With a jam-packed two hours, the Voice
's first quarterfinals episode was a lot to take in. Despite the brisk pacing, the energy in the studio felt high and I thought all the performers (particularly those that have struggled in the past) really stepped up their game. I think the producers accomplished their goal - the caliber of performances was raised when instant eliminations were brought in. If you're still digesting all the performances and results, feel free to check out our recap
for the details. Otherwise, let's get to the best part -- forming our predictions.
First, we need to address Blake and Christina's elimination picks. I think there was a shock when Christina chose Jesse Campbell to go home, as he was probably her strongest singer. Plus, he had plenty of emotion and a raw connection to his song (singing for his daughter), which is something the coaches have constantly emphasized this season. That said, Christina made her mission as a coach clear last night - she's looking for an artist who can grow. If that's her strategy, then I can see why Jesse Campbell would be her pick (though I disagree that that will bring her the winner). Blake went with America's most recent vote, which I think was a smart play. Unfortunately, Jordis Unga has gotten progressively better in recent performances, so it was sad to see her go.
I think Jermaine Paul continues to dominate Team Blake with his heartfelt underdog story supporting his family and killer vocals. I liked that this week he went back to a more soulful song choice that allowed him to show off his soaring notes. Of the team's three remaining artists, I peg Jermaine as safe.
Between RaeLynn and Erin Willett, I truly hope the former goes home. However, she did give her best performance last night, showing a gritty country flair that won over the judges. Erin Willett unfortunately chose yet another Adele song and though she if anyone could pull it off, I don't think her rendition was unique enough to not be compared with the British megastar, who is still in her own league. I still like Erin Willett better, but given that RaeLynn gave her best performance and Blake seems to have a soft spot for his fellow country crooner, my guess is he will save her.
Summary: Jermaine Paul will be safe; Blake will choose Erin Willett to go home.
Of Christina's remaining three singers, I think Ashley De La Rosa gave the best performance. Like Adam said, she has been by far the most improved on the show, which says something about her potential to go even further. But I still think Lindsey Pavao and Chris Mann are more popular, particularly Lindsey. Thus, Lindsey will be safe and Christina will be forced to choose between the opera singer and the young starlet who has grown leaps and bounds.
Given that Christina seems to like her role as mentor a lot and therefore wants singers she can continue to mold, I think she will choose Ashley De La Rosa to save. Yes, Chris Mann stepped out of his comfort zone by singing a Coldplay song, but I would argue it didn't work as well as it could have and there's still a limit to an opera voice that just isn't present with a voice like Ashley's.
Summary: Lindsey Pavao will be safe; Christina will send Chris Mann home.
Feel free to voice your opinions below and tune in for the live results at 9pm on NBC!
(Image courtesy of NBC)