Xander Deccio's Blog
Wow! It's been a while since I have posted a playlist. In matter of fact, it's been a while since I posted really... Anything! In case you were wondering, I have been really busy the past few months as I started a new job and haven't had much time to either shoot or write. But that won't keep me down and to be honest, I really miss writing and even more shooting concerts. But that's besides the point, but I am back now and that also means I'm bringing back the playlists as well. However, they will now be posted on Tuesdays (making an exception for this week) as Wednesdays I'm busy covering American Idol (BTW yes I know there wasn't a post for Thursday's results, I didn't catch it but will have a crapload to say this week.)
Anywho, being I haven't posted a playlist in a while I thought I would go ahead and try something different that I haven't done yet... I get a ton of questions from not only my friends but readers and the main one is always "What are you listening to these days Xander?" As many know I don't have a favorite genre of music per say, but I enjoy it all. Anything from Alternative, Indie, Metal to Classical, Jazz, Hip-Hop and yes sometimes I do listen to Pop and old school country (IE Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings etc) But when it comes down to creating playlists for myself, I kind of get ADD at times and lose focus (maybe I should post one of those "Things you didn't know about me post") So as I was sitting at work last week, I started to actually put together a playlist of songs that I am currently digging at the moment. There is no particular genre to this playlist; just kick ass tunes. So with that being said, here we go!
1. The Flaming Lips - Do You Realize
2. Bloc Party - Flux
3. Muse - Hysteria
4. Social Distortion - Another State of Mind
5. Living Color - Cult of Personality
6. The Bravery - Believe
7. A Tribe Called Quest - Find A Way
8. The Strokes - What Ever Happened To
9. Carney - Love Me Chase Me
10. Oasis - Don't Look Back In Anger
11. Wu-Tang Clan - Triumph
12. Youssou N'Dour featuring Neneh Cherry - 7 Seconds
13. Stone Temple Pilots - Vasoline
14. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros - Home
15. Broken Bells - The Ghost Inside
16. Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah
17. The Beta Band - Dry The Rain
18. Ice Cube - It Was A Good Day
19. The Kills - DNA
20. The Pharcyde - Passin' Me By
21. Matthew Sweet - Sick of Myself
22. Weezer - Say It Ain't So
23. Super Deluxe - Love Liquid Wraparound
24. The Dandy Warhols - Boys Better
25. Pearl Jam - Leaving Here
This week we go a little retro with the elite 8 taking on classics from the 80s. After last week's performances, will the contestants be able to pull things off, or will someone suffer and be sent home? Plus, as a special treat for all you Buzznet fans, No Doubt is this week's mentor to the contestants. This should be a great week nonetheless.
DeAndre Brackinsick opened the show up with the Debarge classic "I Like It." it had a funky groove and awesome elements of 80s R&B with a dash of Prince. I like that DeAndre is doing more R&B/Funk numbers and he should stick to doing that instead of the slow ballads like he did before. Ballads are fine and all, but DeAndre's voice fits more with funk and R&B and it was a great way to kick things off tonight.
Elise Testone took on Foreigner's "I Wanna Know What Love Is." Personally, I hate this song with a passion because it showed how Foreigner sold out. Elise was supposed to cover "Hallelujah" which I really wish she would have but thanks to the judges she changed her mind. I love Elise's voice but I really think she should have stuck with her original choice but she sounded beautiful none the less but had pitch issues. I also disagree with Randy as this song is not the greatest and I wouldn't call it her worst performance as her performance of Whitney Houston the first week was the worst. But yes it had moments it was pitchy and thanks to Jimmy she went with the bad choice instead of "Hallelujah."
Colton Dixon and Skylar Lane took on the Dolly Parton/Kenny Rogers country classic "Islands in the Stream." I have to admit it was a lot better than the original. I guess they are doing duets tonight like with last week having trios
(Xander's Quirp: See I have no problem doing a critique of the duets, but I am really getting tired of Jimmy's suggestions)
Phillip Phillips took on the Genesis classic "That's All." At first I wasn't sure he could pull this off as during rehearsals he couldn't hit the high notes. But he made it his own and the performance was a lot better. I also love the fact that his brother played guitar during his performance. Phillip continues to impress me each week and hope he places in the top 3.
Hollie and DeAndre took on The Pointer Sisters. I really don't understand why the producers paired these two together... DeAndre did great with the vocals, where Hollie did the same thing she does every week.
Joshua Ledet took on "If You Don't Know Me By Now." Originally done by Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes but because it's the 80s he had to go with the Simply Red version. However, he kept it true to the soul and R&B roots that it originally was made for. Joshua reminds me a lot of the soul singers of the 60s such as Percy Sledge, Marvin Gaye, James Brown and in some cases Edwin Starr. I think I have a new favorite and it's Joshua Ledet.
Jessica Sanchez is taking on another Whitney Houston classic with "How Will I Know." First off I just want to say that Jessica is becoming an egotistical diva and now that she has an "alter ego" just makes me hate her even more each week. Anyway, she's really pitchy tonight and the fact that she's taking on Whitney yet again really is unecessary. The judges are pissing me off again this week by not giving her constructive criticisim.
(Xander's Quirp: I really want Jessica to go home this egotistical little brat is pissing me off!)
Elise and Phillip's duet of Tom Petty and Stevie Nicks "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" has to be the best performance of the night... Too bad that can't be their performance that America votes on.
Here we go with Hollie Cavanaugh... This week she took on the Irene Cara classic from the film Flashdance, "What A Feeling." She started off tempo and was all over the place throughout the performance. I have to give her credit that she decided against a ballad but in the end it didn't work as she was WAY TOO pitchy and the performance was too cheesy. She did look great in that dress. The judges were not impressed and the neither was the audience. I also thinks she tries way too hard with each performance and this week wasn't any better.
(Xander's Quirp: I didn't bother to listen to Jessica and Joshua's duet, she's already irritated me tonight but here it is if you want to see the performance)
Colton Dixon whose performance last week put me to sleep, took on the Cyndi Lauper classic, "Time After Time." I was scratching my head on why he chose this selection to begin with although he could have chose anything rock oriented. I will give him props, he made the song fun and gave it the Colton twist that everyone enjoys. It was a step up from last week.
And ending things off tonight was Skylar Lane taking on the Bette Midler classic "Wind Beneath My Wings." It was awesome she decided to do something that wasn't country and I stepped up her performance this week after she made it to the bottom three for covering Miranda Lambert. This is what Skylar needed to get back in the game and hopefully it doesn't send her to the bottom three tomorrow.
My Bottom 3
1. Jessica Sanchez
2. Hollie Cavanaugh
3. Elise Testone (She wouldn't be on here if she hadn't sung a crappy Foreigner song)
Who Gets Eliminated: I think Hollie will be the one to get the boot tomorrow. Her performance tonight didn't impress the judges and the crowd didn't boo the judges during their negative critiques of Hollie's performance. The judges have three opportunities to use a save and I'm not sure Hollie is going to get the save. If it was Elise or even Jessica who got sent home then the judges would use the save. Hollie's performances for the last three weeks have been lackluster, she was in the bottom two last week and almost got sent home, but that was saved for Heejun instead.
Alright enough of what I think, what did you think of tonight's contestants and who do you think will go home tomorrow night?
Heejun Han, the goofball (or Sanjaya) of this season's American Idol, was eliminated last night, making way for the elite 8.
The bottom three came down to balladeer Hollie Cavanaugh and country songstress Skylar Lane who both decided to cover songs from former reality star constestants (Carrie Underwood and Miranda Lambert) and Heejun. He had been in the bottom 2 last week and was a shoo-in to be the one eliminated, however it was Erika Van Pelt who got the boot. However, this week America had enough and sent the funnyman home, ending his journey.
However, Heejun apparently wasn't happy that he was sent home, according to many sources Heejun then made a few remarks on The Insider that had the producers irritated. One in particular was promoting AI's rival singing competition The Voice on NBC. According to the LA Times, "When asked who he was going to be rooting for now, a typical post-elimination question, Han responded: "I was rooting for Jeremy, Shannon or Erika ... but [that] didn't happen so I'm not gonna root any for now. I'm just gonna watch 'The Voice.'"
Han also wasn't very on last weeks mentor Diddy as well. "Han said Diddy was "kinda drunk when we were having our mentor session." He continued, "You do not wanna be drunk when you're coming to 'American Idol' session, OK?"
According to The Insider, Han was pulled aside by stern "Idol" publicists for a little course correction.
Next week the "Elite 8" will take on songs from the 1980's, I guess Heejun won't be "goofin' around" to anything from Devo that week now that he's been given the ax.
Well this season hasn't been the greatest and last weeks butchering of Billy Joel classics made listening to fingernails on a chalkboard enjoyable. But hopefully with the contestant's taking on their idol's it should be a major step up for the last three weeks. Plus you got Stevie Nicks as this weeks mentor and that's better than Miley Cyrus. Anyways here we go!
Colton Dixon, the "Tim Tebow of American Idol" took on Everything by Lifehouse. I like Lifehouse, but this song is a little too churchy for me and didn't really fit in with American Idol. However, I like Colton and he did a awesome job with this tonight and made it more of an insperational song that could move any person, and everyone could enjoy. However, I really hope he doesn't turn into Tim Tebow because the world doesn't need another one of those right now.
Skylar Lane the only country girl this season took on Miranda Lambert's Gunpowder and Lead. Funny, I would have thought she would have chosen Reba McEntire. Instead she chose to cover another reality star (Nashville Star, which I just found out she's the only one to have a career. But don't get me started on the last season of that show!) Anyways this was really over the top and full of energy. A big step up from last week's performance which I felt was really safe and very boring. Not sure on why she chose Miranda Lambert though. For me it was alright, but full of energy and enjoyable.
Heejun Hahn whom it seems many people on Buzznet are not enjoying from the comments I received from last week, took on Donny Hathaway's A Song For You. This wasn't the same Heejun we saw last week when he decided to be goofy. This week we got the serious Heejun and his performance was a major step up from last week. However, will it be enough for Heejun to advance, or will it be the end of the road for him? His performance was good, but not the best of the night.
Ugh, here we go with Hollie Cavanaugh. You know from her accent I could swear she's Australian. But I know she's a Brit. Anyways she took on Jesus Take The Wheel by Carrie Underwood. What the hell is up with the contestants singing songs from other contestants? It's really tacky and doesn't need to be done. I swear if it's not Carrie Underwood, it's Kelly Clarkson. Anyways it was really pitchy and I will give her credit she actually didn't stand behind a mic stand this week. But it's Hollie and every week she does the same thing so I have to agree with Randy and Steven it wasn't great.
DeAndre Brackinsick took on former Mr. Halle Berry, Eric Benet with his version of Sometimes I Cry. I wasn't familiar with Eric Benet's music, but DeAndre channeled his "inner Prince" with this slow, sultry rendition. This was a step up from DeAndre's lackluster performance last week and I agree he needs to stick with his R&B roots as that is what he does best. Awesome performance none the less!
Jessica Sanchez took on Beyonce (WTF?) with her slowed down version of Sweet Dreams. First off, NO ONE SHOULD EVEN TRY TO COVER BEYONCE! She's the same as Whitney Houston, and all it's going to do is set you up for trouble. For a ballad it was actually pretty good and I give her credit. However i'm getting sick of the judges not giving her ANY constructive criticism and they did it again this week. I have to disagree with Randy's comment that with her "A star is born." Personally, I think she has the vocal chops and yes she has matured a bit, but she reminds me too much of one of those little girls who always compete at singing competitions; who are always told they are great. But we all know what happens when they don't win, they start crying and end up a sore loser. Maybe I am wrong with Jessica, but I see it.
The producers decided to create a "boy group" of Joshua Ledit, Heejun Hahn and DeAndre Brackinsick covering Michael Jackson. Was this really necessary? It had moments that it was enjoyable, but covering MJ is not cool! (In case you were wondering, I missed the Fleetwood Mac 2.0 (Elise, Colton and Phillip) performance, I tried looking for it on the web but no dice. I heard it was pretty bad ass though)
(Xander's Quirp: J-LO... Would you please SHUT THE HELL UP! Can we PLEASE get Kara Dioguardi back? Or bettter yet... PAULA! )
Phillip Phillips took on something I never thought I would hear on American Idol... Johnny Lang! I don't know why people keep comparing to Dave Matthews. Yes I see some, but I see more of Bruce Springsteen. Anyways WOW! This guy gets better and better every week! Every week with his song choice's, he ALWAYS makes it his own. This guy is his own entity and I'll go ahead and say, I would love to shoot one of his shows!
Joshua Ledit's cover of Without You by Mariah Carey (Ugh, WTF?) You know what, I have no problem with this song. However why the hell did he choose Mariah's version over the far more superior verson done by the late Harry Nillson? This is the third time this week someone has covered a song that is considered suicidal...However, Joshua kicked some serious ass tonight and made it his own. Although it had elements of Luther (Vandross) which not many can pull off.
(Xander's Quirp: Ok what are the producers smoking and where can I get some? Now the girls are covering Madonna? Great...)
The "girl group" of Skylar Lain, Jessica Sanchez, and Hollie Cavanaugh covered a medley of Madonna songs. By far one of the WORST things I have seen. All three girls were very pitchy and what the hell is up with Skylar's outfit? She looks like a pregnant pimp! Jessica's intro for Like a Prayer was all over the place and don't get me started with Hollie.
And lastly we have Elise Testone channeling her inner Robert Plant with her rendition of Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love. HOLY SHIT! (pardon my language) that was EPIC!!! By far the best performance of the night and no one can pull off Zeppelin and this is coming from a huge Led Zeppelin fan like myself. Forget the rest of the female's this season, Elise is the best so far!
My Bottom 3
1. Hollie Cavanaugh
2. Jessica Sanchez
3. Joshua Ledet
Who get's eliminated?: Oh boy, this is going to be really really tough. I seriously don't know how America is going to vote on this one but if it were me. Hollie would be going home, just because every week she does the same thing over and over. Her performace both last week and this week were bad and how she wasn't in the bottom 3 last week in puzzeling at best. How she stayed over Erika Van Pelt is irritating and I feel for Erika when she was on the talk show circuit this week and even agreed with her comments about J-Lo's critique. But in the end, I think it's going to be either Hollie or Heejun that get's the boot. Jessica is too over with the fans to get kicked off, Skylar has the country fans so she's not leaving. However, I'm wondering if Colton's song choice was a good idea as it was a bit preachy and that can irritate viewers... Especially since Tim Tebow isn't looked at in a positive manner.
Xander's Take: I don't really have much to say that wasn't said last week. I'll probably have more to say tomorrow once the results are announced.
News is coming out that Australian rock band Jet has officially called it quits. The reason for the spilt is due to the band members wanting to pursue other creative endeavors.
Jet, infamous for hits such as "Cold Hard Bitch" and "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" posted the following on their website:
"After many successful years of writing, recording and touring we wish to announce our discontinuation as a group. From the many pubs, theatres, stadiums and festivals all across the world it was the fans that made our amazing story possible and we wish to thank them all. Thank you, and goodnight."
However according to a press release, the band fully intends to work with "their music, legacy and brand alive through new licensing, publishing, merchandise, re-records [sic] and releases."
Jet was formed in 2001 by brothers Nic Cester and Chris Cester along with guitarist Cameron Muncey and bassist Mark Wilson while attending St Bede's College Mentone in Melbourne, the band released the platinum selling Get Born in 2003, its success catapulted in part by an iPod ad featuring the song "Are You Gonna Be My Girl." Two more full-lengths followed, Shine On in 2006 and Shaka Rock in 2009. In total, the band has sold more than 6.5 million albums worldwide.
I have to admit, I hadn't heard much from the band in recent years and wondered if they were going to release any new material. Sadly it looks like it won't happen any time soon.
It was the end of the road for Erika Van Pelt on American Idol tonight. Even a drastic style change couldn't save her from being eliminated from America's vote. Erika was the second Wild Card contestant to be eliminated after Jeremy Rosado was sent home 2 weeks ago.
The bottom three came down to DeAndre Brackinsick, Heejun Hahn and Van Pelt. Brackinsick was announced the first of the three that was safe. It came down to Heejun and Erika as the bottom two which we didn't have to wait long after Brackinsick was announced as safe to find out who had the bottom votes. In the end Erika was had the bottom votes and the judges decided not to use their only save for the season to bring her back next week. Erika had been in the bottom three for the past two weeks, it was only a matter of time before America finally kicked her off the competition, and after she took Tommy Hilfiger's advice and changed her look, it still didn't help her in the end.
Xander's Take: It doesn't surprise me Erika was sent home. In matter of fact I thought she was going to be eliminated last week, but instead it was Shannon Magrane that was sent home. I liked Erika at first, but after a while she started sounding like a tacky Karaoke singer and last week's performance didn't help her chances. She did great this week, and her makeover was probably the best thing she did to help her image but being she had been in the bottom 3 for the past two weeks, it was clear that America was not into her.
This season as a whole has been terrible and it's making me wonder how long Idol is going to be on the air. The contestants are not the best and to be honest, most of them are pretty mediocre; with the exception of Colton Dixon, Phillip Phillips, and Elise Testone. I feel all the talent that made it to the top 24 was eliminated (Reed Grimm, Adam Brock, Creighton Fraker, and Jen Hirsh) and we get stuck with singers like Jeremy Rosado, Shannon Magrane and Holly Cavanaugh who aren't enjoyable and make you wonder what kind of crack the judges are smoking?
Speaking of the judges, i'm really getting tired of Jennifer Lopez. She has absolutely no clue what the hell she is saying when she judges the contestants and gives her critiques. Take for instance she complained about Skylar Laine being "too nasally" during one of her performances... Of course she's nasally she's a country singer. Most country singers have that nasally sound to their voices like Reba McEntire or The Judds which is what Skylar is going for. And don't get me started with her using the term "goosies" every week. The other problem I have is the way they are judging contestant Jessica Sanchez. It seems like every week, they are being too nice with her and not giving her the constructive critiscism that she needs to hear. I also don't like the fact that the judges are already acting like she's the winner of this season. I noticed the judges did the same thing with Pia Toscano last season and that blew up right in their face when she was eliminated and the judges didn't have their save as they used it on Casey Abrams the week before.
Overall, I have a feeling this season will be the one that will end up in cancelling American Idol. The seriously need to kick J-Lo off the show and Jimmy Iovine needs to be replaced as a mentor.
I have a rule that I never review soundtracks. But being I have been hearing all this hype about The Hunger Games and being Buzznet is well, "buzzing" about it i guess I will break my rule just this once. Then again the soundtrack for Garden State was nothing short of epic so what can be so bad?
I'll be honest, I haven't gotten into The Hunger Games hype that is buzzing all over the interwebs and not just on Buzznet. I have been meaning to read the books and I do have all three of them on my iPad, actually I just started the first book yesterday but thanks to interruptions, I only made past the first four pages of the first chapter. I will admit the film looks very bad-ass and will be seeing it sometime next week (but not before I see 21 Jump Street!). So with with every film, we get a soundtrack that either ties in with the film or the songs are played in scenes that tie in. I could go into filmmaking ethics, but that would end up taking away from this review. But anyways a great soundtrack always make's the film and this soundtrack doesn't disappoint.
The first track off the album is Abraham's Daughter from Indie greats, The Arcade Fire. This isn't the normal Arcade Fire song you would hear on one of their albums (especially Funeral) but it's dark elements and grungy feel are a great way to kick things off. Another standout track on this album is One Engine from Portland natives The Decemberists. I was a bit surprised to see them contribute to a film soundtrack but after Death Cab For Cutie being featured on the New Moon soundtrack, all bets are off. For me this one of the stand out tracks on the album as it's classic Decemberists and there is nothing wrong with that.Other stand out tracks on the album include songs from Glen Hansard (of Once fame), Kid Cudi, The Low Anthem, Neko Case and Maroon 5. A track that really surprised me that I found enjoyable was Miranda Lambert's Run Daddy Run, it has this haunting folky sound to it that gives you chills down your spine and fits well with this film.
The only problem I have with this is Taylor Swift's two tracks Safe and Sound and Eye's Open. Safe and Sound has moments where it's enjoyable but get's irritating after a few listen's. Eye's Open is a good song, but Taylor Swift wasn't a good choice. I really couldn't get into both songs but that may be because I never really understood Taylor Swift as an artist and never got her music... Or it could be due to the fact I had to hear her songs non stop when I worked retail.
Overall, this is actually a really good soundtrack for what it is. The Indie elements make it great and with bands like The Arcade Fire, The Decemberist's and Neko Case being featured, it's great way to diverese the music genere's featured. I wouldn't let the Taylor Swift songs get in the way, you either like her or you don't but that should not stop you from enjoying this.
I missed last week's results episode due to working late hence why there wasn't a post on Thursday night. Anyway I was shocked by the bottom 3, however wasn't surprised that Shannon Magraine went home. The fact that she even tried Mariah Carey was suicidal. I do feel that Erika Van Pelt and Elise Testone are not well liked for some reason, and as much as it bothers me because I think both are very talented. I don't think they will be in the competition much longer... Unless Elise pulls a Haley Rinehart. Tonight's episode is "The Songbook of Billy Joel." I like this theme as it seems Idol is trying something new like what they did with Elton John last season. Diddy as a mentor will be interesting to see. Anyway here we go!
DeAndre Brackinsick took on "Only The Good Die Young." I'll be honest, this song is not my favorite but I like DeAndre. For me this felt like a cheesy Karaoke performance, but it did have a happy positive vibe. It wasn't bad but it was very sub-par for DeAndre but at least a lot better than his performance last week. DeAndre needs to do more upbeat fast paced songs like this and Master Blaster; NO MORE ENDLESS LOVE! As for his style this week.. Meh!
(Xander Quirp #1: Tommy Hilfiger is popular again? I haven't seen anyone where his clothes since the 90s. Hell, I remember in High School when all the kids were wearing Tommy or Polo... This makes me feel old!)
Erika Van Pelt took on "New York State of Mind." With the advice of Tommy Hilfiger, Erika changed her look and hacked her hair. I'm really digging it! Her performance was AWESOME! This is a major step up from her last two performances where they didn't sound really karaoke and she actually let loose and just sing from the soul. Erika needs to continue to do this! It was a very beautiful performance and her look is smoking!
Joshua Ledet's took on "She's Got A Way." I actually didn't know this song and neither did Steven Tyler and I know Billy Joel! I think he did great on the vocals, but he didn't make the song his own. To me it felt like a high school song recital showcasing his vocals and not a performance showcasing what he can do as a performer and being able to sell out shows each night. Kind of meh for me tonight but I love his voice. His style was really boring and too churchy for my taste.
Skylar Laine took on Shameless. I don't like the fact that she would take on a song that Garth Brooks covered and not something new that she could make her own. For me this was way too safe because it sounded almost like the Garth Brooks version. It was pitchy and slow at the beginning and this wasn't her best. I was good in parts, but the thing that bothers me is that she took the safe route and not tried something new. Is it just me or does Skylar wear the same damn outfit each week? She needs to change it a bit, she can still have a Country style but enough of the same dress!
Elise Testone who I must say looks smoking hot in that outfit, took on Vienna. Another amazing performance and it was nothing short of beautiful. The outfit alone was sexy! She really made this her own and I really don't understand why she keeps getting voted in the bottom three. Is America on crack? Because her performance last week and her performance this week has been the best she has put out.
Phillip Philips took on "Movin' Out" which is also the name of Billy Joel's Broadway musical based on his music (Theatre Geek Moment!). This started out really slow and boring, but then he stepped it up and made it kick ass. Kind of channeled his inner Bruce Springsteen with this. I like the fact that he kept it his own and did something different. It did indeed feel very Springsteenesque and even his stage antics resembeled The Boss. Does Phillip really have a fashion style?
(Xander Quirp #2: I really like how the contestants are kind of giving Tommy Hilfiger and Jimmy Iovine the finger tonight Hilfiger's style is soo 15 years ago and Jimmy's advice has been shite! Diddy is actually a better mentor than I thought... Can we get him to replace Jimmy next season?)
Hollie (yawn) Cavanaugh does indeed dress like an old lady and she's the only one who so far has listened to Tommy. Sorry to say it's not working for me, looks way too Disco and her take on Honesty is not working for me either. But then again every week she never impresses me and puts me to sleep. She also has no dynamic in her voice and wasn't on key for her entire performance. Every week she sings the same damn thing and it's getting boring. Please send her home NOW!
Heejun Hahn actually stepped it up this week and did something fast paced with "It's My Life." The begining was a bit of shock. I give him an A for effort, and it was very entertaining. I like the fact that he had fun with the performance but the vocals were very pitchy and at times it sounded very Karaoke. His style was very... Heejun I could tell he wasn't going to listen to Tommy as Heejun is his own entity.
Jessica Sanchez took on another Billy Joel song i'm not too familiar with, "Everybody Has A Dream." I like her voice and her style this week was unique. This weeks performance was a step up from the disaster last week, but i'm not really getting the hype with Jessica. Yes I think she has the pipes, but I don't see what the big deal is with her. I also feel the judges are too in love with her and really don't give her constructive criticism and make it look like she's already going to win... Hence why I miss Simon!
And rounding off the top 10 tonight is none other than Colton Dixon taking on Piano Man. I really love Colton's style as he goes for the Punk/Militant look which rocks! To me he is this season's James Durbin and wished he would take chances like James did last season. However, i'm not digging his take on Piano Man which happens to be one of my favorite Billy Joel songs. The arrangement was too slow and depressing and it took away the fun of being a Piano man in a bar that people enjoy,(which is what the song is about) this sounded like he was performing at a funeral. However the vocals were awesome and he did make it his own and I give him props for that, and the fact he also told Tommy that he was an individual was awesome!
1. Hollie Cavanaugh
2. DeAndre Brackinsick
3. Skylar Laine
Xander's Take: I'm really not feeling this season, it get's boring every week and the talent is not the best. J-Lo's judging is starting to irritate the hell out of me. Does she even know what the hell she is saying? My favorites so far are: 1. Phillip Phillps, 2. Colton Dixon, 3. Elise Testone, 4. Joshua Ledit and 5. Erika Van Pelt. To me those five stand out in this competition, Jessica Sanchez has a nice voice but she's not my favorite and the rest I could care less about.
Who's Going Home: Ugh! As much as I want Hollie to go home because i'm sick of her doing the same thing every week. The chances are, the judges will use their save on her. I think either DeAndre or Erika go home this week. But then again I thought Erika was going home last week and it ended up being Shannon. So it's anyones guess.
Yes, this is a Top 11 tonight. In case you were wondering, just read the results. Anyways, this weeks catagory is "The Year You Were Born." It looks like Idol is continuing the same category they featured in previous seasons, so this should be interesting to say the least.
Phillp Phillps took on Hard to Handle by The Black Crowes (Yes I know it's a cover, but The Black Crowes verison is more memorable). WOW! This guy gets better and better each week. I love the fact that he and Colton are the only rockers on this season and with tonight's performance, I wouldn't be surprised if he's in the Top 2.
Jessica Sanchez covered the first cover of a cover with Turn the Beat Around by Gloria (yawn) Estefan who covered the original disco classic as sung by Vicky Sue Robinson. This was a different step for Jessica and it didn't pay off. The judges agreed saying she lacked energy. However this won't hurt her chances in the compeititon.
Heejune Hahn took on (bleh) Richard Marx's Right Here Waiting... Not only did he bomb on this due to pitch issues and being all over the place, but the fact that he chose a RICHARD MARX song should be bad enough. I like Heejun, but what the hell was he thinking? This will probably get him sent to the bottom three. On top of that there were other songs from 1989 that he could have sung but the fact he chose Richard Marx just lost points in my book.
Elise Testone took on Al Green's Let's Stay Together and knocked it out of the park. By far one of my favorite performances of the night. All three judges agreed, and if America puts her in the bottom three again this week, they are smoking some serious crack. Last week for her was another fault of Jimmy Iovine making her sing a song she didn't know, nor was she comfortable with. At least they got it right this week!
DeAndre Brackinsick took on Endless Love... Wait, this song came out in 1981, DeAndre was born in 1994. What the hell is Idol doing by having the contestants sing covers of covers? 1994 came out with some great hits that DeAndre could have easily sung. Anyways, this wasn't a good song choice for DeAndre, it was very safe and boring and I really don't understand why Jimmy wanted him to sing a boring song like this after the awesome week he had before with Master Blaster. I personally blame Jimmy for this one!
Shannon Magrane took on One Sweet Day by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men. Let me get this straight, she bombed on Whitney last week and now she's taking on Mariah? Does she have a death wish? Anyways she had the choice between this and Don't Speak by No Doubt. She should have taken the later but to be honest she actually did a good job with it and did a better job than last week. She seemed more comfortable this week and didn't try so hard as she did with Whitney last week.
Colton Dixon covered White Lion's Broken Heart. While I was little iffy on this selection, it was an excellent choice for him as he made it his own and not to mention most of nationwide audience probably has no clue who White Lion who this is. But Colton rocked tonight and I really disagreed with Steven as this was one of Colton's best. Randy even pointed it out that it wasn't about the song, it's how Colton sang it.
Erika Van Pelt covered Heaven by Bryan Adams. I like Erika's voice but i'm kind of mixed on this. There were parts I liked, and there were parts I felt were boring. I tend to agree with Steven on this I just don't know what to think of tonight's performance. Maybe she should have chosen a better song to have me enjoy her voice.
Jermaine Jones was supposed to cover Somewhere Out There. However, the judges decided to disqualify him because it was found out that he had 4 outstanding arrest warrants and didn't come clean about them. His reasoning was that he was scared to admit to them, but in the end it cost him his spot. From what I had seen of his rehearsal performance, he did a pretty awesome job. Although I could care less for the song arraingment. However, someone will be eliminated tomorrow... I'll have more on this later. But if you want to know why click here.
Skylar Lane chose to sing Love Sneakin' Up on You by Bonnie Raitt. Jimmy and Wil.I.Am didn't like the idea and tried to get her to pick a different song choice. She chose not to listen to their advice and it paid off. She actually did the song well as what Randy had said, showing that judges should listen to the contestants, instead of having them sing something they aren't comfortable with (like that of Elise Testone last week).
Joshua Ledit decided to cover another cover with When a Man Loves a Woman... The Michael Bolton version. However, it sounded nothing like that of Bolton's and more of his own with a mix of Percy Sledge. I seriously don't understand why America put this kid in the bottom 6 last week. Every week he blows it out of the water and this week wasn't anything different.
Hollie Cavanaugh took on Celine Dion's The Power of Love. I'll be honest, i'm not digging Hollie. Every week she does the same thing over and over and to be honest, it's too safe. I have yet to see her take a chance and try something different or hell even an upbeat fast paced song. It's always slow yet boring ballads. I also felt her performace was pitchy as well and why do I get the feeling the judges are too nice too her? Many compare her to Pia Toscano, but i'll be honest she's no Pia and to be honest I don't think she will be one of the top 3 finalists and if they could send her home now, it would make this an interesting to contest.
1. Heejun Han
2. Erika Van Pelt
3. DeAndre Brackinsick
Who Gets Eliminated: Hmm... This is interesting, this week wasn't the greatest to begin with and the song choices were bad. I like all three of these guys but in the end I think Erika is going to be sent home. She's faced elimination two weeks in a row and it's clear that she's not favorable in this contest. Although Heejun had a lackluster performance, he's too popular with the fans and I don't think he will be getting the boot. Personally, I really want America to send Hollie Cavanaugh home as she keeps doing the same thing every week. Yes she has a pretty voice, but she has no personality and her performances are boring.
Xander's Take: I don't understand why they are eliminating someone after they kicked Jermaine off the show. I would think with that alone, they would at least bring back one of the wild cards (Jen or Reed) to at least take Jermaine's spot or bring Jeremy back. The producers could decide because of his dismissal, there would be no elimination this week just to be fair. The other problem I have with this season is the contestants. I feel the judges booted off all the talent, and chose to keep the sub-par ones. There is only four this year that are worth watching, where as the rest are forgettable. If the producers keep this up, Idol is going to be cancelled.
The first casualty of American Idol Season 11 is none other than J-Lo's wild card pick, Jeremy Rosado. Tonight's episode saw the judges making the pick of who would be sent home instead of the viewers. The judges had to decided between the bottom three of each the boys and the girls giving them a Bottom 6 instead of the normal Bottom 3 we are used to seeing each season.
The bottom three boys were: Jermaine Jones, Joshua Ledit, and Jeremy Rosado. For the bottom three girls: Elise Testone, Shannon Magrane and Erika Van Pelt. It was up to the judges to decide out of the bottom two, who was getting the axe. The bottom two came down to Elise Testone and Jeremy Rosado. But in the end the judges decided to give Elise a second chance and sent Jeremy packing.
Xander's Take: My prediction for bottom three came true and as for the elimination, I think the judges made the best choice sending Jeremy home. I don't understand why Jeremy was picked as a wildcard when Reed Grimm and Jen Hirsh who were much better were passed up. Jimmy Iovine said it best that the girls performed better than Jeremy last night. And they didn't have an easy task taking on Whitney Houston, which was a bad choice to begin with. For me he lacked in the vocal department and couldn't even make the song his own like the other guys had done. Jeremy reminds me a lot of Paige Miles from Season 9 who i really thought she shouldn't have been in the top 12 to begin with. I'm really glad the judges decided to give Elise a second chance and hopefully she does better next week.
Alright I want to hear what you guys have to say, do you think judges made the right decision sending Jeremy home? Or do you think it should have been someone else?