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Well, this promises to be a fun night. The celebrity coach is Andrew Lloyd Webber, who ranks right up there with Billy Joel in the ranks of people who almost completely ruined pop music forever, and who, in addition, is not a singer. In a true Morton’s Fork scenario, there are only two things that can happen tonight: the final six will sing songs from Jesus Christ Superstar, in which case I will hate them for ruining the songs, or they will sing songs from anything else Webber did ever, in which case I will hate them for singing horribly shitty tunes. But what can you do? There’s really not a lot you can do.

Ryan Toothpaste says of Sir Andy: “He has composed most of the important musicals of our time.” Gaaaaah, fuck you a thousand times, Ryan Toothpaste.

SYESHA ‘HILARY BANKS’ MERCADO (“One Rock ‘n’ Roll Too Many”): This is exactly the kind of bullshit half-assed yawn-boogie that ALW always writes when he is called upon to write something that sounds like rock music. That said, this is the first time I have ever seen Syesha do anything that in any way justifies the confidence some people have in her. She wasn’t great, but this was a really solid soul-belter type performance, charismatic and confident. I’m impressed with her for the first time. It can’t be heartening that the judges all say she’s got a great future ahead of her in Broadway musicals, but still: pretty good stuff from Syesha.

JASON ‘SCREECH POWERS’ CASTRO (“Memories”): Jason, the AI singer who can’t sing, picks a song that’s really hard to sing. And also that sucks the muck out from under your refrigerator. He doesn’t really do much to make it his own, and as a result, he sounds pretty bad: the deficiencies in his voice are pretty glaring, and he sounds like he’s off of the tempo half the song. This is definitely not his week, and I’d be worried about him if he wasn’t so pretty. Even Randy hated this one, and never before has Paula’s “vote with your vagina” agenda been more transparent.

BROOKE ‘SIMONE FOSTER’ WHITE (“You Must Love Me”): Get ready for more forced Brooke-tears! There’s a hilarious coaching moment where ALW gets on Brooke’s case for not understanding the profound depths of meaning contained in his crappy little vaudeville songs. She’s so emotionally overwhelmed by it that she forgets how the song goes, forcing me to sit through another 15 agonizing seconds of it. I don’t know why I liked Brooke at first; she’s a lot less like Tori Amos than she is Celine Dion crossed with Chan Marshall, and boy oh boy do I not mean that as a compliment. Also, NO, RANDY, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING FOR A SINGER IS NOT TO LISTEN TO ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER. We also got a fun reversal where Simon is the voice of forgiveness, contrasted to Merciless Paula.

DAVID ‘LUKE BROWER’ ARCHULETA (“Think of Me”): ALW just can’t figure out how men can sing lady songs! It’s craaaaaaazy! Archuleta gets a pretty nice arrangement, and he sings it really well, just like he usually does; I’m not sure what I think of him, actually – he never gets any worse, but never really gets any better, either. The judges don’t like good singers who don’t improve, but the Idol viewership loves cute young boys, so I fear he’s just gonna keep coming in every week delivering these predictably competent performances until he wins. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again now: I have no problem with his voice, and he plays the gosh-whillikers routine to the hilt, but I just wish he weren’t so boring. Simon, under the be-nice edict, says what we’re all thinking if by all you mean me: David is pleasant but forgettable and should have been booted weeks ago.

CARLY ‘JO POLNIACZEK‘ SMITHSON (“Jesus Christ Superstar“): Wow, I hate to admit it, but Andrew Lloyd Webber was right about this – it’s a much, much, much better choice for her than “All I Ask of You”. Also, it’s the only Idol contestant I like, singing a song from the only ALW show I can tolerate. The thrift store clothes are really wearing thin, but she blows me away with the vocal performance – her usual loud style is more rock-oriented, but she went for a sort of R&B shouter effect here and it worked quite well, I thought. I’ve been pretty hard on Carly the last few weeks, because she’s been boring and generally lax, but I think she really scored here – this is why I liked Carly in the first place. Even Paula has something insightful to say, pointed out that she really nailed the choruses with that halting little stutter-step hesitation before she started belting. Well done!

DAVID ‘JOEY RUSSO‘ COOK (“Music of the Night”): Okay, I know I hate David Cook and am thus predisposed to not cut him any slack, but is it just me, or did this really suck? It just seemed like he was all over the place, missing cues, flattening notes, and, not to get all Randy Jacksonian, but he seemed really pitchy. He’s got a cocky stride by now, and the girls love him, and inexplicably, so do the judges, so my fear of Taylor Hicks II is just four episodes from coming true, but I’m trying to be as objective as I can, because I liked him at first – I just thought this was a terrible performance. Oh and also I hate that song like I hate cancer. Cancer in me, not in other people. Finally, nice shirt, Andrew Lloyd Webber, you ridiculous dink.

Prediction: The bottom three will be Brooke, Carly and Syesha, and I think we’ve probably seen all we’re gonna see of Brooke White.


Syesha Mercado: "The Rap"
Jason Castro: "The Journey to the Heaviside Layer"
Brooke White: "Call Me Rusty"
David Archuleta: "This Jesus Must Die"
Carly Smithson: "You Suck, Andrew Lloyd Webber (And I Hate You)"
David Cook: "Eternal Youth is Worth a Little Suffering"


Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:54 am (UTC)
Not a big Andrew Lloyd Webber fan, huh?
Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:57 am (UTC)
My official position is that he sucks and I hate him.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 03:12 am (UTC)
What, no "Mr. Mistoffeles"?

Christ. I fucking hate that guy a lot. Truckloads.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 04:16 am (UTC)
I like ALW. That and my unrepentant love of Madonna and Bon Jovi circa 1989 consign me to music hell, I know, but at least in hell I know all the words!

This was the first week I loved the boobs out of Carly. She not only picked a song from JCS, she picked one of the good 'uns, and she tore it up.

I thought David Archuleta's arrangement was stupid. Pffffthbbt, David Archuleta.

And finally, I submit that you perhaps overestimate the prettines factor. American Idols: Jordin Sparks, Taylor Hicks, Carrie Underwood, Fantasia Burrino, Rubin Studdard, Kelly Clarkson. Wherein lies dreamy McHearthrob? I think maybe the judges are so unreasonably harsh on Carly cause they want to handicap the boyzzz.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 04:28 am (UTC)
Let's argue about "I Don't Know How To Love Him" for old times' sake
I happily admit that I am overestimating the tweener/geezer vote. The pretty boys seem to stay in a long time, but never actually win (viddy Clay Aiken). I keep thinking I'll eventually figure this show out, but I can't, meaning that I have been outsmarted for five years running by a dumb singing contest. O my achin' pride!

Oddly enough, and I cannot say exactly why except for possibly "Guitar Hero" and a number of recent interviews with surprisingly self-aware hair metal dudes, my anti-Bon Jovi stance has softened considerably of late, and I've never really hated Madonna so much as I have found her completely insane. I still can't stand Andrew Lloyd Webber, though. Someday Jason Castro will truly win my heart by shooting one of the innumerable goofballs they have on stage every week, but that day is not here...yet.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 03:01 pm (UTC)
Re: Let's argue about "I Don't Know How To Love Him" for old times' sake
i'm not a fan at all of ALW. Had to explain to M why I wasn't, although she could barely hear me over her unrepentant love of "Evita". I was finally able to nail it, though, in that that he stuff is so cloying and yet, it doesn't move me at all. Not a stitch.

Since you brought up "I don't know how to love him", Sinead O'Connor does a pretty solid version of this on "Theology".

I was really disappointed at David Cook. Thought Simon's comment of it being "rounded off" was spot on. I was looking for a little dark hook in there somewhere, but found nothing.

Jason Castro should go home. His voice was lost in the music--doesn't help that Fox's HD programming consistently f's the sound mixing--and it was just bad. At least Brooke finally made it through the song and got some emotion out of it. Which, when you think about it, is like finding WMDs in Iraq.

She deserves a medal, yo.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 05:23 am (UTC)
OT-Argh, our TiFaux decided we didn't want to watch this because our Fox network outlet (don't blame snow, you bastards, there is snow other places and they have proper program announcements) didn't catch it. Based on song selection solely, I give it to Carly. Man. Oh man, those other selections make me wish I was stuck sitting next to my mom, watching the terrible songs from ALW's justly forgotten "Whistle Down The Wind" musical adaptation I got stuck with back in November.

Also, Archuleta is the Forrest Gump of contestants. So he will win because America = Loves Retards.

Apr. 23rd, 2008 12:03 pm (UTC)
My prediction for the bottom three will be syesha, brooke, and jason castro, and brooke will go home.

I thought syesha was pretty great.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC)
I wasn't going to watch because Andrew Lloyd Webber is like scraping my eyes and liver out at the same time. I thought Dor would have vomited on the floor listening to this stuff.

But then I realized that this would be really, really funny. And it was! I think Syesha actually sounded great, and she should quit the show to be the black woman on Broadway. The other one has to be getting old, right? Or moving on to soap operas.

And Jason was... I can't believe that happened. That was unbelievably bad. I think he gets the bottom three; on performance alone, he should go hoooooome.

I think Paula wanted to punch Brooke in the guts for making her hear that. Wow.

I actually started falling asleep during Archuleta.

Carly hit it like she was the Cubs and the song was Mets pitching.

Did the judges like David's performance? I thought it was horrific. Yet... maybe competent? It was all in that range of what I often think of as "crap" but musical theater people seem to like.

Also, shouldn't all of these music nerds learned how to sing for the stage in high school? Don't all schools put on musicals, and the good singers start thinking they have a future, and then they end up on American Idol?

Ramiele would have killed this week.

Brooke will go home because Jason's too cute. Even though "America" hates mediocre black singers (but condones mediocre cute white singers with dreds who say dumb things like "whoa, this song is like popular! what a fucking keanu offshoot), I can't believe that more people would vote for Syesha after she, as Randy would say, "smashed it."
Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:27 pm (UTC)
Your opinions are irrelevant. You are very full of yourself, which is not surprising considering you've got your head up your ass.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:29 pm (UTC)
I hope I'm not full of someone else, at least!
thanks, "Anonymous," I'm so very angry now. How do you know where I have my head? Are you trying to get up my ass?
Apr. 23rd, 2008 04:16 pm (UTC)
Re: I hope I'm not full of someone else, at least!
I think that was directed at leonard not you. Still not OK though, a nonny mouse!
Apr. 23rd, 2008 04:19 pm (UTC)
what kind of moron can't reply to the main post?

I'm not angry at all. I just wanted to rip mr or ms nonny mouse a new assface.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 04:28 pm (UTC)
Re: hmmmph.
the kind of moron who thinks either you or leonard is full of yourself and says so in an anonymous comment.
Apr. 23rd, 2008 02:57 pm (UTC)
did you hear paula tell david cook he had a fine instrument?
Apr. 23rd, 2008 07:42 pm (UTC)
"R&B shouter" - hey can we get an AI gospel week? That would separate out the wannabes.
Apr. 24th, 2008 02:16 am (UTC)
David "Combover" Cook
David "Combover" Cook is a poser (in French, poseur). Everything about him is an affectation. There is no shortage of people in the world who can sing. Let's save our praise for those that have integrity and a soul.


flavored with age
Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator
Ludic Log


Leonard Pierce is a freelance writer wandering around Texas with no sleep or sense of direction. If you give him money he will write something for you. If you are nice to him he may come to your house and get drunk.

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