Here’s your Top 7 edition of the American Idol studio performance reviews.  This week’s winner? Joshua Ledet’s energetic “Runaway Baby”. It makes me want to get up and dance.  Jessica Sanchez is also very good this week.   Elise Testone’s track is marred by a distracting backing track.

What do you think? Which songs are your favs?

Skylar Laine – “Didn’t Know How Much I Loved You” – Not as heartfelt as the live version.  The studio track verges on karaoke, with Skylar’s tone reminiscent of Kellie Pickler’s at times.  The performance picks up when she shows off her powerful pipes at the end of the song.  Skylar has personality and a great voice to match. -    Download from iTunes

Colton Dixon – “Love the Way You Lie” –  The arrangement is very pretty, as are Colton’s vocals.  But this is a song crying out for a passionate delivery, which Colton does not deliver. Who could have imagined “Love The Way You Lie” re-imagined as a Christian Contemporary tune. –   Download from iTunes

Jessica Sanchez – “Stuttering” by Jazmine Sullivan – What’s to say here? Jessica is fabulous as always. Contemporary, fresh. Blah blah blah. I say the same thing every week.  If she leaves the competition next week, she’ll still have a bright future ahead of her.  –   Download from iTunes

Joshua Ledet – “Runaway Baby” – My favorite studio performance from Joshua next to “When a Man Loves a Woman”.   His vocals are so smooth and soulful here.  There isn’t one riff or run in this performance–it shows a side of Joshua we haven’t seen yet. He’s so much more than just a gospel belter.   Download from iTunes

Hollie Cavanagh – “Perfect” – Hollie’s tone is clear as a bell.  So sweet and pure, but there’s very little phrasing or nuance here.  She could be reading out of the phone book.  It’s that connection to the emotion that’s still missing.  Girl’s got to get out and live a little. -    Download from iTunes

Phil Phillips – “Give a Little More” – Phil could have picked a better song. This arrangement is boring. For me, the song really doesn’t go anywhere, although the sax solo is a nice touch –   Download from iTunes

Elise Testone – “You and I” –  Unfortunately, Elise’s warm, soulful vocals are at war through the entire track with a weird drum clack that gives the song a mechanical feel. Whose idea was that? If you can get past the distracting instrumental, Elise delivers a terrific vocal–sexy, with perfect phrasing.  -    Download from iTunes

 
  • http://twitter.com/TweetsFromFrank Frank

    Wow. IMO, they are all radio-ready but I’ve been a fan of mostly Jessica and Elise’s recordings.

    How long has it been since we’ve had a girl-on-girl finale? 8 years? I think we’re due for another.

  • Anonymous

    My favorites this week are Joshua and Colton. I still like Elise’s despite the weird drum thing. I agree with you on Hollie; no emotional connection. I’m so used to hearing that song with much more grit. I see she left out that little rap part, I was kind of looking forward to hearing that  lol.

  • Anonymous

    Love love love Jessica’s Stuttering track. First song I’ve downloaded this season from Idol. 

    This performance actually made me consider voting for the first time this year and I haven’t voted on Idol in several years. I always watch but don’t vote. Until now I’ve been okay with Jessica — I recognize she has a nice voice but I wasn’t especially interested in her. But I’ve been playing this track over and over for the past 2 days. I hope she gets material like this when she puts out her album. 

  • Anonymous

    Joshua’s vocals are awesome.  Hands down the best.

  • Anonymous

    Joshua Ledet has a voice for the ages. To sound so seasoned at his age? Imagine him 5 or 10 years from now. 

  • Anonymous

    Yup. 8 years. Last time was Season 3. Wayyyyyyyyyyy too long.

  • http://twitter.com/bbmetsfan andy

    Loved Hollie this week.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1017520006 Adam Alamillo

    I dont think a 2-girl finale will EVER happen again on Idol. Definitely not this year with Colton and Phillip around. Stupid preteen girls.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1552146216 Shair Shamsuddin

    I’m really digging with Jessica, DUH!…..and Joshua’s song. I’m not really feeling Elise this week but loved her vocals

  • http://twitter.com/bluinjewin Landon Cox

    First time I bought a Hollie track since Whitney week.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_I3NQHPT3NA6VGKK22RCMTGOCII Tiffany

    I love Joshua but hate that song.  I prefer his soulful ballads but he needs to tone them down a bit.  I also think he does uptempo great but hasnt he gotten bottom 3 each time he did uptempo?   I love Elises recording although I agree the drums are annoying, maybe if they werent so loud they would work.

  • Anonymous

    Love Skylar’s track!  She has a really recognizable sound, and I think she could be amazing on the country circuit.  What I love about her is the way she manages to nail the emotion of whatever she’s singing – that’s incredible considering her age and her small town girlhood.  It feels innate. And what a performer.  I think she could sneak into the final three – I hope she does. 

    The weird thing about Jessica is that I think her studio performances are always excellent, but she disappears from the stage as I watch her.  Odd.  But that doesn’t mean that careers can’t be forged that way – mind you, I still think Carrie Underwood is about as interesting as a beige blanket, so….;) 

    Oh DaveMatthewsss.  How you bore me. 

    Not feeling Elise or Hollie.  I always like Joshua, but I never buy him. He’s just not calling me.  Don’t know why. 

  • Anonymous

    My favorite was Skylar Laine’s and Colton Dixon’s. I loved Skylar take on Kellie’s song and I enjoyed that Colton sang a song that was associated with female singers and to me gave it a very emotional sound.

    I suspect like the same week with Piano Man Colton is leading this week based on many other reviews and response by many fans. Everytime he takes to the piano and pulls a very emotional version of songs he gets alot of great reviews.

  • steph6449

    Liked the best
    (overall best) Joshua – I’m still baffled that this is considered a contemporary song, lol, but he sounds really good in this.
    Hollie – I liked hers more than I was expecting. She sounds good in it, and the slightly stilted interpretation is less evident on this than the one from the prior week.
    Skylar – have to give this extra credit as the only song in this group I actually know, lol. She sounds fine, though her voice doesn’t come through that well in the chorus with all the backing vocals/music.

    Not so good for me
    Jessica – she sounds good but the song itself isn’t anything I really enjoy.
    Elise – Wow, that is really weird with the backing music on Elise’s song. Almost unlistenable for me.
    Colton – Boring, plus I really do not like his voice going high in this. Sounds more squeaky than anything.
    (overall worst) P2 – couldn’t get through more than a little of it, but that had nothing to do with the backing music ;)  He even sounds a little off-key in the first part.

  • too-cool-for-school

    Joshua’s is really damn good. He never fails to deliver though so I’m not surprised. He and his recordings remain my favorite. Two recordings from him next week is going to rule. <3

    I like P2's. The sax was cool live but it's actually the one thing I didn't care for on the recording. I thought it was kinda annoying and threw off the vibe of his arrangement of the song. Good overall though.

    Jessica's is really good! Her voice is amazing. Not a huge fan of the song but her voice could probably make me tolerate any song.

    Colton, on the other hand, does not have that ability. I hate that song in any form that it comes (Skylar, Eminem, whoever) and I don't like his version either. :P Skylar has a great voice but I wasn't feeling this one. Spot on about Hollie.. beautiful tone but no emotion. Maybe that's what the judges felt but so poorly articulated?

    Finally, a big WTF to Elise's… was that their way of appeasing her when Jimmy
    told her not to play the drums? Put some really bizarre percussion
    effect/noise on the recording? Argh.

  • Christopher Auyeung

    Jessica’s voice is so, so dope. I’m so impressed with her this week. Such incredible nuance and dynamic to the way she sings. To me, she has everything that Hollie lacks – instinct, vocal swag, and total effortlessness. Hollie has a really pretty and powerful voice, but I feel like she’s rather lost on how to use it. It never feels like she’s just being herself – it seems like she’s trying really hard or thinking really hard about what to sing and what to do.

  • IMHO

    This was the closest I’ve come to buying any season 11 tracks but I still didn’t. Okay, so I would have bought some from Billy Joel week but for some reason they aren’t available on my (Canadian) iTunes. Same with WAMLAW. All the other weeks are available. Am I the only one to have that difficulty?

    As for this week, I liked Joshua and Hollie but not enough to buy them. Maybe later.

    None of the rest appealed to me. I found it difficult to understand some of the words in Jessica’s but otherwise it sounded like the original. I still think she would have been better off picking a song that had been released as a single.

  • http://twitter.com/GottaVote4DREW Ryan

    Hollie’s is actually one of my favorites of the season

  • Anonymous

    I like Jessica and Colton’s the best Jessica is Jessica and I thought Colton vocals were really nice espeacially for him.  Elsie and Joshua and Holly were decent,  Holly needs some of Pinks edge to her singing for sure. Bottom two Skylar and P2.
    P2 is better live because the visual of his performance is what I like.  Skylar’s track seems over produced to me similar to her performances for me.  Her voice is decent but everything is over sung I would love a simple ballad with no screaming so I could really judge her voice.

  • too-cool-for-school

    He even sounds a little off-key in the first part.

    I think per request of many Idol fans, he tried to do something different with this one. He toned down/cut out the “growl” and so it’s quite a change in tone. Some parts do sound a little iffy/unnatural, haha.

    He would be best to not listen to people and stick with what he is good at. Not his best recording, though. That’s fo sho.

  • Anonymous

    Joshua, Skylar, Colton, Elise, and Jessica were stellar this week. All brought their A-game IMO. I can really picture hearing each of them on radio. 

  • Anonymous

    I hope she does to. Jessica clearly belongs in R&B, and I hope Jimmy doesn’t make her record a straight up POP album. I’m sure she could get an R&B crossover hit and get played on Pop stations. 

    I also enjoyed Joshua recording. Everyone else – meh.

     Ok, this is my opinion, but I can’t get past the fact that Hollie picked a Pink song with so much grit, soul, and energy and gave us THIS. I couldn’t even finish her version, the arrangement adds nothing to the song, it just makes it bland and boring. 

  • Christopher Auyeung

    Totally agree about the P!nk song. The reason it works for P!nk is because she has so much angst in her voice – it’s like she’s wailing, “please, don’t you EVER feel less than perfect”. It’s totally believable that she’s gone through a lot of self-doubt and self-esteem issues. The arrangement is also a lot more dynamic on the original recording, with a really strong climactic build. This is too mellow and slow, and her singing is too even and too clean to interpret a song like this believably.

  • Anonymous

    Picked up Colton and Joshua’s this week. But my fav is Colton. Its on repeat on my ipod. Sorry to disagree MJ, but I hear a lot of passion in his delivery. It is very moving to me. lol! 

    Tried to listen to Jessica again, her vocals are good but I think I don’t like the song. I maintain Holie is flat on Prefect. Skylar was great but I’m not a country fan. Elise and PP were ok but I wouldn’t spend money on their recording. 

  • Anonymous

    I have Colton on repeat on my ipod also. ;)

    I think this week he had another Piano Man moment that made people buy the cd. I think Colton is the most current sounding out there, and Skylar also in Country.

  • Anonymous

    My favorites are Phil, Josh and Colton. Phil, though, is the only one I would buy from week to week. I’d love to have a Phil CD right now! 

  • Anonymous

    Poor Elise.

  • http://twitter.com/GashleyT PunkSkittle

    Joshua and Jessica are always my favorites and I d/l most of their tracks.  No one else I get more than 2.  I do find Joshua’s mannerisms a bit disstracting in his live performances but his tracks are always top notch. 

  • sf3456

    Joshua’s vocals are awesome.  Hands down the best.

    Yeah.  Too bad he won’t win.  Or even come close.

  • Anonymous

    Skylar is my favorite this week! Have her song on repeat. I’m actually warming to to Skylar for the first time. I’m impressed how there seems to be a different contestant each week that I have their song on repeat.

    Week 1 – Erika (I Believe in You and Me)/Hollie (All the Man That I Need)
    Week 2 – Elise (Let’s Stay Together)
    Week 3 – None really, Elise (Vienna) if I had to choose
    Week 4 – DeAndre (Sometimes I Cry), and then the original too
    Week 5 – DeAndre (I Like It)/ Joshua (If You Don’t Know Me By Now)/ Phillip (That’s All) 
    Week 6 – Skylar (Didn’t Know How Much I Loved You)

    Come on Colton and Jessica, make me like your live performances enough for me to give your studio recordings a chance!

  • Anonymous

    I love Joshua and Colton’s tracks.  These two recordings were the standouts this week for me.  Joshua sounds incredible with his unbridled energy, and this was definitely Colton’s best vocals yet.  

    Colton’s voice reminds me of Kris Allen’s for some reason.  I think he came out top in sales this week.

    I also downloaded Jessica’s but it’s not my favorite recording of her’s.  Couldn’t being myself to buy Skylar’s and Hollie’s because as much as I love those songs, it would be better to just get them from the original artists.

  • http://twitter.com/desireechick kesia monteith

    I really hope that is the top 5. Saddens me that it won’t :(

  • Anonymous

    My thoughts on the itunes recordings –

    Skylar – She did well with this song. I kind of wish there was less backup on the chorus. I liked it when she almost sang acappella at one point later in the recording. She is great performing live because she brings her personality and that emotion.  It loses a little something on the recording, but still very good.

    Colton – I really liked his live performance. His best vocally.  The guy makes the right song choices, the vocals seem to get better, great stage presence and emotion.  The only thing I will say is those falsetto notes weren’t that great live and aren’t that good on the recording.  I don’t know that his fans will care, but if I had to critique one thing that would be it.  He sounds really good on his recordings and seems confident, smart and savvy in this competition.  Considering I don’t like his voice or music, saying that I like this is saying something.

    Jessica – I listened to her live performance a few times after she got the fewest votes. I really did not like this song when I heard it on youtube. I thought it was a rather bland, boring song that wouldn’t do much for her. I can see her wanting to do r&b to be more contemporary and commercial. She always does great vocally, but I still think this song choice hurt her.  I don’t think the song goes anywhere, there’s no dynamic, no great melody.  I said on another blog site that she made a mediocre song sound decent, but it’s not like she invented gravity.  Her vocals are always strong, but I don’t think she is connecting emotionally as much as she could. Sometimes there is something missing.

    Joshua – I don’t see him singing Bruno Mars and maybe neither does America.  There isn’t enough song here for him. He has so much more. I realize that this is supposedly showing him as contemporary, but I didn’t love it. I always love his voice, but I notice that when he does this kind of uptempo number live his tendency to shout gets worse. However, on the recording it sounds so much better because they can clean up the shouting.  Listen to this and then maybe check him out live and you will definitely hear the difference.  His voice doesn’t get a chance to shine and soar on this song. 

    Hollie – I could listen to this girl’s voice forever. It’s beautiful.  It’s true that she didn’t sing this stylistically the way it needed to be sung.  She does have to learn about nuance, restraint and phrasing.  She will get there.  If I was Jimmy, I would have asked her to read the words and think about the emotion and meaning of the song. I also would have suggested that she use her head voice at the end and pull back.  This doesn’t happen overnight to a girl who never had the voice lessons and training and performance experience of a Jessica Sanchez.  This girl is a true amateur, a diamond in the rough with immense potential.  I do think she is starting to connect more with the songs. I love that voice!

    Phil – At ;east he is singing without so much of that raspy growly voice. This sounds better.  But I don’t know that this was the right song for him.  I don’t know what’s up with this guy. Is he really invested in this whole process?  I don’t see him taking any of the advice he is getting or showing much versatility. He seems to want to do his thing, which is working since he hasn’t been in the bottom.  I think this sounds very generic. 

    Elise – I didn’t love this live, but she sounds better on the recording.  I hear that annoying drum clack. Wow! That is terrible! Very distracting. This is a shame, because otherwise I think she sounds really good.  She knows her way around a melody.

  • Anonymous

    Colton is one of those rare performers that sound better live than recorded.

  • judes

    I also have to disagree with MJ on Colton’s passion in this song. I felt it live & I also can hear it in this recording .I’m actually the opposite as I don’t sense any passion in Jessica’s recording. Same with Holly but I love her tone so if she can find the connection with the songs she’s singing she’ll be on a winner as far as I am concerned.
    I actually preferred Joshua when I was watching his performance as I find the longer version a bit monotonous -but I do appreciate that he toned down the runs.
    I’m the opposite with Elise-I liked her recording much more than the live shorter version[bar the click track in the background] -it seemed much more interesting in the longer version -she was able to build the song.
    I also liked P2′s recorded version as his voice was a lot clearer & tuneful.

  • idolstruck

    i love love love Phillip’s studio version. i just have this thing for his style of singing. looking forward to his performance this week.   

  • Anonymous

    Colton: Nice tone, arrangement and phrasing, and the emotion and intensity are there, albeit subtle. A

    Joshua:  Good voice and phrasing. Lots ot ‘IT’ factor in this, even if the arrangement is too busy for my liking. A-

    Skylar: Good voice, phrasing and personality. Not really my style but not bad at all. B+

    Phillip: Not nearly as bad as the internet meme would imply, reasonably enjoyable for me. B

    Jessica:  Good recording but her vocal tone is hard to my ears. B

    Elise: Not bad, not great. Nice enough tone but dull phrasing. B-

    Hollie: Excellent voice, but musical theatre phrasing. Either she is too young or she is not cut out to become a recording artist. C+

  • http://twitter.com/OnlyHReinhart Peeta Mellark’s

    TOP7: Jessica,Skylar,Hollie,Colton,P2,Elise,Joshua
    TOP6: Skylar,Hollie,Colton,P2,Jessica,Elise
    TOP5: Hollie,Colton,P2,Jessica,Elise
    TOP4: Hollie,Colton,P2,Jessica
    TOP3: Hollie,Colton,Jessica
    TOP2: Hollie,Jessica
    Winner: I couldnt choose between Hollie and Jessica.Both of them are amazing. 

  • happyhexer

    Context:  I’m not all that familiar with the originals of these songs.  Probably most familiar with the Kellie Pickler song.  And the P!nk song sounds vaguely familiar.  Oh, almost forgot! Thanks to a fellow Danny Gokey fan who introduced me to Bruno Mars, I am familiar with “Runaway.”  ;-P  But in general, I’m not up on current music.

    Hollie:  My favorite of the studio recordings is Hollie’s, hands-down.  I understand that it apparently is slower and less gritty than the original, but why is that bad?  If Hollie had sung it too much like the original, she’d be accused of doing karaoke.  What we got was Hollie’s take on the song.  Maybe others thought it was bland compared to the original, but I think it’s beautiful and Hollie makes ME feel connected to the song.

    Jessica:  There’s little doubt that Jessica is a good singer, but I don’t get her.  She always sounds better live to me than in her studio recordings.  The latter always emphasize to me the thinness (I’m sure that’s not quite the right word) and lack of color in her voice.  And that piano is overpowering her vocals.  Was it that bad in the live show?  Even when Jessica’s live performances are good (as they usually are), they aren’t memorable and don’t stick in my mind afterwards.  BTW, I am not saying any of this because I just said I like Hollie’s song best.  I’m in the minority in that I haven’t been a fan of either Jessica or Hollie (though I recognize they have talent).  My faves remain Erika, Elise, and Joshua.

    Joshua:  No, “Runaway” doesn’t show off Joshua’s vocals to their utmost, but it does give some indication of his versatility and ability to fit in today’s music world, which may be important for people to know, given his gospel roots.  Joshua doesn’t need to wail in every song; just needs to be believable and sell the song.

    Elise:  Vocals are stellar and impeccable, but I wasn’t able to get beyond the distraction of the drum thingy.  (And I would have noticed instantly, even if MJ hadn’t pointed it out.)  *sigh*  Background music ruined what otherwise would have been a great song.

    Colton:  I almost always prefer his studio recordings to his live vocals, though I’m not a big fan.  But I can see that people might find the tone of his voice appealing.  This is not bad.

    Skylar:  I like Skylar, but this isn’t my favorite.  Thought the live version was better and more emotional.  Thought the backing vocalists on the choruses were distracting and detracted from Skylar’s voice in that part of the song.

    Phillip:  Aside from Hollie, Phillip was the biggest surprise for me on the studio recordings.  I really liked this!  Maybe because Phillip was actually singing.  I didn’t know he could!  Seriously, didn’t he end up growling toward the end of the live version?  :-P  I’m finding his voice appealing!  OMG, did I just say that?  I think depending on what kind of songs/music Phillip did, I might be interested in him.  But I still hope a girl wins this year.  Or Joshua.

    Only tracks I’d buy from this week are Hollie’s & Phillip’s.

  • http://twitter.com/Mojaommel Mojaommel Alvar

    My favorite this week are Colton and Jessica. I love Colton”s rendition, it could be his first single after Idol. At first I want Jessica and Hollie for the finals but know I want Colton and Jessica for the finale.

  • Anonymous

    Because, when Holie sang it, it felt a little pretty, mellow and has a little tinge of sadness in it. Which is totally wrong of the song.

    Like the poster above said, this song is about someone who has been through self doubt, made a mistakes in their life, mistreated, misunderstood, but stood up and dug their way up and is now singing to tell that someone that  no matter how bad things are don’t ever feel that they are not perfect. There is a lot of angst and also message of life is not perfect, its tired but also a rebellion to please fight in the song. Its not suppose to feel pretty and mellow and sad.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=34307244 Shana Collier

    I didn’t like how in Hollie’s pre-performance video she said something about how the song “Perfect” would give her the chance to be perfect.  I feel thats how she tried to sing it (technically perfect) and missed the entire point of the song.  

  • Anonymous

    Wow.  Joshua is fantastic.  As of this moment I would really like to see him win it all.  We have not had a previous winner that is anything like him.  
    I also love Phil Phils recording.  I like what he does with his voice on this.  A lot going on there just more subtle than the big belters.

  • http://twitter.com/BazzleFjsm Bazzle

    Yea Phillips and Elise’s were better live. Jimmy is right they are character singers. They just give a bit more personality with their vocals than the others. I guess that comes with experience or its just their styles. Joshua & Jessica’s sound good to me as well cos I love R&B. But they to me aren’t as interesting as Elise and Phillip. 

  • fuzzywuzzy

    This week, I like Joshua’s recording the best.  Great song choice and he shows here that he’s much more than a gospel singer.

  • Anonymous

    I purchased Hollie’s recording and Phil’s.  I just love the tone of Hollie’s voice. It doesn’t matter to me that she is not expressing the proper emotion of the song.  If the judges would stop criticizing her as “pitchy” (which I don’t think she is) then maybe she would be able to just relax and sing, instead of trying to sound perfect.  

    I am also someone who hears Jessica’s tone as harsh and thin.  At times she does sound beautiful, such as IWALY, but in most of her performances, I just don’t like her tone.  

    I am a big fan of Phil’s style and voice, live and recorded, and would definitely purchase his album.

  • Anonymous

    I can’t buy these in Australia, but I bought the original tracks from P!nk and Skylar Grey. I would have bought Hollie’s version since her voice is so distinctive, but in the case of Love the Way You Lie it was the song rather than Colton’s voice that appealed to me.

    On second listen (ie after the live versions) I still found Joshua and Jessica’s songs to be utterly forgettable. I had to turn down the sound on Skylar because her voice was becoming painful, and I had no desire to listen to Phillip’s voice or that very average Gaga song again.

  • http://twitter.com/poppetawoppet Emily

    does anyone else miss Ricky Minor? There’s a certain…amateurness to the production on the the tracks this season (and last to be honest) that really takes away from the vocals. 

  • Anonymous

    I think my favorite was Joshua but not because of his voice necessarily it’s just a kicka** song.
    I loved Elise, but I do wish the backing track was more in the….get this….B.A.C.K.   (sigh)
    Hollie’s voice is so breathtakingly pure….very few have that, and I certainly hope some one some where picks her up.  She’d be perfect for movie tracks as well.
    Bored by Colton and P2.
    Still not interested at all in Skylar, or Jessica.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/SOTPQXV7B4SLMWKSXNOTTLG43I Chistosa

    I am not a preteen girl.  I am in the targeted demographic for advertising.  And the only female that I would want in the finale is Elise. While I am in awe of her vocal talent, I do not enjoy Jessica’s performances.   So I am rooting for a Joshua/Elise finale.   And it has nothing to do with gender.  These are performers I would go see in concert.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GQ4GCMANGXQBSGT2LCFYDYHWPM Beach Ammo

    I believe Hollie’s best traite is the innocence in her voice…..I think no matter where she finishes she’ll have the best career going forward. The other 6 are at the top of their game now with no where to go. Hollie is all upside….a blank slate with a great natural voice.
    I hope they let her continue her career, on her own pace, without people like Jimmy and the rest of the industry screwing her up.

  • http://twitter.com/tinawinabina Tinawina

    Joshua- Excellent. I want CeeLo Green to produce his album. Do the trendy retro soul thing, Joshua!

    Phil- I agree about the arrangement, but I liked his voice on this a lot. He records well.

    Elise – Weird and I don’t like it.

    Hollie – As always, the sound of her voice is gorgeous. She so should have waited a year or two. She’s not ready for her voice yet. But its so pretty.

    Jessica – Sounds a lot more like the original than the live version did. But as usual, very well executed. Can’t wait to hear what she’ll do with original material.

    Colton – I liked it, as much as I’m ever going to be into the emo whine. Very tender rendition. He could be current if he would sing edgier material.

    Skylar – Didn’t like it as much as I liked some of her other recordings. She delivered it better live.

  • larc

    does anyone else miss Ricky Minor?

    Desperately!

  • Anonymous

    Nice surprise – liked them all – to varying degrees, of course.  If comparing Hollie and Jessica, feel that Hollie has a warmth to her voice that Jessica lacks.  Colton’s performance had a lovely sadness to it that was very appealing.  Skylar and Joshua both came across very well – again, Joshua even more than Skylar.  P2 – just like his voice and type of music – not the greatest track here, but I like it.  Elise – wth – someone banging garbage cans in the background?  Her voice, though – just terrific – too bad.

  • Anonymous

    I wonder whether Hollie wouldn’t be better served in some other genre. Her strength is the gorgeous tone, and she seems to aim at technical perfection, and it just doesn’t work as an interpretive strategy for Pink songs or pop or so on.

    Could you sell a female classical-crossover Josh-Groban-y sort of thing? That’s where people are buying and listening for the beauty of tone and for singers who  interpret music for beauty’s sake, and doing that seems to be her interest. (I’d even suggest country if it looked as if she were interested in it …) I’d like to see her beautiful voice at work some place where its beauty would be really valued and would work well with the songs.

  • chili1000

    As a fan of Pink, I loved Hollie’s song this week.  I agree with those who said that she did the right thing by steering clear of sounding karaoke.  Pink’s interpretation is defiant.  Hollie’s is inspirational.  It was perfect for her and it was perfect to me.

  • Anonymous

    “As a fan of Pink, I loved Hollie’s song this week.  I agree with those
    who said that she did the right thing by steering clear of sounding
    karaoke.  Pink’s interpretation is defiant.  Hollie’s is inspirational. 
    It was perfect for her and it was perfect to me.”

    Well, I see what she did with the Pink song as sort of classical-crossover Pink!…. “Inspirational” is classical-crossover-ish rather than rock or pop to me just in general. i.e., I saw her interpretation as not being in the same genre as Pink, and I see a lot of her interpretations that way.

    That doesn’t make them bad interpretations (this one didn’t work for me, but other have…). In fact, it can make them quite *good* interpretations — moving a song into another area.

    But I just hear Hollie aiming at something different than rock or pop are aiming at these days, and I think it would be nice if she could get into some genre that valued the strongest aspects of her performance. Maybe it’s jazz, down the line, or something.

    Gorgeous tone doesn’t feature much in most rock or pop performances, as far as I can see, so I can’t see future potential employers in those fields waving Hollie in the door on the strength of that. I think she’d be better served, singing-gig-wise, to either change her performance focus to something other than beauty (which I think would be a waste and, probably , not what she actually wants to do) or find a genre where that’s the most highly respected quality.

  • http://twitter.com/cindydesigns Cindy

    Love, love, loooove Colton, Jessica and Joshua’s tracks.  Hollie’s is good.. I don’t understand the way the judges acted toward her last week. 

  • Anonymous

    I think the best thing Joshua did this week was to sing a current song.  Otherwise, I’m just not a fan of this particular one.  It’s like too rushed or too many words or something, and it light of Bruno Mars’ UNREAL Grammy performance, it sort of pales in comparison.  His voice is fantastic as ever, but I think he needs the right uptempo song.  This just didn’t do it for me.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5CTSGSGATMXQESVDDD7RWQRYXU Jane

    If I were to purchase a track from last week’s show it would be Elise and Phillip’s Gotye duet.  I wish that were available.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_SYFK77IYLRQIVATQ2MJKSW2J7Y Pam

    I would have to say that Jessica and Colton’s tracks were the standouts here.  The drum track for “You and I” is very distracting indeed but Elise sounds good otherwise.  Hollie’s vocals on perfect are very nice but as mj said, the emotion is lacking a bit here.

    Thanks mj!

  • Anonymous

    I’ve had Colton’s iTunes recording along with his live performance and Skylar Grey’s demo on repeat since last Friday. It’s his best yet!

  • happyhexer

     See, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong if Hollie sang “Perfect” in a “pretty, mellow, and * * * sad[]” way.  Though I’d substitute “melancholy” for “mellow.”  Perhaps I am at an advantage in NOT being too familiar with the original version of the song.  I felt like Hollie connected with the song and was singing it to the judges who had called her out the previous week about her supposed pitchiness, AND to herself, to not buy into their criticisms of her.  Hollie isn’t P!nk, and she’s not going to be overtly angsty and rebellious in the same way.  They have different personalities and will express themselves differently.

    I also don’t understand why Hollie not remaining faithful to the emotional tenor of the original song is a negative.  When artists change up a song, they often change the meaning/emotional impact as well.

    FWIIW, I went back and listened to P!nk’s version (radio edit version), and paid particular attention to the lyrics.  There is nothing wrong with what Hollie did with the song, IMHO.  It’s a legitimate interpretation of the lyrics.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah, it wasn’t like Tim Urban singing ‘Under My Thumb’ with a sappy grin and cheery reggae beat.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/7PMEJI6O6PEIP5W2SNVVNATP3I Mikala

    Skylar- I loved this one! She’s great, but a country star won’t win again this year.  (plus has anyone noticed how much she looks like Reba!?) 

    Colton- Boring studio version :( Loved him live, not sure why this isn’t doing anything for me! I think he’ll make it to top 3 for sure.

    Elise- I love her, but she doesn’t compare to Haley’s version of You and I. I wish Haley was on this season instead because her and Phillip would be AWESOME together in duets!!!

    Hollie- Not feelin’ it. She’s adorable and has such a powerful voice, but she over-analyzes everything. She needs to not listen to anyone and just sing!

    Jessica- She has never been my favorite but this version is actually pretty good! I still think there’s no chance she’s making it to the finals, especially since she got booted this week. She just doesn’t connect in my opinion…

    Joshua- Okay, I loved this live, but the recorded version is so blah! Bruno Mars is tough to beat and Joshua just didn’t in my book. He’s still amazing though and I think he could easily win the whole thing. 

    Phillip- I’m a lil bias when it comes to Phillip because he’s been my fav since auditions. I think every song he sings is amazing. This week was probably my least favorite though. He could have made the arrangement more exciting. He needs to drop the guitar and sing a ballad this week to show that he can sing something different and mix it up! No matter what though he’ll get my vote!

    Here’s my prediction for this week:
    Bottom 3: Hollie, Skylar, Elise
    Eliminated: Hollie

    GO PHILLIP! ;)