Here's my quick wrap from last night, with contestants in no particular order:
Overall: Good night, for the performers and for twenty million pair of ears. After last week, we are eternally grateful.
Usher: My favorite mentor - He was generous and wise with his counsel. He'd make a good judge too, and I hear there's an opening next season.
Michael Lynche: What's with the back to the judges? Not sure that was a good decision, though it may have worked for him, artistically. From a TV viewer perspective it was odd - the backs of the judges were to him as well. But didn't hurt with the votes, and certainly didn't hurt h is performance. He's fine.
Lee DeWyse: His best, by far, ever ever ever. I loved it ("Treat her Like a Lady") completely. For the first time ever, I started to think- Lee can win.
Didi Benami: "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted?" Why does she keep picking songs that portend her fate? Not as bad as last week, but her voice collapses like a sack of rags when she hits the low register. She or Tim go tonight.
Andrew Garcia : Well, I guess Rihianna fans didn't vote for him. In a way, though, not a bad performance, and he was smart to pick a song that at least half of the audience would know - everyone under 18, that is. The oldsters - who don't vote nearly as often - have never heard "Forever" ever. He sang it well.
Casey James: Well I liked it, because - he's likeable. The performance? Competent, well performed, but not incredible. But he's sticking to what he does, and likes to do. He's staying within his comfort zone, which is (ummm) comfortable for viewers too. I just don't think he's broken out, and at this rate, he never will.
Siohban Magnus: Scheesh. Two not good performances in two weeks means that Siohban is vulnerable. I thought she was invulnerable from week one. What happened? Wrong song, in part. A beautiful song, that she fundamentally gutted and robbed of emotion and depth. Siohban's a real talent who's still trying to figure out what she is or who she is; wrong time to be searching...
Tim Urban: "Idol" turns into low comedy! It was a hilarious performance; felt like the whole show had been dumped into "The Wedding Singer;" but I liked him. Liked the whole deer in the headlights routine as he veered around the stage just before he segued into "And the Bride Cuts the Cake..." I hope Tim sticks around because he is so completely relateable. (In a funny way.)
Bowersox: Uncomfortable at the keyboard, it threw the whole performance off; but because she is so talented, she pulled the whole thing quickly out of the fire. But with all her great talent, I wonder how likeable she is to viewers - she's a little-to-a-lot arrogant; it may just be nerves, but a lot of this show is selling yourself to the biddies at home, and Bowersox almost dares them not to vote for her. Could hurt her down the stretch.
Katie Stevens: Judges loved it. I thought it was OK. "Chain of Fools" - a perfect song for her voice, so that was a smart choice. But overall kind of forgettable. I think she'll be OK. Not sure.
Aaron Kelly: I'm lost on this performance and on Aaron. People are voting for him and I have no idea why. But good luck, voters!