Initially I thought and believed that the guys had this in the bag. I still think as a whole, they're stronger than the ladies, but the ladies who are strong are amazing. For the first time since I've heard the ladies sing, there's a clear indication of who the front runners are. I also at this point firmly believe that there will be at least one wild card spot if not two.
Up first was the always entertaining Zoanette Johnson singing What's Love Got to do with It by Tina Turner-- This was a train wreck from start to finish. It almost makes me wonder why the judges put her through to the top ten Ladies in the first place. Nicki said it was dreadful. Randy calls it a mess. Keith and Mariah didn't like it either, but didn't have the heart to tell her straight out. If this performance doesn't send her home, I don't know what will.
Breanna Steer sang Flaws and All by Beyonce-- Breanna has definite star quality but some of the judges thought that this performance along with the song choice were predictable. I would be fine with her advancing because she has confidence and personality which some of the ladies are lacking. Keith, Randy, and Mariah all liked her song choice and Keith talked about her control and poise, and I completely agree. I have no idea what Nicki was thinking when she said it was the wrong song choice and straining on the vocals.
Aubrey Cleland sang Big Girls Don't Cry by Fergie-- Aubrey is another young woman in this competition who has potential and then some. She is so talented; I didn't think the song choice was right for her because it didn't allow her voice to soar the way it should have. Mariah thinks Aubrey could achieve multi platinum status; I agree, she definitely has that Rihanna vibe going on.
Janelle Arthur sang If I Can Dream by Elvis Presley-- I appreciate the pureness of Janelle's voice, and she has been a favorite of mine since this whole thing started, in fact, since last year, but for some reason, this song choice just did not hold my interest. My hope is that she gets through as a Wild Card or based on the pureness of her voice, and the sincerity behind her performances. Nicki actually went as far as to say it was the best vocal of the night so far, which technically, it probably was. The judges were actually so sweet to Janelle that it brought tears to her eyes.
Teena Torres sang Lost by Faith Hill-- I actually enjoyed Teena's vocal, and she looks so different and so much better. There were parts of the performance where she was pitchy, but overall, I give her a lot of credit for taking a country song and making it her own. Nicki comments on her hair, and then inappropriately adds in a comment about Teena's boobs being great. Mariah loved the song choice and the richness and fullness of her voice. I think she may have made it in to the finals.
Angie Miller sang Never Gone by Colton Dixon-- Angie sat at the piano for this performance and it was so sincere, the delivery was beautiful, the song was beautiful. I am sure that Colton would be so proud of her choosing his song and singing it so well. Keith calls Angie a "true artist", Nicki says she'd love to buy Angie's album right now. Randy said a star is born onstage right now.
Amber Holcomb sang I Believe in You and Me by Whitney Houston-- Amber's performance was just in a different class; she sang so effortlessly and I can potentially see her winning this competition. I don't think there's been anyone like her on the show in a while. Nicki tells her Babrz to vote for Amber. Mariah says Amber is one of her favorites in the competition. The judges had previously worried about Amber's confidence; I definitely don't think that they need to worry about that anymore.
Kree Harrison sang Stronger by Faith Hill-- Kree remains a favorite of mine this season because with each performance her sincerity is ever present. She is also so good, but doesn't realize she is. Nicki says, "you already know you're my wife," and "your sexiness level went through the roof". Mariah says she is always surprised with Kree because the experience that she gives the audience.
Adriana Latonio sang Stand Up for Love by Destiny's Child-- This was the biggest change from last performance to this one. This was the wrong song for her, and the performance was too pageant. Nicki felt that she should work on performing and come back next year. Randy agreed and said it felt boring. Mariah thought the song was wrong for her. I have to say I agree, I didn't feel anything from that performance, and Adriana does have a good voice, but this just seemed too rehearsed.
Candice Glover sang Ordinary People by John Legend-- I'll make no secret about it, I was not that impressed with Candice's performance of Natural Woman last week. Kelly Clarkson sang that on the first season, and there's been no one who has sang it better on AI ever since. This song was perfect for Candice though. It really displayed her vocal abilities. I loved Keith's comment about how her style and vocal blends the old and new. She is current despite the old soul that is her voice.
My predictions on who is moving forward:
5th spot is a toss up between Janelle Arthur and Teena Torres
Wild Card-- the judges love Aubrey Cleland and Breanna Steer
Adriana and Zoanette are the only sure bets on going home
This will be tough!