Jena: “Barracuda” - great pick for her to wail on. She owned it, she does a great job of interacting with the band, she really took it to a new level right out of the gate.
Sam: “It’s Time” - I like him, but he just isn’t transmitting his performance out to the audience. Getting people to clap in the break does not a connection make. And I think somewhere in there I may have heard a flat note, which I’ve never heard from him.
CJ: “American Woman” - What is he doing with that guitar? Sorry, tough to buy that acoustic guitarist with the electric. Seriously though, I think he would have done much better walking around with the mic stand. I liked this, though if I didn’t know about Lenny Kravitz’ cover of this song I would have been more impressed.
Alex: “Animal” - This was solid, but lacked that unique take that Alex puts onto songs. One can’t expect him to re-maneuver every song he plays, but nonetheless, it was a good pick for him. And Keith really liked lip syncing to it.
Caleb: “Sting Me” - This is a good song in that it’s a Black Crowes rocker, but it’s not one of their “better known” songs, and as a result, I don’t think it’s quite landing. I mean, you can’t compare this track to any of the popular songs that preceded it. And I would say that if it wasn’t for that last note, he would have gotten poor marks for it. But I mean, that last note. Whoah.
Jessica: “Somebody to Love” - Not unlike Jena, this song is not easy, to hit Grace Slick’s range is a feat, she’s doing a great job. I would say, 35% of the time, she gets through to the audience with a sneer or a wink or toss of the hair. But most of the time, it’s a wall.
Sam: "You’re Still the One” - Great curve ball pick for him - someone needs to tell him to get his fist away from his face when he’s holding onto the mic stand. He did fine, but he has angry eyebrows - not exactly what you want with a love song.
Caleb: “Undo It” - This feels like a bit of a cheat, from the “def leppard” school of country music. This is full-on meatloaf. I would just like to remind everyone that last year, this guy did not get out of Hollywood week. That is all.
Alex: "Always on my Mind” - That was great - this is what we have come to expect from him. Some chords got a little goofy in the middle as it seemed like the band was having trouble following all the blue notes he throws in on the guitar, but wow - gorgeous. 2nd iTunes purchase for me.
Jena: "So Small” - Well, even though I really like her and I really like Carrie Underwood, this was boring to me. I just felt like the consonants just got swallowed up by all those vowels and dripping triphthongs… I couldn’t follow it.
CJ: “Whatever It Is” - Whatever it is, it isn’t on pitch. Seriously, how do you get this far in the competition and not sing on pitch? Harry needs to take back everything negative he said to Jena and send it right over to CJ. This cannot continue...
Jessica: “Jolene” - This is another great pick for her. I’m not sure why she chose to arrange it in a rock and roll structure. She made more connections to me with this lyric, especially in the breakdown. Maybe she’s just a really good jilted lover. - great last few notes, I liked it a lot.
So… who’s going CJ home?