So far I have been very pleased with the Cowell-less American Idol. Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez have brought a nice addition to the show. I wouldn’t say it is better than some of the early seasons of Idol, but it is a good evolution of the show. The talent this year has been extremely good and I constant amazed that they are able to find more singers every year. I feel more connected to the men so far it seems that Casey and James are the early front runners.
Clint Jun Gamboa — Superstitious
Clint reminds me of Andrew Garcia from last season, but more talented. I am not digging the disco lights and goofy dancing. Clint seems to be going with a very safe and un-memorable performance. I don’t think he has enough buzz to pull this enough. A few strong notes at the end, but not a real exciting performance over all. Solid performance, but he is being too safe.
Jovany Barreto — Crying Shoulder
Jovany looks very nervous on stage. Good song choice trying to go with a more difficult song. He sounds flat in a lot of places and again the performance lacks any real memorable qualities. It was a good performance, but nothing I will be talking about tomorrow. I know it is the first week, but the contestants need to make a mark on the show. (Randy made a good point, you need to bring something special to the song.)
Jordan Dorsey — OMG
I do not like this guy, but he has some talent. Jordan has the showmanship down. He did a great job owning the stage and bringing some flair to the song. He seemed to bring a lot of personality to the song. He took a chance and stretched himself and tried to make himself better. I don’t really know this song, so I’m not sure how unique it was, but I was a fan of the song. I don’t care if it is not him, I like that he tried to show a new side of himself.
Tim Halperin — Come on Over
Tim seems to really enjoy this song. I feel his spirit coming through in it. It again was a relatively easy choice and didn’t really show off his talent. It was a good song to lead the crowd, but he could have done a tougher song and pushed himself further.
Brett Loewenstern — Light My Fire
I’m not a big fan of Brett coming into this show. I was surprised he made the cut, but here he is. Brett sings the rock classic well, but his voice is so high pitched and his movement is erratic is almost comes across as creepy. He doesn’t seems to have very large vocal range. He seemed to only be singing in a range of about 6 notes. I didn’t see anything new out of him in that performance, but I would have liked to see another side of him. I’m not really sure who is going to vote for him except for the people at votefortheworst.com.
James Durbin – You Got Another Thing Comin’
James is one of my two early picks to win this season. Although realistically he will probably make it to the top 3 or 5 as a rocker has yet to win the show. I don’t know this song at all, but what James did sounded good to me. He is talented, but not as off the wall as Adam Lambert which may help him get over the hurdle the rockers have faced. I don’t know if he is a musical as Chris Daughtry, in terms of arrangements as such, but he may be with his pedigree.
Robbie Rosen — In the Arms of An Angel
Whenever I see a guy is going to sing a song made famous by a femal artist I get nervous, but I was presently surprised by Robbie’s performance. I’m not thrilled with the arrangement, but he is bringing something new to the song and he is a doing a good job of it. He has a very nice voice and he may be a dark horse in this competition. Time will tell if he can keep growing as an artist and find new ways to perform. But, I will give him a lot of credit for trying something different with the song.
Scotty McCreery – Letters From Home
Scotty is very much a one trick pony which will probably be enough to get him at least one good selling album. I don’t like how is face looks all cocky.
I feel like he is a getting a big head because he is a 17 year old kid on Idol, but maybe I am not giving him enough credit. (His humbleness after the whole JC incident and at the end of his performance is making me rethink my impression.) It was a good performance and I liked his little adjustment at the end, but again it wasn’t amazing, but it was a solid performance right in his wheel house.
Stefano Langone – Just the Way You Are
This song was okay until the chorus. After that it became clear that Stefano does not have the pipes to pull this song. Again he seems to have about a 6 note range (admittedly he tried to leave this range, but it didn’t go well). I’m really not sure if I dislike this performance or Brett’s more.
Paul McDonald — Maggie May
Seems like a Rod Stewart cover even down to impersonating the way his voice sounds. Paul seems to have the Taylor Hicks movement tick on stage which doesn’t bother me, but rather it is just an observation (and perhaps a good omen for him.) Nothing new here. A decent cover of a good song. Safe performance, but he is going to need to do better.
Jacob Lusk – A House is Not a Home
Really excited for Jacob to sing. What a performer. It seems that he can sing anything. He can go as low as Scotty and as high as Brett and do it better than both of them combined. He needs to figure out what he wants to sing because right now he is perhaps little too goofy and
doesn’t have a niche. (Although I guess he can have a Luther Vandrose type career with beautiful balads.) Having said that, I am going to have to put him with Casey and James as front runners. (I forgot his God Bless the Child performance or else I may have added him in the first place.)
Casey Abrams – I Put a Spell on You
Wow, what energy! This guy brings it all when he sings and I love it. I don’t know if he is like a young Meatloaf or where he fits into the music world, but I want him to stay around. When he was singing “Put a Spell on You” I felt like he was actually going to put a spell on me. You can tell he is confident, but not cocky. We will have to see if he can make it 15+ weeks.