate with the audience a bit more.
This is definitely the Brooke we like! No pretension – just honesty and talent.
…And I see she’s now back to thanking everyone and their dog… [groan]
America: This is the song that certainly has the most potential coming into the show tonight. I thought he really wasted the first verse, but into the first chorus the magic started happening. The arrangement seemed way too treble-ey for me. Can we hire a freakin’ bass player, please?
Nice cracking of the voice, too. I love how he just kind of winced and went right on. Nice work, dude.
I think Paula just called David a “savant?” I’m not sure she knows exactly what that means…
Thank the Lord for the Nighttime: Again, I thought this was a super-creative choice on her part. Syesha definitely gets the song-choice award for tonight. In a category that could have really brought her down, she picked two winners and then hit them out of the ballpark. She also made them fit her voice really well. I’m giving her gold stars for that! Not easy to do with such a folksy, understated, bland sound that Neil is.
- Syesha/David A
- David C
I’m giving Syesha the top spot again, and I realize most people will not agree with me. But hear me out… it’s not just because she’s mah woooman and is fighting an uphill battle against these two Davids, but because she really, truly picked two better songs, surmounted a bigger challenge with the genre, and had the biggest return on that investment.
Realistically, though, this will come down to David A and David C. It will be raw talent and youth vs a bit more refined talent and wristband wearing.