Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Tonight's Idol: DUETS!

Hint, America. HINT!

Okay, so for YEARS I have been clammoring for a Duets Week on "Idol." I never thought it would happen because of how inherently unfair it would be to either a) saddle a good singer with a crappy one for a week, or b) saddle a crappy singer with another crappy singer and damn their chances entirely. But now that they're down to four singers, all of whom are reasonably talented, that's not really an issue, so look what we get! Happy Tuesday to me!

One of the reasons I've always wanted a duets week, beyond my hope for some "Leather and Lace" up in here, is the absolute uproar it would cause among fans, critics, conspiracy theorists, and all. Looking around the internet, I can see I was not wrong. I'll even join in: Why finally do duets during rock week, the least-duetty genre of them all? Ah well.

Adam Lambert
"Whole Lotta Love"
Great vocal that did reasonable justice to the original (though how is Allison a "copycat" Janis and Adam now a copycat Robert Plant considering how faithfully they both delivered their performances?). Still looks like he's playing dress-up, which always takes me out of the performance, but I liked the sound of it.

Allison Iraheta
"Cry Baby"

At the time, I thought that Allison's lack of a real knockout performance here (it was good, just not great) was going to mean big trouble for her. After the hour was up, maybe not, but I still agreed with Randy (...I know) when he said that the song didn't give her enough room to blow people away. Also, like Simon, I thought Allison was considering the Queen "Somebody to Love." Unlike Simon, I am very glad she didn't pick that one, but the Jefferson Airplane "Somebody to Love"? That could've been fun.

Danny Gokey and Kris Allen

They did manage to sound quite good singing together (with a big assist from the backup singers). But left to their own devices, Danny seemed strained and Kris was completely aimless and lost. He didn't sound bad, but he didn't know what to do with himself at all. Even in the critique he seemed like he was looking for a place to sit down.

Kris Allen
"Come Together"

I didn't think it sounded nearly as bad as everyone else did. I like that he didn't try to step too far out of what works for him. He was kind of fucked either way, because what he should have done was taken a super hard-edged song and made it into a smooth Kris coffeehouse number, but I think the judges (and/or Slash) would have KILLED him for it. I think he's going home, much to my extreme chagrin.

Danny Gokey
"Dream On"

I can't ... how do I even begin to describe the many layers of terror that was this performance. I watched half of it with my face behind a pillow, and that was BEFORE the Last Screech on the Left that killed the song dead. The early notes were strained, the attempted eye-fucking (which, combined with The Scream suggested that this was Danny doing his Adam impersonation), that embarrassing "do-do-do" ... it's too much. Somebody's gonna need to hold up a photo of ME in front of a TV camera next week because Danny Gokey just killed me dead.

Adam Lambert and Allison Iraheta
"Slow Ride"
What I said, verbatim, once Ryan said the word "Foghat": "Oh God DAMN it, Lambert!" You know he chose that shit. Here's where, if I'm a crazy TWoP-posting conspiracy nut, I start spinning my wheels, because if I want to make Allison sing something that she can't possibly impress with, vocally (if Randy thought "Cry Baby" was repetitive?), wouldn't this be my sandbag of choice? Anyway, I don't believe that's the case (for one thing, Adam and Allison really seem to be close), and even if it was, it didn't work. The vocals weren't anything to write home about (again, the song doesn't really ask for much), but A & A were having so much damn FUN on the stage. Their combined stage presence was -- I'll say it -- a joy to behold. Yes. "A joy."

Overall, a weird week where "rock" was funneled into an incredibly narrow "Hard-driving Classic Rock arena anthems plus some Beatles to throw Kris a bone (... so to speak)" theme. The high expectations for the resident rockers propelled Adam while damning Allison (at least at first -- and not like that's an unusual occurrence this season), while the low bar set for the other two hit Kris hard but cushioned Danny's fall (again -- par for the course, this season). A Kris/Adam/Allison final three would be beyond cool, but it's not gonna happen. Oh, haven't you heard? Danny's winning this bitch. Watch it happen. The internet will burn.

Predicted Bottom 3: Kris, Danny, Allison
Going home: Kris

P.S.: Now that the show is apparently petrified of putting more than 6 songs in an hour, I'll bet the Idols only sing two apiece next week. Which traditional Top 3 staple gets jettisoned: the Judges' Choice, Contestants' Choice, or the Producers/Clive Davis/Uncle Nigel choice?


JAM said...

You know, I just... I get sucked in EVERY DAMN YEAR to the point where I actually get angry at the thought of someone winning this thing who doesn't deserve to win it, even though I KNOW that winning isn't really the point here, practically speaking career-wise and even thought I KNOW it's possibly nine-tenths about who the powers-that-be successfully targeted with the talent/sob story combination in the audition rounds, thereby ensuring a solid-enough fan base to keep said individual in the competition long enough to... you know what? I'm just tired of Danny. Maybe he's a nice person, but I just don't want to see him on my TV anymore.

Joe Reid said...

I also forgot to mention the insane hilarity of cutting from Adam Lambert's exaggerated snarl and rock-god poses ... to the tweeniest of tweens squealing for him like he's Joe Jonas. Because as cool and legit and the-future-of-glam-rock-as-we-know-it as we keep hearing Adam is, this is still American Idol.

jessica said...

I'm sick of Danny Gokey too. I'm sick of him, and I'm sick of his dead wife. And why in the WORLD was he dressed like a fat baptist reverend? Bllllechh.

Joe Reid said...

I think I'm sick of Danny for so many reasons that I barely ever think of the dead wife issue anymore. Which I think is progress. I'm now judging him on the merits of his douchey character and inconsistent ability.

JAM said...

Danny is that guy that you kind of forget you hate because on the surface he's fairly inoffensive, and sometimes you even find yourself nodding in agreement when he starts talking, but then he *doesn't know when to stop talking* and you remember why he makes you so tired.

Tom said...

I've been over Danny for about four weeks when I realized he was doing the same song with basically the same arrangement EVERY WEEK.

The only one I have any interest in hearing an album from is Kris.