American Idol Top 7 Review: If only we could have made tonight the finale, Crystal Bowersox wins!

We could have had just two contestants tonight. They would be Crystal Bowersox against the best that each of the other contestants has to offer, and Crystal would just blow them all away as if they were dust.

1. Casey James – Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow – Fleetwood Mac – Casey did leave us thinking about tomorrow, yesterday and any time but not as we watched. He did the song well enough, but he was off key throughout which destroyed a classic for us. We don’t care that he attempted to imitate the song as much as possible, but his vocal sounded more like an off key Huey Lewis instead of Lindsey Buckingham. We have said throughout he is not a soloist, and should be in a band, and that rang true again, but this week, even a band could not have saved the performance. For the first time we can remember, Casey was off key and it wasn’t pleasant. (6/10)

2. Lee Dwyze – The Boxer by Simon and Garfunkle – Lee is possibly the most artistic of the group of performers this year and he also has possibly the most recordable style. Each week we can close our eyes and imagine bopping down the highway cranking up a Lee Dewyze tune. He knows how to really twist a song so it is current and catchy. When you can do that with one of the greatest Simon and Garfunkel songs of all time, that says you are a star. (9.8/10)

3. Tim Urban – Better Days by Goo Goo Dolls Tim did a wonderful arrangement of this song.  His guitar was nice.  But unfortunately, he didn’t sing a single note on key.  He was off key throughout and it hurt to listen to.  We think that had he been on key, this would have been a great performance for him, or at least as great as it could be for Tim.  But it wasn’t.  (4/10)

4. Aaron Kelly – I Believe I Can Fly – R. KellyAaron took this song and made it his own.  He made it spectacularly boring, off key and frightening.  Instead of giving us a life changing experience, he gave us a channel changing one.  Aaron has a great voice, no doubt, but he is so awful on stage.  And we could still never see him doing anything we would ever want to listen to without a fast forward on our DVR.  He should be in the bottom three. (4/10)

5. Siobhan Magnus – When you Believe – Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston (Theme from the Prince of Egypt) – You know, Siobhan can sing, but she takes the songs and makes them all sound like they came from a Disney movie.  We were waiting to see if Mickey Mouse and the crew would take the stage behind her waving at the audience.  She hit one saintly note at the end, but she was pitchy, dull and quite honestly bad.  She keeps saying how much the song meant to her, but that isn’t an excuse for a poor performance.  This was another channel changer.  (6/10)

6. Michael Lynche – Hero – Chad Kroeger feat. Josey ScottThis is a classic power ballad sung by two powerful vocalists that play off each other’s sound.  When a single person does it, it loses that appeal.  However, Michael belted this song out.  He did not pucker like he was going to eat the microphone as he usually does, and he hit every note on target.  It was a strong performance even if the judges didn’t necessarily see it.   We did not believe Michael should have been saved when he was, but this was another example of his better performances, when he stands still, doesn’t come across as Shrek and doesn’t do his fish imitation.  Still, those steroids do nothing for us. (8/10)

7. Crystal Bowersox – People Get Ready by the ImpressionsCrystal took kind of a gospel song and performed it like an absolute pro.  Of course, she is an absolute pro, every week.  She cannot miss.  We believe she could sing a Miss Piggy song at this point and still win this competition. (10/10)

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So now to weed out the most painful performers of the night.  The two absolute worst by far were Aaron and Tim.  Aaron should be gone by now.  He is dull and horrible.  There is no way he could ever win this and he is so outclassed it is pathetic.  Tim is only still here because of votefortheworst, a joke of a website that just seeks to make fun of Idol.  We would like to see both of these jokers go.

But we need someone else for the bottom three.  That would be between Siohban and Casey.  Both were equally bad tonight.  But they were still leaps and bounds better than the Bobbsey Twins of horror.  Either one goes and we will let out a cheer.  We favor Aaron to go over Tim, but not by much.

We were wrong on one artist on double elimination week.  Siobhan or Aaron should have been on the train out of LA.  And they both proved they are not capable of winning unless a miracle happens for one of them.  Tim, well, the miracle happens for him every week.  The Sanjaya of the season.

American Idol Top 9 Beatles Review: The Judges Truly Moved Us This Week…

And after we were done, washed our hands of American Idol as a viable venue for judging talent, and returned from the john, we sat down and tried to analyze what was clearly one of the worst weeks in Idol history from a performance and judging perspective.

One huge problem with this week was the Beatles theme. Out of approximately 400 Beatles songs, not including those done by the individual artists, the bulk of this hapless bunch picked the most overdone and/or boring possible.

But the worst part of all was not listening to the performances themselves, but listening to the judges bickering about style or suffering through the inconsistent and nonsensical comments after each performer had struggled through their respective debacle. (Note all the performers were not horrible, just most of them)

We are changing our rating scale this week. Normally we rate each performance on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being akin to glass being dragged across a chalk board, and 10 being a performance we would like to hear on the radio, or maybe even add to our personal collection!

This week, each artist butchered their particular song in their own special way save a couple. And the judges were clueless. Some of the comments made by this hapless lot prove these individuals are oxygen deprived and suffering from severe brain hemorrhage.

So, this week, we will rate the contestants from 1-10, 1 being the least likely to make their audience barf and 10 being the least likely to get their audience to turn off the radio for the rest of their life.

Before we begin, we send out a humble apology to Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr for the embarrassment American Idol has caused you, and we hope that John Lennon’s and George Harrison’s memorials can be repaired after the severe disturbances resulting as they continually rolled over in their graves.

1. Aaron Kelly – “The Long and Winding Road” – We were certain after this performance and after Aaron had to go first, he was certain to rank even below Tim Urban. Aaron picked this song because he has been deluded into believing he can sing. It is painful to watch him because he takes himself so seriously and we feel embarrassed, like when we watch a relative we know can’t hit a single note jump up at a wedding and do a karaoke performance of some outdated love song. This was pure pain because the song, while beautiful, requires an extremely strong artist, and was made popular by one of the best pop vocalists of all time. Aaron made it his own, entering a performance consistent with listening to the after lunch symphony in a men’s room. On a nauseating scale of 1-10, this rates an 8/10.

2. Katie Stevens – “Let It Be” – If you are going to pick a Beatles song, and you honestly believe you are going to compare to them in any way, you shouldn’t pick one of the biggest hits of all time. We don’t normally criticize song choice, but Katie proved we are wrong about that some of the time. For anyone to think they can perform this song well demonstrates a total lack of any understanding of music, or a total inability to grasp how insignificant the performance will be. Katie was far from unquestionable talent on this performance. After babbling and making idiotic comments about Aaron’s Long Whining Toad, the judges started actually arguing about whether this performance was a country or pop/R&B style. They are so clueless, and they get millions to embarrass both America and the worldwide audience. To add insult to injury, the judges liked this horrific, although on key performance, that sounded more like what we would hear during a mid-summer church service while we daydreamed about bolting for the beach as soon as the final note was over. On the nauseating scale of 1-10, Katie almost matched Aaron. (7/10)

3. Andrew Garcia – “Can’t Buy Me Love” – Andrew did a fun and inspiring performance of this song. We think it a bit too pop for his style, but he performed it extremely well and embarrassed the performers that went before him. So, what did the sub-80 IQ judges say? They dumped on it, except for the Ellen, our breath of fresh air. After we had been nauseated two consecutive times by performances upon which the judges commented positively, they bashed Andrew for what was one of his best stage performances of the season, and one we would love to hear on the radio. We can’t rate him up with Crystal this or any week, but he did not make us want to part with our lunch. (2/10)

4. Michael Lynche – “Eleanor Rigby” – We don’t like Michael, but he has a fantastic voice. So week after week, we have these moments where we are so disappointed he is doing well. We didn’t have to worry about it this week. Michael belted out the song alright; it just wasn’t Eleanor Rigby. We have no idea what it was. The judges idiotically claimed they could hear this on the radio. Hopefully not on any radio we listen to. Michael looked comical as he practically kissed the microphone during the performance looking as though if he inhaled he would accidentally consume the thing and have to be rushed to the hospital. This was a horrible performance. Michael destroyed a great song by making it his own. And the judges were clueless. On a nauseating scale of 1-10, (9/10)

5. Crystal Bowersox – “Come Together” –Crystal once again was the shining star. She was so far above the performers that went before her that we think she should go straight to the finals. The only negative comment this clueless bunch of judges could make was to say that it wasn’t her best performance, because there is nothing really negative to say at all, and the judges would do best to just say nothing at all. (1/10)

6. Tim Urban – “All My Loving” – Leave it to Tim to make All My Loving sound like a Ringo Starr song. He played guitar on this song, and it reminded us of a young child that had just finished his first year of guitar lessons and was finally playing for his parents for the first time. He took the song, which is fun and romantic and made it into a dull and senseless torture. After it was over, the judges appeared to be trying to convince the audience not to vote for him any more by actually praising this horrific disaster, even saying they could listen to it on the radio! On the nauseating scale of 1-10, Tim didn’t do all that badly, but only because Michael had been so completely nauseating. (7/10)

7. Casey James – “Jealous Guy” – Casey chose to do a John Lennon song, which we didn’t care for much. It wasn’t because he didn’t nail it, he did. It was because there are so many wonderful Beatles songs so why do an obscure Lennon tune. We could list at least 40 songs he could have done and demonstrated equal talent and the audience could have better identified with. Still, he had a driving performance and received great praise from the judges in their first successful attempt of the night to judge musical talent. So, Casey gets a 1/10 because he was far from nauseating, but we give Crystal the nod on what we would rather hear on the radio.

8. Siobhan Magnus – “Across the Universe” – Well, somebody should change Siobhan’s world this week. What in John Lennon’s name was she thinking? She butchered this song performing it as though it was a Beatles song being performed by a no talent high school opera singer. We weren’t totally nauseated as we were with Michael, but it was pretty sickening. (7/10)

9. Lee Dewyze – “Hey Jude” – Once again, a choice of one of the biggest hits of all time and that has been so overdone on this show and on television by artists that cannot hold a candle to the Beatles. So, what do we get out of Lee this week after some great performances we thought for sure would put him into our MP3 player? We get a boring and foolish off key performance in which a bag pipe player walks down the stairs to join him at the end. A bag pipe player. On Hey Jude. Did we say he was playing a bag pipe? Did we say he was wearing a Scottish kilt? Did we say how completely idiotic it made the performance? Still it was not as sickening as most. (6/10)

So, this week, we have to ship out those contestants most likely to send us rushing to the rest room.

Crystal, Casey and Andrew were great and did not rank among the toilet humor of this show. So, they are safe, thankfully, because we were running out of undigested food.

The rest were all horrible. The four most nauseating were, in this order:

1. Michael Lynche

2. Aaron Kelly

3. Tim Urban

4. Siobhan Magnus

If the audience listens to the judges, who were horrible and defied common sense this week, but still unfortunately influence votes, one of the best performers of the week, Andrew Garcia would go home, and the worst, Michael Lynche just cinched a place in the finals. That is how completely off the mark these judges were, and we hope the audience sees right through their fallacy of self importance.

Our bottom three have to come from the four above, which is almost in direct contrast to the judges’ stated opinions. These four were all horrible, but Michael stood out in the tidy bowl bunch, and if he doesn’t make the bottom three this week, just give him the million bucks, because no one can hear anyway and we can save time.

Aaron should have gone last week but he survived thanks to the tone deaf judges. Once again, they assisted him when they should have just plain out stated he stunk worse than Tim Urban has all season. He is in our bottom three for sure and we hope he doesn’t circle the bowl long before he gets flushed.

Tim Urban was as bad as always, but the Judges have started to actually praise him. Despite the fact that Tim’s haircut looks like it would be effective for cleaning the toilet, we think he wasn’t much worse than Siobhan. The judges praised his flatulent performance and could fool the audience into saving him again this week.

Siobhan was horrible this week and destroyed a great Beatles tune. We think this gal needs a wake-up call because she is good, but she has been butchering songs for several weeks now. If Tim isn’t in the bottom 3, or if Mike is saved because of the blind, deaf and dumb judges failing to flush him, Siobhan should kiss the bottom of the bowl this week.

All that said, we think Michael should go home. If Didi can be eliminated for a bad week, then Michael should go before he swallows a microphone. Didi had a real chance to make the top five if she had gotten to this week. This is exactly the style of music in which she excels. But she blew it on a bad performance last week. Michael blew it worse this week and should go. He shouldn’t be saved.

However, if we are rating the overall nausea factor over several weeks, we would like Aaron to go and would cheer as well if Tim were the chosen one.

Nuff said, we have to go clean up.

American Idol Top 10 Review: Consistency Wins, Popularity Rules and Tim Urban Stinks

We have weeks when we watch this show and feel we had no idea where the judges were coming from.  We have had weeks when we watch the show and feel we had no idea where the artists were coming from.  And we have had weeks when we watch the show and feel we had no idea where the producers were coming from.  They all screw up, and they all do great things at times, but this week, it was all cut and dry.

Let’s cut to it quick.

1.       Siobhan Magnus – “Through the Fire” by Chaka Khan – we like Siobhan and are from MA ourselves so would like to root for her.  But we find she is often over the top, and have said it before.  She has strong pipes, no doubt, but in this performance and many others, we feel she lacks maturity and also lacks the knowledge of her place in the world.  This song was underdone and off key some of the time and on pitch but overdone the rest.  While it was not an elimination performance, give it a week or two and it could be. (7/10)

2.       Casey  James – “Hold On, I’m Coming” by Sam and Dave – Casey  is a stationary band style performer that always looks like he is having fun.  He did a Huey Lewis song last week and we loved it, because that is the kind of performer we see in him.  Feeling it, hitting the notes consistently and having fun.  Still, he is just a tad too stationary.  So while his vocal is great and he gets our feet tapping, his posture is saying he has no idea how to handle the stage.  But this is common with many band performers because they aren’t the entire act, just the lead.  Once again this week, this “dawg” nailed it, and we would have cranked up the radio on this performance. (9/10)

3.       Michael Lynche – “Ready for Love” by india.arie – For a steroid worshiper, the voice Michael has is surprising.  He looks like a jock from the gym, which he is, and then comes out with these soulful moments that catch you off guard.  He has you shaking your head because things don’t seem right.  Like tonight, he was playing the guitar and his hand looks bigger than the body of the guitar.  His size is in direct contrast with those we would classify as great musical performers, and we think it will impact him.  Still, Shrek killed it again, despite being rather boring.  (8/10)

4.       Didi Benami – “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted” by Jimmy Ruffiin – We hope that the broken hearted only become broken for a week, because Did broke our heart this week. We find that when an artist says he or she performed  a song because it meant something to them or because it was for someone like their dead granny, the performance stinks.  We are not sure why; maybe it is because it sounds like they are doing it in their living room rather than for millions of people.  Didi contradicted her own performance claiming she was out of her style doing R&B, which we believe, but then she said how much the song meant to her.   None of it rang true.  She could have drawn this song into her style, and instead she adapted her style to the song, which failed miserably. Didi has that great off beat persona and style, and this week presented an amazingly weak performance with no beat or style.  We are torn, because we like Didi, but she stunk.   So should she get points for her prior performances?  We won’t do that…yet. (4/10)

5.       Tim Urban –“Sweet Love” by Anita Baker – the only possible savior for Didi this week is Tim.  He is just awful week after week.  His look is corny, his haircut atrocious, and we believe the teeny boppers even have to be getting tired of him.  This was a difficult song to sing, but most are difficult for Tim because he just isn’t that good.  But he does always “just have fun out there”. We see him as having zero chance of being a successful musical artist in any music style going forward.  So what do we do this week when he actually outperformed Didi despite being awful?  Sigh.  Well, he only outperformed her by a quarter point, so we will round down. (4/10)

6.       Andrew Garcia – “Forever” by Chris Brown – Now, we said Andrew had soul.  And the judges said, when he picked a soul song last week, it was a bad song choice.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  This guy has soul and can draw in his audience, but he has to get past the lack of confidence.  Soul is all about feeling and emotion and if you come across as timid, well, it is very difficult to express soul. This week Andrew had soul, felt and reflected it in his song, and drew a tear or two.  Great job Andrew and a winning performance.  Best performance of the season by Andrew and we would turn this one way up on the radio. (10/10)

7.       Katie Stevens – “Chain of Fools” by Aretha Franklin – Lack of maturity is something that does not always break a performer.  We have seen some great 17 year olds on this show that do not perform at all like children.  But no matter how you dress Katie up, no matter how sexy you make the presentation and no matter how seasoned the song, she still has trouble portraying maturity beyond that of Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the Power Rangers. Her vocal tonight was OK, but her sultry look drew a cringe because it wasn’t her.  Simon says she should do country music.  You know, that is kind of clever for her, because she looks silly trying to be a sexy adult at this juncture, but can belt out a tune.  A song that tells a story and that portrays her having fun, rather than making the audience feel she is attempting to seduce them, would be better and more believable.  Country offers that.  But we don’t like her much and think little will help to make this gal a star. (6/10)

8.       Lee DeWyze – “Treat Her Like a Lady” by Cornelius Brothers – This is one of the best Motown songs of all time. If you try to do it like the original, you are likely to lose, but if you go far off the original, you have to have great talent to get fans to like your version.    Lee has great talent.  This version was almost unrecognizable,  but if we heard this on the radio, we wouldn’t just crank it up, we would be Googling it to find out where we could buy it.  Lee has amazing creativity, a unique vocal style and a soulfulness to his sound that we just can’t resist.  And he is starting to get it, which makes him even more scary. (10/10)

9.       Crystal Bowersox – “Midnight Train to Georgia” by Gladys Knight and the Pips – Now, when someone like Crystal does Gladys Night and it sounds like the Pips are backing her up, you wonder if you have lost your bearing with  reality.  Crystal was attempting to step out of her box this week, and we understand that because the judges constantly encourage it.   But Simon is also right when he says if you have a winning style, stick with it.  We don’t want to see Crystal follow this week’s digression from her style and stray too far from her roots, because she is already fantastic.  We think she can play the piano in future performances, but  she has to be less focused on the instrument  Still, we can’t fault her for that here, because despite it all, her performance was brilliant.  And she made us actually want to listen to a Gladys Night song.  That is a major feat.  (10/10)

10.   Aaron Kelly – “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers – Well, we were kind of hoping Aaron would go away on this performance.  While he offers a better vocal than Tim Urban, we see little hope of this boy being a performing artist.  He is dull, unbelievable and much too immature.  He makes the Janus Brothers look old.  And when he does an older song, it shows he only has hope at this juncture by trying to find some appeal as a teeny bopper, surrendering to the reality he will be used up by the time he is 19.  Aaron was off key and will never win this competition, but was not as bad as Didi or Tim.  (5/10)

OK, we were dead on last week in our calls.  We called the bottom three and the loser.  Let’s see how we do this week.

The tie for last place is between Tim and Didi.  This is a shame, because Didi can be so great if she gets back to that off beat style we love her for.  When she uses that style and doesn’t get wrapped up in the nonsense about the song meaning a lot to her, we like her.  You can take things too seriously, and Didi was a major victim of it this week.  Her saving grace this week is that Tim is hard to take seriously at all as is Aaron.

We can’t see any of these three being a winner this year, or any year, but we can see Didi having a career with her style.  We see no hope at all for Aaron and Tim and feel they are both destined for obscurity.

We are tempted to say Bye Bye to Di Di, but Tim is the least talented in the group and the only explanation for his presence on this stage is votefortheworst.com.  We think that will end this week and Tim will go home.  But Didi is in trouble, and if Tim or Aaron draw teeny-bopper votes, we could see her go.

The only thing we are certain of is that they make up the bottom three.

So we hope to say bye bye to Tim, who we think should go.  We wouldn’t mind seeing Aaron go, but he was better than Tim this week.  And we want Didi to stay because she has style, but you know what?  Didi isn’t likely to last more than another week or two anyway.

They all get to go on tour now anyway?  So until you get to the top 5, this is all kind of meaningless.  And none of these three, unless something dramatic changes, are top 5 material.

American Idol 9 Top 11 Performance Review: it’s time to turn the ‘Paige’!

Hey, we’re here! We decided to start covering American Idol when it is down to the more serious contenders in the competition. We watched the early episodes of the whole season 9 but was not impressed. Clearly, there is no Adam Lambert this year.

It is time for the judges to realize that each artist is different, and that the “choice of song” excuse they use for criticizing people is so far off the mark that it has become a joke to the viewing audience. In the first two years of “24” they constantly used the phrase “focus”. The writers caught on people were making fun of them and adjusted, but these judges appear oblivious for their own good.

Ellen Degeneres brings a new feel to the judges and certainly is an amazing comedienne, capable of introducing spontaneous comedy and laughter out of the show while also stating her opinion. What we like about her is she often does not judge the music, but the performance. And she has more experience performing for an audience than any of the silly judges that sit beside her.

The thing is people do it right, people do it wrong, but there is no “wrong song”. The greats can do anything and have you begging for more, and supposedly that is what this show is supposed to be about. Finding the greats.

As bad as the judges were this week, let’s cut to the chase.

1. Lee Dwyze (Boxtops) “The Letter” – Lee has a haunting soulful voice. The closest comparison we can come up with in recent history is the lead singer for Sister Hazel. The sound is so similar at times, we were ready to buy their new album. Lee belts it out, has fun and is unique. We like almost everything about him, but he needs a band to have the stage presence he needs. That is something this show badly misses. When a lead singer stands out, they are treating him or her as a soloist. Lee belongs in a band and if he chooses the right path, that is where he will soar. (8/10)

2. Paige Miles (Phil Collins) “Against All Odds” – The judges were right that Paige was way off the mark here, but they missed the reason. It wasn’t song choice. She stunk. She was off key and did not hit a single note. She was nervous, pitchy, and dull. No top ten here. (3/10)

3. Tim Urban (Queen) “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”– OK, so we aren’t big fans of Tim. He is a cheap version of Bobbie Sherman, and just not as cute. His haircut is goofball and outdated. His look with the sneakers and sport jacket was downright shabby. And then he takes on Freddie Mercury???. Freddie was one of the greatest rock singers of all time. Even the best can’t approach his amazing abilities. So, take an average guy like Tim, and all it does is make him sound corny. Tim is a poor and immature performer with a middle of the road voice. He can’t tackle Donny Osmond, let alone Freddie. (4/10)

4. Aaron Kelly (Aerosmith) “I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing” – We hate it when the judges pander to a performer. When David Archuletta would have a bad week or forget the words, they would roll over and say how great he sang the one word he remembered. Unlike David, Aaron is not good. He didn’t miss the lyric, but he is pitchy (off key) and has no personality. We don’t like him, we don’t care much for his voice, but he was better than deserving elimination this week. What was disgusting though was his statement that he has tonsillitis. Dude, if you have it, you won’t survive weeks without major treatment. Go get some ice cream and quit this show. If you are lying, it will come out. The treatment takes weeks or even months. (5/10)

5. Crystal Bowersox (Janis Joplin) “Bobby McGee”– Crystal is the purest crystal of all. She is a diamond that emerged from the ashes this season. There is no doubt with every performance she is the best. We love Janis Joplin’s version of Bobby McGee, and Crystal did it on par with Janis. None of the stars on this show to date have performed on par with the professionals, except for Crystal, and it happens every week. Bravo. (10/10)

6. Michael Lynche (Percy Sledge/Michael Bolton) “When a Man Loves a Woman” – We don’t like Michael when he overperforms. He is huge and it looks like a Shrek performance when he awkwardly bounces about the stage. Yet he has a loveable quality about him, so as long as we aren’t placing our hands over our face in embarrassment, we have to admit, this man can sing. Tonight he was much more still, and he belted out his performance like a pro. He felt it, he brought soul to it and you know what? He killed it. (9/10)

7. Andrew Garcia (Smokey Robinson/Creedence Clearwater) “I heard it through the grapevine”– Another case of Idol not even knowing the source of the song, let alone knowing if it is the right one. The idiotic comments that came after the misguided introduction by Ryan Seacrest made us shake our heads. First, this is not a Marvin Gaye song as Ryan introduced it. This song was written by Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong in 1966, the single was first recorded by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles. It was a huge hit done again by Creedence Clearwater Revival 34 years before Marvin did his version. Marvin did a version of it in 2004, but it is NOT a Marvin Gaye song any more than it is Andrew Garcia’s. As far as Andrew’s performance? It was horrible. The judges said it was a bad song choice (the standard nonsense they spew when they have no idea why it was bad). It was a perfect choice for Andrew. It is a soul song, and Andrew is all about soul. It is his style. But he was dressed dumb, he performed it with no soul (where did it go Andrew?) and he was stiff throughout. It came across as “Revenge of the Nerds” do Motown. (5/10)

8. Katie Stevens (Fergie) “Big Girls Don’t Cry”– Fergie is amazing. So, please, if you are going to sing her biggest hit, at least be on key. Katie was off key throughout the song. If Paige hadn’t been so horrible, we would place her last and yet the judges praised her, suggesting they need hearing aids. We do admit she looked fantastic, which is a major improvement over past attempts at mass appeal, but she has no recording voice and is lucky to be in the top 10 in a weak year. (4/10)

9. Casey James (Huey Lewis and the News) “Power of Love”– When the judges miss a performance, which is common, it is because they just don’t get the performance. Huey Lewis was all about fun on stage and Casey brought it. We loved him this week. The judges were less enthusiastic, but we believe they never saw Huey in person. Now, granted, without the backup vocals and harmony, Casey could not be equivalent to Huey, but he nailed this song. And the judges were grasping for why he didn’t sound the same as Huey WITHOUT the News. We got “news”. The artists are not all soloists and we feel Casey is another great band lead. (9/10)

10. Didi Benami (Linda Ronstadt) “You’re No Good” – People often don’t get Didi. She is off beat and unique. Listen to artists like Lenka, Meiko, or Vanessa Carlton. Our closest analogy though is Suzanne Vega with her haunting song about Luka. If Didi did that song, we are certain, she would haunt the audience voting for her. The judges don’t get it either. The issue here is sound quality and recordability. Didi has it and performed wonderfully, and yet the judges criticized her about song choice. Wow, how wrong could they be??!! She nailed her performance and was top notch. Perhaps the song is dated, but the performance was far from. (8/10)

11. Siobhan Magnus (Stevie Wonder) “Superstition”– Now, sometimes we believe that a performer did not concoct his/her name (or tattoo), and they are just unique. This name, though, is almost concocted. Siobhan is not the amateur she pretends to be and we expect that to come out. The woman can scream and belt out a song, but other than the scream this week, she was rather dull. (7/10)

Well, it all comes down to the person that was the worst…right? That is unless you believe the unendingly dull website “votefortheworst.com” that suggests everyone should vote for the worst performer. But even then, only one can be at the bottom.

We don’t believe in any talent contest you should vote for the worst just because some dull website scrounging for hits says you should, but hey, YMMV. Such a suggestion would have the “next to the worst” get eliminated each week until you could stand the worst no longer.

What we do believe, and it plays out by the end of almost every year, is that talent will rule supreme and those that don’t have it, will fall by the wayside. There are some reasons we believe some of the seemingly best talents do not win. We believe the most common are the great band leads. Daughtry is our prime example. He is great with a rock band, but you don’t want to hear him sing a Stevie Wonder solo. We do feel this show does do some of these “band” performers a disservice.

Our biggest critical comment of the judges to date though has been hypocrisy. The judges often say, as a contestant is eliminated, that it is just the beginning. Then, week after week, they state BEFORE the elimination, how losing could be the end of their dream or career. It is like they cannot hear themselves.

The gist of it, though, is you can be on week to week, and then miss one week and lose. You can be a fantastic band rocker like Daughtry and lose because you are asked to sing an “out of character” Elvis solo. You can be “off beat” and the judges don’t get it, so you lose because they beat you up week after week. But in the end, the audience knows. And we all know. The hits don’t lie.

We won’t get into who we think are the most recordable voice this season. We saw one eliminated recently, but we didn’t think she should win this year; we just find her voice catchy and memorable. What we will say so far is that there are some major talents in this group, but the froth is only bringing out one as the leader so far. You already know who that is, so we will not go any further.

Bye bye Paige.

12/15 SYTYCD 6 Final Performances from the Top 6 Dancers

The lines are open for two hours! Please vote for your favorites.

Kathryn – 1-888-836-7601
Ryan – 1-888-836-7602

Ellenore – 1-888-836-7603
Jakob – 1-888-836-7604

Ashleigh – 1-888-836-7605
Russell – 1-888-836-7606

The Music from tonight’s dance performances:

Jason Gilkison samba (Kathryn & Ryan): “Magalenha” -Sergio Mendes

Tyce Diorio Broadway (Ellenore & Jakob): “I Gotcha” -from Fosse (original Broadway cast)


Sonya Tayeh lyrical jazz (Ashleigh & Russell): “Angel Standing By” -Jewel


Gary Stuart jazz (Ellenore & Ryan): “Kontact Me” -Boys Noize

Jean Marc Genereux foxtrot (Ashleigh & Jakob): “Let the Good Times Roll” -Chuck Brown and Eva Cassidy

Jason Gilkison paso doble (Ellenore & Russell): “Village Attack” -James Newton Howard from Blood Diamond


Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden contemporary (Kathryn & Jakob): “At This Moment” -Michael Buble


Travis Wall contemporary (Ashleigh & Ryan): “I’m There Too” -Michelle Featherstone


Napoleon and Tabitha hip hop (Kathryn & Russell) “I Can Transform Ya” -Chris Brown ft. Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz

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12/8 SYTYCD 6 Pre-Finale Performances by the Top 8 Dancers. Vote for your faves!

How is it that sometimes listening to the doctor can be bad for you? They often make suggestions that are just downright foolish when viewed in the context of a person’s life. One doctor once advised, “Perhaps you should quit your job if it is stressing you?” The obvious response…”And who pays your bill?”

This week, a doctor severely damaged the chances of a contestant because of an injury that just would not have impeded most of her performance. And those parts that were impacted (one move in the second dance), could have been skipped letting the audience know her shoulder was injured and allowing her to show how great a competitor she really is.

But no, Ashleigh, a huge favorite both on our website and in our hearts, was told not to dance this week, despite the fact she was willing and raring to go. She popped out her shoulder but it was back in place by show time. Football players play with this injury and they take hits from three hundred pound linemen!! You don’t take a person out of the chance at making the finals because of this kind of injury. We believe she could have worked around just one move in the second dance and been fine.

And what if she did come up lame? This is a once in a lifetime chance for anyone that makes it this far. The finals are something that turn the performers into true stars. It is the superbowl of dancing. Doctors always have to be overprotective, but this is one time, the show should not have endorsed it. A doctor can advise, but that is all. If a ball player gets an injury before going into the World Series, he bandages it and sucks it up. Ashleigh was ready to do it, and we commend her. This doctor was over the top.

Ashleigh’s husband stood up after a spectacular solo, and said to vote for number 1, Ashleigh, his wife. It was touching and brought the crowd to their feet. It may save Ashleigh, but not by her abilities, which leaves us even more disappointed, because we wanted her to win with her talent..

Now, to the actual dancing.

Kathryn and Ryan – Disco – “Last Dance” (Donna Summer- Samantha Ronson remix) – choreography by Doreana Sanchez. This was an incredibly energetic dance with moves and lifts that wowed us. Both dancers were nearly perfect in every way. The only judge that disagreed thought Ryan a bit stiff, but most of the dance he was performing a major athletic feat, so that was off base. The only problem for the couple is that this dance came first, making it less memorable than the latter dances. Oh and possibly that it wasn’t as challenging as some of the performances that followed. (9/10)

Mollee and Jakob – Viennese Waltz – “Ordinary day” (Vanessa Carlson) – choreographer was Jason Gilkyson – This dance has been the kiss of death for dancers in past seasons, so it is appropriate it be thrown at Jakob. He is by far the best male dancer this season and if this doesn’t kill his chances, nothing will. It didn’t. The moves were spectacular by both dancers. Mollee was so incredibly beautiful in the dance. This waltz added a clever storyline, and it involved considerable acting ability. Mollee has that in spades. In this dance, she actually outperformed Jakob. The synchronization and moves including a forward flip by both dancers, had us in awe and we knew, they had just made the Viennese Waltz look not only easy, but phenomenal. (10/10)

Ellenore & Legacy – Contemporary – “Machine Gun” (Portishead) – choreographer: Travis Wall – Travis showed us that he always pushes himself to the limit in his choreographies. This was no different. This was a violent theme with each dancer supposed to be attempting to assassinate the other. The movements and acrobatics demonstrated superhuman capabilities on the part of Legacy. And Ellenore was no slouch. This was a truly edgy dance with some of the most dangerous and circus-like moves we have ever seen in a performance on this show. It left us in awe. The acting was great by both dancers and the sexiness of Ellenore in this dance was beyond captivating. The use of props was also incredibly well played. This was the most violent and physically challenging dance we have ever seen on this show and both dancers were incredible. (10/10)

Ashleigh and Russell – Hip Hop – “Too Much Booty 2” (Bobby J Remix) – choreographer: Shane Sparks – Because of Ashleigh’s injury, this became a solo for Russell. He had a partner, but she was not it it to win, just to fill in the best she could. But in a way, this may have helped Russell. It allowed one to completely focus on him. We often hear the judges talk about hitting hard, but Russell defines it. Every move is potent and explosive. Trick moves are slick and fun to watch. If this were purely a hip hop contest, we would give him a 10 out of 10, especially dancing a bit out of his element. But it isn’t. (9/10)

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Round 2

Kathryn and Ryan – Cha Cha – “Put Your Hands On Me” (Joss Stone) – Jason Gilkyson – This dance was spectacular from beginning to end. Kathryn was outrageously sexy and fluid in her movements. Ryan was sharp, strong and masculine. Our only hesitation in giving this dance 10 out of 10 is that it didn’t seem much like a Cha Cha. Much of it seemed contemporary. But the moves were so smooth, the lifts so strong and the finale so memorable that it raised the audience to their feet. (you just have to see that final move to believe it), So, we will overlook the divergence from a standard Cha Cha and gift this couple with. (10/10)

Mollee and Jakob – Broadway – “Easy Street,” From Annie (Samantha Ronson Remix) – choreographer: Joey Dowling – No doubt this couple made the finals with this dance. Mollie brought her character to life, and once again, it was easy to forget it was truly her. The theme was a con artist, experienced at his craft, drawing in an innocent and somewhat naïve girl. Mollie proved she can not only dance, she can act. Even the judges said she should go straight to Broadway. The piece also demonstrated that Jakob has a hand in the choreography of all his dances. He solves problems and enhances the dance to ensure it captivates. The moves in this piece, as usual, were outrageous, somewhat comical and fun. But the most stunning thing is we forgot we were watching Mollee and Jakob, which is the sign of a truly successful act. (10/10)

Ellenore & Legacy – Hip Hop – “People Are Strange” (The Doors) – choreographer: Tabitha & Napoleon Dumo – This started off amusing. The couple was facing backwards, but wearing masks on the back their heads that made it look like they were facing the audience. Only their feet gave them away. The first movements were so cool it got us excited this would be another great piece. From there, though, the choreography was weak. It did not challenge the couple at all, and it was a severe letdown from their first performance. It wasn’t their fault, and it demonstrates how the choreographers can lose points for the couple just as badly as they themselves. The shock power and fun of Legacy was not present, and Ellenore was not her quirky best. It wasn’t hard hitting, it was just, well, strange. (8/10)

Ashleigh and Russell– Bollywood – “Spirit of Rangeela” -from the Rangeela Soundtrack – choreographer: Nakul Dev Mahajan – This style brings back the memory of the truly amazing performance of Joshua and Katee two seasons ago. It is all synchronization. So, this was a rather awkward dance to judge. While we give Russell credit and believe the fact he can dance this style is a miracle, the substitute dancer once again was not Ashleigh. There was little synchronization in this piece, and the hand movements we love so much were not present either. This was weak. But Russell has major personality and faced a potentially disastrous event in the loss of his partner, and performed with a smile throughout, giving the dance a truly fun appeal, so we have to weigh that in the end. (9/10)

Solos

Jakob – One of the dangers for Jakob is that he could be taken for granted, because his solo is not all that different from show to show. They are all incredible. His other danger is that he comes across as too effeminate for America to embrace him. But once again, his solo was magic, except for one part that was much too feminine, and for that we give him a one point demerit. (9/10)

Mollee – We don’t believe that solos are that important. The couple dances are what we remember, and are what most strongly sways our votes. That is a good thing for Mollee, because she just wasn’t the greatest in this one. Some fantastic moves, but the overall performance may have been the weakest solo of the night. (8/10)

Legacy – There is absolutely no doubt we can only give Legacy a 10/10 in this solo. He is super human in his movements. He put on a bit of corny action with a telephone, but he was stellar. (10/10)

Ellenore – Ellenore brought the quirkiness to the stage as always and put on a great show. It wasn’t so much the moves as the performance in this instance. Even the ending was rather simplistic, but still showed off her allure and talent. (10/10)

Russell – The outfit was appropriate for the season. Russell came out as Santa Claus, and he krumped it to death. The only flaw was an accidental result of the costume. His shoes were loose and he kicked one off. Sorry Russell, it made a difference for us (9/10)

Kathryn – When Kathryn dances, it is already something wonderful to behold, but when she pushes herself to the limit of her talent (or possibly anyone’s) she is beyond imagination. She worked this solo with grace, elegance and beauty. Win win win. (10/10)

Ryan – Ryan showed his stuff in this performance. He went all out to show us how much he wants to reach the finals. He added a split and somersault, both of which are not characteristic moves for him, and demonstrated that he can pull off a few gimmick moves himself. This was his best solo of the season. It was enhanced by his look. There is no question about this man’s sexual preference. At the end he made a somewhat noble call to the audience to vote for his wife. It may save her, but we can’t honestly vote for her this week, because we did not see her perform. Leaving it to our imagination is too much to ask. Guilt and sympathy just don’t play at this house. (10/10)

Conclusion:

This week is always difficult, but usually flaws appear in the dancers, and they kill off the performers that aren’t as diverse or perfect as the rest. We have to place Ashleigh last because she didn’t dance. If you are in a race, and you hurt your leg prior to the race and cannot run, you can’t ask them to place you in first place because you are hurt. This is a competition, if you cannot compete, whatever the circumstance, you lose.

However, the audience does not always follow our beliefs. They often play the spoiler by gifting the sympathy vote. With the work these women put in tonight, we believe they would be wrong to do so.

Finally, we don’t believe the solos mean anything in this competition, so we don’t weigh them as heavily.

Here is how we would call it.

1. Jakob
2. Mollee
3. Ryan
4. Kathryn
5. Russell
6. Ellenore
7. Legacy
8. Ashleigh

We have Legacy and Ashleigh hitting the end of the trail. Legacy and Ellenore are surprises for us, because they had such a stellar first dance. But their second dance was mostly memorable for being so forgettable. It drew criticism not only from us, but from the judges as well. Russell and Ellenore are in danger too. They weren’t quite up to par this week. If any one else is chosen to get eliminated tomorrow, it would be a tragedy for those that performed such amazing feats this evening.

– 0 –

Tonight’s show, December 8th is most crucial because it determines who will be in the FINALE next week. We’re taking the time to put in the numbers of all eight dancers for you to vote! PLEASE PICK UP THE PHONE AND VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE.

Ashleigh couldn’t dance tonight because of a shoulder injury, You may still vote for her to dance next week! – 1-888-836-7601

Jakob – “When You Say My Name by Mario Spinetti – 1-888-836-7602

Mollee – “Heartburn” by Alicia Keys – 1-888-836-7603

Legacy – “Fancy Footwork” by Chromeo – 1-888-836-7604

Ellenore – “I Got the Feelin’” by James Brown – 1-888-836-7605

Russell – “Holiday Bucness” – 1-888-836-7606

Kathryn – “Shadowfeet” by Brooke Frasier – 1-888-836-7607

Ryan – “Din Da Da” by Kevin Aviance – 1-888-836-7608

12/01 SYTYCD 6 Top 10 Perform! Some favorites emerge.

This is our first time writing about the dancers this season. We do feel that the top ten are indeed the top ten. There were some disappointments along the way, but overall, these ten are the most deserving. That said, we do have our favorites already.

We knew were were out of sync a bit with the judges on this show when Nigel called Krump “sedentary”. We sincerely recommend that Nigel get a dictionary and thesaurus or to just stop trying to use big words.

The dances were all excellent this week, but we have to disagree with the judges on some of their criticisms. Let’s start with the couple dances and leave the solos to the end.

ROUND 1:

Ryan and Noelle – This was a contemporary piece choreographed by Tabitha and Napoleon and music by Melanie Fiona- “Give it To Me Right”. Ryan, as always, was incredibly handsome and captivating with his personality. Noelle shocked us and gets the ranking of the most cosmetically changed dancer this week. In prior weeks we saw her as rather dull. This week she was hot. This dance brought out her sexiness along with a new do that really got our attention. The couple together are extremely sexy and danced this piece with spark. The theme was an office pursuit by the boss (Ryan) that ends up with a harassment suit. Well, if Noelle acted like this in person in the office, no one could blame Ryan. She smoked this. Ryan was the penultimate partner. But he wasn’t the central focus of this pairing. Both were in sync perfectly when they had to be, though, and Ryan clearly helped Noelle shine. The guitar playing of the dance was corny, but the rest was sheer sexuality and talent. Nigel called it last week saying Noelle wasn’t sexy enough. He changed his tune this week, as did we. She has the capability of playing the vixen. Dance was superb. (9/10)

Ashleigh and Legacy – We like these two as independent dancers. We aren’t sure about this pairing. So it is good they got a dance that did not play them as close partners, but as cooperative singles. The dance reminded us of the video game street fighters. The theme was to have the couple battling each other physically, and it brings to mind some of the somewhat corny karate scenes on TV on shows such as “Alias”. It was interesting choreography presented by Gary Stuart. Both Ashleigh and Legacy were in perfect sync, and played their combative roles perfectly. Contemporary is not Ashleigh’s style, but you would never know it from this dance. The ending was perfect with Ashleigh standing facing Legacy, but holding his legs as he stood rigidly on his head, something that we mere humans could never do.The dance was excellent, but there were more to come that were just as stellar, so going this early in the show could have this excellent piece go a bit into obscurity. (9/10)

Katherine and Nathan – We found this to be a superb Broadway piece choreographed by Danny Kaye. It had an old world feel from days of the great musicals like Oklahoma or West Side Story. This was more romantic though like a Fred Astaire movie. It started off great, and Nathan was moving well, keeping his happy character in tune with the dance. Katherine was the stronger performer. She looked flawless and beautiful at the same time. A true leading lady. Nathan, while dancing quite well, does not go with Katherine. It looks like a sixteen year old courting a 24 year old in a dance where the man should be leading. He can dance it, but he can’t play the part convincingly, which is key to Broadway. This was a fun piece, fun to watch, but Nathan lacked charisma. (8/10)

Ellenore and Jakob – Ellenore has a major quirkiness about her and we love the personality she brings to the dance floor. She reminds of Cheryl Burke from Dancing with the Stars. At first Jakob didn’t look the part, but man, can this guy move. Usually we don’t comment on the speed of a man’s legs in dance, but Jakob’s move at the speed of light. Ellenore has a way of looking nearly perfect on the floor. Great smile, fantastic hair and posture. She kept right up with Jakob on this dance and they partnered wonderfully. The chemistry we thought couldn’t be there- was there in spades, to which we give kudos to Ellenore. The couple was smiling ear to ear throughout and had us smiling as well by the time this dance was done. (9/10)

Mollee and Russell – This was a lyrical jazz piece that was choreographed by Mandy Moore. It is a beautiful piece, but blurs the lines between contemporary and jazz. It started off with a touching embrace, with incredible feeling, We have to give Russell an A for effort on this piece. He does an overhead lift and shows diversity way beyond his untrained Krump background. Still, we watched this twice to see if we were wrong after the judges praised him and, well, he was awkward. While he didn’t drop the ball and fought his way through, he didn’t leave us feeling we had watched a professional. Mollee looked mature well beyond her age. Perfect performance by Mollee. (8/10)

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Round 2

Noelle and Ryan – This was a graceful waltz, and Ryan was, as usual, at his best at ballroom style. They provided the Cinderella experience for us all, and lifted us gracefully into a clouded world of fantasy in which we fell asleep. It is very difficult to get into a waltz after some of the powerful artwork and personal expression that comes out of a contemporary dance. Probably why the contemporary dancers tend to take the lead season after season, and why ballroom dances eventually fall short. Still this was a nearly perfect waltz. (8/10)

Kathryn and Nathan – A rumba choreographed by Tony and Melanie did not leave us standing nor did it give us any goose bumps. Nathan was frowning and portraying an angry character throughout trying to be intimidating and just came across as silly. At the end when being judged he kept on this angry foolish face. We think he danced well, but character is as important as posture in this competition and he did not portray the leading man well. Not believable at all. Kathryn on the other hand was stunning and flawless. Loved her. Once again, we hope she is not associated with Nathan’s less than stellar performance. (7/10)

Ashleigh and Legacy – Time to bring out an old theme. The vampire. Legacy came out with his cape dressed like the Count, but, unlike Dracula, was unable to turn them into a pair of wings in this piece. His cape certainly contributed to the problem taking away his ability to perform his more exciting moves in this dance, but his lack of training showed as well. Ashleigh was flawless and for her sake, we hope the audience didn’t notice Legacy or associate him with her performance. (7/10)

Ellenore and Jacob – This was an extremely quirky contemporary piece which fit Ellenore to a T choreographed by Sonya. It also allowed Jacob to show how well he can act. When he stands still before the judges he looks effeminate and humble. But when he had to play a dark character, he shows he has acting down. Unlike Legacy and Nathan, he is believable in his portrayal of a character. He has chemistry with anyone, but the chemistry in this piece was stunning. You would have thought they had danced it a million times. They played off of Ellenore’s move and pause technique and had many moments with Ellenore still portraying her character. Her facial expression and personality shine through. She has become our most memorable girl. And Jacob stole the show from all the other men. He looked fearful and dark, in direct contrast to his true character. This was the best of season so far and possibly the best of all time on this show. If you missed it, and watch it now!! (10/10)

Mollie and Russell – Man, who would want to follow up Eleanor and Jakob’s piece. What can one do but be perfect? This was a standard rock dance and required a ton of energy to pull off. And these two dancers are all energy. This brought Russell back onto our best liked list after his last dance, which the judges liked, but we were less impressed with. Russell’s lifts, throws and enthusiasm ruled this dance. He was both fun and exciting to watch. They nailed this performance, and if not for Ellenore and Jakob, would have been the best of the night. (9.8/10)

Solos:

Mollee – Mollee always does her solo’s well. She looks so young it is disconcerting and hard, at times, to take seriously. But when she dances, watch out. She is a firestorm. She did a sexy solo, shaking about curly locks obscuring her face and her youth. Wearing jeans that looked to be sure were painted on, she still pulled off flex moves that would challenge a rubber band. She is the most athletic of the girl’s this season and clearly has the most energy. It showed and she had a great solo. (9/10)

Noelle – We found Noelle incredibly sexy in her first couples dance, but in her solo she was back a bit to her cutesy look. She needs to pick sexier outfits for her solo or it is hard to be drawn to her. She can dance superbly, but it felt like this solo wasn’t quite up to Mollee’s. Still, this lady can stand on her toes wile pirouetting and that shows signs of hard training and a background in ballet. (8/10)

Ryan – Now, ballroom dancers always have a weakness in solo’s. They cannot typically dance with the strength and diversity of a trained contemporary or jazz dancer. It appears impossible for a ball room dancer to win this competition. Ryan, though, has this major charisma that carries him beyond the dance. In this dance he came across as a superhero. And we expect he could be in the next Superman musical. Unfortunately, his moves are more theatrical than challenging. (8/10)

Kathryn – Kathryn is all grace. She can move with strength, but you are captivated more by her ability to mesmerize you with smooth elegance. However, in this solo, she did not thrill us. It didn’t have that edge required for competition. (7/10)

Russell – Of course, Russell does Krump. Nigel said it was sedentary. WE hope he was joking. This was powerful. We have not really understood krump until now, and we can tell you, Russell defines it. (10/10)

Nathan – No doubt Nathan is one of the most talented dancers on this show, but he has a personality that does not appeal. He overdoes things, crying at the end of the dance and making frowning angry faces throughout his solo. It turned us off. (7/10)

Ellenore– If quirkiness could win this competition, Eleanor has that in spades. Her movements are so unexpected at times and her jerky movements are her trademark. A quick move and a pause. Then another. Then another. All providing the viewer a chance to view her position. However, Eleanor is not as talented a dancer as Noelle or Kathryn when it comes to solos. (7/10)

Legacy – We have seen some great break dancers on this show. Legacy is better than any of them. Some of his moves just don’t seem humanly possible. His solos are incredible to watch and in this lies his strength. No one is more fun to watch or more amazing. At the end you are just shaking your head and wondering how he does it. (10/10)

Ashleigh – What is most amazing about Ashleigh is the character she becomes when dancing. When you look at her standing still, she isn’t much to look at. But when she dances, she takes on a different aura. Her legs are fast, surely, but not as fast as some dancers from prior years. But her ability to draw us in during her dancing and her sexiness is unquestionable She comes across as in control and fearless. This is where she is meant to be. (9/10)

Jakob – If we were to have to set the odds in Las Vegas for the most probable to win this competition, Jakob is it. He isn’t assuming and is so incredibly talented. While he has a bit of an effeminate personality, it isn’t overplayed and he is lovable and graceful in personality. But when he dances, well, there is no one this season that holds a candle to him. (10/10)

That leaves it time to put our dancers in place.

1. Jakob
2. Ellenore
3. Mollie
4. Noelle
5. Russell
6. Ashleigh
7. Ryan
8. Kathryn
9. Legacy
10. Nathan

This is how we think it will play out. Nathan gets to the bottom not for his talent or dancing as much as his personality. Legacy showed major cracks in his ability to do other than break dancing. We cannot see him winning the competition, and he could go as well, but we figure he has a much bigger following because of his superhuman tricks during the solos. Kathryn was great, but was impacted in our judgement by Nathan and drawn down the list. Ryan is great and fun to watch, but so far behind Jakob and not growing as impressively as Russell. We don’t believe we need to explain the rest other than to say if Jakob doesn’t get hit by a truck, he already won the season.

There you go.

The Music for this episode:

Nappytabs hip hop (Noelle & Ryan):  “Give It To Me Right” Music By: Melanie Fiona

Gary Stuart contemporary (Ashleigh & Legacy): “Poison” Music By: The Prodigy

Mollee’s solo: “Rock the Beat” Music By: LM*AO

Russell’s solo: “Outros” Music By: Black Milk

Spencer Liff Broadway (Kathryn & Nathan): “Choreography” Music By: Danny Kaye

Noelle’s solo: “Everytime It Rains” Music By: Charlotte Martin

Tony & Melanie quickstep (Elleanore & Jakob): “Four Brothers” Music By: Manhattan Transfer

Ryan’s solo: “Rock You Like a Hurricane” Music By: Scorpion

Kathryn’s solo: “Beautiful” Music By: Bethany Dillon

Mandy Moore: lyrical jazz (Mollee & Russell): “It Must Have Been Love” Music By: Roxette

Nathan’s solo: “Golden Train” Music By: Justin Nozuka

JT and Tomas smooth waltz (Noelle & Ryan): “Jeaux d’eau” Music By: Cirque du Soleil O Soundtrack

Elleanore’s solo: “Beatbox Harmonica” Music By: Yuri Lane

Dave Scott hip hop (Ashleigh & Legacy): “Slow Down” Music By: Bobby Valentino

Tony & Melanie rumba (Kathryn & Nathan): “Walk On By”  Music By: Aretha Franklin

Legacy’s solo: “No Air” Music By: Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown

Sonya Tayeh contemporary (Elleanore & Jakob): “Tore My Heart” Music By: OONA & Dave Tweedie

Ashleigh’s solo: “Batucada Por Favor” Music By: Bob Azzam

Anya & Pasha jive (Mollee & Russell): “Land of 1,000 Dances” Music By: Jimmy Barnes

Jakob’s solo: “Always Midnight” acoustic Music By: Pat Monahan

Ann Powers on Adam Lambert’s debut album ‘For Your Entertainment’

adamlambert_debut

Pop music and resident Adam Lambert devotee Ann Powers gets her first taste of his debut album, "For Your Entertainment."

But does she like the goods? Some thoughts:

"For Your Entertainment" is a polished affair, but
stylistically, it shows Lambert running loose like a kid in a Comme des Garçons
store. With the Hollywood pop A-list at his disposal, he chose to go for it all:
The only names missing from his list of collaborators are those firmly in the
R&B camp (wouldn't it be great if he worked with fellow drama club type
Ne-Yo?) The results on "FYE" are inevitably mixed but never a bummer; Lambert's
deft enough to avoid getting stuck in any one of the tropes he
explores.

On many tracks, Lambert stretches himself by putting on the
style of his more seasoned collaborators. He's pleading and soulful on the Pink
co-write, sneering on the song Rivers Cuomo tossed his way, moody when it comes
to parsing Muse and appropriately silly on the neo-glam crusher penned for him
by Justin Hawkins, formerly of the English band the Darkness. Versatility is
Lambert's strategy here, one he might consider changing in the future — when
the material's second-rate, it sinks him a bit. 

Read the full review here.

— Denise Martin

Photo credit: Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times