Another Tuesday night, another round of battles on The Voice. And so far, I’m loving this stage of the competition, especially for how cut-and-dry it makes the whole “weeding out” process that can take months on those other singing shows. Comparing two singers with different styles singing different songs can feel like “apples and oranges,” as they say, but pitting the voices directly against each other at the exact same time has a way of bringing the winner to the surface a lot more easily.
Granted, tonight the judges made some tough calls, but I don’t think any of their decisions were tearing them apart inside. In these duelets, it’s pretty tough to end the song on equal ground.
Here’s the recap of tonight’s battles with more mindblowingly insightful commentary (I’m so sure) from me, your trusty recapper:
Trying to remember who these people are? Check out the teams (named by yours truly):
Adam Levine: Adam It Feels Good to be a Gangsta
Blake Shelton: Frosted Blakes
Christina Aguilera: Xtinage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Cee Lo Green: I Cee London, I Cee France
Cee Lo Battle Two: Battle of the Adorable R&B Boys
Nakia and Tje Austin will be singing Ne-Yo’s “Closer,” and Nakia is worried that the song is “tailor-made” for Tje’s voice.
During coaching with Cee Lo and Monica, Nakia keeps wearing his sunglasses indoors, just like his coach! Is this another “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” thing? He sang “Forget You” in auditions, after all. It’s tough to know who’s the underdog in this one, but Nakia might have the edge if Cee Lo doesn’t get turned off by how hard he’s trying.
I’m rooting for: Tje. I loved Nakia in auditions, but Tje is just so cute.
Tje kicks off the song, and he is cute and smooth as before. Nakia’s voice is naturally more in-your-face, and he goes for power. The song really is more tailored to Tje’s style, and I could totally see him going on to rock some super sexy R&B songs. But Cee Lo likes when people go out on a limb, and Nakia lays it all out there, really selling the song and his strengths as a vocalist without sacrificing pitch.
The judges’ critiques: Adam says he’d be crushed to let either of them go, but he’d go with Nakia if he had to. Blake likes that they each held on to their personalities, and he’d choose Nakia also. Xtina thinks Nakia “sold it” and she loves Tje’s “whole package.” (WINK!) Monica likes Tje’s voice more (she too likes it smooooth) but it’s Cee Lo’s call, and he chooses…
Cee Lo’s Decision: Nakia!
A valid choice and I can’t wait to see what Nakia brings to the live episodes, though I’m sad to see Tje go. First Tyler Robinson, and now this! Beware, cute ones: I like you, and you keep losing. Not to be self-centered, but those facts must be related.
Blake Battle Two: Battle of the Awkward Three-Way
Elenowen are going up against Jared Blake. It’s a triple duelet! They’re singing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”
It seems like Elenowen have the edge: Duets are their thing, and Jared is a hardcore rocker, not a harmony and soul guy. Plus, it’s two voices against one. During rehearsals, Reba advises Jared to try to keep as much attention on himself as he can. During rehearsals, Blake says their styles just are not blending well together (uh, ya think?) so they better work on “coming to the middle” in the final performance.
I’m rooting for: Jared. I like underdogs, and I still think it’s weird that this married couple are called “Elenowen” when their names are not Ellen and Owen. I can’t help blaming them for my confusion. Plus, how pissed would we all be if TWO voices won THE Voice? That’s just not right.
Jared thinks it’s a good idea to wear a head bandanna when he’s singing Marvin Gaye. I mean, sure, keep your personal style, Jared, but tailoring your look to the song just a bit might help show Blake that you’re more versatile. And THE Voice needs to be versatile!
Jared brings his own flavor to the song right from the start. He somehow makes growl-y work with the song, which is impressive. But it’s instantly weird once Elenowen bring their double flavor into the mix as well… because, well, their flavor is weak. Nicole in particular seems to struggle with the song, and her parts don’t stand out. Honestly, I think Jared brings just as much sound and power as Elenowen do together, maybe even more, and for that, he should win. But we’ll see what the judges think.
The judges’ critiques: Xtina says Jared sold it better. Cee Lo loves the married duo together, but Jared did a great job. Adam knew the song was wrong for Jared, but he worked well with it anyway. Reba says Josh and Nicole weren’t comfortable enough with the song. It’s up to Blake now:
Blake’s Decision: Jared wins!
Yay! Justice prevails! Sorry Elenowen fans, but they should have outshined Jared times two, and instead it was the other way around.
What do you think of the judges’ decisions to keep Nakia, Jared, Javier and Beverly? Anyone you wish hadn’t been sent home tonight?
Next Week: More Battle Rounds, including another triple duelet on Cee Lo’s team between Kelsey Rey, his “oh no I’m too hot to be taken seriously” contestant, and Tori and Taylor, the 17 and 19-year-old sisters from the pig farm. GIRL FIGHT!
(Images courtesy of NBC)