Rock Star: Supernova - Week two

Chris Pierson, the Rock Star: Supernova contestant who seemed destined to be the first one to go, was the second one to go instead. He was given a chance to get back in the game after bombing on opening night, but he wasn't able to redeem himself. On Tuesday's performance show, he did a passable but unimpressive job of singing Franz Ferdinand's "Take Me Out", and a similar job on Tonic's "If You Could Only See" on Wednesday's elimination show. It would be okay to see performances like those in a bar, but on television Chris just doesn't have a commanding presence, and he is certainly too lightweight as a singer to join a supergroup.

The elimination of Chris means that Zayra Alvarez is safe for another week, but probably not for longer. On Tuesday, she did a strange, sexed-up Latina version of the Kinks classic "You Really Got Me", a song that she says she was not previously familiar with(!). So, why did she do that same song again on elimination night? She did it better on Wednesday, but I'm under the impression that Zayra doesn't know many rock and roll songs. She even got into a row with Gilby Clarke on Tuesday, when he asked her if she had any idea what type of singer Supernova was looking for. She responded that no one told her. Clarke then asked her if she owned a single CD by any of their former bands (Guns 'N Roses, Metallica, Motley Crue). She curtly told him that she was "in diapers when that stuff was out". Ooh!

This all but confirms my suspicion about this year's Rock Star contestants: most, if not all, of them probably had no idea what band they would be competing to join. As I recall, auditions for the show began before a featured artist was announced. At the time the auditions began, there were still rumors that either Van Halen or Alice In Chains would be the featured artist. (None other than David Lee Roth was perpetuating the VH rumors on his now-defunct radio program). Don't get me wrong; I'm not saying that this year's Rock Star contestants are VH or AIC wannabes. When auditions were held, I'm guessing that the contestants simply rolled the dice, thinking (quite rightly) that TV exposure on the show would help them no matter who the featured artist was. It seemed to me that poor Chris Pierson thought that INXS was still looking to replace Michael Hutchence. It will be interesting to see which contestant ends up getting the Supernova job, because I am now wondering which ones really want it. Just as it is in the world of politics, not all candidates are running to win.

The other contestant in the bottom three was Jill Gioia, who was criticized for doing more screaming than singing on Tuesday when she performed Hole's "Violet". Screaming is to be expected in a performance of that song, especially when the singer is trying to please heavy metal types. What made her look bad was the white dress she wore and the bouquet of roses she carried, in obvious imitation of Courtney Love. I nearly burst out laughing at the sight of her. When Dave Navarro criticized her for this, Jill denied that her look had anything to do with Courtney Love. Riiiight. As Navarro pointed out, Jill's get-up was reminiscent of the cover photo on Hole's album Live Through This. In any case, Jill redeemed herself with flying colors with a boffo performance of Evanescence's "Bring Me To Life" on Wednesday. She'll be around for a while.

It wasn't surprising that Toby Rand was chosen to do the encore, because his performance of the Killers' "Somebody Told Me" easily helped him stand out among the male contestants. Magni did well this week singing the Who's "My Generation". I hope he sticks around for a while. That Lukas Rossi character stands out for a different reason. Lukas managed to sing a Coldplay song ("Don't Panic") with enough grit to save him from the Matt Hoffer trap. Tommy Lee obviously digs the guy, since he told Jason Newsted to shut up when he offered constructive criticism. The other remaining male contestants -- Josh, Phil, and Ryan -- are only making me shrug my shoulders at this point.

Dilana's spooky take on Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire" was nearly as riveting as her performance last week. Her smoky voice reminds me of Marianne Faithfull, who once guested on a Metallica song ("The Memory Remains"). I got a kick out of Dana Andrews' sexed-up performance of Steppenwolf's "Born To Be Wild". She may be too much of a nice, cute Southern girl to fit into Supernova, but I like her. Storm Large impressed me again with her potent performance of Cheap Trick's "Surrender". (Navarro said he felt like he was watching Cats on Broadway. Which production did he see?). Jenny Galt's rethinking of Soft Cell's "Tainted Love" was creative, but it left no lasting impression. Patrice Pike's performance of Nirvana's "Heart Shaped Box" was well done and unpretentious; she's one to watch.

The show's official site is now much easier to use, and I am thankful to whoever made it that way. I am also thankful that we are being given another season of Rock Star, though I must admit that I still miss last season's contestants.

Official site:


Misty said…
I'm with you- i miss last year's contestants also. Last year I Loved certain people from day one. This year I'm going 'Huh?' as i watch and just can't decide. Although I'm in complete agreement with all you've said. I do think Patrice is one to watch, Jill Gioia definitely redeemed herself and so far Toby is my fave in the male dept.