It’s come down to the final 5! Last night the remaining five contestants performed, first a song from the 60’s and then a song from the Brit Pop genre (amazingly there were no Spice Girls songs!). At this point in the competition, I feel like all of the contestants have proven their talent, time and again. There were no “flops” last night, everyone did a good job and everyone was in their own zone respectively. So here are my thoughts on each contestant, how they did, and what I think about them at this point in the competition.
Hollie: has one of my favorite voices in this competition but her performances continue to be flip flopping. At first I was not overly impressed with her performance of River Deep, Mountain High in the first half. It was very standard Hollie in that yes her voice was good, but the song didn’t make me feel anything. That said, it’s been stuck in my head ever since so it obviously stuck with me. In round two she really blew me out of the water (like she often does) with Bleedin Love. Mentor Steven Van Zandt gave her the advice to sing to one person instead of the whole crowd and I think she took this to heart and really had a moment. I could see her in the Top 3 after that performance and moreover, she continues to be an artist that I could see myself buying from at the end of the day, she has commercial appeal in my opinion.
Phillip: sang The Letter which I am unfamiliar with but feel like this song was made for him. It was classic Phillip Phillips and one thing I noticed this week, that’s probably been obvious to anyone who’s reading these little reviews, is that his performances always make me feel something. It’s not about technicalities with him, it’s about the feeling of the song. I do also love when he plays with the notes and gets carried away with it. He’s a lot of fun to listen to. Hollie is probably a more talented musician, but he’s a more talented entertainer. And at the end of the day, I mentally pre-ordered his first CD months ago. For me, he’s Top 2. (In round two he sang Time of the Season, a song with a lot more melody – the judges praised him, but personally I found it inferior to his first performance but not bad).
Skylar: sang the heck out of Fortunate Son by Creedence Clearwater in true Skylar fashion. J Lo has remarked often that Skylar kind of punches each note, like she’s fighting the song. For the judges these seems to be a positive, but for me it’s actually getting a bit old. These performances have become stale for me. So it was refreshing for me when she sang You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me in round two and slowed things down a bit, reminding me what I like about her voice. I think it’s obvious that Skylar is a very talented musician and entertainer and I can see her going far in the country music scene, but I don’t think I’ll need to own her album. Taylor Swift is still about as country as I get most days.
Jessica: sang Proud Mary in round one and I thought she did a great job. She was masterful in the beginning with the slower notes and really held her own in the faster middle. Randy was unimpressed, stating it couldn’t compare to Tina Turner, but honestly what sixteen year old girl can? I thought it was great. But her second performance of You Are So Beautiful was downright amazing. Once again, I find myself with Jessica and Phillip in my personal Top 2 of the night.
Joshua: closed the show with Ain’t Too Proud to Beg and To Love Somebody. The judges continue to kiss the ground he walks on, calling him the best musician Idol has ever seen and beyond. I continue to say, “He’s doing a good job, but I still don’t see how he is musically relevant today.” Maybe I’m short sighted, maybe he’ll surprise me, maybe he’s just not my thing. He may still go far in his career and I am not denying he has talent. He does, it’s obvious. But his CD is just not something I need to own, frankly, and I can’t picture a Joshua Ledet album in Target next to today’s musicians. And I’m a Michael Buble fan. I can appreciate older genres and throwbacks. I have to just assume that his genre simply isn’t my thing and that’s fine.
So who’s going home tonight in just a few short hours? Man, I honestly have no idea. It’s anyone’s game. I just hope and pray that it won’t be Jessica or Phillip and (eek!) I won’t find out until I look it up online tomorrow because my DVR only has room for 2 shows at a time and Big Bang Theory and Vampire Diaries win out over a results show (for now).
Ps: Speaking of Brit Pop, is anyone else watching this cycle’s Top Model? Right now my Top 3 models are Laura, Analise and Sophie – how about you?