You know what I love about being an American? The fact that I have freedom of speech and the press. You don't always have to agree with me, and you can criticize my opinions all you want, but you do not have the right to shut me up.
YOU SHALL NOT STIFLE MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.
And just to clarify (again), it's not a matter of whether or not I can sing better than the contestants. No one needs to be an expert to point out errors like this. For example, you do not have to be a gymnast, a gymnastics coach, or a certified judge to know when a gymnast performs a triple twist with sloppy form (I'm looking at you, Raisman and Mustafina). The same applies in this situation. It doesn't take a singer (amateur or professional) or an expert vocalist to know when someone is singing off-key. All it takes is a good ear. I can appreciate a good performance, I just haven't seen much of those yet.
Also, I bet it's hard for over 40 people to complain about these blog posts when there are only four currently active users on this wiki (even the lone admin/ bureaucrat/ creator is inactive).
Anyway, moving on.
So what I thought was Motown week turned out to be "Music of Motor City" week. Which means they could sing songs by any musician who was from Detroit. Smokey Robinson is mentoring this week with Jimmy. Okay. Well, there goes my hope that there'll be more uptempo songs.
Surprisingly, most of them were much better than last week. There was only one ballad tonight, and every other song was either mid-tempo or uptempo.
Idol did their best to stretch the show out by adding duets and trios. Oh boy.
Candice - "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" by Marvin Gaye
Smokey Robinson said: There are places where she can ride the beat.
I still hate Candice for her misinterpretation of "Come Together" from last week (and the fact that I still remember it). And I still don't like her oversinging every song she does on this show. She was off-key at the beginning of the song. I thought her sass would play well with this song, but her furious face singing kind of threw a wrench in that. I was disappointed with that. Candice has the voice and attitude to do well with a theme like this. She was handed an opportunity to actually give a great performance but she didn't do all she could with that song.
Keith said she didn't overdo it. I laughed.
Grade: C-. It was a much better performance for Candice, but I expected a little more out of her with a song like this.
Bland Janelle & Kree the Janitor - "Like a Prayer" by Madonna (as covered by Jennifer Nettles)
Predictably, the girls did a country version of one of my favorite Madonna songs, because they're not versatile or creative enough to try anything else (at least Carrie Underwood didn't turn "Alone" into a country song and it was her best performance ever). Kree is wearing her baggy shirt again. Right away, Kree is off-key and so is Janelle. Janelle is more painfully off-key and whiny. Neither of the girls moved around a lot. But it was slightly funny when Janelle briefly forgot her lyrics.
Nicki rambled on and on about Kree and said that she outshined Janelle.
Grade: D+ for Kree and D- for Janelle.
Lazaro the Stutterer - "For Once In My Life" by Stevie Wonder
Smokey Robinson said: Perform how you want to perform and do what you like.
Lazaro decided to sing something uptempo (THANK YOU). His runs are off-key, though. His lower register is still spoken rather than sung and he seems a little out of breath when the beat kicks up. Then he starts singing flatly and it gets painful.
Randy called it better than last week, but he sounded disconnected from the song. Nicki calls him Fonzie and Ricky Ricardo.
Grade: D+. It was one of his better performances, but HE NEEDS TO SING ON KEY.
Bland Janelle - "You Keep Me Hanging On" by Diana Ross and the Supremes
Smokey Robinson said: She needs some dynamic in her arrangement.
Janelle is doing an original arrangement that she worked on when she was 14 and it's a slow one. Why? Why do you have to do this? Her runs are off-key. There's more off-key oversinging than there is emotion in the song.
The judges didn't say anything interesting. Janelle cries during the judges critiques.
Grade: D. She's a white girl with a guitar so maybe Vote For the Worst can switch to her if/ when Lazaro gets the boot. Keep the WGWG streak going (the initials are basically the same).
Tintin - "The Tracks of My Tears" by The Miracles
Smokey Robinson said: He basically tells Tintin the origin and background of the song so he can get a better idea of what the song is about (good thinking). He does the diva finger movements in the recording studio, which amuses me.
He's off-key in the first couple of measures. His falsetto is a little flat, too. He looks slightly awkward onstage. His shoulders look a little stiff sometimes.
The judges praised him to the moon and I rolled my eyes so far back I swore I could see my own brain.
Grade: D+. He has potential. He just needs to show his versaility AND SING ON KEY.
Candice, Amber, and Angie Big Hair - "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me" by The Supremes & The Temptations
It's no surprise that these girls were put together, since they're considered the three best contestants. But Amber and Angie's lower registers seem off. Candice tried to flirt but her furious face singing ruined that, too. The girls didn't move around too much, either. They did some one-armed choreography but that's it. Nothing too interesting.
Mariah was the only one who gave a critique and since she's not interesting, I didn't care.
Grade: C- for Angie and Amber, C+ for Candice.
Burnell Urkel - "My Cherie Amour" by Stevie Wonder
Smokey Robinson said: He has a captivating, soulful rasp, but he can't sound strained doing an intimate, romantic song.
Predictably, Burnell's French is terrible (sorry, it's one of my pet peeves). And he's off-key in the first line. His runs are off-key, too. When the key changes, he starts singing very flat. Smokey said the song was intimate, and I didn't get that at all in his performance.
The judges talked a lot about his outfit (which he probably wore to his prom).
Grade: D. There was nothing special about it and the mispronounced French turned me off.
Angie Big Hair - "Shop Around" by The Miracles
Smokey Robinson said: The song is very near and dear to him and she can have fun with it.
This is what I was waiting for with Angie. She was getting a chance to sing something uptempo and have fun with it. Her arrangement is a little rockin', too, but she's very breathy. She seemed a little out of breath in places and her lower register seemed warbly at the end of the second verse. Predictably, she throws in a couple unnecessary Idol-trademark glory notes. One of her glory notes was off-key.
I expected the judges to salivate over her, but they knock her down a little. Interesting. Randy calls her pitchy and I yell, "PITCHY IS NOT A WORD YOU MORON" at my laptop screen.
Amber - "Lately" by Stevie Wonder
Smokey Robinson said: She needs to feel it and let people know that she's feeling it.
Amber still thinks she's the second coming of Whitney Houston. She's not. She's painfully off-key in places, and she's overemoting again. She makes the same furious singing faces that Candice does. The last lyric she sings is, "this time could mean good-bye." Given that she was in the bottom three last week, this sounds a little prophetic.
Mariah creams her pants over her. So do the rest of the judges. I think the producers wanted to celebrate the loss of the last white guy with a guitar and decided to praise just about everyone to the moon.
Grade: D. I was unimpressed.
Lazaro the Stutterer, Burnell Urkel, and Tintin - "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)" by The Four Tops
Some of the harmonies were a little off-key. Tintin's diva snapping was kind of funny. Then Lazaro forgets his words. He seems to be doing some kind of penguin dance at the microphone. Overall, it was an all-out mess.
Nicki hated it (agreed). Burnell and Tintin then proceeded to throw Lazaro under the bus.
Grade: FAIL for all of them.
Kree the Janitor - "Don't Play That Song (You Lied)" by Aretha Franklin
Smokey Robinson said: He was going to call Aretha and make sure she watched Kree sing the song.
What in God's name made Kree think she could sing as well as Aretha? Her voice is not powerful enough to carry this song. Her high notes seem very strained. She also seems a little hunched over bobbing around onstage. Her runs are off-key.
Randy said it wasn't perfect (you can say that again). Mariah commended Kree on her bravery for taking on Aretha (I wouldn't call it bravery). Keith said that she didn't sound like Aretha (duh).
Grade: FAIL. The song was way too big for her and she had no business being anywhere near it.
And in the results show, all three guys were in the bottom three and Tintin was sent home. No real loss. See y'all next week.