Thanks for hanging in with me today, peeps. I know things got a little bit crazy. The conflicting and changing information regarding song spoilers was nuts. I tried to keep up with without confusing y’all. But if I did? Ahhm Saiiry. Hopefully things will be a little more…straightforward next week. On with the show.
Top 8 Performance – Recap
Queen Will Rock You
Bucky Covington – “Fat Bottom Girls” – I’m not sure why Bucky doesn’t rock out more. Maybe he thinks that he can’t compete with Chris. But I gotta say, I like Bucky singing rock. And I think Bucky likes Bucky singing rock–he seemed to be having such a great time up there. His raspy vocals are perfect for crap-kicking songs like this. His stage presence could still use a little work, but he’s really improved his presence since the beginning of the competition. This was, by far, my favorite Bucky performance. I have a feeling that between putting him first and Simon’s negative comments, (the song was “bigger than you”? I swear Simon just tosses these phrases out–they are meaningless half the time) TPTB are hoping to eliminate him this week. But Bucky’s got “People”. He’ll probably hit Bottom 3 this week, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him sent back to the couches.
Ace Young – “We Will Rock You” – I would love to know what Ace had in mind for this song that seemed to completely skeeve Brian May out. That video clip was something. It was basically Ace making song arrangement suggestions and Brian May looking absolutely horrified. At one point, May said something like, “I can’t do that to my song.” YIKES. Ace was very out of his element here. The song itself is one very limited melody and lyric line repeated over and over again. Perfect for the sports chant the song has become. But, as far as stage performance, only a really muscular vocal and high energy could save this song from tedium. Ace just doesn’t have the really big, strong presence needed to make this song work. I think he could have done an awesome job with “You’re My Best Friend” or any of Queen’s sweeter, more melodic songs. But something tells me that Queen song list was really really short. The judges weren’t kind, and I’m afraid that Ace could really be in danger this week.
OK, was I the only one excited to see Micky Dolenz of the Monkees in the audience tonight? I was…seriously excited. I love the Monkees. I’m not kidding.
Kellie Pickler – “Bohemian Rhapsody” – I was a big fan of Constantine Maroulis’s version of this song last season. Her arrangement was really similar, but unfortunately her performance paled in comparison. She looked like an eight year old up there stomping around. And oh my–that little pelvic thrust when she dropped to her knees? Yikes. Her weak vocals were completely overwhelmed by the band, and the arrangement excised all of the most interesting and difficult parts out of the song. There was no drama, no camp, no passion. What was left was a hollow shell of a song, that Kellie wasn’t able to really do much justice. I found the judges praise really stunning, to tell you the truth. They really want Kellie to make it to at least Top 3.
Chris Daughtry – “Innuendo” – I’m with Simon. This was not a good song choice. Really, one of Queen’s weaker and less melodic songs–Chris came off sounding tuneless and screamy. I also agree that Queen should have been Chris’s night to shine, but instead he was average. With the right song, Chris could have pulled off a show stopper. This night was definitely a wasted opportunity for Chris. But it probably doesn’t matter, he’s at the top of the heap right now, and the judges love him. I expect Chris will sail through this week as always. The comment Paula made about the song, has to be the quote of the night, “The reason the band’s probably never performed it live is that they probably don’t want to and only you probably could.” WHAT? Well, since Freddie Mercury has passed on, he certainly can’t.
Katharine McPhee – “Who Wants To Live Forever” – Katharine started off well enough on the quiet notes, but as soon as she tried for the big, big glory moments, her vocals became strident and off key. She was out of tune for the rest of the song. Because she really does shine on these big, stagy power ballads, this could have been a “wow” performance if she had been able to control her pitchiness. The judges glossed over the pitch problems. Simon said it was one of the best of the night. And Simon was right about one thing–She did look really beautiful.
Elliott Yamin – “Somebody To Love” – In Elliott’s film clip, Brian May mentioned that Freddie wrote this song with Aretha Franklin in mind. Elliott started off a little nervous. At first, the performance seemed a little manic, with Elliott staring wide-eyed into the camera and clutching his microphone. His vocals sounded strained a bit at the beginning. But by the end of the song, he found his groove. As he relaxed, his vocals became strong and soulful. The last few notes were awesome. Really positive critiques from the judges. They gave him props for choosing a difficult song. I hope the positive remarks keep him in the game this week.
Taylor Hicks – “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” – Just from the little clip I heard of Taylor singing “We Are the Champions, ” I’m glad he decided to perform CLTCL instead. I’m in the camp that loves the spazzy Taylor dance moves. I really wasn’t too worried about his song choice tonight. It’s the kind of song that can sound like a novelty, but I had a feeling Taylor had a few tricks up his sleeve and that he wouldn’t disappoint. He didn’t. I thought tonight’s performance was the perfect blend of entertainment and great vocals. After last week’s detached performance, it was awesome to see the old Taylor back–connected to the music and to his audience. Randy and Paula loved it. But Simon thought it was “ridiculous”. No surprise there. Simon just hates it when the white guys dance.
Paris Bennett – “The Show Must Go On” – Simon said he found it “All a little weird” True. Her performance was sort of like Shirley Bassey-meets-Queen. But I found it oddly compelling. Like Randy said, it was a little rough in spots. But it was very original. I would say the most interesting interpretation of the night. It’s amazing how ordinary Paris can sound when she performs an ordinary song. But given interesting material, she can be simply amazing. This was easily one of the best of the night. I hope good enough to keep her out of the bottom three.
The odds favor a male boot this week. I think we could have an all male bottom three consisting of Bucky-Elliott-Ace. I’m typing this before I’ve looked at the Dialidol totals. They were right on the money last week.