‘American Idol’ Top 10 Night: It’s an ‘Idol’ Champ Redo

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‘American Idol’ Top 10 Night: It’s an ‘Idol’ Champ Redo

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(Nicki Minaj)

Been there, done that!

This week on "American Idol" it was a blast from the past when the Top 10 contestants sang songs performed by previous "Idol" champs like Carrie Underwood and Scotty McCreery. But even with this "broad" theme, the Top 10 fell into a ballad rut and tonight one of them will be gone, gone, gone!

Yes, there was a bevy of ballads, including Curtis Finch Jr.'s performance of Fantasia's "I Believe," Burnell Taylor's rendition of Ruben Studdard's "Flying Without Wings," and Amber Holcomb's Kelly Clarkson moment with "A Moment Like This."

Paul Jolley took "Idol" mentor Jimmy Iovine's advice and toned down the theatrics in his performances (although Jolley seemed confused, as he's never thought of himself as a Broadway guy), and the result had him looking a little lost in the lyrics.

Ditto for Lazaro Arbos, who was called out by Jimmy for not being ready. "You can't practice enough," Iovine told him. Arbos sang "Breakaway" by Kelly Clarkson, but his confidence seemed to break away. "Today, you seemed very nervous," Judge Nicki Minaj noted after his performance. "Don't let anybody knock you off your square."

For some reason, Randy Jackson didn't love Janelle Arthur's version of "Gone," the Montgomery Gentry song previously performed on the show by Scotty McCreery, and the top Dawg thought Devin Velez' rendition of Carrie Underwood's "Temporary Home" was way too safe. (Maybe he should have added some español, no?)

The judges loved Angie Miller's bold choice of Celine Dion's "I Surrender" (previously performed on the show by Clarkson), with Keith Urban surrendering to the 18-year-old, and Mariah Carey deeming her "stellar." (Too bad Jimmy Iovine told her she seems like she's performing in a beauty pageant.)

Meanwhile, Candice Glover was another standout. She sang "I Who Have Nothing," the Ben E. King classic which was previously performed by Jordin Sparks. Finally, a performance worthy of a standing ovation, and this kudos from Nicki: "It would be in everybody's best interest to never, ever perform that song ever again. You just destroyed and annihilated."

Speaking of Ms. Minaj, the freshman "Idol" judge was actually late for Wednesday night's live show. At the start of the show, host Ryan Seacrest told the audience to give it up for "three of your four judges who are here tonight." (Minaj was stuck in traffic and didn't arrive until after the first performance.) When she did arrive -- in full hoodie and sunglasses regalia -- she recited her favorite recipe for buttermilk waffles, disguised as a critique for contestant Kree Harrison. Seriously. Pass the Aunt Jemima, Barbz.

The next episode of "American Idol" airs on Thursday at 8/7c on FOX.

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'American Idol' Season 12 Premiere: 5 Surprising Moments

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