‘American Idol’ 13 Recap: Top 11 Perform

Last week was not a good week at all for American Idol. Pretty much everyone came out and delivered mediocrity after mediocrity after mediocrity. It doesn’t help that the ratings this season have been terrible. Will this week be better (at least in terms of the talent)? We’ll see.

Ryan Seacrest mentions that this is an important week because whoever makes it to next week, into the Top 10, will join the Idol Tour this summer! Yay! I’m so relieved that they’re doing a tour this year. After they cancelled a bunch of dates last time because of poor ticket sales, I was worried they were just going to not do it at all this year. But I just hope they still come to my area. I just have to wait on that until I can fully breath a sigh of relief.

The intro videos before each performance feature the contestants doing imitations of each other–and aside from some of the great performances, these videos might be my favorite part of the night. Each one is hilarious!

1. Sam Woolf: “Come Together”
This is one of my favorite Beatles songs, and it’s been done quite a bit on American Idol (the ones that come to mind are Kris Allen and Carly Smithson). Sam doesn’t do that bad of a job or anything, though there are still a couple things to work on: like being more natural without a guitar, and putting a little more grit into his voice for a song like this. I’m no fan of Kris Allen, but I actually prefer Kris’ rendition.

2. Jessica Meuse: “The Sound of Silence”
I’m not familiar with this song, but it fits her style. This is the second time she’s said she’s performing a song that’s on her set list from performing pre-Idol. Jennifer Lopez and Keith urban are critical, coming off of all three judges doing the same last week for Jessica, but Harry Connick, Jr. likes it this time–and I do too. I didn’t notice at all that the band was off. She maybe could’ve been more expressive with her face, but that’s just being a little nitpicky.

3. C.J. Harris: “Can’t You See”
This is a C.J. performance through and through. Last week, he went with a safe song choice and it felt like a cover. But here, C.J. is purely himself. He sounds great and the song suits him perfectly. This is what we need to keep hearing from him.

4. Dexter Roberts: “Sweet Home Alabama”
Last week, the best performance of the night went to Dexter. Can he continue that streak? This is really fun because “Sweet Home Alabama” is such a fun song. I don’t have anything bad to say because it’s fine. But coming off of last week, it’s hard not to expect more than this from him.

5. Ben Briley: “Bennie and the Jets”
Here’s another song that’s iconic for previous Idol singers (for this one, it’s Haley Reinhart). It’s interesting hearing him do this because he’s country and I’m not used to this tune sounding country. I wasn’t sure at first because of that, but pretty soon I’m getting into it more. Maybe he should stick to country, but I still like it.

It’s one thing to show the results in real-time, but to split it up by gender makes it completely pointless because it doesn’t tell us anything about how the actual results will end up being.

6. Majesty Rose: “Let It Go”
When Ryan says Majesty is going to do a song from Frozen, you can hear the excitement from the audience as they realize what song. Of course, it’s the Oscar-winning song “Let It Go” by the wickedly talented, one and only Adele Dazeem! (Sorry, John Travolta! You’ll never live that one down.) Anyway, Majesty’s issue lately has been going sharp on the big notes–she really needs to work on that, seriously. There are a few good moments, but I don’t know. Plus, I’m not a fan of the arrangement because it just feels awkward when transitioning to the different parts of the song in such a short amount of time.

7. Caleb Johnson: “Skyfall”
After last week’s comments from the judges and even from many online, Caleb knew he needed to change things up–and boy, does he ever! I mean, Adele for Caleb?! You couldn’t pick two as opposite from each other as these two are. He gives it a rock edge to keep it him while maintaining the mood that we all love of this song. His voice is really strong, especially when holding out notes.

8. M.K. Nobilette: “To Make You Feel My Love”
M.K. has been on a downward spiral in recent weeks, and even looking/acting defeated last week. Tonight, she’s actually trying again, and her voice seems improved–not perfect, though–but maybe this means she’s not going out without a fight. Then again, is it too little too late at this point? We’ll find out tomorrow night. (On an unrelated note, semifinalist Emmanuel Zidor is in the audience and labeled as a friend of M.K.’s. Okay?)

9. Alex Preston: “Falling Slowly”
If you were to ask me to match “Falling Slowly” to one of this year’s contestants, I’d obviously pick Alex. I love, love, love this song!  This is the type of artist he is, and he sounds exceptional on it! One of the best performance of the night (his and Caleb’s are the top two so far). I can’t say enough good things about how beautiful this is.

10. Jena Irene: “Decode”
Regardless of your thoughts on Twilight, there’s no denying that those movies have had some fantastic songs, including this one. Jena was in danger last week, but she’s stepping it up here. This song really suits her style. And I love those power notes; I’m really getting into this performance. Go Jena! (She can be added in with Alex and Caleb in the top three.)

11. Malaya Watson: “I Am Changing”
Dreamgirls is one of my favorite movie musicals, and I’m glad she’s not going with the obvious (which is “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”). Malaya knows how to belt and this song allows her to do just that. There are obviously some areas where she could be more refined, but I have to say, I kind of like this.

Results in Real-Time:
Male Voters: 1. Caleb Johnson / 2. Jena Irene / 3. Alex Preston / 4. Majesty Rose / 5. M.K. Nobilette / 6. Malaya
Female Voters: 1. Caleb Johnson / 2. M.K. Nobilette / 3. Jena Irene / 4. Alex Preston / 5. Majesty Rose / 6. Malaya Watson

Favorite Performances: Alex Preston / Caleb Johnson / Jena Irene / C.J. Harris

My Votes: Alex Preston (50 votes) / Caleb Johnson (50 votes)

Bottom 3 Predictions: Jessica Meuse / Ben Briley / M.K. Nobilette

Elimination Prediction: M.K. Nobilette

Last week, I had a tough time initially with trying to make a prediction. This week, it’s both easy and hard when looking at who might end up in the Bottom 3.

I think it’s more than likely that both Ben and M.K. are in danger. Ben went away from his country roots to sing an Elton John tune, which might not have helped him. And for M.K., while she was definitely better than last week when she pretty much gave up, there’s a part of me that’s wondering if it’s too little too late for her, that she’s just being drug along in the Bottom 3 week after week and eventually that will result in her elimination if it keeps happening like this.

As for the final spot, Jessica or Malaya are the likely possibilities. Jessica does have a fan base, so that could help her. On the flip side, Malaya got the pimp spot, which will help her. Who knows, maybe it’ll be C.J., even though he was really good (but maybe voters forgot about him for some reason). Or since Majesty was such a mess, there could be an upset.

I hate to put Jessica in the Bottom 3 because there’s a good chance she won’t end up there. And if not her, then who? (Who knows, maybe I’ll change my mind in the morning.)

To read my thoughts on all the latest entertainment and pop culture news (including American Idol),

Tomorrow night, we’ll find out which 10 singers are heading out on tour this summer. And Idol‘s very own Harry Connick, Jr. will take to the stage to perform. See ya then…

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