Another group attempted "Payphone" more successfully, but they did it a cappella at the suggestion of contestant Ryan Connor Smith. Guess who was the only one sent home? Ryan Connor Smith. "You guys could have knocked it out of the park vocally and energy-wise with this great band down here," Keith Urban complained, winning the night's coveted Band's Pet award in the process. Devan Jones and especially Devin Velez, the 18-year-old with buzzed red hair and a snazzy vest, sang the best of the group.
Last Minute, who sang One Direction's "You Don't Know You're Beautiful," were "all equally bad" according to Nicki, and had chosen "the wrongest song" according to Keith. It was such a shame they forgot the lyrics so brutally, especially after so lovingly dedicating the number to "Mariah and Nicki, the beautiful girls. …And Keith, with his hair and everything." Ha! You forgot to mention Randy, with…. that purple turtle-skin leather jacket. How dare you. You're all sent home: Dan Wood, Jason Jones, Jessie Lawrence.
Mo Flow encountered problems right from the start, when snoozy judges' favorite, hurricane survivor Burnell Taylor, completely zoned out in front of musical director Michael Orland. I had trouble deciding which line of Orland's interrogation was more cringeworthy: "Can you sing?" or "Are you sleeping right now?" I'm not feelin' it with Burnell -- he still seemed low-energy and forgetful during "Some Kind of Wonderful." Keith chalked Burnell's off-ness to the fact that he might have held the mic too far from his mouth. Excuses! Darien Moses and Mario Jose, who had both sung well, had to go home, while Burnell and Tony Foster, Jr. moved on. I loved Tony's quiet confidence backstage and cute hoodie/glasses combo. And his voice, too, of course!
Emotions ran high in Lazaro Arbos' group Super 55 -- "Wouldn't It Be Nice" if the Cuban-American stutterer could speak normally and knew any of the 20 offered songs? Josh Stephens was understandably frustrated by having to spend so much time helping his group mate, but considering he messed up the lyrics the worst during the actual performance, his criticism of Lazaro after the fact came off unfounded and mean. "If anything, you might as well be [moving on]," he told Lazaros. "We spent so much time perfecting what you needed to be doing." Ouch! Scott Fleenor and Josh headed home; Lazaro and Scotty McCreery lookalike Christian Lopez got to stay.
NEXT: Country Queen, manufactured to deliver the dramz