American Idol Top 2 recap: Candice Glover, Kree Harrison compete to become American Idol Season 12 winner on finale

ssorich@ledger-enquirer.comMay 15, 2013 

Candice or Kree?

It's the final question in an "American Idol" season that's been defined largely by criticism of the show's judges, format and contestants.

But when the final two singers performed on the May 15 episode, I was pretty satisfied.

Candice Glover and Kree Harrison each performed three songs Wednesday: "Idol" creator Simon Fuller's choice, a repeat performance from earlier in the season and a coronation song.

I think Candice out-sang Kree and should win the season 12 title. But Kree's Wednesday performances were hardly train wrecks. She did a fine job and I especially enjoyed her final tune of the night. I just feel like Candice delivered a little more "oomph."

Prediction time: Who will win this season of "Idol"? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Here's a full recap of Wednesday's show.

***

Kree won last week's coin toss and chose to go first.

Round 1: Simon Fuller's choice

Kree Harrison kicks off the show with "Angel" by Sarah McLachlan. Hmm. This isn't the most exciting way to start the show. Predictably, Kree puts a slight country spin on the tune but the vocals sound a little flat at times. The end is better than the beginning. Despite the song's potential for emotional pull, I don't feel the emotional connection Kree delivered last week. The song doesn't really let her shine. I guess we're not getting judges' feedback immediately after these performances.

Candice Glover sings "Chasing Pavements" by Adele. This is a poor song choice for Candice. I don't understand why Simon Fuller didn't pick a song with a more overt R&B belter vibe. Still, she does a fine job and delivers a jazzy rendition. There are no major flaws, but this is hardly Candice's most memorable performance. I doubt either of the round one performances will make or break the contestants' popularity.

Mariah: "This talent is so magnificent."

Randy: Says both songs "were a little sleepy," but gives the edge to Candice

Oh joy. Time for a performance by Carly Rae Jepsen. Bathroom break for me.

Round 2: Coronation songs

Kree Harrison's potential debut single is "All Cried Out." It's a hip-hop tune. KIDDING. Unsurprisingly, it's a country ballad. I suppose the song is OK, but it hardly has the pull that surrounded Phillip Phillips' "Home" last year. Yep, this is pretty much your standard country ballad. It's not amazing, but it's far from incredibly awful. Kree delivers some nice big notes. Three of the four judges give her a standing ovation -- everybody except Nicki Minaj.

Candice Glover's potential debut single is "I Am Beautiful," an empowerment anthem. It's a pop/R&B ballad that allows for a lot of Candice's signature big notes. I like the song's message, but it's not the catchiest tune in the entire universe. I'll probably forget the melody in five minutes. Same goes for Kree's song. Still, Candice seems to connect with the tune and that counts for a lot. Very impressive overall. All four judges give her a standing ovation.

Nicki: Loves Kree's composure, also loved Candice's performance

Keith: Says they're both soulful singers

Round 3: Repeat performance

Kree Harrison repeats her rendition of "Up to the Mountain," which she sang during the Vegas phase of the competition. I loved Kree's initial version of this song, and her finale rendition is Kree's strongest performance of the night. There's lots of emotion and I enjoy the tone of her voice. The song gets gospel treatment with a background choir. Very, very solid. All four judges give her a standing ovation.

Keith: Loved it

Nicki: Says the energy was "uplifting"

Randy: "That right there is a winning kind of performance."

Mariah: "You gave us power here."

Candice Glover repeats her performance of "I (Who Have Nothing)" from the Top 10 phase of the competition. I won't lie: When Candice initially performed this song, I liked Haley Reinhart's version better. But Candice is on top of her game tonight. She begins the song by singing the opening verses a cappella, which takes the performance to another level. She didn't do the a cappella stuff the first time around. She sounds great. All four judges give her a standing ovation.

Keith: "You're such a powerhouse singer."

Nicki: "I loved that performance."

Randy: "That's what I've been waiting on."

Mariah: "You have an undeniable talent."

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