American Idol Recap: Songs From Now + Then
On tonight’s episode (April 18) of ‘American Idol,’ the Top 7 (since Jessica Sanchez earned the sole season save) performed a modern hit and a throwback classic from the soul era. Each singer performed twice, showing off different sides of their sonic personalities as the season starts to wind down and we inch closer and closer to a winner.
Here’s your PopCrush recap of who sang what and when.
Colton Dixon: He went outside the box to perform Lady Gaga‘s ‘Bad Romance,’ turning in an exciting interpretation where he went down to go up. His throwback song was Earth, Wind and Fire’s ‘September,’ and while he “Colton-ed” it and gave it his own spin, the judges felt it wasn’t exciting and wished he had flipped a more drastically different song. Meh, we liked it.
Phillip Phillips: P2 stepped outside of his comfort zone to sing Usher‘s ‘You Got It Bad.’ He added his guitar, trying a new voice. He got a standing O from the judges and lots of screams from the ladies in the crowd since he is a true artist who can sing a menu or the phone book. You never know what you’re going to get with him and that’s what makes him as refreshing as tall glass of lemonade on a steamy day. J. Lo said it best: “That was soooo sexy.” Look out Casper Smart. He ditched the guitar and tore up Wilson Pickett’s ‘Wait Till the Midnight Hour.’ Never boring. EVER. He’s probably going to win the whole thing. We said it.
Joshua Ledet: He seemed a little fatigued by the heat of the competition, but he offered up a gorgeous rendition of Fantasia’s ‘I Believe‘ and came to life again. The boy can sing, no doubts about that. He brought it for his second song, Sam Cooke’s ‘A Change Is Gonna Come.’ He exercised restraint in the beginning and let his performance marinate, which is why it was so effective when his voice popped at the end when he went for it. Pure talent here! Okay, now we think it’s going to come down to Joshua and Phillip.
Hollie Cavanagh: The tiny powerhouse with the cute accent showed her ballsy side by doing Adele‘s ‘Rolling in the Deep.’ She started out a capella and we were impressed. She finally showed some emotion and connected. It was almost flawless. She reprised with ‘Son of a Preacher Man’ while dressed top to toe in hot pink. She connected again, with her cute little hand motions. Adorbs.
Elise Testone: She’s a fabulous singer, but has no dedicated fanbase, and is clearly being judged week to week while camping out at her summer home in the bottom three. She is always voted low. She turned in a smoky rendition of Alicia Keys‘ hit ‘No One’ and came back later to sex up Marvin Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On.’ It wasn’t sexy enough, since she hides her emotion and that’s what prevents her from connecting. She should have been on fire on this song. And wasn’t.
Jessica Sanchez: After sinking to the bottom and earning the save last week, she needed to connect and have fun with Alicia Keys’ ‘Fallin.’ Alicia twice in one night is never a bad thing. Sanchez is a belter, and she massacred all those notes and proved why the judges spent their sole save of the season on her last week. Otherworldly it was. She returned to perform ‘Try a Little Tenderness,’ which she rearranged slightly. Another solid offering from Bebe Chez, but one that was also a bit too safe.
Skylar Laine: Gaga popped up again, with Laine doing the country version of ‘Born This Way,’ which Gaga herself did. It was more rockin’ country from lovely Laine. She returned to the stage to strut her way through ‘Heard It Through the Grapevine.’ She made as soul classic a country song and rocked it.