Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My guest review of American Idol for onemattDOTcom

The following is a blog entry from onemattDOTcom. I joined Matt last year on several occasions to review American Idol and he's asked me back this year to do the same. I'm excited to get this thing going! Here's the review from last night's Top 12 girls.
Greetings all you Idol fans out there!  It’s time for this week’s Idol recap and review to begin…this year, I’m being joined by Jill Miranda, most recently of the Variety Show Blog.  Check her out when you can…she’s got some hilarious insight into life and many other things.

So last night was the first live show of the year, with the Top 12 girls performing.  Let’s get to Jill’s opening thoughts…

I never start to watch American Idol until it’s down to the top 12. However, I’m making an exception this year. I wonder how this will change my rankings. I know after watching tonight I will be amazed if some of these girls make it to the final 12. In fact, I’m not sure 12 of these girls have the talent to make it to the top 12. See? That’s why I don’t like to watch this soon. I don’t think they are yet showcasing who they actually are. They’re all trying too hard or either not hard enough. To me, it’s awkward for the most part.  And, well, it’s hard to break my attention away from my 3 year old and deny her the use of our living room TV for awkward. Yes, I DVR things. But, sadly, I don’t have enough time that is my own to leisurely view said DVR’d show. After all, I have a 3 year old, it’s hard to break my attention away from sleep for awkward just the same.

Let’s give it a go nonetheless.

Okay then Jill, thanks for that…my thoughts are a lot like Jill’s here…to be honest, I wasn’t really blown away with any of the performances from last night.  But still, I do think some of the girls have some talent.  I’m not with Simon here, I don’t think this is the girl’s year.  I can think of at least 3 or 4 guys I think could run away with this thing.  We’ll get to them tonight and tomorrow, but for now, let’s break down the performances in the order in which they performed, and let you know how we think they did!

Paige Miles
Song – “All Right Now” by Free
Jill – Simon thinks she the best of the girls. Eh, I don’t think I agree. She was good as far performances go tonight, but nothing stands out to me about her. I don’t see her making it to the top. Surry (In a short choppy British accent). Score – 5/10
Matt – I have to sort of agree here, although I was clearly a bit more liberal with the scoring that Jill was…she was good, but I didn’t absolutely love the “runs” during the song.  Cute girl though.  Score – 7.5/10

Ashley Rodriguez
Song – “Happy” by Leona Lewis
Jill – When she started out, she kind of came across as being a poor beggar about to make it big in a Come into your own dramatic musical. . .or Disney Movie. Her performance also seemed rather short to me. I think she’s good, but I don’t know if she has it in her to do something “different” like the judges recommended of her. I think the old school big voice area is her forte. Not sure she can stray from that, so she better start measuring up. Score – 5.5/10
Matt – Whoa…sort of brutal there…I think Ashley has a lot of talent.  In fact, of these first two performances, I think Ashley has the way-better voice.  Her voice did seem to go out on her a bit when she tried to really crank up the volume, and it was better (IMO) when she was singing softer.  I like her though, again, another very pretty girl… Score – 8.1/10

Janell Wheeler
Song – “What About Love” by Heart
Jill – I try not judge based on past performances and rate the contestants on a week by week basis. I will say, though, that I loved when she sang the Estelle song during try outs. I don’t think she pulled off Heart, though. But, that’s a really hard thing to do. Heart pretty much rocks. Score – 5.8/10
Matt – Dude…I’m right with you here, Jill.  Nothing spectacular.  This song was WAY out of her comfort zone.  Sure, pick a song you like, I’m with you there…you can easily relate it to the audience if you have a belief in the song you’re singing, but be smart.  Ann Wilson is sort of untouchable…almost anyone that sings that on Idol won’t even come close. Score – 7.2/10

Lilly Scott
Song – “Fixing a Hole” by The Beatles
Jill – I like her. I do. She’s kind of kickass. I’d like to see her with darker hair though. I’m a little tired of the “I lived in my car and sang on the street” story. Call it cynicism. It probably is. I agree with Simon on this girl. There are lots of people on the internet doing this same thing. She has the drive to be different and stand out. She needs to go for it. Score – 7.4/10
Matt – So every time she had her name called, I kept thinking I was watching One Tree Hill and this was some sort of storyline with Nathan having a second wife or a cousin or something crazy like that.  Lilly was good and I enjoyed her rendition of this song.  I gotta admit though…never heard the song.  So I have nothing to base it on.  Score – 8.2/10

Katelyn Epperly
Song – “Oh Darling” by The Beatles
Jill – I really liked her tonight, minus a couple of hip moves and shimmies. And I like her hair. And she pulls off that lipstick. That is all. Score – 8.3/10
Matt – Quick and to the point, I like it, Jill.  I’m with you here…a decent performance, and I think she’s marketable as a pop star…nice voice, big voice…Score 8.3/10

Haeley Vaughn
Song – “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” by The Beatles
Jill – Oh my. Oh, oh, oh. Hayley. I wasn’t impressed. What the hell was that? You lose. Sorry, sweet girl. Score – 2.1/10
Matt – Oooh….my wife isn’t going to like that score at all.  Yeah, there were some things about her performance that could be better, and yes, she might well be going home on Thursday, but I like this girl…I think she has a quality that several of the other contestants lack…originality!  Score – 7.9/10

Lacey Brown
Song – “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac
Jill – She’s a little pixie fairy. I like pixie fairies. Martina McBride, Faith Hill, Jenna Elfman, girl named Lauren I worked with at Landry’s, Liliana before her hair grew longer—all pixie fairies. I agree with Ellen, I like her and she is waaaay better than that. And it made me giggle when Simon pretty much said, “Everything about you sucks. . .but you have nice eyes”. Hehe. I’m pulling for her. If she makes it through, she needs rock it out next week. Score – 2/10 with lots of potential
Matt – Nice one…Christy made the Martina McBride comparison (in looks) last night…I was expecting more from Lacey with her performance, and based on that and that alone, I think she might be in trouble. Score – 7.1/10

Michelle Delamour
Song – “Falling” by Alicia Keys
Jill – I think she’s gorgeous! And I think she sang the song really well. I think that’s her knack and she should stick with it and give it more and more and she’ll be good to go! You can’t expect everyone to create a completely different sound and vibe. Score – 8/10
Matt – Agree on the gorgeous for sure…it is a big song, and Alicia Keys is slowing making her way into the “maybe you shouldn’t sing her stuff because there’s really very little chance you can sound remotely good while doing it” category.  Did well though… Score – 8.4/10

Didi Benami
Song – “The Way I Am” by Ingrid Michaelson
Jill – Is that Brook White? No, wait, when I close my eyes, it sounds like Meghan Joy. Please don’t be another Meghan Joy. No, I think she’s better. I don’t think she will make it to the end, though. I think she’ll make it through, but no more than a couple more weeks. Score – 4.5/10
Matt – HA!  Very nice…yeah, again, apparently Jill and Christy are of one brain when it comes to this thing…she also made the Brooke (with an “E”) White comparison.  I didn’t get Meghan Joy out of her though…I enjoyed this actually, although like with Crystal who would sing later, she’s going to struggle to get out of that “coffeehouse” mentality and into pop superstardom… Score – 7.9/10

Siobhan Magnus
Song – “Wicked Game” by Chris Issac
Jill – A Dark Horse, indeed. This song has the potential to be haunting. Not sure she was haunting. I can’t quite figure her out just yet. I was surprised that the judges liked it so much. I’m a little with Simon, on this one. Didn’t love it, liked it though. Oh, hey, she just said she sang it because it was haunting. There you go. Score – 5.8/10
Matt – How quirky is this girl?!  Very much so…she’s got a big voice, here’s my thing…she’s so quirky that I don’t think she’s got what it takes to earn the votes of America for very long.  I’m sorry, but she’s just too dang quirky!  Score – 8.2/10

Crystal Bowersox
Song – “Hand in my Pocket” by Alanis Morrisette
Jill – I like her because she said “Mama needs a bigger paycheck”. We’re kindred spirits already. And I like her because she has a harmonica and dreadlocks (that are clean looking might I add). When people sing songs by Alanis Morrisette, you almost expect them to sound like they’re at a karaoke bar. Wait, or is that just when I sing Alanis Morrisette when I’m actually at a Karaoke bar? Anyway, I’d like to see her go through because she is so anti the typical Amercian Idol, and I think she can be good. And I think she would take her baby on the tour bus with her. More artists should do that...Britney!!!! Score – 7.3/10
Matt – Well, I’m not sure about the whole “raising kids on the road” vibe here, but I like Crystal.  Again, she’s original.  My problem is America doesn’t typically vote for “original”…but I loved her performance.  Who couldn’t see her singing this song way ahead of time though?  Kind of predictable, but good nonetheless.  Score – 8.4/10

Katie Stevens
Song – “Feelin’ Good” by Michael Buble
Jill – I thought she was good. Reminds me of a young Kathryn McPhee. Her voice is almost bigger than her, though. She’s young and she needs to hone in her look, get a style, come into her own. Merge that big voice with her young innocent look and somewhere in the middle, Boom! There’s a star! Score – 6/10
Matt – Ah, the McPhee…I miss her.  I miss that yellow dress.  Katie has a HUGE voice, and I think she did well.  I hate that the judges pulled the whole “you’re too old to sing that song” crap on her.  She picked a song that would help showcase her voice, which is great, and I think the judges are just giving her some negative criticism because they know she’ll make it through.  Damn judges.  Score – 8.9/10

And now, Jill’s wrap-up…

Whew! That was kind of tough. But I’ll see you again tomorrow to do the thing with. . .The Boys (In a sexy enthusiastic I can’t wait voice).

Yep!  Until tomorrow, we shall see you then!  Oh yeah, almost forgot…what are YOUR thoughts, America?!?  Who’s going home?  Who’s staying put?