0505_jacob_singleJacob Lusk, the gospel-singing giant from Compton, CA, was cut from "American Idol" Thursday night.

The 23-year-old struggled for weeks to match his audition-round rendition of "God Bless the Child," which judge Randy Jackson declared "the best performance on 'American Idol' ever."

On Wednesday, Lusk's pitchy, awkward rendition "No Air" was panned by the judges. And while he redeemed himself with a strong performance of "Love Hurts," Lusk failed to garner enough votes to stay in the competition.

Lusk was overcome with emotion when the results were read and struggled to get through his encore.

Joining Lusk in the bottom two was Lauren Alaina. It marked Alaina's first appearance in that group all season long. James Durbin and Scotty McCreery remain the only contestants who have never been in the bottom group. Haley Reinhart was also deemed safe.

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