AMERICAN IDOL 8: TOP 7 ANALYSIS

You may have noticed that unlike last season, I haven’t been doing any analysis of the latest season of “Idol.” One reason might be that for the most part, the contestants haven’t captured my heart, but I think the reality is President Obama is to blame! His press conferences have pushed two “Idol” performance shows up against my beloved “Lost” and “Lost” comes first, and knowing that I wouldn’t be able to blog week in and week out about “Idol” made me think I shouldn’t start. But since I have nothing else to blog about right now (and the judges were so often off base tonight), I’ve changed my mind. Let’s see what we got tonight…

“I DON’T WANT TO MISS A THING” – ALLISON IRAHETA

When I have tuned in this year, I’ve usually found myself rooting for Allison. I even picked up the phone and voted for her, something I usually don’t do until the final week. But tonight she disappointed me. First I didn’t like the string intro and then Allison made one of the biggest mistakes a contestant can make: she made the performance about her voice, not the song. In trying to show off her big voice, she forgot about the emotions in the lyrics she should have been trying to convey. At least it was nice to see Simon moving away from his support of Lil and give Allison some props. She may need it going first.

“EVERYTHING I DO (I DO IT FOR YOU)” – ANOOP DESAI

I’ve been rooting for Anoop since the beginning, although he’s really had his ups and downs. Tonight was more down than up. He showed nothing special in the verses and the chorus wasn’t much better, as he kept trying to hold notes and add runs which didn’t work. The amazing thing was Kara saying the performance was one of Anoop’s best. You could see Simon in his corner wishing he had the chance to correct that overstatement!

“BORN TO BE WILD” – ADAM LAMBERT

Now here’s a contestant who does have the voice to play around with a melody. While I found the electro take on this Steppenwolf classic jarring at first, Adam was a lot of fun to watch. His vocal power reminded me a bit of Meat Loaf, which is what I think Simon was getting at when he mentioned “Rocky Horror.” Of course, he also has the wide range of a Freddie Mercury, so let’s hope Adam can find some songs that let him show that off.

Simon was wrong about one thing though. The people that would be appalled by Adam’s take on a rock classic like “Born To be Wild” aren’t watching “American Idol,” although he’s right when he mentioned that “Mad World” was better. Adam is doing a great job of mixing things up each week. It’s just too bad there isn’t another horse in the race to really push him each week, like last season’s Cook/Archuleta duel.

“HAVE YOU EVER REALLY LOVED A WOMAN?” – MATT GIRAUD

This performance was just okay. It seemed like every time he reached for his falsetto, Matt was out of breath. I had to laugh when Kara admonished him for doing a rock song. While this may have been originally performed by a rock artist, it’s no rock song! I also wonder if Simon knew he was on camera as he made those goofy facial expressions while Kara was speaking.

“ENDLESS LOVE” – DANNY GOKEY

It seems like everyone who ever recorded this song has a richer voice than Danny. Paula was right on when she pointed out the key was wrong for him. But as always Danny impressed on the chorus. I just have to wonder… with the gravel in his voice, maybe the judges should have pushed him into trying a soul classic or two.

“FALLING SLOWLY” – KRIS ALLEN

A very emotional performance from a singer who actually looks like a star. If anything, he didn’t need the background vocals behind him. Showed off a great falsetto too. The performance of the night.

“THE ROSE” – LIL ROUNDS

I think it was a big mistake to add the R&B flavor on this. When she was riffing on the words  “cold, cold winter,” I actually laughed. I think a more straight- ahead version would have served her better, but with all the songs to choose from, she could have easily picked something that was completely R&B. She’s lucky she was last on the show, because otherwise she’d be in a lot more trouble vote wise, although arguing with Simon won’t help her case.

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