Adam Lambert may not win American Idol at season’s end, but one thing is certain: there is not one person in the Season 8 competition that is as technically and stylistically is good as the “Wicked” understudy. Performing Tears for Fears’ “Mad World” on American Idol’s “Sing Your Birth Year” Week (the Top 8) in an understated falsetto was brilliant and by far the best performance of the night.
But there are six weeks left — because there’s no way he’s going home this week. And although most people, except for the diehard __________ (fill in one of the other contenders’ names) fans, have been calling American Idol the “Adam Lambert and the Rest of the Gang Show” for the last couple weeks (seriously, you can find a version of that descriptor all over the internet), there remains still enough time for Adam to delve into his self-indulgence just enough to kill his chances. Of course, that probably won’t occur until the Top 4 contestants or so, too late for the judges to use their one and only save on him…
But “Mad World” was beautiful. Even if you do not like Adam Lambert — for whatever reason — there is no way that his performance last night ranks behind anyone else’s. Mediocrity and poorly performed original arrangements do not and cannot compare. His closest competitor? By far — Matt Giraud.
Matt Giraud performed Stevie Wonder’s “Part Time Lover,” gave it a little smoky twist. I’ve stated before in my critiques of the American Idol contenders that it is often a mistake to attempt to emulate the incomparable Stevie Wonder, but many do. Many fail. Matt Giraud did not. His performance was excellent, and, hopefully, he won’t have anything to worry about on the American Idol results show Wednesday evening.
But as good as it was, it wasn’t as good as Adam Lambert’s “Mad World.” Not even close…
Allison Iraheta and Anoop Desai should be given some credit as well, as their performances were really well done, just not up to the caliber of those of Matt Giraud and Adam Lambert.
In fact, Simon Cowell stood and gave Adam Lambert a standing ovation — along with everyone else in the audience. Cowell has not done that in recent American Idol history, if ever. Many of the photos and videos of the event show Simon with a smirk on his face, like he is privy to some knowledge that everyone is not. Like maybe Adam Lambert got the fourth lowest amount of votes last week and the bottom four separated the top five by an incredible amount. Of course, Simon Cowell seems to smirk a lot and it just may have been his attempt at a smile to go along with his standing ovation.
Just like with “Tracks of My Tears,” Adam Lambert has again dominated the competition. But unlike the Motown Week standout performance, he had almost no competition this week.
As stated, Adam Lambert might not win Season 8 of American Idol, but it won’t be because he doesn’t deserve it. It’s just that democratically chosen outcomes sometimes do not always result in the best in the competition winning. The American Idol audience has seen that happen before.
We shall see…
“American Idol,” Fox Television