Okay, I've slept on it and gathered my thoughts. I think Jane very accurately summed up my feelings in the previous post. Let me add that I really enjoyed last night's show - much more than last week's. I think all three contestants are exhausted by now. This season the producers have kept them busier than ever, and in some ways it's more grueling than going on tour as a pro.
No surprises last night. Cook sizzled, Archuleta did his Archie thing, and Syesha got the shaft from the judges. My feelings about Cook really come down to this, and please don't mistake this for a criticism of HIM by any means. I'm critical of the situation. I'm done with the covers, I'm done with other people's choices, I'm done with abbreviated songs. Cook is so past this by now. I crave Cook "the professional artist" now. Six weeks ago Randy said Cook was ready to go make records. He was right and that's the problem. This AI thing isn't doing him any justice anymore. If you listen to Cook's studio versions (and I've downloaded them all) you'll hear the amazing recording artist he already has become. Thanks to YouTube, I've now had the pleasure of sampling pre-Idol Cook, including his self-produced solo album Analog Heart (it's a knockout), and audio clips of Axium songs. Cook, of course, was the band's leader, on guitar & lead vocals (plus he wrote many of the songs). "Callout," and his cover of Radiohead's "Creep," are simply amazing. He's just as gifted a songwriter as he is a singer and performer. See both videos below.
As for Syesha, the bias was clear. It was as if the judges and the producers conspired to make sure she goes home tonight. Between the judge's comments and the producers' song choice, she didn't stand a chance. I thought she's shined.
Archuleta has hit a brick wall. If you think he's got the votes because of all those teen and tween girls, you're wrong. Cook's fan base is too diverse and large to dismiss. America doesn't always reward the best of the bunch, but we do recognize EXCEPTIONAL talent (Springsteen, Streisand, Elton). Check out DIALIDOL's vote results & predictions from last night. Cook creamed Archie in terms of busy signal dialings. DialIdol has been spot-on this season. I don't think anyone can stop this tsunami that is Cook right now. And that's a good thing.
David Cook & Axium, audio of live performance of "Creep"