When American Idol 2012 resumed on April 25, the top 6 hit the stage with two different song choices each. When Personal Pick round rolled around, Phillip Phillips delivered a Dave Matthews Band tune that made Jennifer Lopez nervous about his future in the competition.
Prior to the live performance, Phillip’s competitors shared some thought on the Georgia native. His former duet partner Elise Testone called him “boring” and quipped “obviously he’s not a rock star”. Referencing his known issues with kidney stones, fifties throwback Joshua Ledet deadpanned “he pretends to be sick” and “he’s a drama queen”. Judges’ fave Jessica Sanchez called him “handsome” but said he’s not attractive when he sings. Hollie Cavanagh and Skylar Laine both noted that he does weird things with his feet.
Wearing head to toe black, Phillip gave the critics who’ve been saying it all along plenty of comparison fodder by performing the Dave Matthews Band tune “The Stone”. Surprisingly, he actually didn’t sound near as Dave Matthews-like as might have been expected. It was very distinctively Phillip and very much filled with his usual facial expressions and trademark sound, but it was also a very bland pick. The best part of the performance was the fiddler, who absolutely rocked out.
Steven Tyler spoke first, calling the performance “very entertaining, very off the wall, typical Phillip Phillips”. He loved the fiddler, but didn’t “love” a lot else about it. Jennifer Lopez called it “a little obscure and a little too artsy” as she knocked the song choice. She confessed to being “a little bit scared when you do stuff like that” and asked him to “do songs that are gonna get you on that last show so you can win”. Randy Jackson disagreed with Jennifer and told him that he loved his “artist side” and his ever-present identity.
Post-critique, the show took a random turn when host Ryan Seacrest shared that his girlfriend, former Dancing with the Stars pro Julianne Hough, had seen Phillip backstage, sighed, blushed and said “yummy”. The camera found Julianne near the curtains and she tried to dive out of view.
To see if Phillip Phillips survives tonight’s trim to the top 5, watch the American Idol 2012 results show at 8 PM on FOX.