'The Voice' Recap: The Top 12 Perform
'The Voice' Recap: The Top 12 Perform
Esther Gim
Esther Gim
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
It's top 12 night on The Voice, where the coaches can no longer play favorites.

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But America can -- in a brand-new way. Sure you can download your favorite artist's song, vote, call in, etc. But for the first time, there will be an instant save -- via Twitter, no less. How this will all play out remains to be seen. Will it really be a game changer?

Heading into tonight's performances, here are a few questions that I'm wondering: 

After dominating on the iTunes charts, will James Wolpert get the "pimp spot," and close out the show?

Was last week the best we've seen from Jacquie Lee, or can she go to an even higher place?

Will the coaches pick some good songs this week?

The odds are stacked against the ladies, though, because there are only four women against eight men in the top 12.

Welcome to The Voice live blog!


Caroline Pennell ("Wake Me Up" by Avicii)


I admire Cee Lo wanting his artists to do different things, but apparently he didn't learn from last week because this song just doesn't fit her. Why would you fix something that isn't broken? Her unique tone means she needs songs where she can draw out a few notes here or there to bring it out. This just has too many words and the music overtakes her. No wonder she's first -- a rather forgettable performance.

Oh snap, Blake calls out the studio audience, saying they have no rhythm.

Josh Logan ("Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson)


Is America not connecting with Josh like I am not? Hearing Christina speak about him, it sounds that way. He probably did get the lowest number of votes on his team. This is the most "Josh" performance that I've seen because he isn't hiding behind the original artist. And he sounds great. It's not a knockout performance, but it's acceptable. He looks a bit timid, though, because he spends a lot of time with the backup singers than singing out to the audience, which Adam points out.

Blake wonders that had Josh done this a week ago, he probably would not have been in the bottom. 

James Wolpert ("Mr. Brightside" by The Killers)



I can't handle his breathing. It's incredibly noticeable. Is it just me? Especially in the beginning. But I do like it, like the way he takes certain notes and gives it this aggression. He hits the high note Adam wanted him to do. 

Is he just not adorable? There's this one moment where he looks absolutely dazed but not in a confused way, just like he's realizing for the first time what he's doing -- that he's on The Voice stage and he has fans and everything. He tried doing a rock song before but faltered. This is a lot better. Good song choice, Adam.

Austin Jenckes ("It's a Great Day to Be Alive" by Travis Tritt)


Austin only knows one level of output when singing. LOUD. I feel like he's going to come out of my television and attack me with sound. For such an exciting song, it's frankly putting me to sleep -- loudness and all. Nice high note at the end, though. His voice fits perfectly in the country genre, so Blake succeeds with the song choice.

Jacquie Lee ("Love is Blindness" by Jack White)



Wow, Jack White is a popular artist this season. But when Christina said she wanted Jacquie to do something current, I was thinking more in the wheelhouse of someone her age. Maybe next week?

It doesn't start off as great as it ends, which, if you're going to have not-so-great moments, is a good way to do it -- ending strong and showing off a huge range. I hear the emotion in her voice that love is blindness, and I see it in the way she moves across the stage -- she has a way of captivating the audience -- but I don't 100% feel/see it in her eyes. And I feel like she's yelling at me. What did I do wrong?

Ray Boudreaux ("All of Me" by John Legend)


Ray is someone that I always kind of forget about when I think about the ones to beat, but then he gets on the stage and I remember that he's really, really good. It sounds dangerously close to the original, however. I can feel that the song is somewhat difficult for him to get through, though, being emotional, slow and soft. The high notes also aren't quite there. But it's mostly nice.

Kat Roubichaud ("Sail" by Awolnation)


I'm worried about this performance and song choice. There just aren't that many words. But then she falls back into the audience -- crowd surfing, really? -- and it starts to pick up, and she has her moment with a few huge notes by the end. Visually, it kind of gives me a headache. 

I don't know what Cee Lo is rambling about. He's quite hilarious tonight. I agree with Adam, he does look like Zoro.

Jonny Gray ("Another Day in Paradise" by Phil Collins)


I'm officially off the Jonny Gray train, I think. I always know what to expect with him. I know he'll sound pretty great, but nothing will wow me. And that's what it is. Yes, I know the song doesn't lend itself for a whole lot, though. Cee Lo really tries to fight for him -- it's a nice effort.

Adam talks about the rhythmic issues, but turns it into a compliment.

Tessanne Chin ("My Kind of Love" by Emeli Sande)


Technically, she's great. (She also looks fabulous.) But it doesn't blow me away even though she sounds fantastic. It almost feels ... overdramatic? I don't have anything else to say about it.

Matthew Schuler ("Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen)


My problem with Matthew is that I just don't like the breathy, airy quality that he has, which comes out in the beginning verses. But I absolutely do love it when he belts it out (which he does in this performance with a lot of control), and those high notes? Better than Austin's. Overall, it is beautiful, and he connects well.

Cole Vosbury ("Adorn" by Miguel)


Cole could seriously sing anything. I have never heard this song before -- there's an earlier version that's not this? And the falsetto! I always seem to notice something different about him every week. I thought he'd look out of sync without the guitar, but he's pretty comfortable on stage. He and Caroline should record lullabies.

He gets Christina and Blake to stand up for him. I'm getting concerned with Blake's violent references. This time it's a knife fight. Ease up, man.

Will Champlin ("Demons" by Imagine Dragons)


Going from almost eliminated to the final performance of the night -- life is good for Will. I originally thought it was too much for him, but I'm impressed with how he gets through it, even that one super high part, he hangs right in there. I love him as a performer and he rocks out.

I feel I was overly critical tonight, but this is the top 12. I'm expecting perfection.

The Voice results show will air Tuesday at 9pm on NBC.

(Image courtesy of NBC)



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