The Voice season 15 Knockouts continue tonight with coaches Adam Levine, Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Hudson, Blake Shelton and Carson Daly as host. We’re live blogging all the performances and results here.
Coaches have paired up the remaining 32 team members who will each perform songs of their own choosing. The coach chooses the winner, who advances to the Live Playoffs. The loser is eliminated OR can be saved by their coach or stolen by another coach.
Where we stand: Adam has used his Steal and his Save, Kelly and Blake have a Save remaining, and Jennifer still has a Steal. There are 12 more performances to go. Nine of those singers will advance to next week’s Playoffs.
The Knockouts key adviser is…Mariah Carey. The ex-American Idol judge will assist all four coaches with their team members performances.
Chevel Shepherd vs Sarah Grace – Team Kelly – One singer is country, and the other is bluesey. Kelly wants to push them both. They’re also both teens.
Chevel Shepherd – Travelin Soldier by the Dixie Chicks – She used to harmonize on this song with her mom and sister. Her brother was in the army and they sang it together as a way of coping with worry. Chevel and her dad work on cars together back home in New Mexico. Kelly compares her to Loretta Lynn. Mariah calls her voice “pure” and tone “authentic” but stresses that Chevel has to tell a story with her voice. Kelly gives the singer a few tips on phrasing and staying on pitch. Chevel is a very pure country singer. She’s got a crystal clear, plaintive tone. She needs work on breath control, but otherwise she’s a natural. At 16, she’s not quite connecting to the song, but that will come in time.
Sarah Grace – I’d Rather Go Blind by Etta James – It’s the first song she sang that made her fall in love with the blues. Her dad is a firefighter. Mariah calls Sarah an “old soul.” Kelly notes that Sarah is also a musician and it informs how she attacks the song. Mariah makes a few suggestions on phrasing. Sarah has a deep mature voice for a 15 year old and she’s hitting some big notes. But this song is emotionally beyond her grasp. She needs to mature a bit before she can successfully tackle this song.
About mentoring, Kelly’s all WHA WHA I could have used somebody in my moment (the show that shall remain unnamed!) and Mimi, is of course, sympathetic. Whatever!
Adam calls Chevel “angelic” and compliments Sarah’s ability to convey pain. Adam would pick Chevel (so would I). Blake notes Chevel’s breathing problems, but compares her to a young Dolly. He compliments Sarah’s range and ability to sustain big notes. He’d pick Sarah. Jennifer would also pick Sarah. Kelly felt they both chose “bold fearless songs” and she likes that. She’s basing her choice on whose ready right now. Kelly Chooses Chevel. And then Kelly SAVES Sarah Grace.
DeAndre Nico vs Jake Wells – Team Adam – Adam has put the two together because they “couldn’t be more different.”
DeAndre Nico – Wanted by Hunter Hayes – His family lost everything in Hurricane Harvey. DeAndre is a four chair turn. He chose the song because he loves country music! He wants Adam to know he’s versatile. He turns the song very soulful, though. Adam wants to see more refinement and escalation. They raise the key a step. Adam is happy with that change, calling DeAndre a “beastly singer.” There is nothing even remotely country about this rendition, but still, it’s a beautiful performance. Gorgeous tone–his voice is like velvet. But he can bring on the growls too. Adam is a little crazy if he doesn’t pick him.
Jake Wells – Yellow by Coldplay – He sang gospel music on the road with his family. Now, he’s gigging as much as possible. Oh. I like this guy! I hope he makes it. He considers himself “Neo-Soul.” He’ll play piano tonight. Adam suggests he STAY at the piano rather than get up. “Dig in,” he suggests. Adam likes that Jake is willing to collaborate. These two seem to connect musician to musician. Unfortunately, Jake’s performance is edited. Maybe because the song is a little out of his range. Coldplay can be challenging to cover. Jake is having a tough time staying on pitch. Definitely a song choice misfire here.
Blake notes that covering “Yellow” was a tough one. Blake wishes DeAndre was on his team. “That was brilliant.” Kelly mentions her daughter’s obsession with the song. Kelly liked his interpretation. She calls DeAndre “stupid” but in a good way. “A beautifully crafted instrument,” she describes his voice. Kelly would choose Jake, though. Adam says DeAndre came to win. Adam Chooses DeAndre Jake is Eliminated. Dang. I’m going to miss his quirky style. Bye Jake.
Mariah wants to co-write with Jennifer, who is very excited at the prospect. We’ll see if that ever happens.
Anthony Arya vs Kennedy Holmes – Team Jennifer – Jennifer put them together because “they’re the babies” i.e. TEENS.
Anthony Araya – Operator by Jim Croce – Jennifer stole Anthony from Adam. He loves classic music from the 60s and 70s. He sounds a lot like Croce when he sings. Jennifer compares him to Jack Johnson. Anthony is really drawn to the story. But when he first heard the song 3 years ago, he had no idea what an “operator” was. SOB. We old. Anthony reminds me a little of Sawyer Fredericks, but without the immediacy. Anthony has a pleasant voice, but it lacks heft. I’m a little bored here. Man. This matchup is going to be a blowout.
Kennedy Holmes – What About Us by Pink – She’s only 13. She’s been singing, dancing, doing gymnastics and musical theater. Yes. She is an overachiever, and incredibly poised and mature for her age. Also, Kennedy is a four chair turn. Jennifer sees herself in Kennedy. Interesting, her Battle performance was montaged. Jennifer thinks Kennedy is maybe TOO polished. Be vulnerable, she says. Kennedy’s tone is to DIE FOR. It’s thick and low, but she can hit the high notes too. But Jennifer has a point about vulnerability. Kennedy’s got the poise of a pageant princess. Once she lets down her defenses, she’ll be unstoppable.
Kelly notes that Anthony sounds “identical” to Jim Croce, which isn’t really a compliment. “Pink is going to be so proud,” she says to Kennedy. Adam calls Anthony the coolest 15 year old he knows. “That’s what makes you so special.” Adam calls it impossible to choose. Blake notes that Kennedy is the flashier vocalist. He’d “take her all the way.” Jennifer pretends like it’s a REALLY HARD DECISION. Right. Jennifer Chooses Kennedy. Anthony is Eliminated. He was nothing but cannon fodder. Sad.
Colton Smith vs Kirk Jay – Team Blake – Blake stole Colton from Jennifer. “It’s going to be a tough decision for me,” Blake says. The two freak out when they see Mariah.
Colton Smith – Lady Marmalade by LaBelle – He’s been living with hearing loss since he was a kid. “Lady Marmalade is his mom’s favorite song. But it’s a big song! “Ambitious,” says Mariah. Blake says Colton will need to fill the stage up with “excitement.” During the performance, he tries to work the stage. But he seems to run out of steam by the end. He’s distracted, having to pull his in-ears out during the performance. He seems a little lost. We joined the performance midway–I suspect the REALLY bad parts were edited out. Poor guy.
Kirk Jay – In Case You Didn’t Know by Brett Young – He plays in a country band, but goes back home to visit his family. “I grew up poor,” he says. “I’m country til I die!” insists Kirk. The singer wants to show Blake his versatility, so he performs sitting at a keyboard. Before his blind audition, he went through a bad breakup. He wants his ex to know he still thinks about her. Mariah and Kirk suggest he stay at the keyboard for the entire song. Kirk’s got a gorgeous tone and his high notes SOAR. He’s so heartfelt–I believed every word of that. This has gotta be the easiest decision in the world for Blake.
Jennifer calls Kirk’s moment “beautiful” and Colton a “professional.” She advises him not to count himself out. Kelly adds that they’ve all been in Colton’s shoes. She calls Kirk “something special.” Adam calls Kirk a unicorn, predicting “you’ll be in the finale.” Blake says he paired Colton with Kirk, because of his big voice, and that he “held it together” even as he fished around for the pitch. Poor Colton. The flop sweat is REAL. Blake Chooses Kirk, Eh. Even if Colton had killed it, Blake would have chosen Kirk. WHAT THE ACTUAL EFF. JENNIFER JUST STOLE COLTON BACK. Wow. Jennifer says she never wanted to let him go in the first place. That’s Cray Cray. FAIRY TALE ENDING.
Delaney Silvernell vs Steve Memmolo – Team Adam – Steve is the Ben Affleck look alike. Adam stole Delaney from Kelly
Delaney Silvernell – Praying by Kesha – The singer has been struggling in Los Angeles for the last 6 months or so. She chose the song because of its vulnerability and strength. She’s been auditioning since 13 years of age and has heard a lot of nos. Mariah helps Delaney with the low notes, which she’s struggling with a little. Oooh. Her performance is powerful. What a big voice. But really gorgeous phrasing too. It’s her best performance yet, for sure. She lays it all right out there on the stage.
Steve Memmolo – Unaware by Allen Stone – His dad died after suffering a brain injury. It spurred him to never waste time. Adam urges him to use his falsetto. “You have room to be sexy…don’t be confined.” Adam says “sink your claws into it.” Hm. His falsetto is kinda weak. But once he’s on stage, he delivers a solid performance. He’s a decent blue eyed soul singer. This performance could have been super cheesy, but it’s not. Still, Delaney deserves to win this round, absolutely.
Blake starts up with the Ben Affleck stuff. He feels the Knockout was evenly matched. He’d choose Steve. Jennifer really enjoyed Delaney, she loved Steve’s passion. She would choose Steve too. Hm. Kelly calls Delaney’s head voice “yummy.” She would pick her. Adam Chooses Steve. Delaney is Eliminated. Bah. Delaney was clearly and unambiguously the superior vocalist. ROBBED. Adam believes Steve is ready right now, and is impressed that he took his notes.
The two Comeback stage Finalists will be revealed on tonight’s The Comeback Stage digital clip.
Blake has a Save remaining. We all know where this last Knockout is headed…
Chris Kroeze vs Michael Lee – Team Blake – Blake wants to move forward ONLY ONE gravelly voiced singer. Riiight…
Chris Kroeze – Burning House by Cam – He’s a part time stay at home dad. He plays bars around his tiny Wisconsin town. He grew up on country music and wants to display that side of himself. He re-arranged the melody. Blake loves the changes. Mariah calls Chris “sincere.” With this performance, Chris shows he has a vulnerable side, which is very smart. His super raspy voice is never unpleasant. He know how to use it to be both tender and powerful.
Michael Lee – Whipping Post by Allman Brothers – The Allman Brothers was one of his first concerts. He’s been playing professionally since 18. He’s been at rock bottom, partying too much, so he relates to the song. Mariah was very impressed with his rock scream, and his ability to deal with the mic stand when it suddenly collapsed. He just took off the mic and stopped playing the guitar. In the end, they really have no notes for him! Michael brings together impressive guitar and vocal skills. He’s a terrific performer. I’ll be really surprised if he doesn’t go deep in this competition. Big rock scream gets Kelly on her feet.
Jennifer feels they both bring something special to the table. Kelly calls Chris’s tone incredible. But she’d go with Michael. Adam thinks Chris won the knockout because he tackled the tougher song. Blake doesn’t think there’s a winner. So he flips a coin. Michael is the Winner. Blake Saves Chris. I KNEW IT says Jennifer. No kidding.
ELECTION COVERAGE TOMORROW NIGHT. My American readers–REMEMBER TO VOTE! Clip show on Thursday at 9 pm. Next week, it’s the LIVE PLAYOFFS YAY.