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Jacob Lusk amazes, Stefano Langone and Pia Toscano impress on 'American Idol'

"AMERICAN IDOL": Final 12: Top Row, from left:

"AMERICAN IDOL": Final 12: Top Row, from left: Pia Toscano (holding image of Casey Abrams), James Durbin, Paul McDonald, Jacob Lusk and Scotty McCreery. Bottom Row, from left: Haley Reinhart, Karen Rodriguez, Stefano Langone, Naima Adedapo, Thia Megia and Lauren Alaina. (March 16, 2011) Credit: Fox

Until Jacob Lusk showed up "American Idol" wasn't having a great night letting the finalists sing songs from the year they were born. 

Stefano Langone may have become a dark horse contender, Pia Toscano and Scotty McCreedy were good the same way they always are, but everyone else seemed to be just OK at best -- some nerves, lots of pitchiness, it was almost like any other year instead of the season of greatness.

But, oh Jacob . . . He closed the show big, pouring his all into it and reminding us just how high the bar has been set this year.

Here's how I rated everyone. Put in your thoughts in the comments below.

1) Jacob Lusk did his thing on "Alone." He's just such an emotional performer, with the pipes to do anything. He always leaves me shaking my head and grinning.

2) Stefano Langone introduced himself as a contender with a pitch-perfect "If You Don't Know Me By Now." I see thousands of teen girls taking notice.

3) Pia Toscano sang "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" the way she does everything: Big, bold and to general applause. Just wish she were more creative.

4) If you missed Scotty McCreedy singing "Can I Trust You With My Heart" no worries. It was as good, and predictable, as always.

5) Lauren Alaina could've given us a moment with "I'm the Only One," but maybe because she was sick we just got a pretty good performance.

6) James Durbin was strong on "I'll Be There for You" -- he's gonna be even better singing Aerosmith with Steven Tyler on the finale (they promised!).

7) Thia Megia's "Colors of the Wind" wasn't anything special, as J.Lo said. J.Lo told her she hopes she "comes out next week and kills it."

8) Casey Abrams  was definitely "screamy-screechy" on "Smells Like Teen Spirit" to use J.Lo's words. Not sure he's that fearless either. It feels the same every week to me.

9) Karen Rodriguez wasn't horrible on "Love Will Lead You Back" but the best part of her segment was her super-cute, super-proud mom.

10) Sick Paul McDonald was all over the place on "I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues." He really needs to learn how to dance.

11) Haley Reinhart got lipstick all over her face singing "I'm Your Baby Tonight." Her vocals were just as messy.

12) Pitchy Naima Adedapo got panned for "What's Love Got to Do With It." As Randy Jackson put it, "vocals are kind of a mess."

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