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American Idol, Week 5
Wednesday, 2007 March 21 - 8:32 pm
It's British Invasion week. There are three great performances and a bunch of mediocre ones.

Haley: 7/10.
She sings "Tell Him". It's a fun performance, a little pitchy in spots. It suits her personality, but unfortunately her personality is that of a cruise director. The song lacks attitude. Randy says it's the perfect song and her best performance to date. Paula says it's the perfect song, and it's flirtatious. Simon says "you naughty little thing"; it's fun, young, but a bit shrieky in the middle. He says people will be talking about a lot more than her singing (probably referring to her revealing shorts and halter-top outfit).

Chris R: 6/10.
He sings "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Cryin'". He starts well but man, he's got a nasal voice and a closed-mouth style of singing. It's kind of a boring song, and it shows that this vocals aren't really his strength. Randy says it's in tune, it shows another side of him, and it's a great performance. Paula says he's in it to win it, and that he's very sexy. Simon says it's his best performance so far; it's controlled, but a little nasal. My hunch is that the judges might change their minds a bit when they hear it back on tape.

Stephanie: 7/10.
She sings "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me". She's uncharacteristically pitchy, and the rhythm is odd; she's off beat. It's not a bad song choice for once, but this time I think her singing is weak. Randy says it's a great song choice, but not her best performance. Paula says she picked the right song, but a few notes were off, and she needs to have fun. Simon says she's losing her edge, losing her soul, and sounding like a nightclub-y, cabaret singer.

Blake: 10/10.
He sings "Time of the Season". This time, his contemporary styling works. It really works. The song sounds modern, it's on key, and he exudes charm. He's struggling to get the high notes but he's making it. This might be the best we've seen from him, and that's saying a lot. Randy says it's cool, vibe-y, edgy, with massive "yo" factor. He made a 45-year-old song sound current. Paula says she felt like she was at a concert, and that she would buy the song. Simon says it's a million times better than last week, that he chose the right song, putting his spin on it without messing with the melody.

Lakisha: 8/10.
She sings "Diamonds are Forever". She's capturing the song pretty well, but it the whole song and performance seems very dated. She's singing fine, but it's just not my favorite performance. Randy says it's a good song choice but not his favorite; he didn't feel enough Lakisha in it. Paula says it's the right song, and she's smart to sing about diamonds (because they blinged her up). Simon says she's a fantastic singer but this is like Lakisha 50 years from now.

Phil: 6/10.
He sings "Tobacco Road". He's kind of shouty and it's like a garage band performance. It's OK, but not very challenging and not very good. Randy says there were a few pitchy spots, and it was pretty good, especially in the upper register. Paula says it's a good choice of songs; some parts were pitchy but she liked his various ranges. Simon says he wasn't crazy about it; it was like a third-division bar band performance, needing more grit.

Jordin: 10/10.
She sings "I Who Have Nothing". She sings it confidently and with strength. The song sounds young from her (a good thing), and she's got great tone and great presence. This is her best performance so far. Randy says it's a very difficult song, but that she gave a great, controlled performance. Paula says she has great range and that it was a wonderful performance. Simon says she sang it beautifully (though the song itself was depressing).

Sanjaya: 5/10.
He sings "You Really Got Me". This is a real departure for him, and, well, it's not really good. It sounds forced, and it's not believable. Randy says he shocked him; it's his best performance to date. Paula says it's fun, and that he went for it. Simon points out a grimacing little girl and says her face says it all.

Gina: 7/10.
She sings "Paint It Black". It's a great song choice, but she's a little pitchy. I like the look and the grittiness of the performance, but vocally it's not her best. Randy says he loves the edge and the vibe, but it's not his favorite vocal. Paula says it's way better than last week, and that she let loose and did her own thing. Simon says there were moments of complete torture, so off-melody it was horrible. He says she took style over content.

Chris S: 8/10.
He sings "She's Not There". He's working the crowd and that throws him off-pitch at the start, but he gets it back. It's a good song choice; he gets a little shouty at times but it's not bad. Randy says everyone is performing tonight; it started a little rough and ahead of the beat, but that he finished great. Paula says the vocals were good and she likes that he's working the audience. Simon says he did his thing and it was fun, but not the best vocal; but it was a good choice of song and it showed his personality.

Melinda: 9/10.
She sings "As Long As He Needs Me". It's a good performance and her voice sounds great. Her tone is pure, and it makes the most of a fairly corny song. Randy says it's the best vocal of the night and a stunning performance, and that she takes her time and listens to every word she sings. Paula says it's not forced, and that she's in her own league. Simon says "Are you really as nice as you seem?" He says she made a boring song great, with impeccable vocals.

Standings: (Weighted running average)
Jordin 9.2
Lakisha 8.8
Melinda 8.3
Blake 8.0
Hanging in there:
Chris S 7.7
Gina 7.2
Stephanie 6.8
Chris R 5.7
At risk:
Haley 5.5
Phil 5.3
Sanjaya 4.2
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Posted by Ken in: television


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