Last night we listened as the American Idol Top 12 guys took the stage, each hoping to solidify his spot among the season's Top 16. Overall, the performances were solid.
Will the Top 12 girls find the same success in the first round of live performance? They certainly hope so. Let's find out who soars now!
Seventeen year old Lovey James, who has a stage name if ever there were a stage name to be had, kicks off the night with "Love Runs Out" by One Republic. Hey, remember that time One Republic was on the Idol stage with Kris Allen? That was neat. Lovey gets off to a really rough start and she has just a touch of Jessica Simpson hand. She's trying really hard to be hard and I'm not buying what she's selling. Meh.
Jennifer said she got us off to a great start. Harry thought it was a rocky beginning and Keith said it got better as the song went on. 7/10
Adanna Duru slows it down with "Rather Be." These girls all have some terrible habits with their hands. Adanna has a solid voice but this song feels a little too low for her. It's pretty, but it feels like she's struggling to stay low. She goes a little sharp when she hits the middle and then ends on a nice note. It was a wide range for her first performance, that's for sure.
Keith loved that she condensed so much capability into the performance. Jennifer wants her to learn to control her singing when she's excited. Harry said it got out of control when she got loud. 7.5/10
Alexis Gomez, self-proclaimed "Hispanic hippie," is diving into country music with "Gunpowder and Lead." She's also wearing shoes. She's the strongest performance of the night so far! She's on pitch, on point, and basically perfect. She works the crowd, doesn't lose the moment, and sees made for the stage.
Harry says she's "lovely, talented, and natural on the stage." He doesn't want her to put a twang into the songs if she doesn't naturally have one. Keith says she can ditch the guitar if she wants. Jennifer loves that she plays around a little. 9/10
Singing a Keith Urban number with her squeezebox, Joey Cook, sings "Somebody Like You." It's quirky and weird and fun, but I think this is going to hurt her. Harry and Jennifer appear to have no idea what to think at all, but she's completely rewritten this song and made it totally bizarre. I can't decide if I loved it or hated it which is probably a good thing.
Jennifer loves how unique it was. Harry thinks that's what any kid he and Keith ever had would sound like. Keith called it "perfect." 8.5/10
Katherine Winston is taking on Taylor Swift with "Safe & Sound." She, too, has the hand thing going. It's like the girls who don't play an instrument have no idea what to do with their hands so they just start weirdly caressing the air. Katherine has a great voice. It's really clear and pure. While the arrangement was sleepy, her vocals were great.
Keith wants her not to be afraid to feel when she sings. Jennifer calls her voice captivating. Harry wonders if she maybe chose the wrong song. The ballad didn't help her. 8/10
Shannon Berthiaume never sang in front of people before auditioning for Idol and here she is on the stage singing "Who Knew." She slows down the intro which doesn't work in her favor. Her vocals are rocky, and it's probably her nerves, but it wasn't a great performance.
Harry calls her unpolished and says the novelty of her greenness is going to wear off. Keith didn't like her song choice because Pink songs are actually quite difficult to sing. Jennifer dittos the guys but says that Shannon has to start believing she's a singer. 6/10
Up next is budding actress/singer Loren Lott. If anyone thinks she's not here hoping to get to Broadway they're wrong. For her inaugural live performance, she sings "Note To God." This girl is absolutely gorgeous with a voice to boot, but her style is very one-note. She's dramatic and can't smize so she often looks pained when she's singing. Singing wonderfully, that is, but the whole thing was kind of...eh.
Jennifer called the song choice brave. Harry called her powerful. Keith said she's giving everyone a run for their money. 8/10
Shi Scott picks "Umbrella" for her first night on the stage. She makes some great choices with the arrangement, but there's not a lot of emotion in it. The whole thing falls sort of flat, even with all the power she has in her voice.
Keith wasn't wowed by the song choice. Jennifer thinks she should go on but questioned the song, too. Harry thinks it helps that she picked a song everyone knows but says it wasn't the right song. 7.5/10
Iowa girl Maddy Walker, (maybe Chris Soules' neighbor?), heads north of the border for a Shania Twain number, "Love Gets Me Every Time." I can't understand a single word she says until the chorus. She's so nervous she might vomit on the stage. Alexis blew her out of the water as far as country performances go because this feels like a pageant talent performance and not a "Hey, I'm a singer. Take me seriously."
Harry says her voice sounds older than she actually is and thought it was a solid performance. Keith didn't think that was a good song choice when flipping through Shania's songbook. Jennifer agrees with Keith. 5/10
Four-timer Sarina-Joi Crowe chooses "Mama Knows Best." She's great! She works the stage, sounds great, and incorporates her face into her performance to convey the emotions included in a pretty flawless lyric. Thoroughly enjoyed that!
Jennifer thinks she's so good she rivaled Jessie J's original performance. Harry basically just says she's "great." Keith loved how on point she was. 10/10
Jax, who still has the ridiculous X on her face, hit up the wayback machine for Nancy Sinatra's "Bang Bang." She starts out sitting on a stool with almost no musical accompaniment and I'm immediately captivated. Once she stands and ups the tempo, I'm even more hooked. Ditch the X, keep the vocals coming!
Harry, Jennifer, and Keith all loved it and said she'll be here next week. 10/10
Closing out the night, Tyanna Jones, is bringing it with "Lips Are Movin." This is an excellent song choice because it's current, but her voice is different enough from Megan Trainor's that it sounds original. Tyanna also has an amazing spirit and sense of style.
Harry puts her in the "ridiculously talented" category. Keith wants her not to be afraid to tell the band what she wants. Jennifer wants her to be herself always (which she does). 10/10
So far, with only 24 performances heard, the guys are stronger than the girls this year, which isn't really anything new from all previous years except the horror that was the Mariah Carey season where the deck was completely stacked so that a girl would win. If America wants a GWG, that's what America will get, but there are at least a few girls in the mix who deserve to be here for a long while.
Tyanna Jones killed it tonight. Jax and Sarina-Joi Crowe followed very, very closely behind. Alexis Gomez was great but might be hurt by the fact that she sang so early in the night. Joey Cook is going to get the quirky vote, and for good reason. She's quirky, yes, but she's also incredibly talented.
Shannon Berthiaume is probably leaving after this week. Katherine Winston might as well. Maddy Walker probably should leave, which would mean the judges got it wrong in putting her through during a sudden death sing-off. (Surprise! They got it wrong.)
We'll find out next week when American Idol returns!
What did you think of tonight's performances? Which girl had the strongest vocals? Are the girls or guys stronger this season?
Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.