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The fun-loving acoUstiKats made their fifth and final appearance last night, Dec. 18, on NBC’s The Sing-Off falling along with Orlando-based Voice Play in a double elimination.
The University of Kentucky a cappella group first performed the classic ‘Old Time Rock ‘n’ Roll’ from the movie Risky Business complete with a socked feet slide and underwear finish.
Judge Jewell told them to create a picture and bring nostalgia, but she also said to work on musical consistency while having fun on the floor. She warned them not to let “theatrics overshadow technique.”
To see the acoUstiKats sing ‘Old Time Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ click below:
The 12-man fraternity clearly had fun with the song and then recreating Tom Cruise’s famous air guitar scene in white boxers. The UK men wore tight red denims, white button-down oxfords and a grayish blue varsity jacket throughout their choral-rock-gospel rendition. For the big finish, Ross Hill, Jeremy Michael and Ron Wilbur tore off their pants and appeared in white socks and white boxers, much to judge Shawn Stockman’s dismay.
The judges praised them for taking the audience on “a musical tour” of genres with Jordan Lindsey taking the choral lead. Judge Ben Folds, who told the network audience that in honor of the underwear-baring trio he’d gone “commando,” said the performance’s “transitions were good and well executed,” but he wanted more rock ‘n roll. Stockman congratulated the group for finding their “niche” of fun and entertaining a cappella, but said they suffered from “just a little bit of wavering harmonics when the choreography takes over.”
Each of the six remaining groups in last night’s show were paired with another in three Ultimate Sing-Offs in preparation for the judges sending two ensembles home. The acoUstiKats went group-to-group with the all-men-and-one-woman Voice Play. Rather than battling it out, the two groups decided to join forces and jointly sing ‘Eye of the Tiger’ from Rocky III.
Going into the performance, the UK men felt their “wall of sound” with 12 voices would “wash over” Voice Play. The theme park friends cited “experience” as their winning card. In the end, although the judges gave the performance the first standing ovation of the night, both groups were eliminated.
Folds, in response to a question from host Nick Lachey, said he got what he was hoping for from the groups and “then some.” He praised the way both ensembles worked together which resulted in a “really fun” experience.
Stockman called their unique collaboration “a mixture of Looney Tunes and Monty Python.”
“In the midst of you sounding wonderful, you entertained everybody here,” said Stockman.
Jewell said she clearly loved it, but merely called the performance “sound.”
Click below to view a video of the ‘Eye of the Tiger’ performance:
Before their elimination was announced, Evan Jennings Pulliam spoke for the UK acoUstiKats and said the experience of being in the national competition had been one of “the most amazing experiences of our lives.” He called the Ultimate Sing-Off with Voice Play “the pinnacle of my performing life.”
He said the group wasn’t worried about the show results meaning the end of the ensemble’s a cappella career. “There’s a lot left in our tanks,” Jennings Pulliam said.
The four remaining groups – Ten, Home Free, The Filharmonic and Vocal Rush – perform tonight, Dec. 19, in the semi-finals. The winner of $100,000 and a Sony recording contract will be revealed in the final show on Monday, Dec. 23.