Hear ‘American Idol’ Contestant Completely Transform Radiohead’s ‘Creep’ in Jaw-Dropping Performance
It's not frequently that rock gets performed on singing competition series, but we've seen several interpretations of Radiohead's intense '90s breakout "Creep" taken on by aspiring vocalists over the years. But American Idol competitor Christian Guardino just delivered a jaw-dropping performance of the song that left the panel of Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan rising to their feet.
The song choice was an inspired one, as the decidedly rock track was definitely a vocal showcase for Thom Yorke back when it first arrived. While Radiohead's '90s hit features plenty of fuzzed out guitar moments, Guardino's American Idol backing band gave his performance a little different arrangement, with the singer able to dig into his more soulful side with a '50s-esque guitar backing that almost allowed for a more gospel transformation of the track that certainly took the viewing audience and judging panel to church.
As the performance unfolded, Katy Perry seemed mesmerized with intense focus and Lionel Richie shifted his seat as if being pulled directly into the performance. As Guardino hit some of his more intense vocal moments, you could spot applause starting to build in the background around him, and by the end it was a standing ovation from Richie, Perry and Bryan as well as the crowd.
Guardino has been showing his powerful vocal talents throughout the Season 20 run so far, auditioning with Donny Hathaway's "A Song for You," then offering a blend of rock and soul performing John Lennon's "Imagine," Kings of Leon's "Sex on Fire" and Silk Sonic's "Leave the Door Open" in the lead up to his most recent Radiohead cover. The 21-year-old musician from Long Island, New York has now made it into the Top 14 and seems to have a solid shot at winning it all.
Radiohead's "Creep" was initially released in 1992 ahead of their 1993 debut album Pablo Honey. It climbed to No. 2 on the Alternative Airplay chart, while also cracking the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 34.