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I could go on and on about the technical flaws I saw on last nights episode ( the musical numbers were way to polished and the AV was out of sync), but I’m not. No. Because I am in love with this show.

The fact I love this show should be no surprise to anyone, as I am also deeply in love with Ryan Murphy’s previous high school dramedy Popular  (Mary Cherry forever!). Glee in many ways hits similar tones comically and dramatically as this late 90s cult classic, and the struggles the students face are also similar. The slightly awkward, overly ambitious girl crushes on the cool jock boy who dates the pretty blonde cheerleader. There are kids with speech impediments and disabilities, and they aren’t all a size two. Murphy creates a real high school feeling. Then he throws on show stopping musical numbers.

Now, the audio of ” Gold Digger” is amazing, but it was hampered last night by poor mixing and editing.  In fact, that was an issue with all the musical numbers last night. If this show is going to work over the long haul, they have to fix it. Off sync is distracting.  And the “Push It” number was amazingly cringe worthy and hilarious at the same time. I watched it mouth agape and sniggering the entire time. That was right on the edge of appropriate and Murphy probably knows it ( the man also created Nip/Tuck, which has been crossing that line for years).

But there were some really great moments in the episode- Will and Emma’s chalk dust on the nose, Finn and Rachel bonding over their mutual love of music, Finn making the angels cry with that popping balloon, Rachel’s speech on teenage sexuality that made her a hero to a certain faction of horny teenage boys, every moment Jane Lynch and Jayma Mays were on screen, and the realization that Quinn and the Cheerios can kind of sing. As the Cheerios go in to spy for Sue Sylvester, expect high jinks to ensue.

The flaws,  though, have the potential to be too distracting. I like Jessalyn Gilsig a lot as an actor, but her character Terri is shrill and shrewish. I honestly wanted to punch her at various moments ( though I did snicker when she pointed out the children’s bedroom as the room for ” their daughter or gay son”). The Cheerios are still way into Mean Girls territory and have yet to be really fleshed out as characters. The same thing can be said about the jocks. There are those sync issues and they need to dirty up the vocal tracks as well ( last night was a little too polished and studio for my liking- only ” Take A Bow” came close to any real emotional connection, aside from Jayma Mays’ Emma sobbing through ” All By Myself” in her car).

Then there are the highs. The appealing youngsters are delightful as the ” island of misfit toys”, as Sue called them. Matthew Morrison ( Tony nominee for Light In The Piazza and the original Link in Hairspray)  is charming as Will, who only seems to come really alive when he’s at the school, doing Glee and interacting with the students. The incomparable Jane Lynch is clearly delighting in playing the vindictive, spoiled, entitled cheerleading coach, who gets the school to pay for European dry cleaners and for some reason has seen an elementary school production of Hair. There is sharp humor and commentary about relationships, the high school caste system, and the general malaise of education systems in North America.

After the completely charming pilot, this was a good follow up episode.

Pilot received an A from me. ” Showmance” gets a solid B+.

Quoteworthy!

Rachel: I guess I don’t have a gag reflex.

Emma: Years from now you’ll find that a blessing.

***

Coach Tanaka: I’m a minority so they can’t fire me, I’ll always be able to provide for you.

***

Kurt: Wait! One day you will all work for me.

Other things of note:

  • Figures guys would join the Celibacy Club to try and bed their chaste girlfriends.
  • Chris Colfer, who plays Kurt, is going to get a big episode coming up that Ryan Murphy has said is based on his own high school experience. If you know anything about Ryan Murphy, you can probably figure it out.
  • I tend to hate cheerleaders in TV world. These ones take the cake.
  • Quinn and Finn. I hate cutesy couples with rhyming names.
  • Amber Reilly has a voice and a half!
  • I do not remember the disco revivial of 1993. Anyone else?

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Idol is being self congratulatory again. I know it’s a ratings powerhouse, but this is ridiculous. It’s not like Simon Fuller has discovered the cure for cancer.

Gwen asks why they are wearing white. Oy.

I’m looking forward to tonight. All the pressure is off. But can Kris and Adam sing together without sounding totally weird?

Kris was leading on Dial Idol this morning, but by negligible numbers. Kris also barely won the TV Guide poll. I’m just passing this on for info sake.

Kris and Adam’s mics don’t work. Ha!

The top thirteen launch into a haphazard version of Pink’s ” So What”. The thirteen sound atrocious together. They always have. ” And you’re a tool” made the cut. Snickers. Awful off key notes left and right. Last year’s top twelve were truly much better as a collective.

RyRy=smarmy ass.

David!!!!! ” Permanent”!!!! Whoot! And he sounds great. God, I’ve missed him on this show. And everyone buy the song.

Idol Awards- a moment of levity. Some awful performances. Everyone laugh at the deluded.But we get NickNorman again. God, I love the guy.

Lil sings with Queen Latifah, and The Queen sings circles around the Lil one.

Jason Mraz!!! With Alexis and Anoop. I love this song. I love Mraz. I love Alexis and Anoop. I love this. Best of the current Idol performances so far.

We get a Kris tape piece. We found him in Kentucky, remember? He’s such a sweet guy. And he sings ” Kiss A Girl” with Keith Urban. He sounds good on the song. I’m not a big fan of this Keith song, but whatever, they sound great.

The girls are now singing Fergie’s ” Glamorous”. Are you kidding? Fergie can’t sing either. Jasmine is heinous. There is no melody to this song. Fergie comes out and “sings” “Big Girls Don’t Cry”. Ugh. Now the Black Eyed Peas come out to join there wayward girl and launch into whatever this song is ( I’ve been immersed in Green Day’s new album- it’s a classic. I’ve been avoiding BEP at all costs). Why the sudden cut to the Idol sign and no sound?

More Idol awards. Best Attitude. And Bikini Girl is on the list. The only moment all season I liked Kara. And then Kara joins Bikini Girl on stage and sings circles around the girl. ( Kara can sing. Not spectacularly, but she can.)

Ally!!!!! Singing “Time After Time” with Cyndi Lauper. Awesome. Allison loses the lyric a bit. They both sound good in their quirky way. The chorus is gorgeous. I love you, Ally Cat.

Danny is singing “Hello”? SACRELIGE!!!!!!!

But Lionel Richie… well, he’s cool in a cheesy ass way. Too bad he’s singing with DWP. I don’t like this song at all though. Just like DWP. Now some ” All Night Long”. DWP sucks donkey balls.

Now we get Adam’s tape piece in San Fransisco. He kept his promise, indeed. Adam is singing with …, wait, what the fuck is he wearing? He launches with ” Beth”?  KISS!!!!!!!!!!!! KIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!! ” Detroit Rock City” is my fave KISS song, and then we get ” Rock And Roll All Nite” and I love Adam right now. Awesomeness.

Still prefer Cyndi and Ally. Just saying.

Carlos Santana is awesome.  Some ” Black Magic Woman”. Loving it. Some Matt Giraud who sounds pretty good with the man. Little off in the lower register. Now some ” smooth”. Love this song. It’s ten years old, you know. Adam joins in. Jorge… this must be the guy song. Kris really sounded good on his line. DWP sucks still.  Nope, the girls join in.  The thirteen together still sound shitty.

Ford video. Whatever.

David gives Adam and Kris cars. I love that. All three seem so nice.

Steve Martin, who is my comedy hero. He’s joining Sarver and Megan. WTF? This is the weirdest thing ever on Idol. Megan still is bizarre. Total surrealist moment.

Gwen has informed me we are watching SYTYCD. Oh boy.

Um… The guys are singing ” If Ya Think I’m Sexy”. Why?  I’m not even a Rod Stewart fan and I feel sorry for the dude. Rod does come out next, and he begins  “Maggie May”, the only Rod Stewart song I believe is perfect. Rod’s voice hasn’t been the same since his surgery. The grit’s there, but the power he had is gone. Sad, really. The song is still awesome, though.

Another Idol award. Oh, shit. Shriekianna. SHIT! I was hoping to avoid the drama queen. Shit. This is bad comedy but I can’t help laughing at the absurdity.

So we are now twenty minutes out of the scheduled end time of Idol. I’m expecting an Adam-Kris moment.

And we get “We Are The Champions”. Queen on Idol. Awesome. Adam is in his zone on this song. Gwen just saw Brian Mays and screamed. Awesome vocals by our top two. I am loving this more than I really should. The swaybots are annoying, but that’s not new. Fucking awesome.

Idol finale returns with Kris and Adam. RyRy goes to Simon and tells Simon to give advice. Simon is not snarky at all. A rare moment. The dude comes out with the results. Almost 100 million votes cast. Dim the lights, here we go. And the winner is… KRIS ALLEN!!!!!!!!

The dark horse actually won the thing? Holy shit!

Off the radar for most of the series, Kris Allen just won American Idol.

He looks stunned and flabbergasted. He can barely form a sentence. Adam looks genuinely happy for Kris.

Wow.

Too bad Kris has to sing that bullshit song again. Poor guy. I forgive the pitchiness and everything right now.

It was an interesting season of Idol, too be sure. And I’ll be back in January to do it all again. Because Idol and I will never break up despite the hell it puts me through.

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Today I got a record number eleven spam comments. Oh, and about 65 people read my essay about the modern sitcom. But I digress. Idol never gets me major hits, Chuck and The Big Bang Theory do. Which reminds me- look for upcoming posts on DTTMOT about the finales for all my faves. It’ll just take some time. Chuck will be first. I’m still waiting on my renewal news ( increasingly positive, increasingly looking like Fridays). I was afraid to write it lest my favorite super spy be cancelled out of my life, making me sad. But I am clearly completely off topic here. I’m just writing till the show starts. And promptly beat the 100 word mark by talking about nothing.

So the show begins with a Ben Stiller/Hank Azaria/Bill Hader/Jonah Hill product placement shill crapfest that is honestly the funniest thing to happen on Idol this season ( intentionally funny, I mean. There were many unintentionally hilarious moments). Time waster.

RyRy descends from the glowing steps of death. He informs us 88 million votes came in and 1 million separated first and second ( now I’m really worried about Kris).

Katy Perry is a crappy live singer. A train wreck not involving the Idols tonight in the making.

The Ford video sucks yet again.

Alicia Keys is now onstage.  Another Idol Gives Back moment.  Love her. Noah, the kid she has been talking about, comes out and sings. I can’t do anything but smile. Bright bouncy world music.

We get the hometown journeys tonight. God.

So the trio are backstage and Danny gets called out first. We go with him back to Milwaukee ( Schlemiel… Schlimazel… Hassenpfeffer Incorporated…). I get hometown visits are biased propaganda pieces, so I ignore it and read Tweets instead. ( Collin, I need to find you…). Then the lights dim and RyRy talks… do we need to be reminded about Simon’s insulting to Elliot Yamin “Master class” comment.Then off to the couch.

Kris goes home to Conway (Twitty) Arkansas. ( Sorry, but Conway Twitty really took his stage name from the town). OHHHH…. one of my all time fave songs!!!! “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” for  Kris. Awesomeness!!!!!!!!!! I’m loving it.  I got misty eyed with his mama. RyRy gives the rundown. Then to the couches.

Jordin Sparks and Adam’s tape are up next.  Jordin looks like she’s sparkly stripper dress. But she sounds good, if a little screamy. Not liking the song that much, though.

Adam puts on a crooked smile as he’s called out, and they talk about San Diego. A streaker?  He has insane screamers and a pretty diverse crowd. He goes back to the theater he performed with as a child (aaaaawwwwwww…). We do see the streaker, and a lot of screaming. RyRy dims the lights ( not awashed in blue this time). He recaps the critics and announces Katy Perry. Prepare to be nauseated.

Katy sings her new song, “Waking Up In Vegas With A New STD And A Bad Hangover And Prime Rib In My Teeth”. She’s awful. Terrible.

Please end my misery. No. Commercial. Assholes.

And the lights finally dim, and the first in finale is… Kris!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And the person going home is… DANNY! WE DID IT!!!!!

No more Gokey!!!

It’s not my perfect final two ( I miss you Allison…), but it’ll do.

I’m gonna now slam back the rest of my Marg and party.

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So, off the top- the Ford commercial is lame, the group sing was only slightly better than usual, and the judges are stupid. ( Well, they haven’t done anything offensive as of this moment, but it bears repeating.)

The typical breakdown that Idol does for top five week, creating two groups of two and making the fifth choose a group. This year, RyRy sent Matty and Kris to the one side, Allison and Danny to the other, making Adam choose between the two. Usually, they announce the fifth person safe and then makes them choose. This year, I got suspicious when RyRy didn’t call Adam safe.  Adam went and joined Danny and Allison, when RyRy pulled a switcheroo and announced that no, DWP and my beloved Allison were in fact safe, and Matty, Adam, and Kris were the bottom three.

Natalie Cole looks really good for someone who is as ill as she is reported to be and she sounds great.  Some pitch issues, but she’s a legend. I forgive legends.

Taylor Hicks? Ugh.

Taylor looks pretty much the same. I’m not impressed though. His song is tolerable but nothing special.

Matty, Kris, and Adam come back and the person sitting back at the couch is-Kris.

RyRy didn’t say bottom two, so I don’t know who is bottom two.

EW has been predicting this week could be a shocking elimination. I would think if Adam went, that is beyond shocking…

I don’t like this song (the video’s cool, but the song sucks). Jamie Foxx can go away now.

RyRy calls Simon out, and Simon take sit rather well ( but smugly). Adam is announced safe ( the right call), and Matty goes home for real this time.

Next week is Rock week, and Slash is supposed to be the mentor. The coolest Idol mentor ever!

Till next week.

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Fucking Idol had to remind me of Paula’s “sexy” comment for DWP last night? Why does Idol hate me so when all I do is love snark it?

Anyhoo, tonight’s Idol will be interrupted as I will watch part of the East coast Letterman feed- one of my future husbands is on, and the EC feed of Letterman coincides with the WC feed of Idol. And the mid part of Idol sucks. But it serves me right for having a nap after dinner and falling asleep.

Choreographer Paula is my favorite Paula because she was really meant to be that choreographer. She looks focused and- well, normal.

The Idols launch into their very VERY canned version of ” Shake Your Body Down”. Matt’s falsetto had been sweetened to the point of being on key. And for all of Paula’s efforts ( she really is a great choreographer- let’s give her credit where it’s due, people), the Idols CANNOT dance. Except for Adam. That theatrical training helped him a lot there.

And this week’s Ford video sucks donkeys.

This episode of Idol will now pre-empted so I can watch Jim Parsons on Letterman. Be back in ten.

I return to Idol to catch the end of KC and the Sunshine Band, and we launch back into commercial.

I discover that Lil Rounds has ( thank God) been eliminated. Whoo, one down.

Kris- safe.

Adam- safer than safe.

DWP- please kill me now… he’s effing safe. Damn it.

Anoop- silver chair of doom…

Allison and Matty-  Matt is safe.

My Allison!! Noooooooo…

David Archuleta… he’s back… Jason style…

Archie does ” Touch My Hand”.  He sounds vocally tired. I like the kid, despite all my mocking last year.

I’m bored. So bored.

So we come down to Anoop and Allison and the one heading home is… Anoop.

Kinda sad about that, I like Anoop. But Slezak called it- Anoop in about sixth place. Yeah.

Next week, folks.

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Wow, we’re moving quick this week. Did Fringe fans threaten Seacrest’s life? Or did Fox execs? (I’m betting it was the Fringsters).

Lil Rounds goes with Chaka Khan’s legendary ” I’m Every Woman” and completely butchers the modulation of the chorus, goes sharp constantly on her big notes, and is a general train wreck. That was awful. And someone muzzle her, damn it!

Simon calls it. Horrendous. Bye bye, Lil.

Kris- whom I am beginning to adore ( his version of ” Falling Slowly” is my number one song on IPod last week)- chooses… ” She Works Hard For The Money”?????? WTF?????

Wait.

Artistry, everyone. That is called artistry. He sounds good vocally and I’m kinda digging the Bedouin Soundclash-ish vibe with the music. ( I am a Bedouin Soundclash fan). Kinda cool. Like it? I think the verdict is yes.

Is Paula off her meds again?

Next up- “September” by DWP, who is wildly pitchy off the top. Why does he always go flat?  I now hate this song because Gokey is singing it. Sorry, Earth Wind & Fire.

Enough about that.

Allison sings a totally awesome, rocking version of Donna Summer’s ” Hot Stuff”. Her vocals kick ass. That may be my favoritism peeking out. And I’m a little disturbed a sixteen year old is singing this song…

Adam is next… is he gonna be crazy boy Adam or amazing singer Adam? (Some would argue they are one and the same, but I maintain he’s schizophrenic in his performance style).

He goes with ” If I Can’t Have You”. Saturday Night Fever, everyone. Finally. And it’s one of those disco love songs. And he’s just singing. And it’s a great vocal. Controlled. Even. Till the chorus, he is a little shrill. But overall, impressive. And I love the shout out to Michael Orland, who helped with his arrangement.

Matty. I have a love/hate relationship with Matty. I love him when he gets it right. He crushes my soul when he doesn’t.  Chances are he’s heading home tomorrow night, regardless ( perfect world would send DWP and Lil home, but it”s never a perfect world where Danny Gokey is concerned). Matty goes with ” Stayin’ Alive”. Ooh… iconic song… but I like it sooooo much more than those two people I hate. He’s on key, he doesn’t really try to reach Barry Gibb level falsetto. Until the end. He kept it in the Robin range. Good call.

Um, now Paula’s bowling.

Anoop looking a little less frat boy, more something with the scruff.

My baby, Emma, would just like to say ” Amoo, Amoo, Amoo it aw fyah”.

Anoop goes with yet another ballad beginning.  Seriously? He goes with ” Dim All The Lights”, which does pick up, but is still midtempo. His vocal though, is on pitch and pretty good. Brave dude to wear neon and pastels, I must say.

Randy’s hyperbole is ridiculous. Better than last year? Really?

So yeah, Top three tonight- Kris, Allsion, Adam ( in no particular order).

My bottom three- Anoop, Lil, and DWP. But the bottom three will be Anoop, Lil, and Matty, with Matt and Lil heading off home.

This bites.

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First off, Colonel is a funny word. Like Lieutenant in Canada, where it’s pronounced ” Lefftennant”. Just saying.

As season two of Chuck winds down, I have been thinking about a lot. Like how I am regretting not touting it as much as I should have. Not talking it up every week. I felt it would find an audience. Sadness suurounds me if next weeks season finale ends up being the series finale.

There is also the fact that I have been ignoring three of the best television performances. Yvonne Strahovski as Sarah Walker has been enlightening. In the pilot she was a pretty blonde who could kick some convincing ass, but she has grown to be a woman with a deeply troubled past trying to escape through Government approved means, and one who is surprisingly caring and warm, two things one does not expect from a C.I.A. operative. Adam Baldwin, so good as Jayne Cobb and Animal Mother, got no glory as Maj. John Casey, N.S.A. super badass. Yes, Casey hasn’t been given much in extraordinary emotional range, but that’s the genius of it. Casey is always combat ready, so it makes those emotional moments strangely effecting. Then there is Zachary Levi’s Chuck Bartowski, the opposite of Casey in every way. He wears his emotions on his sleeve, unable to hide is love for Sarah even if he really needed to. He’s no spy in a classic sense, but has proved time and again he could be if he would just relax and remember that they have his back. He’s a genius with slacker tendencies, more at home with Call of Duty than his actual call of duty. Levi gives Chuck the perfect balance between sweet naivete and calculating brilliance.

This show has been one that has just improved with each passing episode. The pilot was amusing, buoyed by Levi’s excessive charm and comic stylings, and while the action was really good, it lacked a certain heart. I cared about Chuck, but not enough at the moment to be moved by the fact that his dead college roommate downloaded a computer into Chuck’s brain and ruin his life. The second episode really was just a bridge to the third, when the show began to find it’s footing. Chuck’s ability as the Intersect aids the missions, but his general good guy behavior keeps getting him into trouble. He has an inability to stay in the car. He feels the need to rescue Sarah at every moment, despite the fact he knows he proably will end up being saved by her in the end. He doesn’t know what to make of Casey, whether Casey was friend or foe. Poor Chuck, and then the show just kept getting better. Bryce Larkin wasn’t dead. Fulcrum appears. And the mythology the show builds itself on solidified and it got REALLY good REALLY fast.

Which makes last night’s episode really interesting. the few criticisms I have heard are all valid. It was packed full of the myth and the fandom. Sarah and Chuck almost go at it- to be stymied by the fact there is a Morgan Grimes ” IOU one Condom” note in Chuck’s wallet. Casey is promoted to Colonel and tries to be the cold badass, but is really just mad he wasn’t invited along for the ride. Sarah let’s all her emotion out, but at what cost in the end? Awesome stumbles into Casey’s life- and Chuck needs to tell the truth in order to ultimately protect Casey from impending stalker, assault, and attempted murder charges ( and Awesome from the unleashed Casey). Awesome comes through by being, well, awesome, and trying to calm a devastated Ellie when Chuck and her dad both appear M.I.A. Morgan decides to leave the Buy More to become a benihani chef… okay, some things are still ridiculous at the face of it.

The show has always used two things cleverly. The music ( last night, Bon Iver). A blend of 80s craptastical genius, indie brilliance, and an propulsive house score.  The music is too cool for words. The other thing is the pop culture references. For one thing, Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak seem to be much enamored of the 80s Chevy Chase classic Spies Like Us. And last night, between Big Mike’s Godfather impersonation, the slow clap, Morgan carrying Anna out of Buy More ( well, attempting to), The drive-in, the ” can you dig it?”, Scott Bakula being awesome, Chevy Chase being awesome, the strange desire to have a Pepsi, Emmett Milbarge- the show is in love with pop culture.

The fact is, Chuckhas become the most consistently funny, heart warming, thrilling show on television. The fact that it’s on the bubble disappoints me a great deal, seeing as it’s fresh and unique in this landscape. Why aren’t you watching it? I know I’m tuning in next week for the season finale to see if there is any clue where it will go if it does miraculously get a third season. I pray you all do the same.

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You know, this one was just to mind blowing to wait till Monday or Tuesday to do. I mean, it’s disco week. The much mocked, undervalued seventies dance music that has enjoyed a recent underground revival ( truthfully, it never really went away). The general consensus is Adam will be the only one to survive this train wreck week in waiting, but that would only be if he doesn’t repeat himself by doing something to close to ” Play That Funky Music” ( please don’t…). When I was researching, I kept looking at songs and seeing Adam do something pretty close to that performance. I want him to do something different. The rest- well, I guess it comes down to what Idol means by disco. Practically every dance groove of the last thirty five years qualifies as disco. But something tells me that Idol producers lack imagination or even a working knowledge of music styles, so I’ve narrowed my list to mid 70s to very early 80s dance pop. It doesn’t mean, though, that the Idols should do it disco style.

Allison- the talented teen with the Joplin rasp seems like a goner if she doesn’t pick just right. Her age may also lead her to an obvious choice- “Lady Marmalade”. The huge cover done by Christina and company, not the LaBelle version ( though they really are too similar for words- louder guitars do not a rock song make). But my advice- ignore the song about New Orleans prostitutes and go instead for the Feist version of the BeeGee’s ” Love You Inside And Out”. It’s quieter, more even, and easier to adapt to Allison’s great but limited voice. Alternate choice- the disco classic ” I Love The Nightlife”, only because it’s the fifth greatest disco song in history. Avoid- Blondie’s ” Heart Of Glass”. If Allison has a falsetto, we haven’t heard it. The verses span an entire octave.

Anoop- he does best on ballads, but I would like to see him try something like Earth Wind and Fire’s ” September” ( fourth greatest disco song of all time). It’s smoother than most disco standards, and I’d like to see if he can match Phillip Bailey’s amazing vocals ( doubt it- no one can, not even Bailey anymore). Alternate choice- ” I Just Wanna Be Your Everything”, Andy Gibbs’ schlockfest love song. Avoid- anything that requires any range, i.e. The BeeGees.

Adam- the funny girl comedian in me could make so many wisecracks… but I won’t. I prefer Adam when he just sings, but if any week requires high camp- it’s this week. I wouldn’t be adverse to a stunning rendition of forgotten ABBA gem ” Voulez Vous”, but I pick instead a- Lou Rawls song. Hear me out, people. ” You’ll Never Find A Love Like Mine” is a great disco song. Lou had one of the great baritones in history. Adam is no baritone, but the song could really allow that clearly amazing tenor voice of his some actual range defying drama. The song would allow for embellishments if needed, but would benefit form a highly controlled vocal. I want him to sing. I want to challenge Adam to use his lower register. See where I’m going. Avoid- camp classics that would remind tween girls everywhere that Adam plays for the other side. Which is 95% of disco music.

Matt- his ass saved by the judges, Matty lovely needs to step it up. And he gets disco week? The kid never had a shot, indeed. Poor Matty. But I’m throwing him a bone and suggesting Bill Wither’s ” Lovely Day”- soulful folk disco pop. Avoid- Everything else.

Danny- I honestly thought it would be hard for me to find DWPing songs in the most gloriously banal, apolitical, sunshiney genre of music in the history of mankind. I was so wrong. He could go with ” Don’t Leave Me this Way”. “Last Dance”. “Tragedy”. ” You’re The First, My Last, My Everything”. ” I Will Survive”. I predict he’ll go with Andy Gibb’s ” An Everlasting Love” and put the go in Gokey. At least, I hope. Avoid- frankly, do whatever the hell you want, Gokey, just do it badly and get out of my life.

Lil- the one who woulda gone home if the world was at all fair. The bet is Donna Summers ( the truly awful, worst song in history ” MacArthur Park” please. Even Carrie Underwood couldn’t make that song good.) But- there are a couple of other options. The obvious ” I Will Survive”, for one. But i keep on hoping for Lil to just dirty it up a bit. I want her to sing ” Don’t Leave Me This Way”. I just keep hoping she can hit something. But if she fails, she’ll fail miserably, and then I never will have to listen to her again.

Kris- oh no. Ummm, I picking blindly out of a hat and going with- Boz Scaggs’ ” Lowdown”. I really have nothing for our sweet Jason Mraz wannabe. Nothing. So I just picked randomly off of Wkipedia’s List of Disco artists. It could have been Boney M.

And I am sorry I couldn’t work Boney M’s legendary ” Rasputin” into this list. Till now. That woulda been frakkin’ awesome, no?

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Oh. My. God. Has Idol now become a UFC grudge match? WTF is up with that opening?

RyRy looks smirky and smarmy.

Looky, the Idols did a Ford vid to J. Geils Band’s 80s cheestastic ” Freeze Frame”.

“Maniac”? Really? Idol couldn’t clear a better song that?Oh, and it was painfully live, not canned. I’m in agony.

Adam looks vaguely embarrassed.

To quote Idolatry- put the Go in Gokey. I hate the dude so much.

RyRy asks the Idols about working with Quentin last night. Coolness from Adam. I love how teenaged normal Allison is. Too bad they had to go watch a Zac Efron movie.

Time to dim the lights.

Allison- safe.

Adam- safe.

Anoop- Bottom three ( WTF? He delivered one of the best vocals all night last night). Off to the silver stools of doom.

JHud!!!!!!!!!!

My feed is all fucked up.

She looks gorgeous. She sounds great. I adore her.

Paula says she’s surprised by Anoop’s inclusion in the bottom three. Simon- not so much.

Kris and Lil- Simon gets a word in for Kris- brilliant. Lil still gets to natter on. Shut. Her. Up. RyRy does one of those stupid switcharoo things, and Lil ends up going to the silver stools of doom.

Matt and Danny- I just hate DWP sooooooo much. ” Sing it how it’s supposed to be sang”? Are you kidding?  Danny needs to GO AWAY! How the fuck do you give an edge to ” Endless Love”? That’s like saying you can give edge “My Heart Will Go On”.  Danny is safe, I’m dying, Matt goes to the SSOD.

Paula still can’t say who she thinks will go home.

Anoop gets to stay. Relief.

Miley Cyrus.  Never a great live singer, but a surprisingly competent songwriter. She sings ” The Climb”, from her new movie, and it’s a pretty good little pop song. She annoys me so many different ways ( and she’s so nasally). I give her props though for not being a wreck so much on stage like when she did ” Fly On The Wall” at the AMAs. Oooh, those big notes kinda fall flat, don’t they?

Lil and Matt. Matt and Lil…Simon would consider the save.

Love live TV when it fucks up like that.

RyRy… get the fuck to it.

And the person to go home is…Lil is safe? Fuck. Matty?No…

Shit, dude.

He starts off better than he did last night. Could it really be better than last night?  Really? Oh, hell yeah! Soooo much better. If he sang it like that last night, he would be fine and Lil would be going home. Still didn’t like the bridge shrill thing, but two lines doesn’t make it bad.

Save or not save? Come on, Simon, tell me… is it safe?

Hell yeah!!!!!!! They saved MATTY!!!!!!!!!!!!

But that means a double elimination  next week, keep that in mind.

And next week is disco week?

Oh. God. No.

That is my own personal hell.

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Quentin Tarantino, all-round pop culture geek, is this week’s mentor. I know some people have issues with this development, but I don’t. QT was a guest judge in season three ( he was a Fantasia fan), and every single one of his critiques were more spot on than any of the judges. In retrospect, he’s even more sane now while the judges are even more ridiculous.

Simon apologizes for last weeks overrun, which pissed of Fringe fans extremely ( I don’t blame them- it’s a good show, even if I don’t watch it often). Simon, ever the class act, blames the girls.

Allison tackles the legendary ” I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing”, and Quentin points out her performance flaws. DC did this memorably last season, so I’m nervous for her ( it has a gigantic chorus). But she sounds so fantastic in the verse I immediately relax. She runs into pronunciation issues in the chorus, and there are a couple of bum notes in the bridge, but super solid. I hope cursed at first doesn’t apply this week. Simon finally tosses my girl some love. Yay!

Anoop to do ” Everything I Do ( I Do It For You)” and Adam to do ” Born To Be Wild”, I gather from Ryan’s throw away.

Quentin recs to Anoop to rough it up a bit, which I whole heartedly agree with ( the song is pap, let’s face it). He sounds really good, a few bum notes, but surprisingly strong vocally. He messes up the melody just enough to make it more interesting. He really is a great balladeer. The girls screamed through out. That’s what it’s about.

Adam takes on the huge classic ” Born To Be Wild”, which has always been popular on Canadian Idol ( Steppenwolf being a Canuck band and all).  I don’t like this vocal as much as ” Mad World” last week, and the arrangement seemed messy to me. The boy can sing, we have established that, but I strongly dislike it when he doesn’t control his vocals and goes all over the place. He doesn’t service the song that way, he distracts from it. This song is legendary and doesn’t need the embellishment.

Matt’s doing ” Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman”. I hate that song. Matty, you are making it really tough for me to keep championing you. QT’s advice to enunciate is valid. Matt drops sounds when he sings, and gets a bit mushy mouthed. I still hate the song. But he did it just fine for what it is.But  the bridge fell apart, and was all over the place. Man, that bites.

RyRy didn’t give me a Danny clue. DWP is a mystery… I kinda want him to do something ridiculous, like ” The Trolley Song”, because, as we know, I HATE GOKEY. ” Endless Love”… ridiculous DWPing song, right? Gawd. I hate this song as well. I feel gross right now. Missing notes, DWP. Kill me now. Kill me now. Kill me now. Kill me now. Kill me now. Kill me now. Kill. Me. Now. Please.

I need to go bathe in Lysol. Followed by bleach.

Kris does the unimaginable- he picks something NEW and INTERESTING and INDIE!!!!!!!! He goes with  the Oscar winning love song ” Falling Slowly”. He decides against the guitar, and the vocal is imperfect, but so beautiful at the same time. I’m aching at the moment. Gorgeous. Love the chorus… stunning and emotionally perfect. Welcome back, Kris.

Randy is the biggest motherfucking moron in the history of mankind.

Is Lil singing ” The Rose”, or a different song from The Rose? The problem with ” The Rose” is that it is deceptive to sing. It’s a very simple melody, but it needs to be infused with a certain emotion or it’s a massive fail. I’ve seen good singers brought down by this song, and Lil isn’t that good a singer.

There is a difference in making a song your own, people, and destroying gorgeous melodies.  The Rose, a sad love song, is NOT a gospel song. Not even close. And I think it’s not pleasant to listen to at all. And her vocal isn’t strong enough to make me feel it helps her at all. FAIL! Not good, girl. Not good at all.

It’s still running over. They do all these modifications, and they STILL go over.

Top three: Allison, Kris, Anoop.

Bottom three- Danny, Lil, Matt.

Adam- confusing the hell of me.

Shut up, Fringe is supposed to be on!!!!!

See you tomorrow tonight for the elimination, folks.

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Frankie Avalon? Really? Although he is the Teen Angel. And Allison’s hair looks as though it was done buy Frenchie. Beauty School Dropout indeed. ” Venus”, fine, whatever.

That is the worst group sing ever.  Oh. My. God. Just awful.

That was also a really bad Ford vid.

Adam, Kris, and Anoop stand up, and the judges are allowed to give their Adam critiques ( praise from all). Adam is safe.

Anoop and Kris stand there waiting, and DI had Kris at the very bottom, but he ekes it out as Anoop is in the bottom three ( to be fair to Dial Idol, Adam was the only green button, and everyone else was deemed capable of being bottom three).

If I seem a little scattered, I’m pulling a double posting duty tonight, as I am desperately trying to save Chuck from cancellation. Just so you know. Anyone want to help? Go to NBC.com and watch Chuck episodes, write to NBC, sign the petitions, and generally make a ruckus. Before we all decide to start sending pineapples. ( Chuck fans will know…)

Flo Rida comes out to “sing” ” Right Round”. This song annoys me. Loved ” Low” though.

DWP is safe. Ugh.

Matt.  Safe ( oh, thank God.)

Scott. Bottom three ( rightfully so.)

Allison and Lil.  Allison is safe, and Lil heads to the silver stools of doom.

Kellie and her little girl voice comes back to the stage and I still am not a huge fan of the girl.But her clear confusion after her song means she’s still Kellie.

Lil is safe. Mean trick on Anoop, RyRy. Fucker.

Anoop and Scott stand there, bottom two, and… Scott has the lowest number of votes. Anoop is safe ( what is up with that?)

Truthfully, it was slightly better than last night, but he still couldn’t hit that high note.

It’s a split panel, Simon tells us. They are actually discussing it. And Simon pulls his veto power out and send Scott packing. That was the right choice, he went as far as he could.

See you next week, everybody.

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An Idol favorite indeed, RyRy with the buck teeth.

Danny does a version of  “Stand By Me” which is cheesy and stupid, just like DWP himself. I’m sorry, I don’t get the appeal. Why is he number one every week. Gwenny says it’s a different version of pimping the DW type of song. He wasn’t in key for half of it. And it’s terrible. Ugh. Somebody shut him up, he pisses me off so much.

The judges are apparently still do not want their jobs back, as Randy, Kara, Paula and Simon praised that shit. Please, cursed at first, be in effect.

Kris is charming in his interviews. He tackles a good song with Don Henley’s ” All She wants To Do Is Dance”. I think it’s a bit of risk, and it doesn’t quite work for me. He’s never off key during the song, but he lacks the dramatic flair Henley himself brought to the song.  It’s to dance-rock for him, frankly, he’s much more of a singer-songwriter folkie. But I like it soooo much more than DWP.  Kara’s assessment is right in it’s jazz funk exercise vein. Kris, you may be in trouble, darlin’. Simon and Randy were unnecessarily mean to the guy. Kris at least took it well.

Lil goes with Tina ( correct on artist I am!!!!), but instead of the more aggressive ” Better be Good to Me”, she goes with the overdone ” What’s Love Got to Do With It”. There are massive pitch issues through out the song, but it’s her best performance in weeks.  The judges are mean to her, and I’m feeling very protective.

A couple of weeks ago, the judges sneered at artistry ( albeit bad artistry), but now they’re complaining the singers aren’t being artistic enough. The judges are idiots and will be fired for the rest season if they continue the damn hypocrisy.

Anoop is going with ” True Colors”? Nononononono… that song is sacred to me. Cyndi Lauper’s voice is one of those singular voices that owns the songs she sings. Don’t do that to me, Anoop.

Anoop admits he’s a jackass a bit, and he’s excited about the Tarheels win last night (Booo…).  He needs to learn to enunciate better as he sings, but he actually sings it well, if some what samey.

Scott’s version of “It’s Over ” was horribly pitchy through out. And he’s on guitar!!!!!!! ( that seems odd to me). Not even liking it at all.

Allison, I adore you. She tackles ” I Can’t Make You Love Me”, which I left off my list for two reasons- it’s been overdone, and I wasn’t sure she could pull of the maturity it requires. But her vocal was awesome, soooo much better than last week. I might buy this one on I Tunes ( for the record, this is one of my all time favorite songs).

Matt is next, and I’m worrying, as he is hit or miss.  He tackles Stevie Wonder’s ” Part Time Lover” ( shortlisted but discarded).  He’s all over the place vocally, and he’s crushing my soul.  ( For the record, this is one of my least favorite songs of all time). Not good, Matty, not good.

What were the judges listening to?

Adam is next. My friend Magicalbeck and I over on the BBAC boards have had long conversations about Adam. She’s a die hard fan who appreciates the flair of the dramatic he has, while I… don’t. I don’t mind drama, but he’s prone to overdoing it at times, and as someone who worships those who could barely eke out three chords on beat up Telecasters singing  about sniffing glue, I prefer my melodrama minimal. When Adam just sings, I love every minute of it ( ” Tracks Of My Tears” was so beautiful). I even liked ” Play that Funky Music” last week, even if it was more wacky, because wacky is fine as long as he maintains control over his voice and his stylistic choices. I must say, he has been learning quickly. Magicalbeck and I come at the Idol experience with loads of musical experience of our own  ( she in voice, me in classical piano and punk rock guitars). It makes for an interesting dialog about what constitutes good music and the subjectives of taste and style.

And Adam’s glorious version of  “Mad World” ( the Gary Jules version of the Tears For Fears Classic). I didn’t think he needed to go up in his register in the second verse like that, but it was up there with Allison for best of of night, even with the vocal shake on the last note ( truthfully, it was the first time I’ve heard him miss a note for weeks). He got a standing ovation from Simon on behalf of the judges.

Adam, Anoop, and Allison were the best of the night, everyone else was mediocre. I pick Scott, Kris, and  Danny as the worst, but I suspect Danny will be just hunky dory and poor Lil may work her way into the bottom three, with Scott heading home.

See ya tomorrow.

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We get another idiotic opening montage ( does Idol think it’s now a CBS procedural?), and a Ford Commercial that was really heinous, before the Idols launch into a halfway decent group sing. Now, I love me some ” Don’t Stop Believing”, and the opener with Allison and Kris was amazing ( they are clearly my new top two, with Matt pulling third after last night). Yes, the group sings are canned vocals, but at least this week they were decent canned vocals. And Adam’s last note- that’s what I wanted from him singing this song, which is why I wanted him to sing it last night. I am always right, and the sooner the Idols realize that, the better off they’ll all be.

This is followed by a lame ass video thing, and then RyRy divides the Idols into three groups of three. Megan, Matt, and Kris are first, then Allison, Adam, and Lil, then Danny, Scott, and Anoop.  God, are they doing this shit again?

Then, what we all have been waiting for since it was taped-

❤ ❤ ❤ DAVID COOK!!!!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

He looked FIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNE and sounded fabulous. That is all. Love the song. Mommy Beth was singing along. Then RyRy brought out some leggy blondes to hand SBF his platinum plaque. Le sigh. I miss him every focken week.

After the goodness of DC, RyRy starts the thinning of the herd.

Kris- safe

Matt- April Fools, you ain’t bottom three, you is safe!

( Ryan, you’re an asshole.)

Megan caw caw’s her way to the silver stools of doom.

Lil- safe.

Allison- bottom three ( Everyone all together now- NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!)

Collin’s future husband- safe.

Danny- safe ( Everyone all together now- NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!)

Scott- safe.

Anoop admits he deserves the bottom three slot he now has.

Next, we get a fog machine, a Lucite piano filled with bubbles, and Lady Gaga singing a bizarre version of ” Poker Face”. How’d she get away with the line ” Bluffin’ with my muffin” on the TeeVee?

RyRy begins to send people back to safety with Allison ( huge sigh of relief).

Down to Anoop and Megan and- Megan is heading home. As it should be and was decreed by me.

Simon didn’t even bother to waste time by saying there was no way in hell Megan was going to be saved. Thank God.

Megan does her weird spazz dance thing while singing, eff’s up the words, and that is the end of cool crazy chick.

RyRy announces that next weeks theme is ” The Year They Were Born”. Allison is seventeen. 1992- dudes, 1992 was an awesome year for rock!

Thank God that nightmare is over.

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Top Downloads turned out to encompass every Tunes list in the history of I Tunes. So… we got the music world on a string. What did our Idols come up with?

Anoop tackled Usher, and his ” Caught Up” was competent, but pitchy. He also lacked a certain swagger in the vocals. Simply too smooth for his own good. He is a masterful balladeer, for sure, but balladeers do not a career have anymore.

Megan, god bless her heart, tried to do Bob Marley’s ” Turn The Lights Down Low”. and failed. I really love Megan as a person, she looks like a blast. But that was horrible. Bob Marley verges on an untouchable artist ( not quite there). Very unhappy with that.

DWP came with Rascal Flatt’s ( I called the artist!!!!!). “What Hurts the Most” is a song about losing the love of your life. Yeah. Dead Wife PIMPER. And whatever the judges  are smoking needs to be banned of the planet. it may be good shit, but it’s causing them to lose their minds.

I felt gross after watching DWP sing, so I did a tequila shot in the thirty seconds Allison’s tape was rolling, and then stood stunned as she massacred ” Don’t Speak”. That was not pretty. I love her, but it really wasn’t that good. I hope the borderline positive  reviews the judges gave her singing will save her ass from the bottom. But after last week’s revelatory performance, such a let down.

Scott came out with a better haircut ( thank God), his piano, and some Billy Joel ( thank God). I knew he’d gravitate to Billy if he had the chance, and he would knock Billy out of the park. He sounded his best since the audition- confident, on key, and mellow. He knew this song backwards, and the piano was great.

Matt went with The Fray. I do not like the Fray. No. Matt needs to knock it out of the park, and he sounds off pitch immediately. On the electric piano this time, he got better vocally as the song continued, but  I’m disappointed. I really wanted him to take a real risk with Kings Of Leon or something bluesy soulful rocker style.

Lil had to go with Celine, didn’t she? Come on. That is the most ridiculous song choice ever. ” I Surrender”? It’s not even a decent Celine song “decent” and ” Celine” is an oxymoron). She has some pitchy moments. No, not feeling it. What the hell is wrong with Lil? She was awesome in her semi-final performance. This is getting to be a huge train wreck.

The judges crack pipes must have been in use during the commercial break.

Adam does Wild Cherry? He’s doing ” Play That Funky Music”? Are you KIDDING ME?????????? Adam, nonononono… I was just starting to like you. This is insane, dude. No. No. No.

But then the music starts. And it’s bass heavier, not so disco like, and a pretty interesting revision of a disco classic. He allows himself some shriely moments, but I kinda enjoyed it against my better, music cool judgement.  It’s at least new and interesting. Everyone else has been so safe.I guess I am coming around.

Did Kara just say Studio 57? Studio 54, you moron. 54.

Kris closes the night with ” Ain’t No Sunshine”. Perfect song choice for the folk dude.  He’s on piano, not breaking out the funky Bill Withers guitar licks. And I am really loving it. ” Ain’t No Sunshine” is one of my favorites songs of all time. He even does a bit of the funk on the break. Love it.

Top Three- Kris, Adam, and Scott.

Bottom three- Megan, Matt, and Danny, but I bet Danny’s safe and Anoop will be bottom three ( cursed at first).

Megan, I adore you, but it’s time to go home.

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After all, with B.C.’s status for weed capital on North America, it led to way too easy jokes by our host, funniest man alive Russell Peters.

Of course, Nickelback opening the show with a song about strippers having things in their mouths was also a silly plan, as ” Be Somebody” is a far superior song. This opinion from someone who dislikes the band a great deal.

Peters took advantage of the increased interest in Bollywood by having dancers with him at the beginning, but let’s face facts, Peters is not a Bollywood dude, he’s a hip hop head, and he brought that to the floor. He was hilarious tonight.  Be proud, he’s Brampton’s favorite son.

Winners of the evening:

Songwriter- Dallas Green ( City and Colour)

Group- Nickelback

Rap Album- Kardinal Officiall

New Artist- Lights

Canadian Music Hall Of Fame-  Loverboy

Fan Choice- Nickelback

Artist- Sam Roberts

Album- Dark Horse ( Nickelback)

As for the performances-

Sam Robert’s ” Them Kids” was awesome.

But the two best performances of the night were City and Colour featuring Gord Downie, doing an amazing version of C&C’s  ” Sleeping Sickness”, and Great Big Sea featuring Hawksley Workman doing an awesome cover of Zeppelin’s ” Gallows Pole”.

Considering the weakness of the past year in Canadian music, it was a pleasant evening.

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It’s so natural. He needed to go. He needed to be better and failed.

Go…to the end of the road…

Sorry, prom flashback. Never mind.

The now admittedly sweetened group sing was as awful as usual. Next!

The less said about the Ford thing the better.

Ruben looked like… well, Ruben, and he was sweating heavy as he sang his bland R&B song that I have forgotten the title of already. Yeah. Whatever.

The eliminations start:

Collin’s future husband- safe.

Matt- bottom three. Shocked gasps and booing ensue.

Kris- safe, although he was again convinced otherwise.

RigPig and Lil- come on, we knew it’d be RigPig.

Smokey joins quasi-soul girl Joss Stone for a bland song I have already forgotten. Jeez, Smokey, you’ve done classics, but this was forgettable. Gimme “Going To A Go Go”!

More eliminations.

My girl- safe as a snug bug.

Anoop- still here

DWP- still here to torture me another day. Damn it!

To Scott and Megan. Both were predicted to be in the bottom three bi DI, but the addition of Matt means that DI is off significantly ( it had Matt at fifth- a comfy fifth). Scott joins the stools of shame, but is promptly sent back to the couches, and Matt and RigPig sit there.

Fuck me!!!! STEVIE WONDER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes, ” My Cherie Amour” was way pitchy and odd sounding, but he’s STEVIE WONDER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I DON”T CARE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It spent hours as a kid in between Bach and Brahms trying to learn Stevie songs from my growing collection of Motown records. My Cherie Amour was the first I tried.

Whoot! ” Superstition” is one of the greatest songs ever! As long as the Joni ( see: Grammy threads) don’t touch it. Awesome.

” Overjoyed”, over done on Idol, in the hands of the master, and he giveth the smacketh down, everyone. That’s how you do it, lame asses!

” All About The Love Again” is a more obscure Stevie song, but he sounded awesome ( with a shout out to the current President as well).

So then we return to the bottom two, and fortunately, I never have to write the words RigPig again.  And Simon cuts him lose after he sings, mercifully. Bye, Sarver,  and give your kid a hug.

Ladies and gentlemen, your Idol Tewer Opener… Michael Sarver.

Bleeeech.

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31 million votes? Wowza.

Reviewing back, Matt and Anoop were still the best, and Danny sucked. That was heinous and I don’t care what anyone says. Who the hell votes for him ( Dial Idol has him at number one).

They launch into ” Trouble” as the group number and it’s awful the way those group sings are awful ( some awesome piano from Scott, though).

The Ford music video sucks like usual.

Okay, now for the real reason we are here:

Dead wife Pimper- safe

Soul diva- safe

Anoop Doggy Dogg- safe

Rocker chick and Rig Pig-  both in the bottom three ( so which of the Dial Idols is wrong- Megan or Alexis?)

A great little performance from Brad “I’d do him in a second” Paisley  ( well, I would).

Scott, Megan, Kris, Matt- all safe.

Adam and Alexis- Adam is safe, Alexis- damn it.

Ryan then turns around and sends Allison back to safety ( thank God!).

Carrie Underwood comes back again to sing her duet with Randy Travis. It’s lovely.

Simon admits that they would consider saving one of the two remaining ( bet it’s Alexis).

And the one safe is- Michael. Alexis was voted to go home.

Will the judges save her?

She launches into ” Jolene” again, her life depending on it.  Still some pitch issues, her voice cracking with emotion. She’s determined, I admit. Better than last night, full of anguish.

And the judges say- no.

Whoa.

Good news is- TV Guide’s piece yesterday proved wrong.

Next week is Motown ( oooooh… love me some Motown). The show airs Wednesday and Thursday due to the Presidential address.

Till next week, y’all.

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Randy Travis as a mentor? Actually, I think that’s cool- old style country cool. ( I admit to being a sucker for ” Forever and Ever Amen”.) Idol country weeks are generally a mixed bag, where favorites get eviscerated and others surprisingly shine.

This year- no different.

BTW, still hate that opening judges walk thing. Talk about indulgent, Simon.

Michael Sarver sings Garth the Great’s ” Ain’t Going Down Till The Sun Comes Up”, an ambitious choice, since it’s quick paced vocal lines can bring down some of the greatest singers. In fact, the only version of this song I like is the original. That has not changed one iota. It was competent, pitchy, and he fell behind the melody more than once.

It looks like the only judge that would be hired back this week will be Simon, but not yet. I think he was being unfair to the song itself.

My personal fave Allison came out and sang Patti Griffin’s legendary ” Blame It On Your Heart”.  She got breathy ( it’s another quick song with machine gun lyrics), she dropped a few notes in the process, but overall, for sixteen, mucho impressed.  Simon, though, called her ” precocious”, so he can bite me.

Kris Allen singing Garth’s ” To Make You Feel My Love” was dreary and bland, so I have no idea what the judges are talking about.

Lil Rounds tackled Martina McBride’s soaring ” Independence Day”, but she should have gone with Martina’s  gospel infused ” A Broken Wing”. The songs are similar in theme and style, but the chorus of the latter struck me as a better fit. But she didn’t read my mind, and ended up disappointing. She didn’t hit the notes I wanted her to hit, and the verse was pretty pitchy.

Adam has talent, but he’s making choices that makes it really hard for me to like him. Johnny Cash is up there with Dylan as an artist you don’t touch in my books ( unless you are Joaquin Phoenix pre-breakdown/Kaufman impersonation). I admit though ( all Adam fans, I know)- the first part of the song was well sung and I didn’t hate it as much as I thought I would when I heard the word ” sitar-like”. Then he started to go all wild over the back end and he lost me again. This song doesn’t need the theatrics. He really needs to learn to edit and reign it in.

Scott went with another Martina song, ” Wild Angels” and I have to say, it was better than last weeks.  Pretty good. He is, however, a much better pianist than singer, and he’d make a great session guy.

Alexis tackled “Jolene”, and I really like it, despite her pitch problems.  Certainly better than Brooke’s last year ( and I liked Brooke’s version).  She sounded a bit breathless on that series of high notes. But overall, solid.

Danny- oh, Danny. This confirms my belief that all the judges are smoking some strong shit. That was TERRIBLE. He started too low, was completely off pitch, off tempo, he strayed from a great melody for indulgent craziness. Awful awful AWFUL.

Anoop…oh, Anoop… ” You’re Always On My Mind”- not on the sacred list ( I love three versions- Elvis’, Willie’s, and my personal fave, The Pet Shop Boys), but it’s one of those amazing, legendary songs that shouldn’t be messed with unless you are Chris Lowe and Neil Tennant.  He does it as the sweet ballad Willie Nelson intended, and he sang it on pitch, with a modicum of soul, sweetly, mournfully, lovely. I also really like the haircut. Anoop is back, indeedy do. Needs to take the cockiness down a bit still, though.

Megan, whom I adore for reasons beyond my comprehension ( I know what’s wrong, but somehow, I really don’t care, she makes me smile. She makes ME, a raging misanthrope, SMILE).  ” Walking After Midnight” is an overdone song, so I worry a bit.  She looks gorgeous, though. And the slightly jazzy tinge she gives the vocal suits her and the song surprisingly. She’s never gonna be one of those singers that his every note in the song, but she is a fantastic interpreter.  No weird dance this week. Those high notes are really squeaky. I’m impressed. And with the judges telling us about the hospitalization and every thing, I’m even more impressed. She saved the hacking for after her song. That might even explain some of that squeakiness.

Matt is up last this week, and his song is Carrie’s ” So Small”. I’m beginning to think Carrie is gonna be an untouchable.  I get that uneasy feeling every time I hear her name on this show in conjunction with the contestants song choices. He reconfigures it to be a soulful pop ballad, which suits him, but there are vocal issues. Another great pianist, though, another guy qualified for being a session dude if necessary. I’m actually enjoying this more than I thought, though. Simon’s Michael Buble comparison was spot on.

As for the judges being rehired? Well, they were better this week. But there was still some wackiness. They are currently on probation.

A much better week than last week ( almost anything would be better than last week).

My bottom three- Michael Sarver, Danny Gokey, and sadly, Lil Rounds. I think that Adam and Scott could be in trouble as well. ( I apologies to the Adam fans, but the rest were stronger, I’m sorry. I don’t think he’ll hit bottom three, but he’ll be on the lower end of the scale). Megan could also be down there, as she’s become quite polarizing.

And now, till tomorrow’s results show, everyone, I bid you adieu.

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Best British male
Paul Weller

Best British female
Duffy

Best British group
Elbow

Best British live act
Iron Maiden

Best British single
Girls Aloud – The Promise

Best British Album
Duffy – Rockferry

Best British breakthrough act
Duffy

Best international album
Kings of Leon – Only By The Night

Best international male
Kanye West

Best international female
Katy Perry

Best international group
Kings of Leon

Critics’ Choice
Florence and the Machine

Outstanding Contribution To Music
Pet Shop Boys

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First, RyRy’s introduction of Paula Abdul gave me an enormous sigh of relief- thank God there is only one Paula Abdul. Second, the new (old) format still doesn’t sit right with me, as it doesn’t allow for growth. Third, I want whatever Paula’s taking.

Yes, it’s that time again, time to dash the hopes of all mediocre singers and pimp even worse singers. Idol is back in force, and they didn’t disappoint.

First up, Jackie Tohn, who has a natural rasp that many previous girl rockers have tried to fake. But she wastes it on an Elvis track , ” A Little Less Conversation”, matched only by her Minnie Mouse as a prostitute outfit ( seriously, girl, that was heinous). It wasn’t pretty, but it would not end up being the worst of the night. Randy wasn’t blown away, Kara liked how she worked the stage, Paula said something incomprehensible, and Simon called it ungainly and gimmicky. First shot, Simon, bet it felt good.

Ricky Braddy was next. Does anyone remember seeing him ever in the audition rounds? I don’t. And that’s a shame, because he was a surprise, nailing Leon Russell’s difficult ” A Song For You”. He seems pleasant, kind of Archuleta bland, but considering some of the people who got through to the top 36, I might have to fight for the guy. Randy complimented Ricky’s great tone, Kara called it effortless, Paula said… something, and Simon said he had a good voice but lacked charisma ( legit critique).

Alexis Grace is one of my favorite girls, ans going with ” I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You” was gutsy ( it’s not an Aretha song that has been over done on the show). I thought she did a credible job on it. Randy was loving it, Kara dug it, Paula drank some tequila, and Simon said the magic words- Kelly Clarkson.

Brent Keith is one of those ringer types, having appeared on Nashville Star a few years back. His version of ” Hicktown” was harmless but unmemorable.  Randy said new edge with old swagger, Kara called it safe, Paula took some Quaaludes, and Simon called it forgettable.

Oh, and a note to all contestants- SHUT THE FUCK UP! TAKE YOUR CRITICISM LIKE A GROWN UP AND QUIT MAKING EXCUSES. I’m done.

Stevie Wright crashed and burned fiercely, as her version of Taylor Swift’s ” You Belong With Me” made me want to see Taylor Swift sing it live. But along comes ANOOOOOOOP! Anoop Doggy Dogg in da HOWIZ! Granted, his song choice was insanely weird ( ” Angel Of Mine” by Monica, a song I have never liked). But he sang it well, and he’s still my early fave. Randy said he was sharp ( true), Kara said he had great potential, Paula muttered something about Brian McKnight, and Simon said Anoop was tremendously likeable.

Casey Carlson took a risk with ” every Little Thing She Does Is Magic”, but the judges are right- don’t take on a song sung by Sting, you are asking to have your ass handed to you. And hers was. It was terrible, matched by those facial ticks and the neck touching thing.

Michael Sarver, pleasant enough guy with cute kids, did the perennial ” I Don’t Want To Be” by Gavin DeGraw. Pitchy,lacking in the soul and range Gavin DeGraw brings to the song ( or the grit of Bo Bice, who nailed that song back in season four). He is also bland.

Anne Marie Boskovich took on ” Natural Woman” (everyone all together- Kelly Clarkson, Season One, stupid move, Anne Marie). She lacks the vocal depth to sing the song, and I never believed her. Simon’s critique was the only one spot on- the song was simply to big for her voice.

Stephen Fowler, who blew away everyone Hollywood week with a pitch perfect version of Stevie Wonder’s ” Superwoman”, disappointed with a weird version of Michael Jackson’s ” Rock With You”. The judges called him on song choice, with Simon going as far as calling it pointless.

Now for the pimp heavy part of the show.

Shriekianna appears, screeching her way through Whitney’s ” I’m Saving All My Love For You”. Pitchy, too low to start, wavering on her hold notes, dropping her glory notes- and they loved her. Pimp pimp pimp. Fifty Cents want’s his job designation back. Simon couldn’t even muster a complaint worth mentioning. PIMP.

Last was the real ” pimp star”, Danny Gokey, who really is a good singer, but whom I’m not liking as he seems to be exploiting personal tragedy for personal gain. His rendition of ” Hero” was pretty rote, as were the judges comments ( “blazing hot”, ” incredible”, “stellar”). Simon was at least restrained in his praise. Was I the only one who thought Danny sounded constipated?

Over all, it was okay. Bur the three who should stay are Anoop, Alexis, and Ricky. My gut’s telling me though it’ll be Danny, Tatianna, and Anoop. If that’s the case, kill me now. And we haven’t gotten to Norman Gentle yet.

Tomorrow- the results, which are sure to piss me off.

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