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James Durbin, along with Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina, is “in it to win it.”

So sayeth Randy Jackson in an apparent attempt to get Haley Reinhart and Jacob Lusk voted out. Did James live up to the judge’s high praise on Wednesday?

Mostly. The Idol hopefuls picked songs both new and old, getting advice from Sheryl Crow. James began with Thirty Seconds to Mars’ “Closer to the Edge”:

James Durbin - Closer to the Edge (American Idol)

Jimmy Iovine says James’ voice fits better with this kind of material than it does with the ’80s hard rock he likes so much, but that’s somewhat debatable.

It was almost impossible to hear the band at first, though once the sound was more balanced, James did sound pretty good. Same with his next number.

Follow the jump to see the rocker’s take on the 1970 Harry Nilsson hit “Without You,” a song with lyrics that make him cry as he thinks of his family …

 
James Durbin - Closer to the Edge (American Idol)

Who was the best on American Idol this week?