8:45 am EST, April 4, 2013

‘American Idol’ top 7 recap: Classic rock, no ballads, lots of rhinestones

Season 12’s top 7 took on some classic and not-so-classic rock songs this week, but in several cases, the judges had more to say about the contestants’ clothes than their performances. Special guest and amazing guitarist Orianthi accompanied each of the contestants’ performances.

We also got to hear what the contestants had to say about one another in the video packages before each performance. Apparently Amber talks to herself, Kree knows and hugs everyone, Angie is easily excitable, Candice is the only one with her own room, Janelle is dramatic, Lazaro is flamboyant, and Burnell has the hots for Amber.

Top 7 Performances

Burnell Taylor

Twitter: @BurnellAI12

Burnell struggled a little bit with his take on Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love A Bad Name.” While his vocals were fine, Burnell was obviously uncomfortable settling in to rock week. He’s just such a laid-back, chill performer, that he fell a little flat with this big song. The judges recommended that even if he has to sing a song he may not necessarily like, he should still try to make it his own.

Kree Harrison

Twitter: @KreeAI12

Kree chose the perfect song for herself: Janis Joplin’s “Piece of My Heart,” but she seemed to be struggling through her performance. When Keith questioned her about it, she admitted that she had a pinched nerve, which was causing her a lot of pain and making it difficult for her to move. Hopefully next week she’ll be feeling better and be able to put more energy into her performance.

Janelle Arthur

Twitter: @JanelleAI12

Janelle would’ve made Dolly Parton proud with her fringed metallic vest and outrageously bedazzled cowboy boots. The judges seemed more captivated by her outfit than her performance of Billy Joel’s “You May Be Right,” to the point of Nicki asking to borrow her boots. They did, however, commend her on both her stage presence and likability.

Lazaro Arbos

Twitter: @LazaroAI12

Lazaro took on a big song with Queen’s “We Are The Champions,” sticking as close as he could to the ballads he is most comfortable with. He looked pretty miserable and sweaty throughout the entire performance, and seemed to be dreading the judges’ comments as soon as he finished singing. They weren’t that hard on him, but the best they could say is that he was “good.”

Candice Glover

Twitter: @CandiceAI12

Candice was also suffering this week, after breaking her toe while trying to play an April Fools’ prank on Lazaro. This may have taken some of the energy out of her performance of the Rolling Stones’ iconic “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” but the judges still lauded her performance. Randy praised her for having a rock attitude, even though rock itself is not her preferred genre.

Amber Holcomb

Twitter: @AmberAI12

Amber’s performance of Heart’s “What About Love” proved to be the standout of the night, earning a standing ovation from three of the four judges (perhaps Mariah’s skirt was too tight again). The judges praised her song choice, and her ability to maintain her own personality regardless of the song she’s singing.

Angie Miller

Twitter: @AngieAI12

Angie pushed the definition of “classic rock” by performing Evanescence’s “Bring Me To Life.” The song was a good choice for her, as she got to start out at the piano, where she has earned praise before, before moving on to an edgier, more rock performance. Afterwards, Angie admitted that she’s interested in this kind of edgier sound for her own solo record, which Randy agreed was a good choice for her.

Group Performances

This week’s group performances went much smoother than last week’s, though lyrics continued to be an issue for some.

Angie and Lazaro were paired up to perform the Queen classic “Crazy Little Thing Called Love.” The song was not a great fit for them, and they didn’t exactly make the best of it. The two had absolutely no chemistry onstage, and for the second week in a row, our dear friend Lazaro had some trouble remembering his lyrics.

Burnell and Candice brought their brother and sister chemistry to The Box Tops’ “The Letter.” It was a great performance for both of them: while Candice is clearly the more powerful vocalist, Burnell was much more relaxed in this performance than in his solo, and the two voices paired well together. All of the judges praised both contestants for their performance.

Kree, Amber, and Janelle came together for Billy Joel’s “It’s Still Rock N Roll To Me,” and while horrible sound mixing for this particular performance made it hard for those of us at home to get the full effect of their harmonies, the judges loved the trio’s performance. Amber really shone as the true star of this group, in spite of the fact that her jeans were more holes than they were denim.

Find out who goes home Thursday night on Fox at 8/7c.

Which contestant do you think will be going home? What song would you have chosen for “classic rock” week?

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