Wow, now that I've caught up on reading all the posts, how amazing that we really all do hear different things. How interesting!
My absolute favorite top 2 of the night were -
#1 - Jacob (07)and #2 - Stefano (03).
I'd also put Lauren A. right up there, a hair below Stefano.
I thought Jacob (07) was phenomenal! The absolute best by a long shot! What a spectacular voice! He looked so down and depressed and humbled by landing in the bottom last week, that I hope more voters agreed with me. What a phenomenal singer and sweet guy. The best here!
As for Stefano (03) - It was his best performance so far, and he did fantastic. I loved it! He really poured his passion into it and he succeeded. Loved it! Love his voice. He really outdid himself tonight and succeeded in showing how much he wants to stay and deserves to continue!
Lauren A. ((02) - did a terrific job and gave a wonderful performance and has continued to improve. Her voice and boots, no matter what else she wears, just shout "Country" to me, but I am really appreciating her voice lately and the emotion and control I see and feel her use. She strikes me as a junior-Carrie Underwood and I think she did wonderfully tonight. Great singing. I wondered if the "tears" and other mentions regarding her voice were really coming from the many back-up singers, even though Jen meant it as a compliment. I loved her vocals tonight. And oh yeah - while I normally can't stomach Miley C. or such accurately described 'Idol finale type song' - she did it better than most!
I thought Paul was atrocious tonight and killed that song. The vocals just weren't there at all. I enjoyed his energy and performance, but couldn't take the singing being so bad.
And one surprise for me was Scotty, who's so popular. First of all, he was the worst off-key tonight of anyone, which isn't at all like him. I can't stomach his facial expressions when he performs, and it's gotten worse. And I was utterly disgusted that the judges would rave over him after that performance. He really bombed, for the first time. I am no supporter of his, but I've always maintained he had real talent and his singing, itself, was top-notch, if you liked the oldest style Country, which I don't! But tonight he was bad - just off.
Haley was abominable. I hope she finally lands in the bottom and goes. UGH! Really bad. Terrible song choice.
For me, the real surprise was Casey, who I've never supported and never voted for nor ever liked. Well, tonight I was so impressed I did send him some votes! Shocker! His singing was perfectly, sliding into place, in key, subtle and really impressed me. He gave a very credible performance, if too low-key and unusual to have gained enough popularity at Idol. But I was with the judges on this one! I was glad he stuck to what he most felt he knew and loved doing. Love the upright bass. The only I don't and didn't like was his face and expressions. Still puts me off, what can you do? But I loved his singing tonight. He deserves more votes.
Which leads me to the final surprise: James D.! Though I've agreed he comes off, before this, as a kid rock star wannabe, I also happened to enjoy him and his performances and thought fairly well of his singing and loved his range, even if he didn't make it to Adam Lambert standards. However tonight, he truly impressed me I am no heavy metal fan. I loathe it and usually run out of a surprise encounter with it, with my fingers in my ears! lol.... But not only did he passionately know what was right for him, what he's most passionate about, but he went for it, full on and did a great job! No, he's not the best of the best as a singer; but he was truly terrific and it was amazing to see heavy metal on Idol, like that - even if true aficionados cavil at the authenticity and quality. I think he did a really terrific job. If it weren't for the voting time limits, and my passion for Jacob and Stefano, I would gladly have sent more votes his way....so I hope he has enough fans to stay. His bravery and abilities deserve it.
Hope we can send Hayley & Paul home before James and Casey and most especially fantastic Jacob ever have to worry about it! It was Scotty who deserved to land in the bottom 3 tonight, though I really doubt his fans will let that happen.
Jacob, Stefano, Lauren, Casey & James were the best tonight, in that order.
Hayley & Paul and Scotty were the worst tonight, imo.