Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Mixed bag

Tonight's Idol was the music of Barry Gibb.

First Course:
I was shocked that Melinda chose Inside and Out because I was not thinking of that as a song that would be a fabulous performance, but she made it really terrific. The judges didn't like it that much, but I actually enjoyed it. It was very Gladys Knight-ish and very growly. I grew up with this music and loved about everything the Bee Gees, specifically Barry. This was a song I always liked in the falsetto, but Melinda changed it up and made it very original. Funny that last week, they thought Blake was the golden boy for changing up Bon Jovi when he couldn't sing it as written, even though the performance was not that terrific, but when Melinda does it and hits it dead on, they pan her. I don't get it.

Blake fouled right off the bat with a flat pitch and then remained somewhat off through his whole falsetto of You Should Be Dancing. His falsetto was nowhere near up for the task. He dragged behind the music. The beatbox didn't do anything but ruin the song. Note that he sang the lyric, "my baby takes me higher, my baby keeps me warm," when the actual lyric is "my woman takes me higher, my woman keeps me warm." Jess caught this and noted that he thinks Blake sang it that way for a reason, something we have speculated about for a few weeks, and something that was actually pretty transparent in last week's show when he and Chris were chumming it up as the choice was made between them as to who went home. Those are two boys in love...which is nice...I just wish they both had better voices. Yay for Simon, who hated it. It was a trainwreck.

Barry's 61 year-old falsetto sounded better than LaKisha's voice on tonight's performance of Stayin' Alive. That's a song that's far bigger than she is. She went miserably flat on the high power note near the end of the performance. She made strange tempo changes and just killed it. It was a yawner, and didn't do it.

Jordin was the clear winner in the first round with To Love Somebody, which was positively stunning. This was the performance. Her hair was terrific, but that outfit needed to lose the pants.

Second Course:
Melinda's performance of How Can You Mend a Broken Heart was strong, but didn't do it for me. I didn't particularly like the ending flourish, which I felt was just staging. Randy liked the ending, curiously. I don't get it. Paula called her "a throwback to Stephanie Mills," and I would actually LOVE to see her do Stephanie Mills' Lean on Me, from the 80s, which she could tear up and knock right out of the park.

Blake's performance of The Danger Zone was quite good in showcasing his vocal style, but he couldn't stay up with music and he had some flat moments, which is just ridiculous at this level of the competition! But Paula said he sang the whole thing "spot-on tune" which just tells me that she can't hear. This song was a flop for the Bee Gees, but Blake could actually make something of it if he could learn to keep up with the music and be on key. Simon said he hated it, which was harsh. I didn't hate it, I just didn't love it.

LaKisha's performance of Run to Me was another surprise, if a bad one. I loved the way she started it, very soulful, but she didn't sustain that even through the first stanza. Jess' comment was "she's better than this!" And she is. And that cracking voice at the last...dear God. It was not good. She's definitely in trouble this week.

Jordin's second performance was even more daring than the first. A Woman in Love was pretty good. It was, of course, much different than the Barbra version, which is one of my all-time favorites, so I was a little more discriminating about this performance than her first. It was okay.

Final analysis: Blake and LaKisha, you should be packing. One of you is leaving.

I was sorely disappointed by the overall choices of the evening. There are so many terrific Barry Gibb songs that could have been used tonight. Emotion, an old 70s number performed by Samantha Sang and backed by the Bee Gees, would have been terrific for Melinda or Jordin, and so would If I Can't Have You. Or Melinda could have sung Nights on Broadway and done a great job with it. Tragedy and Words would have made great choices for LaKisha, Blake could have used his beatbox very well on Jive Talkin', or You Stepped Into My Life; and Love So Right would have been a nicer match for his vocal range. Jordin could have been outstanding with Love Me. All in all, a mixed bag of less-than-stellar choices.


At 1:07 AM, May 09, 2007, Blogger Cincy Diva said...

Blake sadly disappounted me. Lakisha paid aboslutely no attention to anything barry mentored her on. I think Blake is in danger but Lakisha should go home

At 7:24 AM, May 09, 2007, Blogger Marc said...

I agree, Cincy. LaKisha has a better voice, but Blake is trying; LaKisha just isn't trying any more. I have been noticing this for a few weeks now; I think she has been thinking for some time that the judges like Melinda better, so she's just letting things shake out and would be happy as long as she made it to the top six, because she knows she'll get a contract. No need to work too hard, because she would rather lose and have a contract under someone else than lose and work for Simon. She has a bad attitude; I noticed last night that she was smiling a lot more for the judges comments than in previous weeks, which was telling, considering the savaging they have given her.

At 11:07 AM, May 09, 2007, Blogger Michelle Ann said...

I just loved Jordin last night....even if the second song wasn't may favorite. I hope she takes the whole thing.


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