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'American Idol' Recap: Curtis Finch Jr. Stands Out In Top 10 Men Semi-Final

Andrew Payne Andrew Payne
March 7th, 2013 12:07pm EST
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'American Idol' Recap: Curtis Finch Jr. The Only Standout In Top 10 Men Semi-Final

The guys of this season’s ‘American Idol’ need no introduction, mostly because they don’t deserve an introduction. They’re just a bunch of mediocre talents with one standout. None of whom the producers particularly want to win.

So who was the best of the worst? Read on to find out.

Elijah Liu Sang “Stay” by Rihanna

Keith Said: I thought that was a really great start to the show.

Nicki Said: I think I would be willing to stay.

Randy Said: It never left first gear. It just lay there flat.

Mariah Said: I liked this a lot. I felt it was one of your better performances.

The Verdict:

Hey, Ladies! Elijah is single! He’s performing for all of you out there! So if you want a 5’2” dude who looks like an annoyingly cockly 14-year-old, just come running. He’s ready.

Hopefully being a compelling performer or a good singer isn’t on your checklist though, because this kid doesn’t have any of that going on. He sounds like that same 14-year-old trying to sing a grown-up song and sounding pleasant but nowhere near connecting with the song or making it interesting.

Instead, it’s just a lifeless vocal and even deader performance as he stands in his oversized jacket trying to remember the words and find a good note.

But hey! He’s single!

Grade: D+

Prediction: He better hope he really appeals to the ladies as much as he thinks he does to overcome such a flat performance in the lead-off spot.

Cortez Shaw Sang “Locked Out of Heaven” by Bruno Mars

Keith Said: I don’t think that was the best song for you.

Nicki Said: I love your charisma but sometimes it feels like you’re straining.

Randy Said: I’m not sure you’re there yet.

Mariah Said: I thought it should be down a half-step at least so you can take it higher at the end.

The Verdict:

Oh you make me feel like…I’m watching live bad karaoke…And I walked out!

This was just kind of icky. Watching somebody sing about how sex takes him to paradise with the eyes of the world’s nicest serial killer and a vest from the 1982 Bugle Boy fall line, just doesn’t quite come together. Especially when he’s just singing the notes of the song without any regard for any sort of soul or rhythm or competent performance.

It’s unclear what part of his performance was the worst, but it was all definitely bad.

Grade: D

Prediction: Bad reviews from the judges this early are certain doom.

Charlie Askew Sang “Mama” by Genesis

Keith Said: There’s a thing about the way you’re performing that feels disingenuous.

Nicki Said: Where’s my little baby at, Charlie?

Randy Said: The front part was terrible and the end of it you went to like a scream.

Mariah Said: I think you add some diversity to the group.

The Verdict:

Charlie gets credit. He gets credit for one thing. He gets credit for choosing a song unlike anything anybody else will sing on the show. He gets credit for that, but there’s nothing else for which to give him credit.

He flat can’t sing. Like at all. He sounds like somebody shrieking in his shower right before he gets to into and almost falls over. His vocal style is mix of speak-singing and outright screeching. There’s nothing even remotely good about this voice. And he does all that with maximum effort.

Then there’s the outfit. Little ginger pipsqueak decided that a tiny tanktop was the way to go this evening, clearly nobody needed tickets for the gun show. Or a reason to keep their food down.

Finally, the performance. Something out of a hobo’s singing and dancing around a fire inside a boxcar to keep warm. No. That’s usually more graceful. This was just spastic to the point of worry, like he might overzealously dislocate his shoulder from throwing his arms up too enthusiastically.

In other words, pure garbage all around.

Grade: F

Prediction: There’s a chance America loves him and that Vote for the Worst can rally him, but that’s a longshot at this point.

Nick Boddington Sang “Iris” by The Goo Goo Dolls

Keith Said: I thought that was beautiful tonight.

Nicki Said: That was in your comfort zone.

Randy Said: I thought it was a good solid performance, but not your best.

Mariah Said: There were so many better performances.

The Verdict:

Let the singing inability continue! Wow, Nick’s voice is just non-present. Like a choir boy with laryngitis. Just a barely-audible lilting falsetto that I think is what angels sound like when they’re crying at a bad movie.

Tonight, though, he couples it with abysmal piano playing. Some simple chords that distract him so completely from his piano playing that he can’t look up with his alien face to use whatever mind control technique he must have employed on the judges to get him through this far.

I doubt America will be hypnotized by this poor “sensitive college guy” performance.

Grade: D-

Prediction: That was too forgettable for Nick to get through. Too creepy as well.

Burnell Taylor Sang “I’m Here” from ‘The Color Purple’

Keith Said: I loved it. Thank you for doing that.

Nicki Said: I’m happy that we found you and I really love you.

Randy Said: That was great. Love you love you love you.

Mariah Said: I’m so proud of you. So happy. I have so much love for you.

The Verdict:

Singing a song from a musical is just moronic at this point. This is a pop singer competition and there’s no way not to sound cabaret and overly theatrical when you sing a song from a musical. That’s because this is the way these types of songs are meant to be sung: By musical theater performers in a musical theater.

It’s clear Burnell can really sing and he sings this pretty well, but it can’t leave the theater. He doesn’t make it current at all. He looks like somebody from a cast in a hipster musical in the early 90s. He sounds exactly like it too.

He sounds good, just not the type for this show.

Grade: C+

Prediction: The judges certainly dug it. He’s a safe bet to go through.

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