American Idol 2012 – 1960s songs/British songs

Or, how to take a theme from season six and turn it into two themes.

Hollie Cavanagh: So this was the week they told Hollie Cavanagh to stop trying to be entertaining. To stop trying to please people, and do things that someone might conceivably enjoy listen to, and just go BALLS TO THE WALL man. Really cut loose, stick her two fingers up to the judges, and shake her vote to its very foundation. And what does she do? A serviceable (if slightly dull) version of a Tina Turner standard, and a serviceable (if slightly dull) version of a Leona Lewis song, and then ends up in the Bottom Three. Again. WAY TO MIX THINGS UP HOLLIE CAVANAGH! To be fair, she did pick that obscure Leona Lewis song, that Steven Tyler had never heard of. You know “Bleeding Love”. I think it was an album track. Still, she’s set up nicely to seize the record that Elise nearly got, when Jessica gets her second SHOCK BOOT next week. Do England proud Hollie, and muggle your way through another week, just about, somehow, by the skin of your teeth, by singing alright, but nothing major. (SCORES : River Deep, Mountain High 7/10 ; Bleeding Love 7/10)

(It’s the British way! SCORES: River Deep, Mountain High 7/10; Bleeding Love 9/10)

Phillip Phillips: I ran out of things to say about Flup Flups several weeks ago, and I’ve been wondering why that was. Tonight I think I figured it out: there’s just no diversity in his performances. I’m not even talking about his vocals, even though that’s a criticism you can level at them too, with the same throaty grumble every week. But his actual performances, the way he chooses to present himself during the songs, is just so samey. Hiding behind a guitar, smirking out of one corner of his mouth, squinting his eyes. No matter what the subject matter of the song, that’s what he does. And it’s tedious. Still, at least his voice was functional on his first performance, ‘The Letter’. His second effort, and I use that word loosely, on ‘Time Of The Season’, was the point where I officially snapped, because HE CANNOT SING. That was painful. In fact, it was beyond painful, it was insulting. Watching him screw up his face trying to force those notes out, miss by a mile and then have all the judges compliment him on how well he did was just the biggest pile of bullshit, and oh God he’s going to win isn’t he? Oh, and he was fucking dreadful on his duet of ‘You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling’ with Joshua as well. (SCORES: The Letter 4/10; Time Of The Season 0/10)

(I didn’t think the verses for Time Of The Season were APOCALYPTICALLY bad, but those choruses were straight-up trolling. No way he thought he’d be able to sing that. None. The Letter : 3/10, Time Of The Season : 2/10)

Skylar Laine: Goddammit America. Just when I was starting to think that you’d actually been eliminating all the right people at the right time, you go and kick off my three favourite people in a row and leave me with a top four rivaling that of season nine in the dullness stakes. Admittedly, this was probably Skylar’s weakest night in a while, but still: robbed (of a place in the final where she would have lost to Flup Flups). Anyway, to the matter at hand: Jimmy Fraggleface decided that she should not sing ‘Knock On Wood’ (DAMN YOU FRAGGLEFACE) but should instead serve us some Creedence Clearwater Revival realness. I can sort of see his thinking with that, but it didn’t really work out – as fun as she was to watch, and as fine as the vocals sounded, I couldn’t make out a word of it because the band were too loud and she was mumbling. Also, Chris seems to think she completely misunderstood the song, and if I’d heard the lyrics, I might be able to corroborate that, but unfortunately I can’t. Then she went on to a countryfied version of ‘You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me’, which is like eight-parts country to begin with, and sang it next to a lamppost for some reason. Again, her interpretation felt a bit off, and this time her tone was a bit flat too. Still, I look forward to her inevitable sassy country album. I might even buy it. (SCORES: Fortunate Son 6/10; You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me 6/10)

(It was total X Factor to derail her by spending the critique of her second song talking about those people on stage with her. Or it would have been if anybody listened to a word they judges said any more. Also getting her to grin her way through a CCR song about being POOR AND ANGRY instead of being adorably OTT enthusiastic on Knock On Wood was a CRIME. SCORES : Fortunate Son 5/10, You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me : 6/10)

Jessica Sanchez: Since I’ve been ragging on Hollie so much for what she wears this year, I think it’s only fail I point out the sheer mess of Jessica this week. First she turned up for her rehearsal with Fraggleface in her netball uniform, and then she was unleased on the stage in a ridiculously tight dress that completely inhibited her ability to dance and a pair of stupidly high heels that made her walk like Sharon Needles. And an inability to move around is really not something you want when you’re singing ‘Proud Mary’, because that’s a song that really needs you to be able to run the length of the stage and back, especially towards the end. Perhaps that’s why, for all the vocal adrenaline she was chucking at it, the whole thing felt a bit lifeless. Then she made a statement about not liking the word “loungey” only to sing her second song lolling on the stage with one arm propping up her torso. If that’s not lounging, I don’t know what is. Again, it was technically impressive but just lacked any real impact for me. I mean, I’m glad she’s dropped that horrific BBChez effort to have a personality, but did she really have to go back from that overcompensation to having none at all? There is a middle ground, you know. (SCORES: Proud Mary 8/10; You Are So Beautiful To Me 7/10)

(That was some of the weakest Proud Mary dancing I’ve ever seen. She should be ASHAMED. SCORES : Proud Mary 6/10, You Are So Beautiful To Me : 8/10)

Joshua Ledet: I swear, even though he gave (SPOILERS) my second “Perfect Score” performance of the series, the greatest feat pulled off by Joshua Ledet in this episode was sitting there straight-faced through all half an hour of “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling” desperately trying to keep a handle on the new and exciting directions that Phillip wanted to send that song off in. There are places on TV for Aphex Twin sonic-terrorism and/or glitch-pop, but I’m not sure that American Idol is it, and Joshua just about kept a lid on it. Of course he sounded absolutely horrific, but that’s not the point. Other than that, it was pretty much a perfect game for Joshua this evening, right down to that adorable daffodil for his up-tempo number. I mean, I don’t think a Joshua up-tempo number is ever going above an 8 for me because they always feel a touch insincere, but it was enough for the judges to declare him in the Top 2 Idol contestants of all time, and who am I to argue? (I’m guessing the other one is Katie Stevens? David Hernandez? Jessica Sierra? That guy from Series 6 who kind of looked like Bat Boy?) But then out came the Bee Gees and the emo and the dramatic staging and the EPIC MANTASIA WAILING and I was sold. With this week’s elimination he surpasses Jacob Lusk in “You Know, That Niche” singers, but he surpassed him in my heart a long time ago. JOSHUA VS JESSICA FOR THE FINAL. TOO MUCH EMOTION VS TOO LITTLE. MANTASIA VS BEE-BEE CHAIRS. MAKE IT HAPPEN. (SCORES : Aint Too Proud To Beg : 8/10 ; To Love Somebody : 10/10)

(Sheesh, calm down Mantasia. SCORES: Ain’t Too Proud To Beg 8/10; To Love Somebody 8/10)


4 thoughts on “American Idol 2012 – 1960s songs/British songs

  1. Ferny

    I can’t believe Skylar went, she was my fave from the beginning. Then I thought maybe Colton had a chance but he went. So that leaves…Philip and, I’m thinking ONLY Philip, who can win this. I would laugh if Holly won though. I guess I’m going to have to root for Joshua now. It was looking so promising a few weeks back.

    Philip reminded me so much of Simon Ambrose when he did the scream and head wobble in Time of the Season that I can’t look at him anymore. I thought he’d completely biffed the high notes and then the judges said he nailed them – I mean wut?

    1. monkseal Post author

      I’m thinking Phillip has a case of “you’re winning whatever, so we have to pretend everything you do is amazing, so we don’t look doopid”.

  2. moreglitterplease

    Absolutely nothing to do with this, but I wanted to tell you that your mannerisms are rubbing off on me. We are currently watching football (my dads choice…) and two footballers fell over each other, and my mum said “Oh look, they fell on top of each other!”
    I was so close to yelling “HOMOEROTIC FOOTBALL!” when I realised who i was with, and that my mum does not read your blog. Or maybe she does?

    I am disturbed by that thought.

    (In relation to this recap post, I don’t even watch American Idol, but that doesn’t stop me reading your recaps. That is how awesome you are.)


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