'American Idol' XIII Top 30 choices begin: Who made it to the live shows?

american-idol-xiii-chair-eliminations.jpgIt's time for one of those filler episodes of "American Idol" -- the contestants remaining after Hollywood Week are made to take the longest elevator ride of their lives and then sit in the dreaded singular chair as the judges start the selection process on the Top 30.

At least when most singers either ride the elevator or are waiting for their judgment, we are treated to a performance from Hollywood that we may have not seen yet.

Highlights (and lowlights) include:

  • Emily Piriz singing and playing the piano on "Stars" by Grace Potter. Absolutely gorgeous. Thankfully, she is chosen for the Top 30.
  • An original song by Spencer Lloyd is perhaps a misstep, but the judges still select him -- and of course they do, because he's a good singer and super attractive.
  • Madelyn Patterson is the first person the show says goodbye to, which is too bad. She kicks off a montage that eliminates Michael Simeon, LeBryant Crew and Sabrina Lentini.
  • An original song called "I Try" worked for Sam Woolf. It was a nice piece and he made through to the live shows.
  • Keri Lynn Roche's final performance, "I'd Rather Go Blind," is full of raspy grit that we really like, so it's a shame that she gets let go.
  • Guess who comes by for a visit? Randy Jackson, who will debut next week as the new in-hour mentor. What up, dawg?
  • Jessica Meuse, whose kind of Stevie-Nicks-meets-Allison-Krause voice we really like, is made to do a sing-off with Jesse Roach on the spot. Roach is a good singer, but we considerably prefer Meuse. During the sing-off, however, neither one nails it -- though Roach is a bit better. The judges choose Jessica, which actually surprises us slightly, but we're glad she made it.
  • The off-beat MK Nobilette, who has a really interesting voice, is overcome with emotion talking about how much the world is changing for gay and lesbian people like herself and she is delighted to make it through. We also spy some tears in Keith Urban's eyes, which is not surprising. Love him.
  • A face-off between C.J. Harris and Casey Thrasher is a shame, we like both of them a lot. Also, they're friends on the show, so that's extra sucky. During the sing-off, we give the edge to C.J. -- and naturally, the show doesn't reveal which one goes through. Bah!

For a quick reference, here's who made it through so far: Emily Piriz, Jillian Jensen, Malaya Watson, Bria Anai, Jessica Meuse, MK Nobilette, Kristen O'Connor, Andrina Brogden, Spencer Lloyd, George Lovett, Sam Woolf, Maurice Townsend, Dexter Roberts, Emmanuel Zidor, Jordan Brisbane, Malcolm Allen and Alex Preston.

What did you think of the choices so far?
Photo/Video credit: FOX