I apologize for not finishing my recap in a remotely timely fashion. I have been tied up with the Frank Ski/Wanda Smith departure on V-103.
I still think it’s going to be Tate vs. Carly Rose. Fifth Harmony had a moment of life there thanks to their first performance. I’d say Emblem3 has a small shot of knocking Tate or Carly Rose from the finals. We shall see.
1) Tate Stevens (”Bonfire’ Craig Morgan/ Team L.A.) – Clearly, Tate picked this song himself. L.A. looks ridiculous in a cowboy hat. But Tate feels like home, even with the over-the-top pyrotechnics behind him. This song with its upbeat country/rock vibe is right up his alley. “You look like a man who believes he can win this competition,” Simon said. Britney, clearly aware he is Carly Rose’s biggest competition, said it wasn’t his best performance. Grade: A-minus
2) Carly Rose Sonenclar (”Your Song” Elton John/ Team Britney) – I always found this song boring. She does okay with it but as Demi Lovato likes to say, I was a wee bit bored by it, even with Carly’s vocal stylings giving it a little bit of spice. She said this was her father’s favorite song so I can’t blame her for picking it. “It’s still very predictable,” Demi said. “Another slow song. But the R&B side of your voice is so magical. I don’t care it was predicable.” Grade: B-plus
3) Emblem3 (”Baby, I Love Your Way” Peter Frampton/ Team Simon) – If this show is trying to find a modern artist, why does Emblem3 keep carting out songs long before they were born? What is Simon thinking? They do modernize this a bit with some reggae feel and a bit of rapping. It’s actually not half bad. They shake it up enough to make it work. “I saw you as stars. It was inventive,” L.A. said. “The very first time since the first auditions: that’s what Emblem 3 is,” Demi said. Grade: A-minus
4) Fifth Harmony (”Anything Could Happen” Ellie Goulding/ Team Simon) – I have never heard this song but it’s a winner for this group. I have not been a fan of anything they’ve done until last week and this performance was impressive across the board. The look, the vocal mixes, the harmonies, it all worked really well. They are finally feeling like a group. Good timing. “That performance was the very best vocal performance you’ve ever done,” L.A. said. Grade: A
5) Tate Stevens (”Fall” Clay Walker) – Another ballad and he’s very earnest. He’s likable, which helps him get through a fair slog of a song. “You’ve done enough to make it to the final,” Simon said. Grade: B-plus
6) Carly Rose (”Imagine” John Lennon) - She takes a risk by adding some big notes on such an iconic song. I tend to agree with Simon that she worked the vocal gymnastics a bit much but she is so good, I still enjoyed it. All the movement from piano to stage and back “made the song fussy,” Simon said. “I’m not sure the song needs big notes. It was overcomplicated.” Grade: B-plus/A-minus
7) Emblem3 (’Hey Jude’ Beatles) – Another ancient song for a group that needs to be doing more modern stuff. This is sweet and cute but is this really what Emblem3 wants to be? One of the guys is reminding of Bobby or Peter Brady. It’s a perfectly amiable version of a Beatles classic but I am confused what they ultimately are going to be in the pop marketplace. Grade: B
Fifth Harmony (”Impossible”/ Shontelle) – This attempt at drawing a Hispanic audience wasn’t nearly as embracing as their first song. There were even some bum notes. A bit of a letdown and a bit of a snooze to boot. L.A. said they had sung this before, a “lazy song choice.” Britney said she would be surprised if they survived. Grade: B-minus