The Voice 10 Recap Playoffs Part 1
Host Carson Daly is promising “stripped down” performances so we can concentrate on the vocals.
Paxton Ingram – Team Blake – How Deep is Your Love by Calvin Harris – Paxton is back singing an upbeat song. He’s pretty excited to be dancing again. In his video package, Paxton teaches Blake the Nae Nae. NO NO. On the second chorus, Paxton grabs the mic and shows off some of his dance moves. The singing/dancing combo rarely works on singing shows, but Paxton has it going on. He’s able to keep his voice strong and on pitch while working in his dance moves. It’s the perfect song to open the night. Paxton is cute as a button. Christina was so entertained! She’s excited. Pharrell felt he had his moment. Adam says he looked like he had the time of his life. Refreshing. Blake says he commands the stage like no other. He’s as confident he’ll move on to the next stage as Adam will do “something stupid with his hair.” Paxton definitely has a little MJ vibe going on there. – Download from iTunes
Ryan Quinn – Team Christina – I’m Not the Only One by Sam Smith – Christina says “Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable.” He confesses that he was cheated on before. Sads. Christina suggests he lose the glasses, so we can see his eyes. Oh. He’s looking HANDSOME tonight without those specs. Whatever Christina told him, he’s connecting to the audience better than ever. Coupled that incredible rangy voice, he could be hard to beat. He’s kinda in the death spot though. There’s a lot coming up and SO MUCH competition on Christina’s team. Remember when he was the frontrunner after the Blinds? Maybe not so much now. Pharrell says only a hater wouldn’t give it up for that performance. He felt his control and tenderness. Former coach Adam is overjoyed for him. “You’re in the right place. I’m so happy,” he says. Christina calls him effortless and tender. – Download from iTunes
Katie Basden – Team Blake – Georgia Rain by Trisha Yearwood – Blake compares Katie to Carrie Underwood. Hm. Blake suggests she end with a big note to remind everyone she’s the rangiest singer in the competition. She’s got the big full voice of a Carrie, but none of the personality. For some reason, I can’t remember any of her prior performances. She’s just not memorable, even if she can hit those high notes in her chest voice. Pharrell ask her if she was “born to do this.” He’s full of questions! She wants to inspire people. Oy. “You’re so good, it’s crazy,” says Adam. Katie makes Blake feel good about the future of country music. – Download from iTunes
Kata Hay – Team Christina – You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman by Aretha Franklin – Kata is a 5 time yodeling champion. Christina says that’s where she gets her tremble. She helps her tamp that down. Kata wants to sing a mix of country and soul. Her vibrato is a little out of control. But she’s staying on pitch, more or less. OK maybe not so much on the bridge, where her voice is too guttural. I’ll give her credit for not holding back emotionally. But maybe she should a little bit, because those noises coming out of her in the second half of the song sounded like a goat in heat. “Super spirited…that poor gas pedal…my mind is still spinning,” says Pharrell throwing some subtle shade. Adam calls it an “exorcism” but awesome. – Download from iTunes
Christina almost pushed her button for Nick Hagelin in the Knockout round so she decided to bring him back. (The coaches can choose ANYONE who was eliminated. Nick was never on her team).
Nick Hagelin – Team Christina – Stay by Rihanna – Nick cut off his hair. BOO. His voice is still purty, though. A smooth tone that moves effortlessly into his falsetto. That was also a very emotional performance. Some of these weird eliminations in the Knockout rounds are now understandable. Christina really has had the opportunity to pad her team with winners. Pharrell, who ditched him, says he deserves to be in the competition. Adam is also happy to see him back. He’s still improving and has an opportunity to improve from week to week, he says. Christina thinks they were destined to be together from day one. “You deserve to move forward,” she says. – Download from iTunes
Joe Maye – Team Blake – Long Train Runnin by The Doobie Brothers – Blake thinks Joe could be a Bruno Mars type entertainer. The introduction is slowed down. Maybe Blake is the right coach for Joe. That was still a little rough. But while Paxton is a more polished entertainer, Joe’s weirdness has it’s charm. He just needs to maintain the crazy without driving himself off a cliff. Christina calls it “so much fun.” Blake says “We got a shot to win this thing.” I wouldn’t go THAT far. – Download from iTunes
Adam Wakefield – Team Blake – Seven Spanish Angels by Ray Charles and Willie Nelson – Blake was looking for a soulful country song, and feels he found the perfect one. Adam needs very little coaching. He’s such a pro. His voice is pure gold. Strong, rich and effortless but with a rough hewn growl. This dude would sound so good on the radio. He commands the stage with his voice. A natural storyteller. He is Adam L’s favorite right now. The way he entertains with his voice is the essence of the show, he says. Blake compares him to Travis Tritt and Chris Stapleton. – Download from iTunes
Tamar Davis – Team Christina – Rise Up by Andra Day – Christina is pushing Tamar in a modern direction, so we can see the kind of artist she’ll be. Smart. There were some sketchy moments in her head voice, and difficulty hitting high notes on pitch. She’s trying to do too much. Keep it simple sweetheart. That’s a saying. Less is often more. Some of the simpler vocal choices were perfect and on point and the best moments in the performance. Just because Christina is the queen of ad libs, doesn’t mean Tamar needs to be. Pharrell calls the performance “precise.” Well, no. “You are definitely anointed,” he says. Blake calls it her best performance so far. Nope. Christina notes how difficult the vocal was. (More difficult than it had to be.) “That was a joy to listen to,” she says. – Download from iTunes
Mary Sarah – Team Blake – (I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden by Lynn Anderson (Martina McBride) – Mary sang this song with her grandmother before she died. Mary would like to update the arrangement and make it more contemporary. After a slow intro, the tempo really speeds up. The chorus borders on frenetic and there are many pitchy spots. Man. That arrangement was a hot mess. This might not be the time to take a risk, when half the singers will be cut. Blake claims she’s a fan favorite. No worries. If she’s cut, Blake will save her. Christina calls the performance “super solid.” Is that a backhanded compliment? Blake felt she came to life in her upper register (she was real pitch impaired up there). Blake calls it so good and fun. He loves that she’s a hillbilly inside. – Download from iTunes
Bryan Bautista – Team Christina – Pillowtalk by ZAYN – Christina lowers the key after Bryan struggles. His confidence is taking a bit of a hit, faced with the biggest performance of the competition so far. Oh My Effing Gha. This dude just oozes sex appeal. He’s unbuttoning his jacket now. Alrighty then. And that voice is so sweet, sliding up into that lovely falsetto. Here’s a singer whose vocal tricks are varied–going from chest to head voice, singing adlibs in his falsetto–but his performances never feel studied or strained. Smart to wear a suit, says Pharrell. “You have what it takes to be a superstar,” he says. Adam can’t believe the key was lowered! “You murdered that song,” says Adam. Blake notes all the girls going crazy. Adam says, some of the men, even. “I knew you were something special,” says Christina. – Download from iTunes
Blake couldn’t get his Coach Comeback out of his mind. I remember being pretty surprised that Justin Whisnant didn’t make it out of the Battle Round. But setting him up against Mary Sarah sealed his fate. Aw. Justin cries when Blake delivers the news on via phone.
Justin Whisnant – Team Blake – Here’s a Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares) by Travis Tritt – Coach Comeback – Pay attention to your diction, Blake tells him. Justin delivers a really solid, rousing performance. He’s got a classic twang, with a modern twist and the ability to hit some impressive high notes. Pharrell loved his passion and feeling. Blake liked the liberties he took with the melodies. He’s sure Travis will comment on twitter. Sidenote: His hair is terrible. – Download from iTunes
Alisan Porter – Team Christina – Cry Baby by Janis Joplin – Janis has always been Alisan’s hero, because of her guts. Christina suggests she tap into her grit. And boy does she. It’s as if the spirit of Janis Joplin entered Alisan’s body. This is kind of a go-to song because of a video that went viral on You tube. She really pulls out all the blues/rocker stops. She’s a gifted performer. The show is pushing her big time, giving the singer the pimp spot. No doubt she’ll advance to the finals, but will she win? Adam is not surprised at how “miraculous” that was. He repeats the thing about her winning the show. “You murdered that song!” says Christina. “You deserve to go the entire way and then some.” – Download from iTunes