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American Idol Fodder

American Idol: The Six Tops

Lil-Rounds.jpgPoor Paula Abdul. I mean, she's obviously spent a lot of time making sure her critiques make sense this year (for the most part). And just when she's starting to earn a little credibility, here comes Simon with a box of crayons, and poof- goodbye credibility, hello mustache. Yes, that was a mustache Paula was hiding behind her hands as she tried to throw some positive comments at Allison Iraheta. And no, Simon did not look sorry.

But other than that, there weren't too many other bad marks to speak of on this better than average episode of "American Idol." This week the Idols had a chance to pick from some of the most well-known songs in history, the Motown catalogue. I wasn't sure what to expect, especially since some Motown songs have been done to death on this show, but tonight's crop of contestants totally blew me away!

There were several people who proved their worth tonight, but I was completely surprised by the sheer number of singers who had a good night. At least six of the finalists had a "moment," under the guidance of Smokey Robinson who was on hand to offer advice. So, here's my top six contenders, followed their four unlucky friends.

The Top 6: (a.k.a. those singers who have cemented their places in the final six spots)

Matt Giraud- Leading the way this week with an amazing rendition of "Let's Get It On," Matt finally shook things up. Usually we either get Piano Matt or On His Feet Matt, but never both, which is what Giraud did tonight. He started off with an awesome prelude on the ivories, before standing up and working the stage. His vocals were top-notch, he wowed the audience and, most importantly, impressed the judges. Simon told him he was one of the front-runners, and that status didn't change for the rest of the night. After his great performance last week, I'm pretty sure I'll be waiting in line for Matt's CD, whenever it comes out. (P.S. Dear Matt, So glad you stopped raiding J. Tim's wardrobe. See you next week!)

Kris Allen- Isn't it funny the difference a few weeks makes? During the semifinals I wrote Kris off, saying he was tuneless and completely wrong for the competition. It's a good thing I was wrong, because this guy is pretty darn good. I say "darn" because to say anything harsher would totally be out of character in describing Kris's "aw shucks" attitude. Performing Marvin Gaye's "How Sweet It Is" on his guitar, Kris put his own folksy twist on the melody. The judges had nothing but positive things to say, including Simon who said it was "smart." And even though Kris was clearly singing to his wife in the audience, I'm guessing he's fast approaching tween heartthrob territory. Move over Jonas Brothers! Step aside Archuleta! Kris Allen is in town.

Anoop Desai- Proving as hard as he can that he DID deserve to win a spot in the finals, Anoop-Dogg sang his heart out once again. He tackled "Ooh, Baby, Baby" and amazingly hit all the notes on this complicated song. I agree with Kara that it is very difficult to switch his voice from high-pitched to normal and low tones, and for Anoop to do it effortlessly was pretty awesome. He is showing just how much control he has over his voice, though he needs to work on his stage presence a little. While singing the song he looked like he had just popped an Ambien and was waiting for that little butterfly from the commercial to float through his bedroom window. If he can mix the excitement from Michael Jackson week with his vocals from the last two weeks, this guy is going places. Hopefully, it's not to sleep.

Adam Lambert- Once again, let's file him under the "What the?" category, though this week it's for a different reason. If you remember, just seven days ago, this was the weird kid with the spiky hair and the creepy vocals. This week, wearing what can only be called a mashup of clothing styles from Elvis and k.d. lang, Adam attempted "Tracks of My Tears." And man, as much as I haven't liked this guy, he can really sing. First, I was thrown off by his slowed down, low-key performance, since he's usually doing something wacky. But it totally worked for him. His vocals were almost near perfect (someone serve a warrant on this kid, because he killed those higher notes), and that last note was brilliant. He made Kara and Paula stand up and clap, and Simon said he was the best of the night. Danny better watch his back as Adam tries to steal the title of most-talked about contestant.

Danny Gokey- Robert Downey Jr.'s clone wasn't as good as he usually his, but that still means he was awesome. Singing "Get Ready" Danny served up some nice vocals with a side of fun personality. He was in pitch the entire time and was fun to watch as he danced with the backup singers, which proves he's a likeable guy. These are all key if he wants to win, though he may have to battle it out with Adam.

Allison Iraheta- I had no doubt she'd be good, but I didn't think she'd be "amazing." Allison "Did you know I was 16" Iraheta blew the rest of the girls away and proved why this isn't an all-male competition just yet. She sang "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" and showed off her smoky, rocker voice. And that last note was really good.

Everyone Else:

Scott MacIntyre- He challenged Paula's suggestion that he should stop playing the piano and do something different, by sticking to what he knows best. He shook things up with a faster tempo, some Billy Joel-style arrangements and a team of backup singers, but in the end it wasn't as good as the other contestants. Some of his notes were a little off, but on the bright side, he seemed much more confident. The judges didn't like it, though, and said he picked the wrong song.

Megan Joy (Corkrey)- This girl is hard to categorize. Is she a jazz singer? Is she contemporary? Is that a potty dance she's doing? I don't know the answer to any of those questions, but I do know her take on "For Once in My Life" was a little too scattered. All the judges agreed she picked the wrong song, and said she should've tackled something more like "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" which would have given her a "moment."

Michael Sarver- Apparently he's had a rough week, after falling ill and missing the trip to Detroit, which may have something to do with his less than stellar performance. The whole thing seemed a little disjointed and Paula got booed when she said it seemed like a Las Vegas show. Michael needs to decide what kind of genre he wants to sing in, and then stick with it.

Lil Rounds- Underneath her faithful, yet boring, performance, I could hear Lil's awesome voice just trying to break through. You could almost hear that Mary J. Blige style to her voice, and it made me wishing she'd turn this into a medley, just so I could hear her sing something different. Alas, she kept singing "Heat Wave," though her rendition was only luke warm. Simon's correct in calling her one of the best singers, but she just didn't show it.

BOTTOM LINE: I have absolutely no idea who's going home this week, but I'm pretty sure Megan and Michael will be in the bottom three. I'm not sure who'll join her, but I'm hoping it's not Allison. Wake up people and start voting for her! My best guess for who is getting kicked off: Megan.

How did you think everybody fared on Motown night? Do you agree with my Top 6, or was one of your favorites left out? Who are the real frontrunners in this race? Can the female contestants catch a break? And did Adam earn himself even more voters with his restrained performance? Post below and tune in Thursday night for the results! -Chris Sardelli


Posted by Chris on March 26, 2009 8:27 AM
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I'm sorry Simon, but the game has passed you by. You look absolutely flabby when your wearing your see-through white t-shirts. You are actually hard to look at and forces my wife and daughter to hold up there hands and mask your lower half. I know in England your probably considered quite a classy guy, but the fact is your just old and I bounce between thinking tone deaf or just plain hateful. So in retrospect, here are some tips: don't touch your face when your on camera, wear thicker shirts, even if you like the feel of light material, consider even Cher looked bad showing her southern cheeks at the Academy Awards, most important work out, transparent white t-shirts over a flabby back ground isn't family programming, it's just plain offensive, and finally stop fondling Paula, if you've got something going, get a room. But you're suppose to be paying attention to the contestants. Please take these suggestions seriously.

-- 1. Posted by: svduran1 at April 4, 2009 1:44 PM

Awesome prediction. You actually got the top 6 right. That was also my opinion guess since 'Everyone Else' were just way too boring, mistaken, and misplaced with their song choices and performances. Thank God the best 5 are up now :)
I'm hoping the top 4 will be the guys; Matt Giraud, Matt, Matt Giraud, Matt, Danny, Kris, and Adam :D

-- 2. Posted by: Tam at April 23, 2009 4:16 AM

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