Country Universe continues its annual tradition of live-blogging country night on American Idol.
9:55 Kind of boring night overall. I liked Anoop the most. Not too much stood out for me.
9:52 When I reviewed “So Small”, I think that I mentioned it would sound better stripped down. No surprise I liked the first half of this performance more.
9:51 Interesting that only the men took on Carrie this year. Probably a good move on the women’s part, as none of them could go toe to toe with her.
9:46 Ten down, one to go.
9:45 Again, I feel they’re just pushing certain people.
9:43 This is the second time tonight – the first being Adam Lambert – that I feel I’m watching a parody of Idol.
9:41 “Walking After Midnight” is the first song that I actually associate with the Opry that’s been performed tonight.
9:33 I’ll say it before Randy does. This sounds current. It’s also easily the best of the night.
9:31 I remember Fantasia nailing “Always on My Mind.” He’s got his work cut out for him. Love his name, though.
9:25 The show seems rigged this year.
9:24 Why do they keep suggesting songs that you can scream all the way through? That would sound terrible.
9:23 Jesus, take the mic.
9:21 This guy wants to be Color Me Badd on the verses and Linkin Park on the chorus. He can’t pull off either of them.
9:17 Seriously. “Jesus, Take the Wheel?”
9:13 That didn’t sound like Dolly Parton, but I guess Simon’s aware of the version she modeled hers after.
9:11 “Jolene” is a simple song in its original version. That’s what makes it so easy to put a new spin on it without making dramatic changes. I liked her performance of this.
9:10 This is the Mindy Smith version.
9:09 Dolly Parton’s “Jolene.” The second song tonight that’s been covered by Olivia Newton-John. Let’s see if Alexis can do it better.
9:03 I think he could sing just as well on a stool as behind a piano, but he should only do it if he’s comfortable doing so. If he’s not, it won’t work anyway.
9:02 So they have hat picks for songs? Wow.
9:00 I think that if Martina had found this song today, this is how she’d perform it. Sadly.
8:58 It’s like Jim Brickman meets Martina McBride, without either of them along for the ride.
8:57 “Wild Angels.” Love that song.
8:52 Are Nine Inch Nails current, young, and fresh?
8:51 “Absolute indulgent rubbish.” Harsh.
8:50 Randy Travis in the audience. Looks tickled pink.
8:47 It burns. It burns!
8:46 This is out of the Daughtry/Cook playbook.
8:45 Oh, I don’t think Adam Lambert and Randy Travis are antithetical. That plays into stereotypes that don’t hold water for me.
8:40 I don’t see why they were so disappointed. Would showboating have been better?
8:39 Why does he keep saying “obvious?”
8:37 Good connection to the song being relevant. I thought about that when she was singing it.
8:36 Very controlled performance. Good.
8:32 Uh-oh. “Independence Day.”
8:25 So even with four judges, everyone’s still waiting for Simon to be the final word, even when he’s not. Why bother with the other ones?
8:23 This is country in the way that Lonestar was country at their peak.
8:22 I think I’m the only person who doesn’t care for Garth’s version of this song, but I love it by Trisha.
8:21 Amazing artist?
8:20 The judges don’t go in order anymore. Bleh.
8:18 Good Lord, it’s Patty Loveless meets Joan Jett. And I’m not gonna front. I dig it.
8:17 Allison’s the red-haired girl and she’s not singing “Memphis.” Darn. Let’s hear her take on Patty Loveless.
8:13 Doesn’t “More classic country” imply that there has been some already? Or am I too old and haven’t realized that “Ain’t Goin’ Down” is now in the classic country category?
8:12 “It should’ve been good.” I agree with Cowell. Should’ve been, but wasn’t.
8:11 Country music is not about having some fun. Good God.
8:10 Randy is less coherent than the guy who just sang that song.
8:09 He’s flubbing the lyrics, the melody and the rhythm. That can’t be good.
8:08 Sounds like he’s going down before the song even ends.
8:07 “You can sing a lot of great licks. But don’t lose the words in the licks.” That should be emblazoned in every recording studio.
8:07 “Ain’t Going Down” is a tough song to sing.
8:06 Randy’s been watching Idol for years? Good for him.
8:05 I remember Garth Brooks heavily promoting his Opry induction when he broke through big, and I love that Underwood is doing the same. I can’t think of a superstar in between who did the same.
8:04 I wonder how much of Music Row actually knows the Opry history?
8:03 Country music has a lot to do with Idol’s enduring success. They should be a bit less flippant, don’t you think?
8:02 Country week is always the tough week. Is that for the contestants or for the viewers?
8:01 It’s Saint Patty’s Day. I forgot about that. Cue the corny “luck of the Irish” joke.
8:00 Okay, so maybe it’s not a parrot on his head. Just a really bad weave.
7:58 I’m wondering how active a role Underwood played in Randy Travis being guest mentor.
7:52 So somebody fill me in. All I know about this season of Idol is that there’s a guy coasting on his recent widow status, another guy who looks like he has a parrot on his head, and a red-headed gravel-voiced teen who I’m hoping rips into “Maybe it Was Memphis” tonight, though I’d settle for anyone doing a Pam Tillis song.