American Idol 8 – Round 2 Performances

American Idol Promo - CowboyAfter last week’s lackluster performances, the fabulous Tatiana Del Toro not making the top 12 and crappy song choices from most of the contestants I was really looking forward to this week’s show – I mean there was no way to go but up. It started off well, they got rid of the awkward friends and family segment and they alternated which judge started off the judging portion. Speaking of judges, at first I wasn’t keen about them adding a fourth judge to the mix but Kara DioGuardi has quickly become my favorite judge after Simon Cowell. I find her comments to be insightful and customized instead of Randy’s ‘Dawg’ and Paula’s ‘I love your spirit”. Here’s my rundown of who I thought brought it tonight.

GALLERY: Images from American Idol 8 – Round 2. [autoviewer id=”4″ width=”800″ height=”600″ link=”Click Here“]

Jeanine Valles12. Jeanine Vailes
This Love – Maroon 5

Trainwreck #3 (including count from last week) Having never seen her sing a single note, I thought she would be a pleasant surprise like Ricky Braddy from last week. Unfortch for our ears, Jeanine blew chunks. No wonder the producers kept her under wraps – she was pure cannon fodder. Reminding me of a young Jody Watley with frickin’ hot legs and dressing like a hooker – in a good way, I had such high hopes when I first saw her tonight cuz I love me my divas. Her performance was so overdone and all over the place that I highly doubt Maroon 5 will ever let anyone on idol ever sing SLASH murder their songs. Honey, I’d call in sick on results day and check out the LA tourist sites, cuz you’re heading back home the next flight out.

Kai Kalama11. Kai Kalama
What Becomes of the Brokenhearted – Jimmy Ruffin

I’ll start off with the good. Ummm… He’s got great hair – I wish I had curly hair like that. Now with the bad. Ummm… He sang it alright and hit the notes but the performance was so cheesy, corny and old-fashioned it had no business being on the idol stage. If you’re going to go retro own it like Melinda Doolittle from Season 6. Instead, he came off sounding like a lounge lizard and looked way older than he is.

Jasmine Murray10. Jasmine Murray
Love Song – Sara Bareilles

“Head under water…”. That’s what she sounded like when she started. When she hit the high notes, she sang well but when she hit the low notes, OUCH, her lower register was awful. I had such high hopes for her based on her earlier performances and cuz she’s so darn cute and commercial. Trying to make the song her own, she ended up overdoing it by making a simple song much more difficult than it should’ve been. Like Simon said, she’s probably a couple years too early for the competition and should’ve waited a few more years to try out. You gotta give the girl credit for owning the stage but it felt more like she was singing a “Hate Song” rather than a love one.

Matt Breitzke9. Matt Breitzke
If You Could Only See – Tonic

I had no preconceived notions on how well he would do. Frankly, I don’t even remember if he’s even been highlighted in previous episodes or not. He has a decent voice, sang it well, but look awkward on stage which left me bored with his performance.

Matt Giraud8. Matt Giraud
Viva la Vida – Coldplay

During Hollywood week, his rendition of Georgia on my Mind was A-MAZ-ING , so when they announced he was on this week’s show, I was uber excited but like most of Adam R’s dates, it was disappointing. Rather than dueling another piano player, he seemed like he was dueling with the natural rhythm of the song. I felt he did way too many runs didn’t annunciate but instead slurred his way through it. Kara pointed out that he’s bluesy, soul type singer and that song didn’t lend him for that kind of interpretation.

Nick Mitchell - Norman Gentle7. Nick Mitchell aka Norman Gentle
And I’m Telling You – Jennifer Holiday

Does he know any other songs? This is the third time we’ve seen him sing this song. To his credit, vocally, it was his best rendition of this song we heard. But unlike Tatiana who evolved from being a joke to an actual singer last week, Nick remained true to form and remained a joke. The only reason why I’ve ranked him this high is because he made me laugh and smile during his performance and the others below him were just that awful or disappointing. How could you not laugh when he gave Neil Patrick Harris a ‘Doogie’ shout out. PS. Love the comment Kara made about Nick/Norman wearing the same shirt like Simon does every week with his shirts. I, too, like Simon will pray he doesn’t advance.

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Mishavonna Henson6. Mishavonna Henson
Drops of Jupiter – Train

It started off with promise but then ended quite badly. As technically sound as she sang, something about her performance didn’t get me excited. She reminds me of those nerdy, alternative, serious girl cliches (ie Rachel Leigh Cook) in those teen movies. If she loosened up, she would come across more endearing and inviting. I give the girl credit for trying out again after being cut in Hollywood last year. Unfortunately her dream of making that elusive Top 12 will still be out of reach.

Megan Joy Corkrey5. Megan Joy Corkery
Put Your Records On – Corrine Bailey Rae

When we last saw Megan she was without a middle name but I guess she felt she needed to add her middle name like Corinne Rae to do this song justice. A single mother and font designer from Salt Lake City, Megan sang her little heart out. I thought she and her hair looked gorgeous. Loved her voice, her singing style, and her quirky epileptic shoulder dancing moves coined the ‘Corkrey’ by Ryan. I agree with Kara and think she’s a perfect ‘package artist’ and with the right song could be a huge artist. Bonus points for Megan for not mugging in front of the camera and putting up 7 fingers when Seacrest announced her phone number. PS. This weekend, I’m totally working the ‘Corkrey’ on the dance floor at Patrick’s birthday.

Kris Allen4. Kris Allen
Man in the Mirror – Michael Jackson

By far the cutest guy this year. At first I thought it was a weird song choice but as he got into I totally was feeling him. He reminded me of a grown up David Archuleta but much better looking. Unfortunately with the amount of pimping Adam Lambert & Matt Giraud has received, it’ll be tough for him to overtake them and take the top male spot. I find him very likable and sweet and it’s not just because I think he’s cute as sh*t . I hate it when the judges say the contestant was amazing during hollywood or at the audition but we never get to see it. I wish they would give everyone a level playing field and let the true talent rise to the top without producer manipulation.

Jesse Langseth3. Jesse Langseth
Bette Davis Eyes – Kim Carnes
Apparently Jesse has a famous sibling. Her brother is former teenage blues singer prodigy, Johnny Lang, which explains her arrangement of this 80s classic. Loved her voice. Loved. Loved. Loved her phrasing. It was reminiscent of British songstress, Josh Stone. As much as I liked her and her performance, I admit it wasn’t perfect vocally. That imperfection was enough ammunition for the judges to crucify her. If the judges don’t like you, you NEED to be perfect. Otherwise it’s going to be a slaughter which it was.

Allison Iraheta2. Allison Iraheta
Alone – Heart

Judging her on her interview skills alone, Allison sucked ass. Luckily for her we’re  judging her on her talent. After Carrie Underwood’s version of this song blew me out of the water during Season 4, all other renditions have paled in comparison. So when she mentioned she choose this song I was apprehensive. At times it got a bit screamy but overall it was good and did Heart justice with her version. Allison isn’t your typical 16 bubbly teenager that we see on idol and for this she should be commended. A definite dark horse to watch and keep your eyes on as Simon mentioned during the mansion episode.

Adam Lambert1. Adam Lambert
Satisfaction – Rolling Stones

Unlike last week where Danny Gokey didn’t deserve the pimp spot, musical theatre vet Adam definitely saaaaaaaaaaaaaang this song. I loved his interpretation and his phrasing of this Stone’s classic which he selected because the Rolling Stones are his mom’s favorite band of all time. When he hit his high register it was pure perfection. The one thing I couldn’t get out of my mind during his performance was that he reminded me of Jim Verraros from season one but a way better looking version. He’ll definitely be making the Top 12. Simon stated either you’ll love it or hate it. I LOVED IT.

Just like last week, I leave you with these random observations.

  • Why does it seem like most of the girls this year moms. It’s definitely the year of the MILF
  • We learned that they have 5 rehearsals before the show and that Paula and maybe the other judges watch them during one of them
  • For the second week in a row a male has received the pimp spot. Why not pimp the girls, producers?
  • In a new tradition of sorts, my lowest ranked performer is again my best dressed candidate of the week. Janine looked fierce in her hooker outfit.
  • What was Neil Patrick Harris doing there for the second week in a row. Does ‘How I Met Your Mother’ film in the studio right beside them?
  • Jasmine’s mom was all smiles and giggles during her daughter’s performance but once Jasmine got beaten to a pulp by the judges Mama Murray looked so sad for the remainder of the whole night. She didn’t even fake happiness for other contestants when they received their praises. Check out a few screenshots of her throughout the night.

American Idol - Round 2 - Parents

Nick/Norman’s father reaction is shown in the last picture during his son’s performance. You can tell he’s one ‘proud’ papa. lol