Murtzcellanious: LIVE Canadian Idol Recap – July 28

Here we go again.

After last week’s initial jitters (since I was away for so long), I am now settled into Canadian Idol. Or should I say, was settled in. After taking my seat on Monday night, I was shuffled seconds before the show. I was conflicted because while it messed with my pre-Idol equilibrium (I have this hardcore routine before every show now where I analyze the song lists, make my predictions and try to figure out where the commercial breaks will be slotted), I couldn’t complain because the girl who took my seat was shall we say more “camera-friendly.” Funny right?

The theme for the show this week was “Idol Unplugged.” This is always one of the better themes on the show and I was especially excited to see the Idol mentor this week, Gavin Rossdale (formerly of Bush and married to Gwen Stefani). I thought that he was a perfect choice to tutor the Idols and I was also a big fan of his from back in the day (seriously, how can you not like “Glycerine?”) Truth be told, part of me was also just hoping that Gavin decided to bring his wife!

The show opened with a Rossdale video package and Sass Jordan saying that she was excited to hear the artists “perform naked.” I was amused already.

As usual, I will go through my noteworthy moments.

Sebastian Pigott was up first and delivered an incredible version of “Lucille” by Little Richard, complete with harmonica. There is no question that he was my pick to go last week and was again to go this week, but this performance was so good that I think he might have saved himself. As I was explaining to another colleague of mine though, Ontario is notorious for not voting well (even though Brian Melo won last season, I have always felt like he was the exception to the rule). Not only is Sebastian from Toronto, but so are competitors Mookie and Drew. I believe that they will split the Ontario vote and it will be curtains for all three eventually, but I sincerely hope I am wrong. It doesn’t change the bottom line that Sebastian was simply spectacular on Monday night. That being said, he also wasn’t great last week so his awesomeness might just be graded on a curve from Rock ‘N Roll Heaven week.

I thought that Earl Stevenson and Mark Day were average. I don’t think either are in danger of leaving. Earl had the crowd on its feet last week with “Light My Fire” and his lower-key version of Ryan Adams’ “Two” had a kind of deflating feeling (especially given the intensity of his performance last week).

If it were up to me, I think it is undoubtedly Mitch MacDonald’s turn to leave. His take on “Oh Atlanta” by Alison Krauss didn’t do it for me. I don’t know what it is. I really get a Moffatt-vibe from Mitch and I thought that in a week where the theme was supposed to highlight the personalities of the contestants, Mitch decided to go in a hokey direction. The judges noticed this as well as Jake told Mitch that it was time for him to “step up.” I could not agree more.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to say that I am now ready to make my official final two prediction. It took me two weeks, but there is no question in my mind that Amberly Thiessen will be there. I thought that her performance of “The Way I Am” by Ingrid Michaelson was flawless and a perfect song selection. It suited her voice, she didn’t oversing it and it highlighted her perfect pitch and tone. It was a very impressive performance and one of my picks for the best of the evening. Amberly has the coolest last name in the competition (Thiessen? Saved By The Bell anyone? 90210?), is from Alberta which is known for voting well (Melissa O’Neil, Kalan Porter, Jaydee Bixby), is the only female standing and can sing. She’s a lock and probably my pick to win. Who is the other member of my final two. You’ll see in a second.

I like Mookie Morris and at the John Bassett theatre, he is clearly the favorite. I just didn’t think he brought it on Monday and I think he is capable of being much better than he was. Last week, he was the star of the show and this week’s “Ophelia” by The Band just didn’t highlight his raspy/grungy/unique voice. I don’t think he will go this week but I am hoping he will improve for the next time.

The last two performances were both standouts for me as well.

If you asked me who the smartest competitor is this season, I would have a hard time not saying Drew Wright. After choosing a well-known Blind Melon song last week, the Collingwood-born Wright made another superb song selection in “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5. Once again, I thought he did the show justice. I have to say that one of my favorite parts of his performance was when he put his arm around one of the back-up singers who looked COMPLETELY STARTLED. I was laughing about this for quite awhile. The judges were especially tough on Drew with Zack saying that he didn’t know who Drew was and Jake saying that his outfit just “wasn’t working.” I disagreed. I thought Drew sounded great for the second week in a row.

The show was closed out by Theo Tams and his version of “Weak In The Knees” by Serena Ryder. Theo busted out his trademark piano again and it feels like everytime he does, the competition is over because he really is quite untouchable when it comes to the piano. While Theo might not be the most versatile singer out there, he is currently the class of the field (along with Amberly) and as a result, he is the second member of my predicted final two. My only concern is that both Amberly and Theo are from Alberta and that might split the vote… but as of right now, I think they are too strong. Theo sounded amazing on Monday. Simply amazing.

So that’s it. The Top 8 show is in the books.

My predicted bottom three is: Sebastian, Mitch and Drew with Mitch going home.

See you after the results show on Tuesday which will also feature a performance by Gavin Rossdale!!!

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