Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Eight Voices Compete For Finale Spot

We're now down to two from each of the four teams on The Voice, with the eight contestants vying for four spots in the finale.

Cee Lo and Adam Levine started the show with their cuts. Cee Lo's audience pick was Vicci Martinez, so he was faced with a choice between Nakia, Curtis Grimes and Tori and Taylor Thompson. I mean, really ... what other choice could it have been? Obviously Cee Lo picked Nakia. Adam had a tougher choice and literally whined about it before he got started. After Javier Colon was put through as the audience pick, Adam had to choose between Casey Weston, Jeff Jenkins and Devon Barley. He tried to get rid of Carson Daly first (brilliant idea) but settled on Jeff and Devon, leaving Casey as his pick. I was surprised by this considering how much he has propped up Jeff, and Adam even said that he came in thinking he was going to save Jeff, but I thought Casey deserved it. Well done, Levine.

Frenchie Davis (Team Christina) - Like A Prayer by Madonna (Buy on iTunes)
Christina put this up-tempo dance track to this song, and I just feel like she's trying to pigeon-hole Frenchie into the disco diva/popular in gay clubs type of singer. The only part of the song that I thought was really interesting was the end when Frenchie took it to church.

Nakia (Team Cee Lo) - Whataya Want From Me by Adam Lambert (Buy on iTunes)
Nakia was hesitant about singing this song at first but got comfortable with it after examining the lyrics. The opening just on piano was stunning. I wish he had kept it like that, to be honest, but still, I thought he did a good job on the song and put in his own touches. Adam Levine endangered himself by telling Nakia he wasn't familiar with the song and that he "probably sang it better than the person who sang it originally." Rut-roh. You in danger, girl!

Dia Frampton (Team Blake) - Losing My Religion by R.E.M. (Buy on iTunes)
Dia keeps doing songs that my favorite reality show singers have had moments with (Heartless and Losing My Religion). If she does Billie Jean next, I'll be done with her. Having said that, this was as much like Ryan Star's than Heartless was like Kris Allen's (meaning not really at all). And I really loved the hand claps she added to it. She's talented, and she's definitely more creative than most of the people on this show, but let's get real - she's not totally original. Also, her personality totally gets lost. She's so meek and blase, almost to a point of being forgettable. Almost.

Casey Weston (Team Adam) - I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton (Buy on iTunes)
Levine totally blew it with this very tired song choice. He was aiming for her to go between Whitney Houston and Dolly Parton, but it was more Carmen Rasmusen than anything else. Holy goats!

Maroon 5 and Christina broke up the competition with a performance of their new single "Moves Like Jagger" (Buy on iTunes). I hated this song when I heard the recorded version, but it's better live. Less autotune, more Adam Levine visuals. And let me broken record this: Damn, Adam Levine is hot. Especially in a suit. Christina, though ... gurl, what was that outfit?

Beverly McClellan (Team Christina) - The Thrill Is Gone by B.B. King (Buy on iTunes)
I sat up and took notice when Beverly was singing this softly in rehearsal. I didn't know she had another volume except loud rock. She sounded amazing on this song! I think she just earned a ticket to the finale.

Javier Colon (Team Adam) - Fix You by Coldplay (Buy on iTunes)
Adam and Javier talked before the performance about balancing between staying true to a song that means so much to a lot of people and making it your own. I think just having Javier's honey tones singing makes it different enough, and I think he struck a good balance. It wasn't his best performance of the competition, but it was still very good, and it was nice to see a more rocking side in the second half of that song.

Before the final two performances, Blake Shelton had to join in on the singing, performing his current single, Honey Bee (Buy single on iTunes). Blake worked the stage and the audience better than all the Voice contestants combined, and then he brought his two contestants up on stage to sing with him. Oooh nice touch and a good way of getting them some extra stage time. SNEEKY.

Xenia (Team Blake) - The Man Who Can't Be Moved by The Script (Buy on iTunes)
Another Script song? Can we branch out a little bit? Although she does sing their songs really well, she can't make her living as the lead singer of a Script cover band. And she needs to lose the angry faces when she sings. But like Adam said, her voice is so unique that you know it's her the minute you hear her.

Vicci Martinez (Team Cee Lo) - Dog Days Are Over by Florence & The Machine (Buy on iTunes)
The staging of this was fantastic with all the drummers and with Vicci drumming herself. As Adam said, "coolest performance of the night". That definitely helped to brush aside some vocal patches that weren't quite pleasing.

Rankings:
Beverly (Team Christina)
Vicci (Team Cee Lo)
Javier (Team Adam)
Dia (Team Blake)
Nakia (Team Cee Lo)
Xenia (Team Blake)
Frenchie (Team Christina)
Casey (Team Adam)

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