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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

American Idol: May 2 (Bang Bang)

Elliott Yamin mutilates George Benson’s “On Broadway”. He’s pushing too hard to make it vocally interesting without realizing that those touches that make a song special tend to be nuanced and rare instead of obvious and overdone.

Bad things, man. Simon is the only vaguely rational judge at this point of the show, although Paula’s hair is lovely.

Paris sing’s Prince’s “Kiss”, and it was both adorable and effective. Really cute, really fun, and as much seventeen year old attitude as she could stuff into what was, essentially, a pretty easy song.

Chris Daughtry hits the sweet spot for his style and personality singing “Renegade.” Not something I would consider particularly special, but definitely a good choice. It was definitely the right way to start for pre-fab rock boy.

Sadly, the ever-cute Katherine McPhee was utterly hiddeous ("oOOOooOOO") at the beginning, then lost it during some of the key changes, and then muffed the ending in a really ugly way. The only thing she has going for her at this point is her cuteness (somewhat lost in that dress, if you ask me).

Play That Funky Music, Taylor Hicks. And dance sort of funky, too. He isn’t the best vocalist, but this was a nice return to his charismatic form. Loads of fun and a bundle of energy.

Coming up on Part 2…

Elliott sings some slow, boring, contemporary song with which I was previously (and thankfully) unfamiliar. What a tedious performance. The g-phrase adds that he did hit all the notes, which is nice for him.

So, yeah, who dressed Paris for her second song? ‘Cause that was some unflattering and strange combination of sparkly and camoflauge. She sounded pretty good even though it was hard for me to concentrate on the singing behind the big, silver, shiny butt.

Daughtry proves that, regardless of the cool background, he can sing boring songs, too. Good for him. He’s so gonna win.

McPhee does far better during the second song, but the kneeling and lounging on the stage act was just sort of strange. The singing was a ton better than in her first song, though; it worked.

“Something” was slower than I expected from Taylor’s second song, but it worked out pretty well. A pretty song sold largely by his personality.

Monday, May 01, 2006

The Big Sports Questions of the Day

How is it that the Denver Nuggets became the first team to allow the LA Clippers to advance to the second round of the playoffs?
Easy. The root of it was that they didn’t rebound well throughout the entire series. On top of that, they shot poorly--from long distance, from the free throw line, and even close up--every single night. The shots and chances were there, but the Nuggets just failed to score their open shots.

They looked unfocused and uneven, never settling into their game and never managing to break out of the slump that started well before the playoffs.

Why did Kubiak pass on Reggie Bush?
I’m surprised at the surprise. Kubiak has been playing with Mike Shanahan for years now, and what has Shanahan shown the league? That you can create schemes that make solid, skilled running backs into 1400+ yard rushers and never spend a high round draft pick to get there; but pass rushing defenders are harder to come by.

For all that Shanahan builds much of the Broncos’ success on a rushing attack, it’s also quite clear that he won’t break the bank to hold onto all but the most special of the bunch. He’s had a much harder time building a consistent pass rush over the past few years.

That doesn’t mean that I agree with the decision: Mario Williams might or might not be the next Reggie White, but Reggie Bush is most definitely an amazingly talented running back who, barring injury, would contribute hugely to any team from the first time he touches the ball. He may or may not be quite as good as the hype would indicate, but he is--undeniably--an exceptional talent.

But it’s easy to understand how Kubiak could take a very specific lesson away from his years coaching with Shanahan.

What happened to the Detroit Redwings?

Heheh. They lost. That never stops feeling good.

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