It's Grand Ole Opry week. This is gonna be rough. Of the remaining eleven contestants, there really aren't any who seem to be strongly suited for country music. Randy Travis is the Idols' mentor, it will be interesting to see how well he can shape them.
Michael Sarver - Ain't Goin' Down 'Til the Sun Comes Up
This is a hard song to sing. It's got a whole lot of words in a really short amount of time. After the first verse, I'm impressed. Not only did he manage to nail all the lyrics, he's able to walk around and shake hands while doing it. My only complaint is that he's not opening his mouth a whole lot on those longer notes. Nicole thinks it looks like he's got dip in his mouth. Overall I think he did a good job with the song, technically, but there was some kind of spark missing. I'll go with a 3.
Allison Iraheta - Blame It On Your Heart
Maybe it's the lighting, but I really think her hair matches her jacket. I'm sure I've said before that Allison has a very distinctive voice and one wouldn't think it would translate very well into country. She actually did a really good job with this song. 4.
Kris Allen - To Make You Feel My Love
While he had practiced with Randy Travis with his guitar, he's performing tonight without. What's good about this is that he's not just copying Garth's style singing this song. It's a song that was written by Bob Dylan and later covered by Billy Joel, Garth Brooks, and a number of others. Kris was able to put his own signature on it and came out really well. 4.
Lil Rounds - Independence Day
Randy tells Lil that it's a big song, and he's right. At least one of the girls does this every time we hit country week. She's slowed it down a bit, and the verses come out kind of boring. The chorus really doesn't get much better. And she sounds a little flat when she gets there. She's just not connecting with the song. 2.
Adam Lambert - Ring of Fire
Randy Travis does not like this arrangement of the Johnny Cash classic. I'm sorry. I have to agree with Randy. This is kind of awful. He's still got a good voice, but listening to that was almost painful. Simon warns Adam not to go to Nashville anytime soon. I agree. I think the good people of Nashville will probably beat him with a sack of doorknobs. I really didn't like it. At all. But I can't give him a one because his voice is still, technically, pretty good. 2.
Scott McIntyre - Wild Angels
Scott's back behind the piano, a place where we know he is truly comfortable because he is a truly talented musician. I'm not sure he's good enough to win in the end, but win or lose, I have a feeling he'll go far after this competition is over. He picks up the tempo on the chorus, following Randy Travis' suggestion. He takes this Martina McBride song and makes it his own. Very good. 4.
Alexis Grace - Jolene
There's nothing that really stands out about this performance. I mean, it's not bad but not great. I'm calling it average. 3.
Danny Gokey - Jesus Take the Wheel
Seeing his practice sessions is not encouraging. Maybe he was just nervous singing in front of Randy Travis. His actual performance is much better, but his song choice may have hurt him. I think he did a really good job, especially toward the end. The verses were a little boring, but the chorus kicked it off. 4.
Anoop Desai - You Were Always On My Mind
Starting off is a little rough I think. However, this is a huge improvement over last week's performance. I'm not saying it was a perfect performance, but definitely an improvement. 3.
Megan Corkrey - I Go Walking After Midnight
She still has absolutely no stage presence whatsoever. Standing behind the mic stand looking terrified. She may not actually be terrified, but she's like a freakin' robot up there. It really takes away from her performance. She's got a decent voice, but the overall performance wasn't great. 3.
Matt Giraud - So Small
I'm actually liking this. I was a little hesitant when this was announced as the song he'd be singing. He's comfortable behind the piano. 4.
There were really no stand-out performances tonight. If they decide to do a bottom three tomorrow night, I think we'll see Michael, Adam, and Lil. I know that prediction is wrong. But based on what I saw tonight, those are the ones who should lose some ground.