American Idol just got a little less country.

Last night, Dexter Roberts, the country-crooning sweetheart from Alabama, was sent home after America decided not to keep him in for another week. We’re sad to see him go and a little surprised that he didn’t outlast Jess Meuse, his bottom two companion for the week.

Should Dexter have been sent home? In our opinion, no. When has the guy ever given a bad performance? He knows what he’s good at, and he plays to his talents. He’s consistently solid vocally, and he definitely gave a better performance this week than Jess. Did we think he’d win the whole thing? No, but we’re surprised he was cut in the Top 7.

After his performance of Luke Bryan’s “Muckalee Creek Water,” the judges told him he was good, just not terrific.

“We know that you can sing this kind of tune really well, but again, you really didn’t do anything differently from the original vocal,” J.Lo told him. “I just want to hear you sing other things than you singing along to the radio.”

We think that kind of judgment is a little unfair, considering that the contestants didn’t have much control over which song they performed this week. And we all know what happened to Ben Briley when he deviated from his country roots.

J.Lo is right about one thing: Dexter should push himself. And when he figures out where that sweet spot is between doing what he’s good at and taking it to the next level, we know we’ll hear him all over radio.

Are you surprised Dexter was sent home? Did you think someone else should have gotten the boot?