American Idol: Top 13 Perform

After the BIG elimination last week we get to see the top 13 contestants performing for the judges and America. Ryan Seacrest (out) says the songs this week are going to be their personal idol’s tune. They were working with Jimmy Iovine all week. Here’s your review:

Lauren Alaina is singing Shania Twain’s “Any Man of Mine” in the tough first spot- a frequently voted out position on the show. Bit of a twangy version going into a powerful honkytonk chorus, sounds a bit karaoke to me. Cryptkeeper says it was not “kick-ass” enough. JLo’s lipstick didn’t say anything about the performance. Randy J says it was not the right song.

Beardman Casey Abrams is up next with Joe Cocker’s version of the Beatles “With a Little Help from my Friends” which he first heard on Wonder Years (rarrrh Winnie Cooper). Great song choice, starts off slow sitting on the stairs before letting loose, hitting the Cocker growl and the falsettos and anger and personal wide-eyed flair. Standing O. Well done. JLo says she was blown away, RJ calls him unbelievable and fun, Mr.Tyler calls him a rainbow of talent, a plethora of passion.

Next up is wildcard winner Ashthon Jones doing “When You Tell Me That You Love Me” by Diana Ross. I’m not sure if her voice was channeling Diana Ross but her huge hair certainly was. I think the song was kinda dull, not too exciting. Randy calls it safe, Stephen agrees, Jennifer Lopez says pick more popular songs. This is a common mistake I’ve noticed over the years with younger contestant is that they pick lesser known songs.

The incredibly strange Paul McDonald is up next with Ryan Adams’ “Come Pick Me Up”. Don Was loved his jacket from last week. Warms up the crowd during the intro. He’s wearing a weird red trimmed militaryesque jacket this week. Singing well but dancing in his own “unique” style all over the stage. ST says no matter what song he does, it becomes his. JLo loves his moves and uniqueness. RJ loves his character. Seacreast hilariously tries to do the moves. I’m still picking Paul as the winner, assuming America “gets” him.

Out in a sparkly dress with a weird train, Pia Toscano is taking on Celine Dion “All By Myself”. Uhm Eric Carmena anyone? It’s a huuge song and she hits those big notes well. The song is just a showcase for those soaring vocals. She has rendered JLo practically speechless. Thank you. Randy calls it hot dope cool. Stephen, clearly referring to his own daydream about her, says she polished the apple.

James Durbin is making a smart move choosing Paul McCartney’s “Maybe I’m Amazed”. His take on the Macca classic is more straightforward than the video package would make you think. His voice totally reminds me of Sebastian Bach (Skid Row). Very nice job, Screeching vocals but in control. RJackson says he slayed it and he can sing anything and he’s dangerous. Good job says Tyler. JLo says he has a melodic quality and he can really sing. Nice job James.

Haley Reinhart up next doing the LeAnne Rimes song “Blue” Wow- the song starts off with wobbly off notes. This is painful it’s so sharp. If you live in an older house with thin windows you might want to inspect for cracks. For some reason ST loves it. JLo compares her to Paul- umm no. RJ speaking the truth calls it sleepy and boring.

Jacob Lusk is on now singing R Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly” which is a good song for his powerful voice. He’s doing those weird scale runs again as a preacher’s robed chorus joins him and he belts it out. I might be the only one in America but I don’t like Jacob. He needs to tone it down a bit. ST says he’s so good he can’t even judge it, JLo agrees. I’ll judge it: not for me. Randy is excited for him.

Cute as a button Thia Megia hits the Idol stage next with Michael Jackson’s “Smile”. If you could choose any MJ song, would that be the one? Probably not. Is this another young contestant making the mistake of choosing a lesser known song? Yep. It’s not even a Michael song anyway, it’s a cover. She sings it pretty well but America’s going to like more popular songs over this. Randy calls it pitchy, the first use of “pitchy” this whole season! Aerosteve makes it the second use of the word right after. Jen wants to see her move more but says she sings like an angel anyway. She’s seen in tears after the break, I feel bad for her.

Another wildcard, Stefano Langone is doing Stevie Wonder’s “Lately” They give him a sort of dance remix beat to the song in the middle which is enough to keep me distracted from his weird facial expressions. Dude looks like he’s in pain when he sings. Decent performance. ST says it soared like a volcano, whatever that means. Judges all seemed to like it quite a bit.

Karen Rodriguez is ready next with her sparkly pants suit cross top thing doing Selena’s “I Could Fall in Love”. Well done, maybe a little safe even, not her best performance though. Judges thought it was a bit sleepy and not too exciting and I’d agree.

Country boy Scotty McCreery up on the big ol’ stage now singing Garth Brooks’ “The River”. Don Was says he’s a great storyteller. I’m having trouble getting over his Alfred E. Newman resemblance. Nice version. RJ likes it. Stephen Tyler is totally in space right now, looks like his meds are wearing off towards the end of the show. JL digs the performance and audience interaction.

Finishing up the night is Naima Adedapo covering “Umbrella” by Rihanna complete with hip-hop reggaeton breakdown showing off her dance moves nicely. Great finish, good song style for her to do. Stephen says she was pitchy but brought the flavor, JLo says she has fire like a real star. RJ dug the reggae part.

Airings prediction for bottom 3: Ashthon Jones, Karen Rodriguez, and Haley Reinhart. Sorry ladies, it was the men’s night tonight.

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