Drew does her usual Drew thing, perched on the set of the opening scene in Macbeth, but I'm glad to say she actually projects for the majority of the song. She falters on in big high note, but then the drums kick in and we're so shocked that drums were allowed anywhere near Drew that we soon forget all about it.
L.A. has a comment for Simon, saying the song wasn't age-appropriate. Which is ridiculous, given that Demi Lovato's under twenty and has only been to rehab once as far as I know. Simon sits stone-faced, leaving Drew to step up and give an impassioned defense of how she feels strongly about the song regardless of her age, and how important it is to have a friend like Shelby (who is clearly overcome in the audience). Drew even forces L.A. to back down a bit, which is a lot more impressive than another slow, creepy, minor-key pop song would have been. Nicole says she's not frustrated. Paula points out for L.A. that "Skyscraper" is sung by a young artist, by the way, and -- wait for it -- she felt the connection. Simon perfunctorily tells Drew he's proud of her before turning to L.A. and saying, "I am sick to death of your pointless, stupid criticism." #ohsnap! The two of them descend into bickering, talking over each other until Steve wades in and dads, "This has to stop right now please." Into the awkward silence, he eye-rolls, "Thanksgiving!" Oh, it turns out he gets this holiday pretty well for a British dude after all.
One singer left to go, and it's Josh. He's dedicating it to his 13-year-old daughter Rowan, who was born when he was 17. Josh's mom explains he fell in love as a teenager, "And sometimes things just don't work out." Josh got so depressed he gave up on music, until one day he saw Rowan playing the piano and decided to get back to it.
For tonight, Josh has picked a song he's been playing his whole life, about being away from his child and not seeing her. "Cats in the Cradle"? No, "Wild Horses, which he sings at the piano, surrounded by a cage of light shafts pointing up at the ceiling. I think this is the first time we've seen a contestant play an instrument on this show (my mind keeps going back to that Dumpster full of guitars at the initial auditions...still a disturbing image). Josh sounds great, as always, and gets a four-way standing ovation from the judges. His mom and daughter in the audience look pretty proud too.
L.A. tells Josh he has the right amount of everything, including what it takes to win the competition. Paula talks about Josh being larger than life (hey, those burritos aren't low-cal, you know), and Simon says that was what it's all about: "A great song, a great voice," etc. All of which I agree with, except for how he gives any credit at all to Nicole. She can't even speak, she's so emotional. Eventually she manages to say that his music can change the world. Well, if it leads to a world where people respect Nicole Scherzinger, I would have to agree. Josh stops Steve in the process of what he was about to say and thanks the audience for inspiring him, along with his daughter.