To start off, I’ll give you some background about myself. I am an avid reader of mjsbigblog and like the critical approach that the users here take, although i rarely post myself. I am a 20-year old female university student from Brampton, Ontario, so perhaps I am a bit younger than most posters here. I’ve been watching American Idol since Season 6, but don’t usually get infested in the Idols post-season. I have attended Season 7 Tour show in Toronto, but only out of obligation since I’ve already purchased my tickets in May mindlessly and didn’t want them to go to waste. This year was the first time I’ve been truly engaged with the Idols and their activities post-season. This would be part of the reason why I got to pay attention to the concert, because I cared about them.
I must say that my tastes compared to the majority of users here are quite unpopular, but hey, I’ll share my point of view anyway. It’s purely subjective, and I am not convincing anyone here to agree with that I say.
I basically come from a background of listening to alternative and folk-inspired music, although I don’t mind listening to more mainstream genres, as long as I enjoy the lyrics and emotional delivery of the song. I came watching American Idol with the same mindset, hence I develop my favorites along my established tastes, but I am open-minded to diverse types of talent. My favorites from this season have been Kris and Scott, and I also enjoyed Matt and Anoop, although Noopy kind of lost me towards the end of his run on the show (and then redeemed himself again during the concert; more on that later). I realize Adam and Allison have been the big favorites of the audience, but I never really got them that much. I admit they have big voices and command the stage like nobody’s business, but they’re not the type of artists I’d take seriously. They’d only be useful when I need energetic songs to work out to. During the actual concert, though, I was amazingly engaged with Allison and she did earn some of my respect.
As for the review, I’ll use the approach where I’ll compare my opinions of the Idols during the show vs. during this concert, as well as commenting on group numbers.
Left me cold:
1) Michael. He improved big time from the time on the show. I’m in Love with a Girl and Closer were feel-good, energetic songs, so I’ll give him props for starting the concert with an energetic set. His voice is rich and nice to listen to. At the end of the day, he just left me feeling blank. All he did was perform these songs as a singer, not as an artist. Just typically good, but nothing special.
2) Megan. I’ve heard stories that she didn’t have much control over the songs on her set nor her outfit, so I’ll give her some benefit of the doubt, but she still didn’t deliver. I actually kind of liked her during the show and am a fan of her style, but in a real concert on that big stage she just looked off. Combine shaky vocals with no real conviction and with awkward walking from one side of the stage to the other, and you got me disappointed. Sorry, Megan.
3) Lil. She can sing very well and is fun, but just seems like a back-up singer brought up front. Nice to sing along to, and yes I did along with the audience to Single Ladies, but there was no real artistic feel to her performances. In all, her set felt a bit dragged out for me. The other 2.5 songs I don’t even remember any more.
1) Danny. I love his strong raspy voice, and he’s quite a… fun dancer. The problem with him is that he is a bit corny. He does everything right as far as performing and entertaining the crowd goes, but his attempt of Maria Maria and acting all latino was pathetic and his delivery of My Wish was a bit overboard. I like emotional performances, but not this kind. P.Y.T was fine, but at least he did it well with What Hurts the Most. That one was convincing enough.
2) Adam. Adam is just too flashy and poser-ish for my liking, sorry. He’s still the type of artist that usually does well in the industry, and IS entertaining, so I obviously see where people who love him come from. Myself, focusing more on the aesthetic of a performance than the strict visual and aural delivery of it, felt turned off by his set. Mad World is a beautiful song, but his facial expressions and blank presence didn’t really evoke the haunting and depressing feeling that it originally meant to have. That had to be forcefully enhanced with props such as the smoke. Whole Lotta Love and the Bowie Medley were just… no. I was not feeling his dancing and gyrating, and I’m a female. Go figure. It’s not that I don’t get his style, because I have a decent exposure to glam rock music, and do enjoy listening to and watching Queen and David Bowie, but the problem is that Adam lacks the maturity that makes these artists so special. Ah well. At least I enjoyed his take on Starlight. It was really pretty. And then there’s Slow Ride with Allison, which was amazingly fun. I loved the way the two interacted together. They are unbeatable as far as objective showmanship goes.
Delivered as expected:
1) Scott. I love Scott, and am not ashamed to admit it. He left American Idol on a sour note, so I was hoping for him to redeem himself on the tour, and he did not only fulfill but exceeded the standards I had for him. You can’t blame him for not using the stage much, so he got to make up for it by bringing it with the vocal and emotional delivery. I thought he was beautiful to watch, playing that piano. Simple, but convincing and captivating. A Thousand Miles was my favorite. His vocals improved a notch too, so no more painful falsh*tto notes. Thank you, Scott.
2) Matt. Matt is absolutely astounding on the piano, I couldn’t take my eyes off him. I especially enjoyed how he started off Hard to Handle with no piano, and then it came up, and he started playing off his mad fingers off on it. It’s one of those moments when your adrenalin goes up. Georgia on My Mind is a slow bluesy song, the type that you typically sit down to, but still pay attention to with well… your mind. I found Matt’s delivery of it like that of a true artist, very interactive with the audience. He also pulled off You Found Me and connected with it well. Heck, I like his version more than the original.
3) Kris. Hands down, my favorite set of the night. I particularly enjoyed how he incorporated the whole band into his arrangements, as opposed to the full acoustic approach he took on the show. It made his retake on Heartless all more refreshing. Kris is a very intelligent performer, and always succeeded in challenging Adam as far as performance art goes. He’s just a different kind of performer. He has a strong voice that he used accordingly with each song, and delivered the lyrics maturely. Ain’t No Sunshine and Bright Lights were just beautiful, and All These Things I’ve Wanted and Hey Jude really got the crowd singing. You can’t help it.
1) Anoop. I liked him during the auditions and semi-finals, but in the finals I just found him too dull and pretentious, even though he always had a killed voice. Anyways, he redeemed himself for me with his set that night, because it was just cool to watch. It had a cool feel to it. I especially loved how the energy of the songs build up with each succeeding one, from the smooth and pleasant Always On My Mind to mid-tempo Mad, and finally ending on the energetic My Prerogative. He used the stage really well and his dancing was fun to watch. I must admit that he really got screwed with those backdrops. Clouds and water drops, really?
2) Allison. As I said earlier, I was never much of a fan during the show. She just always seemed like a pretentious rocker girl type, so that always turned me off no matter how well she performed. Heck, I’m still not totally convinced by her, but the quality of her performance art is just too good to resist. Experiencing her voice and fiery presence in real life was really different from watching a TV. Cry Baby and Slow Ride with Adam were the big highlights, and I was hooked on watching her all the time. I doubt I’d buy a CD of hers (unless she improves the believability factor), but wouldn’t mind buying a ticket to her solo live. For the lack of a better phrase, she’s really nice on the senses.
They were both enjoyable. The medley felt a bit short with the part where there was only Lil and Megan, but the other three parts were great. Loved the dueling pianos, Michael’s Suspicious Minds interlude, as well as Beggin’. The choreography was simple, but clever. Don’t Stop Believing is just one of those cheesy yet classic songs that sounds really good when done in a group, building up as everybody joins in with their parts. It left me with an aftertaste of nostalgia.
For those who bothered to read this, thank you. Comments are welcome, whether you agree or disagree with me. I’ll also be glad to respond to any inquiries you may have. Not sure how good my grammar was here, since I wrote this review a bit late and didn’t bother to edit. Hopefully it was more than readable.