We Listen To The Finalists’ EPs So You Don’t Have To

idoleps.jpg

After Jordin Sparks was crowned this year’s American Idol last night, iTunes rushed into action, putting out five-song EPs that collect studio versions of songs from the finalists’ repertoires this season. After the jump, we review the collections, and even imagine what Simon would say when each record was through.

Jordin SparksCover: Did you know Jordin was only 17? You wouldn’t by looking at this cover, which was apparently made with heavy use of the “Age Subject” filter in Photoshop.Tracklist: “This Is My Now,” “I Who Have Nothing,” “Broken Wing,” “To Love Somebody,” “Wishing On A Star”Best Moment: “Broken Wing,” thanks to the plainspoken lyrics being believable for a teenager.Worst Moment: “This Is My Now,” which somehow is arranged to sound even more heartstring-tuggingly sappy. Oh, that tinkly piano! It’s All About Song Choice: The smooth-jazz cover of “Wishing On A Star” that Jordin sang in the top-three episode is there, in all of its backseat-of-the-car-service-at-3-am glory. Where was “You’ll Never Walk Alone”? What Simon Would Say: “A bit pageanty.”

Blake LewisCover: Blake: Just a bro who likes to relax in a really awkward position during his downtime. Tracklist: “You Give Love A Bad Name,” “Time Of The Season,” “I Need To Know,” “Love Song,” “When The Stars Go Blue” Best Moment: A completely credible cover of Marc Anthony’s “I Need To Know.” Worst Moment: Trust us: You don’t want to hear the Idol orchestra try to tackle the Zombies. It’s All About Song Choice: Apparently, Maroon 5 and Robin Thicke weren’t interested in clearing its songs for this enterprise–that’s the only explanation we could figure out for Blake’s songs from last week, both of which were much better than most of this EP, going missing. What Simon Would Say: “You don’t have to beatbox on every song.”

The winner: In head-to-head competition, Jordin; but we’re wondering if Blake won overall, because the Idol arrangements of his songs drove the whole enterprise straight into the cheese palace. (“You Give Love A Bad Name” actually sounded better on TV, which we were not expecting at all.) He won’t have to work with them now, right?