Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Look Out Idol - The Voice Premieres

Watch yo' back, Idol (and X Factor). You've got some serious competition. NBC's The Voice premiered Tuesday night with big buzz and a truly legitimate judging panel (Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Cee-Lo Green and Adam Levine) that has not only the credentials (current credentials, even!) but the entertainment value. And they sang circles around everyone with a group performance of "Crazy" to kick off the show.

This might be my favorite judging panel ever. They have a great chemistry, especially with this inner-competition amongst themselves. They're hilarious in so many different ways. Blake and Cee-Lo were lobbying for one contestant, and Blake told her that she needed stability "and one day he'll come in dressed like Batman!" To which Cee-Lo replied, "No I won't! ... OK I can't promise that." And Simon Cowell-Paula Abdul fake fights from Idols past have nothing on the Adam Levine-Christina Aguilera duels from tonight. And it seems like Adam almost always hits his button when he thinks Cee-Lo is about to. It's hilarious.

I wasn't sure how this show would hold up after the singers were revealed since it seemed to me as though the premise of the show is to find the greatest VOICE, but somehow it works. At least for now. I am quite looking forward to the battle round, where two singers have to sing the same song, and only one will survive. But I do wonder if audiences will be able to vote for voices with no other prejudices.

Oh, and there's also the singers. No train-wrecks, no "loser" auditioners. It's so refreshing. These people are, for the most part, good! Now, that's not to say that I would have picked all of them, but it's nice to see an audition show where you're not cringing and facepalming all day long.

Here's a quick rundown of the first day of the blind auditions, with links to the iTunes studios (ALREADY!):

Tarralyn Ramsey - Breathe by Faith Hill (Buy on iTunes)
This chick can sing (wow was her voice soaring in the chorus), but it would be helpful if she actually sang the correct lyrics. I'm not sure I would have picked her.
Chosen by: Christina, Cee-Lo
Coach: Christina

Patrick Thomas - Live Like You Were Dying by Tim McGraw (Buy on iTunes)
He has a great country voice and is super cute too. I'm not sold on his performance skills yet, but that's not the point of this show right now.
Chosen by: Adam, Cee-Lo, Blake
Coach: Blake

Jared Blake - Good Girls Go Bad by Cobra Starship
He's way too old to sing this song. Even without seeing him, you can tell he's too old to sing it.
Chosen by: No one

Vicci Martinez - Rolling In The Deep by Adele (Buy on iTunes)
She has a Melissa Ethridge-like voice. She seemed to struggle a little bit with getting that full power in there. She's no Adele. She's not even Haley Reinhart.
Chosen by: Cee-Lo, Christina
Coach: Cee-Lo

Sonia Rao - If I Ain't Got You by Alicia Keys
The verses were unrecognizable, and she completely oversang that.
Chosen by: No one

Elenowen - Falling Slowly by Swell Season (Buy on iTunes)
This is the married couple from Nashville who are living in her parents' basement.
Her voice is way too theatrical and melodramatic. And their voices don't blend well together. Either one or both were off-key.
Chosen by: Blake, Cee-Lo
Coach: Blake

Frenchie Davis - I Kissed A Girl by Katy Perry (Buy on iTunes)
I loved Frenchie during the Hollywood round on American Idol Season 2. I didn't quite so much love her here. She sounded a little pitchy to me, and she had this very robotic and scary Grace Jones face during her performance. Also, LOL that her sob story was getting DQ'd from Idol. It's not as if it's been a huge detriment. She was on Rent in Broadway, and people know who she is. Cee-Lo knew her by sight, for crying out loud.
Chosen by: Christina
Coach: Christina

Kelsey Rey - American Boy by Estelle (Buy on iTunes)
She's gorgeous, but I'm not completely sold on the voice. It's not all that distinctive and kind of thin. I could not help but laugh and roll my eyes at her "waaaah I'm so pretty, life is hard" speech backstage.
Chosen by: Adam, Cee-Lo, Christina
Coach: Cee-Lo

Jeff Jenkins - Bless The Broken Road by Rascal Flatts (Buy on iTunes)
I'm surprised the guys picked him so quickly. He has a bit of mush-mouth. I'm even more surprised that Adam Levine doesn't know this song. Is he serious?! And I've heard several different versions of this song that sounded better than that (i.e. Carrie Underwood).
Chosen by: Cee-Lo, Adam, Christina, Blake
Coach: Adam

Rebecca Loebe - Come As You Are by Nirvana (Buy on iTunes)
Wow this is a really interesting take on Nirvana. I'd pick her for originality. I died at her reasoning for choosing Adam. It was kind of like a "Eh, sorry, Christina, but I'd rather have an Adam-like career than yours lately."
Chosen by: Christina, Adam
Coach: Adam

Joann Rizzo - I Say A Little Prayer by Dionne Warwick
She's in her 50s and dresses and acts like she's in her 20's. It's awfully disconcerting. Her voice sounds old too. Of course, it doesn't help that she picks this musty old Dionne Warwick song.
Chosen by: No one

Xenia Martinez - Breakeven by The Script (Buy on iTunes)
Xenia is a shy, quiet high schooler. Can she become a pop star? She has a long ways to go performance-wise, but her voice is very distinct and cool. If she can loosen up more, she'll be great.
Chosen by: Cee-Lo, Blake 
Coach: Blake

Tje Austin - Just The Way You Are by Bruno Mars (Buy on iTunes)
Tje Austin from Austin, TX sounded terrible on the verses and only slightly better on the chorus. He just brought nothing new to the song.
Chosen by: Adam, Cee-Lo
Coach: Cee-Lo

Javier Colon - Time After Time by Cyndi Lauper (Buy on iTunes)
I LOVE HIM. His voice is amaaaaazing, and he's got soul. I agree with everything Christina said - the song is gorgeous stripped down, and he made it his own.
Chosen by: Adam, Cee-Lo, Christina, Blake
Coach: Adam

Beverly McClellan - Piece Of My Heart by Janis Joplin (Buy on iTunes)
She sounds too much like a trucker, and her voice is a bit old-sounding. Not coincidentally, she is old. Good luck with that, Christina.
Chosen by: Christina, Adam
Coach: Christina

No comments: