The guys of American Idol had better be glad that five of them are guaranteed to go through until the next round, because otherwise it would a mostly-girls club.
The 12 remaining girls on Idol performed in Hollywood for the first time last night, and they thoroughly outperformed the 13 guys the previous night. According to the rules this year, five girls and five guys will advance along with three others whom the judges pick.
Just as importantly, last night the judges were more judgmental, actually telling the singers what they liked and didn’t like about their performances, a much-needed change from Tuesday night’s rose-colored commentaries.
Chelsea Sorell, one of three country and western singers, started the show off with a mediocre performance of Carrie Underwood’s “Cowboy Casanova.” Sorell, as J-Lo pointed out was too nasally. She is also too tan, and the way her dress pushed her bosom up to her chin, she may have been feeling a little choked.
Usually, you have to wait until about four weeks into the contest before the make-overs start, but Erika Van Pelt was hardly recognizable from just a few weeks ago with a new hair cut, coloring and more fashionable clothes. She belted out Heart’s “What About Love,” and did a pretty good job, but she was overshadowed by better perfomers later in the show.
In an unusual move, two singers performed the same song, which is a bad omen by Jen Hirsch, the first of the pair to sing “One and Only” by Adele. The second singer, Elise Testone, was in the final spot, which means she is a shoe-in to advance.
Brielle Von Hugel was next and you almost couldn’t see the strings her mother was using to move her lips so she could sing “Sitting on the Dock of the Bay.” The New Yawka started off way too low and her nasally accent made some of the lyrics – Joe-a-ja instead of Georgia , for example– very grating. Here’s hoping she gets kicked to da curb. Ehhhh. Ohhhh. Forgetaboutit.
Hallie Day, aka Blondie, aka Marilyn Monroe, was solid with “Feeling Good,” but as has been noted elsewhere, this song is a death note for previous singers, even landing Adam Lambert in the bottom two during his season.
Skylar Laine, the second of the three country singers, bounced around the stage with “Stay With Me.” She is a little fireplug, maybe too much of a fireplug, definitely too much of a fireplug. Of the three country fried singers, she will be the one to advance because the other two were well below her in terms of overall performance.
Baylie Brown (from Krum) is as cute as bug, unfortunately she sang like a cricket. She was the first real train wreck of the night.
Hollie Cavanaugh now lives in McKinney though she is originally from England, and her twisted accent is peculiar but her rendition of “Reflection” by Christina Aguilera was solid and should be good enough for her to advance.
Haley Johnsen nudged Bailey Brown down the train wreck line with a screeching performance of “Sweet Dreams.” She hit a few right notes but not many, and her screaming incoherently didn’t help.
Shannon Magrane, all 6-feet of her, looked elegant when she sang “Go Light the World,” and if she doesn’t make it to the next round through America’s vote, then Steven Tyler will likely make her his judge’s pick so that Magrane’s 6-5 father doesn’t pound him.
Jessica Sanchez probably has the best voice of all. Even though she’s 16, her voice has a maturity to it well beyond her years.
Elise Testone was in the final spot and her piano-playing rendition of “One and Only” by Adele was better than Jen Hirsch. Elise is the oldest looking 28-year-old you will see, and I’m not sure that she is long for this competition, but she will make it to the next round.
Who Will Go Through:
Girls: Sanchez , Testone, Magrane, Cavanaugh, Laine, Day, Van Pelt
Guys: Ledet, Dixon, Phillips, Han, Fraker and maybe Rosado as a wild card.
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