Guys, can you believe there are only four contestants left? Last week saw the departure of Janelle Arthur. The themes for this week are contestant choice, duet and then one hit wonder. We get to see lots of singing from the contestants, since there are so few left. These girls have to be exhausted. I know I am.
At this point, the girls keep getting reminded that their amazing voices are no longer enough to keep them in the game. It’s basically a given that their vocals will be stellar. As it turns out, Angie Miller manages to pull out all the stops and stands out as the best all around for the night.
For the first half of the show, we get reminded intermittently that American Idol would like you to know they care with a visit to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. The girls have a sweet interaction with the kiddos, but I couldn’t help but wonder, where’s the Ford Focus?
OK, enough with the feel-good stuff, let’s hear some songs!
Amber Holcomb is up first and she is channeling classic Whitney Houston tonight with her curly hair. Her first round choice is Celine Dion‘s, “The Power of Love.” She sounds great and I could totally see Celine rocking that white pantsuit of Amber’s.
Keith Urban kicks it off by saying the song sounded “tailor-made” for Amber’s voice. He says the choice was a stroke of genius. Nicki Minaj calls her a “sexy glass of milk,” taking a moment to comment on how gorgeous Amber looks. She congratulates Amber on a fantastic job. Randy Jackson believes she is “the contestant with the most growth.” He tells her, “You are ready!” Mariah Carey compliments her on “taking a classic song and giving it some flavor.” Jimmy Iovine could hear the strain in Amber’s voice, but says her performance “will be very difficult to beat.”
Candice Glover is next. Her first selection is “Find Your Love” by Drake. We get treated to a montage of her interaction with adorable patients at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, to whom she dedicates her performance. Candice keeps it smoky and seductive, per usual. She manages to make the song uniquely hers, but I wonder if it was enough to really showcase her amazing range.
The judges gaze at Candice adoringly before Nicki starts her commentary. She says that she feels that Candice should have stuck with the original melody, even though she calls her voice “unmatched.” Randy concurs with the “crazy good vocals,” and tells her to simplify the runs and church sound. Mimi, of course, disagrees, saying, “There were certain moments where you took me where I needed to be.” She says the song selection “was risky, but you still did it.” Keith is of the same opinion and loves that every time she sings, he “hears Candice.” Jimmy calls Candice’s the second best performance of the night so far.
Now it’s Kree Harrison‘s turn and we see her visit the hospital. I’m already dying from watery eyes from allergies and a cold, so the last thing I need is another touching moment of someone singing a sick baby a lullaby. I’m already writing this recap from inside a giant pile of wet tissues.
Kree takes to the stage with the rocking, blues, “It Hurt So Bad.” It’s clearly in her wheelhouse. Randy says she was vocally “tremendous,” though it wasn’t the best he heard. The audience isn’t trying to hear that. Mariah kicks it off with an orgasmic “Oh!” and says she liked when Kree was being a free spirit on stage. Keith picks up from there and says that all they can use to judge the contestants with is the emotion, and that with Kree, it wasn’t fully there. Nicki says she loves Ms. Kree in red. She advises her to get back to basics. I still love her though. And those black leather pants! Jimmy agrees with Nicki, saying that this was the wrong song choice.
Then we hear from Angie, who also shares her experience with the kids at the hospital, who were super excited to meet Miley Cyrus‘ stunt double. Angie’s first song choice is Jessie J‘s “Who You Are.” The smartest accessory she chooses is a white baby grand piano. It’s a good, solid Angie performance and while she’s not my favorite, she nailed it tonight.
Mariah blows her kisses and apologizes for not rising to her feet, citing her train as an excuse. I like imagining Mimi at her own wedding apologizing for not kissing hubby Nick Cannon because her girdle is too tight. Keith says the song was a perfect way to showcase Angie’s evolution, kicking off somewhat primly but ending with a bang. Nicki loved it all around, especially the piano. Randy calls it “sheer perfection” and “the best performance of the night.”
Ryan Seacrest calls Angie’s emotional grandmother to the stage to give her granddaughter a hug. With that, she gives the one-two emotional punch she needs to lock down those votes from America. Jimmy says Angie is “neck-and-neck with Amber.”
Amber and Kree team up for Adele‘s “Rumour Has It.” The two sound great and I really wish Kree had chosen this for her solo. And can I just say, Kree has the most amazing hair. Keith is so into it, he’s doing his adorable chicken dance.
Keith compliments Amber’s “commanding stance” but said they both sounded great. Nicki tells Kree she needs to get her confidence back up and channel her inner diva.
For the next duet, Angie and Candice perform Rihanna and Mikky Ekko‘s “Stay.” They’re both working the black leather, with Angie in a short jumper. The judges go crazy before the girls even wrap up the song. Randy practically yells his accolades. Mariah particularly loved the smoke effect and how the girls handled themselves with it billowing everywhere.
When we get back, it’s one-hit wonder time. Amber is first and sings Donna Summer‘s “MacArthur Park” for her next rendition. She’s a vision in orange and I predict Nicki will rejoice that she is wearing finally sporting the pink lipstick.
Despite her train, Mimi stands up to applause. Keith tells her she’s dominating tonight. He calls it “an incredible performance.” Nicki calls her a “blooming flower.” She smiles at the lipstick and says out of the four girls, “You are the one I would like to get to know.” Randy keeps chanting, “She’s in it to win it!” Mariah says it’s her “inner glow” and “confidence” is radiating for all to see. Jimmy, meanwhile, is in complete disagreement, calling the song “corny.”
Candice takes on Samantha Sang‘s “Emotion,” giving her trademark Candice spin on it. Nicki said the performance felt very current. She then takes a moment to call out Jimmy. Ms. Minaj punctuates her positive commentary to Candice by saying, “Yes ma’am!” Randy thinks it was a good choice for her. Mariah compliments Candice on the strength of her voice throughout the competition. Keith loves her, but wishes she would have taken on a “bare-naked-bones ballad.”
Ryan then pulls Jimmy to the stage to face the panel. He stands by his decision, but prompts Nicki to come to the stage. She pretends to choke him and Mariah yells, “Cue music!” Ha! My favorite part of the show. Poor Candice would like to drink some herbal tea and be done with this mess, since she’s trying to get over a nasty cold.
Kree is back with her second song and she is clearly nervous after her earlier performances in the night. She’s chosen “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” for her one-hit wonder. For the first time tonight, I get goosebumps from Kree and I feel like she’s back in her element with the quiet, slow burn that is truly her best genre.
Randy calls out to Kree and tells her she redeemed herself with this song. Mimi says she’s going to download the song to her phone. “Feel good about what you just did, honey, because you just did it,” Mariah says with several claps. Keith says he wishes he would have had a more intimate song choice from her. Nicki tells him, “Watch how you talking to my wife, Keith.” She says she really loved the performance. However, she worries whether or not it was enough to keep her in the competition.
Angie Miller closes the show with “Cry Me A River” by Julie London. Her outfits have been totally on point tonight. Mariah calls it “classic.” Keith’s words are “mystical and celestially powerful.” I want him to write me some poetry, stat. Nicki says that Angie showed up to “snatch some wigs!” She tells her, “Tonight was your night.” And I have to agree. Randy says, “Angie wins the night, hands down!”
Good lord, it’s getting down to the wire. Next is the results show, and depending on what happens with that save the judges have in their back pockets, we may only have three ladies left. Exciting stuff!
Who do you think is in danger of having to sing for a save on Thursday night?