Thursday, May 16, 2013

American Idol 12: Top 2

It’s the American Idol Season 12 Finale! Doesn’t it always feel like the season just flies by? Especially this season when we only had 10 finalists compete and the week’s started to melt away.

Now, we had a finale and we had some amazing moments. Don’t look at those moments through an infantile viewfinder that gives no credit to the contestants and derives nothing but negative outlooks on the future. After all, it’s F@&#%*! REALITY TELEVISION and they let Carly Rae Jepsen perform! Umm, yeah, I felt like I lost brain cells just listening to that song. Haha.

Without further nonsense, I'll get to the rankings...

ROUND 1: Simon Fuller's Choice

Kree Harrison
Angel was actually a perfect fit for Kree's soothing voice. I liked that she caressed the song with her tender vocals and country undertones and her rendition was actually very nuanced and lovely backed by her exquisite phrasing choices. It was so gentle though that at times it faded away on her, but that's just me nitpicking. 8/10

Candice Glover 
Chasing Pavements
On paper, Chasing Pavements as a song choice should've been annoyingly predictable for Candice as I seriously felt like there's practically nothing she could have done to the song that other renditions hadn't already achieved. But, Candice changed the tempo, took a couple of liberties with the melody and her performance just soared. I wasn't necessarily blown away by this, but it was still pretty good. 8/10

VERDICT: Not entirely crazy about either of the performances, but I probably give the slight edge to Candice, but mostly because of the song choice that they both had nothing to do with.

ROUND 2: Single

Kree Harrison
All Cried Out
Yes, she sounded a little strained in parts, but this song suited her voice and style perfectly well. It’s got a hook and it sounds like something that could grab the Country radio audiences for a moment or two. Vocally, Kree once again gave it her all, and managed to really have a few soaring moments that allowed you to picture what it would be like if she was singing this song while the confetti rained down. That’s a coronation moment! This felt real and substantial. Oh, and that light show was fantastic! 8.5/10

Candice Glover
I Am Beautiful
Not sure what to think of her single. I Am Beautiful was melodically soaring in spots and Canidce's vocals were flawless, but the song was a little generic with some trite lyrics. At first, I thought the message was more self empowerment, but the song was about how a girl doesn’t really feel beautiful until a man tells or shows her she is. Oh no. Yes, she elevated it from "meh" to "decent", but this felt like an upgraded version of Jessica Sanchez's Change Nothing. 8/10

VERDICT: Sorry Interscope, you are not getting a massive hit song this year, although Kree Harrison's song could be a country hit. Angie Miller's You Set Me Free would have destroyed both songs though.

ROUND 3: Reprise

Kree Harrison
Up To The Mountain
This was one of her finest moments on the show and it was so long ago it felt brand new. She sounded even more fantastic this time around and the overall performance was improved considerably. The song was technically beautiful and emotionally powerful and left very little doubt in my mind as to who would win this round.. 9.5/10

Candice Glover
I (Who Have Nothing)
Until this happened! WOW. I honestly felt like reprising I (Who Have Nothing) instead of her showstopping rendition of Lovesong was a stupid decision, but I figured her strategy and it was brilliant. She made a few adjustments with the arrangement, switched the first verse to an sublime acapella and further locked in the soul of this number. This performance physically assaulted every other performance of the season. Literally. It grabbed every "great" performance we’ve seen over the past few months and slapped them into submission. To me, her reprise of I (Who Have Nothing) was a culmination of a great record of performances that lead me to proclaim.. 10/10

VERDICT: Candice Glover as the hands down winner of this round - or even of the night!


1.  I (Who Have Nothing)
Candice Glover

2. Up To The Mountain
Kree Harrison

3. All Cried Out
Kree Harrison

4. Chasing Pavements
Candice Glover

5. Angels
Kree Harrison

6. I Am Beautiful
Candice Glover


01. Candice Glover
She just won the night just on the sheer greatness of her last performance. I'm not particularly a fan of her single, I Am Beautiful, but I don't think it matters now because I (Who Have Nothing) will be the performance everyone will remember.

02. Kree Harrison
She fought hard, but fell short. This is where I really have to sit back and marvel at how different these two contestants are. Apples and oranges. She's more comfortable with the light, tender and almost laid back moments while Candice is more of a vocal powerhouse. I thought her single, All Cried Out, was stronger, but she was outperformed for the most part.

Prediction will be on another post to be posted later!


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