Diana Ross week. Meh.
Brandon: Is it me or does he seem at opposition to the music as opposed to flowing with it? Not too good. Lots of breaking and cracking.
Randy: You didn't bring it. Paula: Not easy to do what you're doing -- ooh, it's a big concert hall, look at the pretty lights ... Simon: That was a complete let down.
Holy crap! Simon just told Ryan to come out of the closet. Too darn funny! Gotta love live TV.
Melinda: She's singing some song from "The Wiz;" a song I'm not familiar with at all. I don't like the song very much, and that's probably the worst thing I've ever said about Melinda. She's singing very well, and is really selling it. This little lady really comes alive on stage. Wish it had been a different song though.
Randy: Gotta say, I don't know if it was my favorite performance of yours, but it was still hot. Paula: (Crying ... leaking!) I'm so excited for you ... gobbledy gook. Simon: Why are you crying? Look, you made a very boring song exciting. You remind me of a young Gladys Knight.
Chris Sligh: Singing "Endless Love," and singing without glasses. Is he rushing a little bit there? He seems to be singing in front of the beat a bit. You can hear a bit of the nervous break in his voice. Not too bad. Certainly not his best performance, though. Leaps and bounds beyond Brandon, though.
Randy: The bad part, sounded like Coldplay a bit ... that was a mess for me. Paula: That song is so recognizable ... I think you're trying ultra hard to be ultra hip ... you have a nice voice, worry less about being contemporary. Simon: I think you murdered the arrangement. Found it completely unemotional.
Gina: Diana says, pronounciate everything. You must pronounciate. This is the woman who advised Michael Jackson, remember. She's singing "Love Child." Hmm. I'm kind of liking this. I wasn't expecting to. So, props to Gina. Maybe not the best vocals, but it's not a demanding vocal and overall it was powerful.
Randy: Once again, not my favorite performance from you, it was pitchy, I didn't feel any excitement. Paula: It's such an exciting song, thought you were much better than how you did the song tonight. Simon: It was OK. You can't say much about it, it wasn't terrible. It wasn't fantastic. You picked the right song, I think. It was a little bit forgettable.
Sanjaya: Diana took him to school a little bit. Maybe he'll listen. She likes to counsel those younger men. Good lord, I'm not sure what the hell happened to his head. I'm thinking he cut it off and someone gave him a bad wig. Either that or my parents old mangy poodle clawed its way from its grave and plopped on his head. Oh yeah, the song sucked.
Randy: Don't know what to say. Dude, it wasn't very good. Thank god for the background singers. Paula: You sang on pitch, but you need to start it off when you grab the audience. You really need to explode with your vocals. Simon: Essentially he said -- Diana Ross is going to freak when she hears this song.
Haley: Diana says she has a recording studio voice as opposed to a live voice. Too true. As she starts the song ("Missing You") you can barely hear her. It's at the very bottom of her register and she's so quiet. And she's dropping words. And she's dropping pitch all over the place.
Randy: You gave it a valiant effort. You were very pitchy. Paula: You look lovely tonight. And for Paula, it's the nicest thing she can say. Simon: I didn't think it was that bad. To give you credit, I think we will remember you know. I think you look like a star. If you can hold it together, you may do better than I thought you were going to do.
Phil: I think he was planning on sucking Diana's blood. I'm not sure. There are rumors that he's a Nosferatu. He's not too bad this week. Surprisingly so ... he's not my favorite guy on the show. But he's really showing out tonight. Very good job, Phil. Just don't look into the sun.
Randy: The performance was boring, but the vocals was hot. Paula: Vocals were good, just that song was a little dull. Simon: It was OK. Very good choice of song, but you have a tendency to shout when you try to hit the big notes.
LaKisha: Singing a Billie Holiday song ("God Bless the Child") that Diana sang in "Lady Sings the Blues." And she sounds a lot like Billie, while still sounding like herself. She also took Diana's advice. You know the singers are going to go far when they listen to the judges and the guest performers. And, being able to sing like LaKisha doesn't hurt either. She's just doing an amazing job. She takes the vocal prize thus far.
Randy: Wow. Perfect song choice for you. Unbelievable vocal from you. That was sensational. Paula: Your heart comes through when you sing. Simon: You either got it, or you haven't got it. You've got it. I have to say, the quality difference between you and Melinda and the other singers, you two are in a different league.
Blake: Diana is looking forward to what Blake is going to do with "You Keep Me Hanging On." It's his arrangement. He's slowed it down a bit and added some other beats. It sounds kind of like an '80s-era new wave version, I think. But he's doing a great job with it, I think.
Randy: Check it out, check it out ... there were some good things about it. You sing better than that. Sometimes let the classics be the classics. Paula: I hear what you're saying, Randy, but there's a difference between what you did, Blake, and what Chris did. Simon: I didn't get that at all. If you had heard that in isolation, you wouldn't like it.
I really don't agree with the judges here. I thought it was a good job. A good performance. They make a decent point about punching up the vocals a bit, though.
Stephanie: Singing "Love Hangover." I guess she's doing a decent job, I just don't like the song that much. Stephanie does have a tendency to oversing bits. She shouts some of those extended notes. Otherwise, very good job.
Randy: It's been kind of an interesting night ... good vocals, not your best. Perfect choice for you, I was waiting for the uptempo part and was upset it didn't come in. Paula: Is there a reason you didn't do the uptempo part? Simon: Strange arrangement, basically what you sang was an intro. Not your best performance.
Chris Richardson: Singing "The Boss." I don't know why, but his voice is starting to grate on me a bit. Is it whiny? Is that it? Tonight, definitely so. Cracking with whine (and nerves, I'm sure) that's especially obvious in his falsetto breaks. Worked the crowd very well though -- just like Diana told him to do.
Randy: You oversang it a bit. Half good and half bad for me. Paula: I think, out of all the guys, you nailed the blend of classic and contemporary. Simon: Remembering this is a singing competition, listen to the vocals, I thought it was dreadful. If you heard it on the radio, you'd switch the station.
Jordin: Is singing "If We Hold on Together." Jeez, she is really going for the Disney crew, isn't she. It seems obvious to me that she's banking on a career in children's TV or film once she gets kicked off Idol about three or four weeks from now. One quick note: She does the "goat vibrato." Something that really bothers me. Michael Stipe does it too. I hate it.
Randy: At 17, I'm so, so impressed with you. Tonight, you made it a three girl race (Melinda, LaKisha and her). Paula: You are a natural talent, and you're have lovely song sing, good ... Simon: It was a bit gooey, but having said that, I thought it was a very, very good vocal.
Ugh. Now I have to pick the bottom three. Brandon, Sanjaya and Haley. Going home (rolls dice) ... Brandon.
Tracey has a unique critique on some performances last night.
Dean feels, much as I do, that we should just give the title to Melinda and be done with it.
Sarahk, as always, has an exhaustingly thorough rundown.
Curly McDimple at American Midol gives a concise report.
Dial Idol predictions: Blake, Chris Sligh and Stephanie Edwards are this weeks bottom three according to DI, but the bottom 9 are all well within the margin of error. It's interesting how the top two (Melinda and LaKisha) get such strong results that it throws the MoE off on all the others. I'm pissed that Sanjaya ranked so highly again. Damn you America! Stop voting for him.