LL Cool J might have oversold the performance in his introduction, claiming the performance was going to be "literally on fire." He also defined "mash-up" with such fervor you'd swear it was the first one he'd ever heard.
Lights up on Adam Levine dressed up as an shi-shi NYC bartender singing the third single from Maroon 5's Overexposed. It would not be wise to ever bet against Adam's live abilities; he's the nonpareil of technique and vocal confidence onstage. That doesn't mean we weren't utterly bored by the whole operation.
Lights up on Alicia Keys dressed up as a shi-shi NYC hostess singing, you guessed it, "Girl on Fire." Unlike Mr. Levine, we've never been entirely comfortable with Alicia's onstage abilities. She has a history of falling flat in both senses. The bout began with Alicia banging on two drums and rocking a fierce smize. As expected, it was bland, and the interplay between "Girl of Fire" and "Daylight" weren't as clever or inspired as LL Cool J might have advertised. Total yawn fest all around, except for a five second cut to Jay-Z and Beyonce bobbing their heads adorably.
POPDUST SAYS: 2.5/5