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Music Review: Adam Lambert “Season 8 Favorite Performances” via iTunes

Continuing my American Idol Season 8 wrap-up nonsense, I decided I would also review Adam Lambert’s “Favorite Performances Collection”.  This song set is extremely popular on iTunes; it’s still #5 on top albums over one week from being released.  Here’s the review:

(The songs are in the order they appear on the track listing, and will be rating on a scale of 0 to 10 elephants)

  1. Black or White“- 8 Elephants- The live version of this “Black or White” was energetic and exciting, and I don’t think that translated very well to the studio version.  It seems much more relaxed.  Analogy: The live version is to bold, black coffee as the studio version is to a mocha frappe latte.
  2. Born to be Wild“- 8.5 Elephants- Once again, like “Black or White”, I don’t think these high-energy songs from Adam translate very well into studio recordings.  But of course it’s much harder to deliver the energy and excitement on a recording, especially an American Idol recording.  I can’t get it out of my head that this sounds like a “Born to be Wild” dance remix.
  3. Cryin“- 9 Elephants- This was one of my favorite songs from Adam throughout Season 8 because the screech/wail that he does worked so well.  It wasn’t overdone or obnoxious, it just worked.  The studio recording is similar in that it’s a great vocal and it all just works.
  4. Feeling Good“- 9.5 Elephants- I think this is one of the few songs that I enjoyed the studio recording and not really the live performance.  The studio recording is great!  Definitely one of my favorite studios from Adam.  He breathed new life to this old classic and it really worked.
  5. If I Can’t Have You“- 8.5 Elephants- The vocals in this song are great, but when I listen to it the music gives me the feeling that this an 80s pop song.  I don’t know what the people that add the backing track in are thinking sometimes.  Other than that, it’s good!
  6. Mad World“- 9.5 Elephants- I’ve got three words for you: haunting.  Take it in folks, I will never use the word “haunting” to describe a song again because it makes me feel like Kara.  Seriously though, this song is great and Adam does a great job with it every time.  It may be teetering on the edge of “performance overkill” since it’s been on every morning talk show in the U.S., but it’s still great and the definitive Adam song.
  7. One“- 9 Elephants- I expressed my complete disdain for Adam screwing up one of my favorite songs, but he fixed it all with the recording.  The little changes he made in the melody are gone and it’s back to it’s original form.  I know that I’m the number 1 proponent for changing songs up, but that’s only if it works.  If you go for it and it fails, tough stuff for you.  But like I said, he fixed it for the studio and it sounds great.
  8. Play That Funky Music“- 7 Elephants- I hate this song, and I like it no more when Adam does it.  The vocals are good, but the song is complete garbage.  That’s all I’ve gotta say about this one.
  9. Ring of Fire“-  0 Elephants- Just as frightening as the first time, I can’t even finish it.  I’m not trying to pull a Clay Aiken and say that I’m going to have nightmares and it was horrible in the vocals because that’s just not true.  The vocals are fine, the whole arrangement is just scary.  I don’t like this song really in any form though.  Oh and I don’t really give it 0, more like 7.
  10. The Tracks of My Tears“- 8.5 Elephants- I definitely liked the live version better without all the background nonsense going on, but it’s still a good song even in studio.  I wish American Idol would just leave the performances acoustic or whatever in studio because that’s the reason why American loves those performances!  Ahh, it’s so aggravating.
  11. Whole Lotta Love“- 9 Elephants- Once again like “Cryin” the screech works here.  If Adam is going to want to do the screech, then songs like these are definitely going to suit him well.  And to give the screech credit, it’s one heck of an on-pitch screech.
  12. A Change is Gonna Come“- 9 Elephants- It’s probably the most soulful track on the favorites compilation, and it definitely sounds good.  Not too much was added to the studio version (thankfully) so it keeps a lot of what was in the live version.

The Verdict

After much debate, I’ve decided that the following songs wil make the TCJ Playlist:

  • “Cryin”
  • “Feeling Good”
  • “Mad World”
  • “One”
  • “The Tracks of My Tears”
  • “Whole Lotta Love”
  • “A Change is Gonna Come”

What do you think of Adam’s “Season 8 Favorite Peformances” from iTunes?  If you disagree with my review, let us know!n  Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Thanks for participating!

Rick

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Filed under Adam Lambert, Entertainment, Music, Singers, TCJ Playlist

American Idol Finale Performances Recap

This….. is…… American Idol!  Sorry, I had to.  I hadn’t done that yet this season I don’t think.  Anyway, Season 8 comes down to this, the final six competition performances of the year.  I’m sure it’ll be epic.  Hmm.

Ryan reminds us to all fix our DVRs for the finale runover, but I will predict now that millions of people will still flock to message boards to complain.  First up is…

Adam Lambert singing “Mad World” by Tears for Fears for his re-do performance.  What’s up with the cape, man?  Haha, and the dramatic fog screens going across the floor?  This is over the top without even trying to be.  But in all seriousness, this is good.  I think it’s better than the first time he did it overall.  There aren’t any small bum notes anywhere, which is always a plus.  I’m not seeing the big twist that we heard he was going to do, but it was still good.  Not your typical Adam Lambert here.  Randy gave it an A+ and loved the fog machines, Kara said he is an incredible artist, Paula told him to bask in it, and Simon thought it was over theatrical like Phantom of the Opera.  Next up is…

Kris Allen singing “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers for his re-do performance.  Kris has really nice parents, I really like them.  I will probably miss them more than anyone this season, except for Allison.  And Meghan.  So nevermind.  Anyway, this has been one of my favorite performances from Kris this year, so I’m glad he went with this one.  It’s more understated than his other two, so it’ll be good to bring it back to the fore front.  Great performance.  This is more my kind of thing.  Really good ending, too.  Randy thought it was one of his best ever, Kara complicated his ability to make an intimate bond, Paula says something about “Allenizing” things, and Simon said he had doubted America’s choice last week, but now he takes it all back.

I’d have to give that round to Kris, and Simon agrees with me.  I always knew Simon knew what he was talking about.

Adam Lambert singing “A Change is Gonna Come” by Patti LaBelle and Sam Cook for Simon Fuller’s choice.  Wow, this is really good, I’ve gotta say.  He’s hitting some big ole notes as usual, but it seems to work well for this song.  I enjoyed this much more than the first one.  It’s one of my favorite Adam performances of the year for sure.  There’s more substance to it than usual screech fest.  The judges pretty much all thought that it was his best ever, and Simon said he was definitely back in the game.  Next up is…

Kris Allen singing “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye for Simon Fuller’s choice.  This is very Kris Allen, to quote Paula.  A very cool pop sound to this one, which is definitely what he should go with after Idol.  I think this performance is proof that he has the most potential radio success after Idol from anyone this season.  It’s not his best, but I could imagine hearing it on the radio.  Randy thought it was a little light for him, Kara like the song choice and thought he delivered a message, Paula thought he “tore it up” and made Marvin Gaye proud, and Simon thought it was like 3 friends in a bedroom strumming along to Marvin Gaye and too laid back for a finale.

Simon gave that round a million percent to Adam.  I think it goes to Adam as well, but not by a million percent.

Oh great, now the epic coronation song is up.  I can’t wait to see that one.  Not.

Adam Lambert singing “No Boundaries”, this year’s coronation song written by Kara DioGuardi.  This song typical Idol cheese, limburger to be exact.  He’s doing a great job vocally, though it gets a little shouty in the end.  Not typical Adam “screech” just shouty.  This song is going to kill Kris unless they allowed them to change it up.  Good vocal for Adam, though not the most captivating performance.  Randy thought it was pitchy, Kara gave herself a shout out for writing it (Come on Kara), Paula will forever be his fan, and Simon made fun of the song, but said Adam has been one of the best and most original ever.  Next up is…

Kris Allen singing “No Boundaries” as well.  Unless Kris can change it up it’s going to kill him.  Well, the beginning was really good!  In the middle it kind of fell a part a bit, but he got it back together.  I actually really liked that.  The song didn’t kill him like I thought it would.  Adam’s always got him beat as far as range and ability, but Kris knows what he can do and does it really well.  Randy thought the key was high, but said he was amazing; Kara said he is a compelling artist and incredible person; Paula said he’s done an amazing job this season and deserved every bit of it; and Simon said the first was his best, but watching him as been incredible because he has improved so much.

Now the real reason everyone’s watching American Idol tonight…

Carrie Underwood singing the good-bye song “Home Sweet Home”.  Carrie’s looking great back on the Idol stage!  Great performance of “Home Sweet Home” by Carrie.  I think this just proves that she is the greatest winner of American Idol.  She is one of the only people that actually sound better live than in the studio.  I will always be a fan.  I give the night to Carrie Underwood!

What did you think of tonight’s show?  Who do you think will be winning tomorrow night?

Leave your comments below or send an e-mail to theconservativejournal@gmail.com.  Don’t forget to bookmark The Conservative Journal and sign up for the RSS Feed and the daily e-mail newsletter.

Thanks for participating!

Rick

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Filed under American Idol, Breaking News, Entertainment, Music, No Politics Tuesday, Singers, Television