Anyone else besides me think they could have just skipped the first hour of last night’s show and not really missed out on anything good? The first five acts really didn’t do much for me – I think I even mentioned on Twitter that the show this week was shaping up to be a big disappointment.
Luckily, the second half of the show brough some much stronger performances – not necessarily GREAT performances (I really only think one act knocked it out of the park last night), but pretty good ones. I still think this quarterfinal was one of the weaker ones – someone like Tone the Chiefrocca would have made it through without any problems if he was on last night, I think.
1.) Jimmy Rose – Ok, let me get this off my chest: I’m all opera’d out and I’m all country’d out (likely due to all the ado about the opera and country acts), so it’s hard for me to really get enthusiastic about really any of the acts in this category at the moment. I think Jimmy did pretty well – definitely better than Marty did in his quarterfinal, but like Mel I wasn’t really wowed by his song choice. I don’t think it was one that really fit the twang of his voice well. But America just seems to go crazy for their country boys, so I’m fully expecting that he’s going to make it through tonight. Will be interesting to see he & Marty go head to head – I still think Jimmy is the more talented of the two, but I think Marty might be the more popular.
2.) Cami Bradley – My favorite act of the night, and the only one that I think really delivered and exceeded expectations. Love, love, LOVED the arrangement of “Believe” and the conviction with which she sang it – what really impresses me about her voice is that she has an incredible amount of control when she’s singing softly. Incredibly hard to do (often moreso than singing really loudly), and she handled it beautifully. I have to laugh when I think of how much I underestimated how she’d do in Vegas and then she was really the only female vocalist that didn’t somehow bungle her performance. I think she flies under the radar because she’s so shy – but then she pulls out performances like this and just blindside people. I may not be wild about how many singers are making it through to the semifinals, but I can get behind Cami – she’s the real deal.
3.) Timber Brown – Admittedly, I kind of went “Uh-oh, what’s this?” when I saw him come out with that suspended planet-shaped thingie instead of his usual pole. But I think the gamble worked out in his favor – he was pulling some pretty impressive, high-speed tricks on that thing. And I think it was Timber’s performance that really woke the show up – he had 4 rather ho-hum acts before him, and I was almost to the point of changing the channel when he came bursting onto the stage. Glad he was able to salvage the show!
4.) Aerial Ice – I had really high hopes for Aerial Ice, based on their initial performance – but I think their larger set this time around may have been a bit detrimental to their performance, as they seemed to get lost in it. Their stunts are amazing, no doubt – but I feel like the large set made them lose some cohesiveness, as it felt more like 3 separate couples doing stunts on their own, as opposed to a unified act. Regardless, I still think that what they do is unique enough that they’ll advance to the semifinals.
5.) TIE: David Ferman & Taylor Williamson – Two guys that I really like, but also two guys who seemed to struggle last night…and the funny thing is, they seem to have the opposite problem: David has the content, but not the delivery…Taylor has the delivery, but not the content. God love David, he seems like a really good kid with a lot of crazy, cool ideas in his head…and some cojones grandes to carry off these crazy stunts he dreams up. But his delivery is just so…bland. He comes off as robotic and stiff, and seems to rush his delivery – and the trick itself was over so quickly that it was hard to appreciate the difficulty of what he was doing. If I were him, I’d get on YouTube and watch videos of Landon Swank from two seasons ago – kid had this butter-smooth delivery that really brought his tricks to life. Taylor, on the other hand, delivers his jokes with such endearing awkwardness that you find yourself laughing and smiling along with him…even if the joke isn’t particularly funny. And that was his major struggle last night – his material was only mildly funny, and not nearly as strong as we’ve seen from him previously. I think one of these guys will end up joining Aerial Ice in the judges’ choice – I just can’t decide which one.
7.) 3Penny Chorus & Orchestra – Repeat after me: song choice is EVERYTHING. And they unfortunately seemed to choose the wrong one – I thought that silly Taylor Swift song just came across as juvenile and annoying. Truth be told, I wasn’t wild about “Call Me Maybe”, but their delivery of it was novel enough that I enjoyed it. I didn’t get the same vibe this time around – I just found myself saying “this is silly”. I also don’t think they benefitted much from going first, especially since the first half of the show was overall much weaker than the 2nd half – I think they might get lost in the shuffle of the weak first hour acts and not get as many votes as they probably should.
8.) Chloe Channell – Sweet, adorable girl, no doubt – but I just think she’s got a lot of maturing to do in her singing before she really becomes a force to be reckoned with. I also think she’s picked the wrong songs two times in a row now – neither her song in Vegas nor her song last night seemed to serve her well. I also think she just lacks a bit of stage presence…she doesn’t seem to know how to emote with her face, and just seems to pace back and forth as she’s singing. Very bright future ahead of her – but I just think it may have been too early for her to make the leap to a show like AGT.
9.) The Robotix – I feel a bit bad for this group – they came into the competition at a bit of a disadvantage, since we didn’t get to see them perform in the audition round or Vegas…so right off the bat, they had to impress the viewers, since they came in with little to no fanbase. Then they tried to tackle a song that was wayyyy too big for them – and I agree with Howard: the drummer was the raddest, most interesting member of the group to watch, and the rest of the group was just kind of there. Like Chloe, I think they may have just attempted AGT when they weren’t quite ready.
10.) SensEtion – A slight improvement from their initial audition, but all in all, they’re still just another “dancing in the dark” act looking to ride the coattails of Fighting Gravity, Team iLuminate, Lightwire Theater, etc. I still don’t think they’re doing enough dancing in their performances – and the graphics they’re using seem a bit rudimentary and generic…like some kid playing around with Windows Movie Maker. Just not enough to cut it, at this point.
11.) Champions Forever – I thought this act was a bit cheesy the first time we saw them…and I found them even cheesier this time. It got repetitive really quickly, even if what they were doing was actually quite difficult; there’s only so many times I can watch a group on unicycles ride around in circles onstage. Not much more to add – just not enough content at this point in the competition.
12.) Tummy Talk – Oy…the great Tummy Talk debate. People seem to really hate this act, which is why I have them at the bottom – I don’t see any way they could possibly make it through tonight. But I actually don’t mind this act too much…is it borderline icky? Sure, but so are a lot of the danger acts we’ve seen. I actually thought they were pretty creative with their drumming last night, and you can tell these guys do have somewhat of a percussion background. Let’s put it this way: I’d take them over Aaralyn & Izzy any day.
So what did you guys think of last night’s performances? And who do you want to see in the semifinals?