Tuesday, March 17, 2009

AI- Top 11 Performance

Evidently, the voice-over intro of the judges is a permanent feature. Randy is growing his hair out. Kara is very shiny in dolman sleeves, a tassel necklace, and soft hair. Paula, and the very prominently displayed puppies, are in floral print. Simon is wearing an old t-shirt that probably cost more than my refrigerator.

We’re hitting Country Week early this year. And while every performance is important, the kids left standing tomorrow will go on tour, and that matters a great deal.

Randy Travis is in the audience. Oh- he’s the mentor. With 25 albums and $25million in sales, he exemplifies why AI is perfectly happy to court the Grand Ole Opry crowd. It doesn’t take much psychic ability to predict that the spirits of Brooks, Parton and Underwood will be invoked tonight.

Michael is singing Ain’t Goin’ Home ‘til the Sun Comes Up, which is the CW version of I Am The Very Model of a Modern Major General. This song is not about melody, and I have no idea if he got all of the words right, but the performance is enjoyable, if a little clunky.

Allison reminds me of a 59 year old denizen of the casino slots, but the stylists are helping. Tonight, she’s wearing a ruffled leather jacket over a cute blouse and jeans. Her raspberry hair looks good with the matching rose. She has an amazingly mature voice, and I am liking her more and more. She has a real edge (unlike most of the pink-haired rocker girls on this show), and even more importantly, she owns the stage. She’s singing Blame it on My Heart, and she’s rocking the house. I just might vote for the first time this season.

Kris is singing a ditty that I think is called To Make You Feel My Love. It’s a pretty ballad that is only country because Garth Brooks sang it. It’s okay, but not as good as the judges thought it was. My guess is that Kris can coast on his looks for awhile.

Lil is wearing a short, tight, strapless fuchsia dress festooned with ruffles across the bodice. Her hair and makeup both look fantastic. She's singing Independence Day, which was Carrie’s single. The whole notion of singing CW has Lil shook. She’s overthinking, which is hurting her performance. She finally busts loose on the chorus, and we see a bit of the Lil that we know is in there, but overall, it’s a disappointing performance. Oh Lil, I will say this as gently but as firmly as I can: STFU! You’ve annoyed Simon to the point that he’s calling you Little. And you’re annoying me. I don’t want to be annoyed with you. So hush up. And stay hushed. Please.

I’m with Randy- what in the world do you say about someone in a fussy metallic leather jacket, black glovelettes, black nail polish, prominently displayed zipper on his extremely tight pants, and enough pancake makeup to cover the entire cast of The Mikado? Adam’s Snake Charmer version of Ring of Fire is, perhaps, the weirdest thing I’ve ever seen, or heard, on this show. Tell me, what is the difference between Adam and Sanjaya? I’ll be dipped if I can figure out why the judges fall all over themselves over this kid.

Scott, with his hair looking the best it has so far, sings Wild Angel. It’s pretty, but I think Scott has peaked. Simon decides to pick a fight with Paula during her critique.

The stylists are weaning Alexis from her pink streak- it’s smaller every week. She’s wearing a beaded black dress that would be rather pretty if the bodice wasn’t so oddly saggy. She’s singing Jolene, one of the dumbest songs in the universe. She starts on the stairs, which is generally a sign that what is to follow is unadulterated bad. But I find that I am liking this spare, banjo-accented arrangement, and Alexis’s take on the song. There were some off-notes, especially one long one in the middle, but overall, it was an interesting performance.

We all know that Paula’s ramblings get more and more incoherent as the season progresses, but I am tired of Simon’s eye-rolling rudeness.

Danny has a truly rough rehearsal with Randy Travis, and he’s chosen Jesus Take the Wheel (a song I find annoying in concept). He’s wearing a white safari jacket over a lavender shirt, and his beginning is uncharacteristically tentative. But once Danny hits the chorus, he kills the song (if you can say that about any song with Jesus in the title).

Anoop almost has to sound better than he did last week, even if he’s attempting Willie Nelson’s Always on my Mind. He looks good, in a gray and purple checked hoodie under a dark jacket. Randy is right- this is the best Anoop has sounded in the entire competition, and he wisely eschews the high note at the end. Bravo, Anoop!

So tonight, she’s just Megan Joy (no Corkrey), and I sigh when I hear that’s she’s treading in Cline Territory. Megan Joy is wearing a full-length, green and brown boob-sling, as she warbles about Moooooooonlight and searchin’ for youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu, and does her signature hip swivel (a move that makes me want to throw things at the TV). The performance is flat and shrieky and bad from start to finish, but Kara makes sure that we all know that she’s been sick, which will probably get her another pass. Sigh.

Is Paula sniffing Simon’s arm? Or licking it?

Matt is wearing a nice suit, and singing So Small. There must be something in the studio performance that doesn’t translate to my living room, because I am mystified by the love that the judges throw at him. There is simply nothing about this kid that appeals to me.

The best tonight? Anoop and Allison.

The worst performance of the night was undoubtedly Megan Joy’s, but a visit to the hospital (and some coughing, and a general look of unwell being) will likely save her this week. My guess is that either Michael or Scott will hit the road tomorrow night.


Frankie said...

Aw Kathleen . . . I usually really agree with your AI critique and even when I don't, I always love reading your opinion. But, I have to say, I really loved Adam. Different? Oh yeah! I know the judges just hated his performance (which was totally expected from Simon -- he hated the whole night). And Megan? Well, I enjoy listening to her but watching her do that weird "dance" is painful -- so we'll agree on that! And the fawning over Matt I totally don't get. He bugs me too. It will definitely be interesting to see who goes home tonight. Happy knitting!

LizzieHelen said...

Comparing Adam to Sanjaya? Never! I did like the version he sang very much. Poor Megan. It sounded like she was pushing her voice--not sounding like she did when singing for RT. Even before she finished singing it was obvious she was sick with at least a cold. In general, no one stands out as really, really awful this year. [What would Tatiana have done with this theme?]

BarbE said...

I love your blog too. I have decided that this year I'm getting my AI fix from your blog and the internet recap. I just can't stomach Paula anymore. I think the snake charmer part of Adam hit the nail on the head. He's so weird you can't stop watching. On the other hand almost all of the others were hard to get through. Watching the recaps is different because if they haven't caught your attention in the first half you certainly won't listen to the second half.

BarbE said...

Adam is a snake charmer! He kind of sucks you in and you can't stop listening. I think he's too weird to make it all the way. I have only been watching recaps this year as Paula is too much to take and boy if they don't catch your attention right away, you don't have to listen very long. Then I read your blog and I've had enough of AI for the week. Thank you for your service!