It was Beatles night on "American Idol," but which finalist earned their ticket to ride to the top 8?
Some of last week's standouts were good but not great, while others rose to the occasion. Here's how we ranked their performances, from best to worst.
The worst performance of the night received the harshest criticism, leaving the contestant in tears. Scroll all the way down if you want to find out who it was.
1. Kree Harrison
Kree has been fighting a cold this week, but she really rocked out to "With A Little Help From My Friends," popularized by "The Wonder Years." She felt more in the rock element than Candice (see below) while still maintaining her country vibe. If she was feeling 100%, she would've brought down the house.
2. Janelle Arthur
I haven't been a big Janelle fan this season and was surprised that the producers picked her to close the show. Up until now, I feel she's been the weakest of the girls, but she picked the perfect song to show off her sweet country voice and shot up in my standings. There was a little bit of shakiness about 2/3 through her version of "I Will," but that's nitpicking. And we know how "Idol" viewers love their country singers.
3. Candice Glover
I've praised Candice's confident and cool R&B style, and she went the rocker route this evening covering "Come Together." I'm not sure the intent was fully realized, which is why Nicki Minaj knocked the frontrunner on her stage presence a bit. Still, Candice proved she's top 3 quality, and her supporters will "come together" and vote for her.
4. Burnell Taylor
How could Burnell have never heard of "Let It Be"? But I digress. I've been a fan of Burnell's unique tone all season long, and he always make me smile at the end of his performances. There's an uplifting quality to his singing but not in the affected, gospel style of ousted contestant Curtis Finch. I hope America is inspired as well, but I can see him in the bottom three this week.
5. Amber Holcomb
Amber's unfamiliarity with "She's Leaving Home" may have hurt her a bit this week, but her vocal was still amazing. Once she settled into the song, it was lovely and controlled. Perhaps there was a slight disconnect with the lyrics, but she was probably more focused on getting them right than emoting them. On a style note, Amber looked stellar tonight.
6. Devin Velez
I agree with Randy Jackson that Devin was back on his game this week, singing "The Long and Winding Road." He was in the bottom two last week, so it'll be a long and winding road for him to get back to the top. I found this performance to be pleasing, but I don't think people will be rushing to their phones to vote for him. It's a shame, because he's got a great instrument.
7. Angie Miller
You might be shocked seeing Angie so low in the rankings. Her cover over "Yesterday" was good (though her vocal wasn't as masterful as Candice or Amber's). And while I like her, I agree with Keith that she went in and out of her performance, and some parts felt a little put on. She was in the top 3 last week, but Janelle's star is definitely rising. She'll be safe, but next week she'll need to raise her game. On a side note, Angie bore a striking resemblance to Miley Cyrus tonight.
8. Paul Jolley
What can I say? Paul is consistently good but forgettable. His cover of "Eleanor Rigby" showed off more range, and wasn't wild about the falsetto at the top and end. I don't have much more to say, which is usually not a good sign.
9. Lazaro Arbos
Lazaro has a nice voice, but he is completely outclassed by the remaining singers. "In My Life" has one of the simpler melodies, too. Despite a key change, Laz failed to show off any range. I agree that he has stalled, and even regressed. He was clearly the worst performer this week, and didn't take the critique well, ending up in tears.
Here's the audition:
And his emotional reaction to the judges' critiques:
So who goes home? I feel that Devin and Paul may find themselves in the bottom, but it's Lazaro's time to go. Unfortunately, I think his popularity will mean better singers will go home before he does. Do you agree? Tell toofab in the comments below!