I love the battle rounds on The Voice. Like those large, swiveling chairs, it’s something that makes the show unique. They get me riled up, whether it’s over a coach pairing two unbelievably talented contestants or a favorite of mine not getting “stolen” by another team.
I watched both episodes this week (but no recaps next week, I’m going on vacation) and really enjoyed the duets. I thought the top three battles of the night were the R&B youngsters singing “Listen”, Donna and Tessanne singing “Next To Me” and, surprisingly, two singers that I’d barely remembered from the blinds singing “House of the Rising Sun”.
Grey vs. Nic – Domino
Adam’s choice for these two pop singers was a catchy hit by Britain’s answer to Katy Perry, Jessie J. I expected Grey to win here, because I remembered her earlier audition. But after the duet, the other coaches were really into Nic’s onstage energy. Adam went with the solid vocal (and, in my opinion, more potential) and chose Grey. But! A steal! Cee Lo scooped up Nic. I think Nic will be a good fit with Cee Lo, but I question whether he can grow any more as a performer. His voice is just so-so.
Amber vs. Timyra – Listen
AGH! I can’t believe Christina paired these two together. I get it, they’re very similar. Young, incredibly talented R&B singers. But damn, they were SO GOOD! After watching their rehearsal footage and seeing their performance, I could not choose between them. I wanted them both. Christina chose Amber, and I was crushed when no one stole Timyra. What gives? She was one of the most talented singers of the night!
Justin vs. Shelbie – Don’t You Wanna Stay
I like Kelly Clarkson, and I think this song is pretty, but it’s not really my thing. I could have fast-forwarded through this performance, but I watched so I could try and choose who was better. Shelbie is just more my cup of tea, and the song provided her more opportunities to shine. I found them both a bit stiff on stage, and though Blake chose Shelbie in the end I don’t think either singer would make it very far.
Team Cee Lo
Anthony vs. Caroline – As Long As You Love Me
This was a strange battle, because the artists were so different and the song was, well, not my favorite. I found the performance kind of boring, even though both singers are very good. I worried that Anthony’s glee club history, and his over-singing during rehearsal, would make him unbearable. But he listened to his coaches and pulled it back in. Caroline, to be honest, is just more my kind of singer. She’s sweet and has a breathy, mellow voice that I’m often drawn to. I was surprised that Cee Lo picked Caroline, but pleased. Christina stole Anthony and I think he’s a good addition to her team.
Donna vs. Tessanne – Next To Me
This was a hell of a battle. Donna is a great singer, with a Tina Turner sound that all the coaches complimented. But I had really, really liked Tessanne from the blind auditions. She was probably one of my top two standouts from those early rounds. From the rehearsal footage, I thought Donna was out-singing Tessanne. But in the actual battle, Tessanne really shone and I wasn’t surprised when Adam chose her. No one picked up Donna, which was a disappointment. She was very good.
Briana vs. Jacquie – House of the Rising Sun
This battle was a surprise. I remembered Briana from the blind auditions because she’s Kaley Cuocu’s sister, but I hadn’t been that impressed by her. I really liked Jacquie’s Amy Winehouse cover in the blind auditions, so I was rooting for her here. The surprise was, both girls performed much better than I anticipated. I actually wasn’t even sure who I’d choose – though probably Jacquie, based on their previous performances. Christina indeed chose Jacquie, but two coaches tried to steal Briana. She chose Blake over Cee Lo – I was a little surprised there, too. I thought she’d like to work with Cee Lo.
Matthew vs. Jacob – My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (Light Em Up)
I barely remembered either of these singers, and I didn’t know this song, so this was not destined to be my favorite performance of the night. It was actually pretty fun, but Matthew was too good to beat. Christina chose Matthew.
Team Cee Lo
Kat vs. R. Anthony – I Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing
I enjoyed both Kat and R. in their blind auditions, but wasn’t blown away by them, so I had no preconceptions before this duet began. I felt like Cee Lo chose a pretty cheesy, overdone song though. I don’t love Cee Lo as a coach on this show because I disagree with his song choices so frequently. This was, I thought, one of the weakest battles so far and I partially blame the song. I guess I liked R. Anthony better, but whatever.
Team Cee Lo
Cole vs. Lupe – Africa
Why did Cee Lo pick that song? It’s such a karaoke song. This was obviously a weak battle. The guy named Cole won.
EG vs. Sam – Something To Talk About
This looked like another weak battle. EG, a country-singing woman, won.
Ashley vs. Justin – Just a Fool
This battle I wished we’d seen, because Adam has a pretty strong team and it looked like Ashley was pretty good.
Monica vs. Ray – Some Kind of Wonderful
I didn’t have very high expectations for this battle, based on what we saw of their rehearsals. Ray definitely seemed like the stronger singer, and I thought he did better in the battle. Blake chose Ray, and Cee Lo stole Monica. I mean…Monica and Nic, but not Timyra? I know, I should move on. But still.