The Voice UK belatedly ended the 2020 season only in November, but now the show is back with more singers hoping to spin at least one chair.
Will.i.am, Sir Tom Jones and Olly Murs are back as coaches, while Anne-Marie replaces the departing Meghan Trainor. Emma Willis returns as host.
The first round, the Blind Auditions are underway. If a singer gets at least one chair turn, they advance to the Battle Rounds. If not, the singer heads home, without comment from the coaches. Multiple chair turns give the artist the opportunity to choose their coach. Additionally, each coach gets one opportunity to block a coach from “turning” for a singer. It’s a brand new twist for The Voice UK. In the age of COVID-19, the series has a virtual audience.
Jordan and Wesley – Go Get It by Mary Mary – 27 & 30 – Singing brothers from Coventry. The two come from a big family. Mom admits that she offers honest critiques to her boys. Their dad is a Bishop. The two started singing in church. Their song choice is a gospel song. Will is immediately on his feet, dancing. There are some pitch problems. The performance is a little sloppy for a sibling act. No turns at first. The performance is better by the end, though. Olly and Anne-Marie hit their buttons at the last minute. Will is a little disappointed that he didn’t turn. Olly compliments their energy. Tom says his team is filling up. Olly says he’s learned a lot about Gospel on the show. Anne-Marie loves that they are brothers, calling their sound “clean.” But in the end the duo choose Team Olly. – Anne-Marie and Olly turn. The duo pick Team Olly
Chanel Yates – Adore You by Harry Styles – 21 – She’s a shy kid from Sheffield. As a child she was obsessed with science. But soon, at age 13, she switched to music. Oh. Her tone is definitely an acquired taste. She’s very nasally, screechy, but distinct! She’s still raw. Anne-Marie turns immediately, but she’s the only one. She turns to her fellow coaches and demands they not hit their buttons. Tom thinks Anne-Marie is the best fit for her. Anne turned right away because she loved Chanel’s tone. – Only Anne-Marie turns
Rebecca Watkins – Back in Black by AC/DC – 30 – She grew up in Wales, but currently lives in London where she works in a gym. She started singing at 18, after which she sang on cruise ships in clubs. Things didn’t work out, but now she’s giving The Voice a shot. She’s a classic rock singer, which none of these coaches seem to be interested in. She’s got a decent rock voice though. She kinda sorta misses a big rock note. If she had nailed that, she might have gotten a turn. It’s sad, because she views The Voice as her last shot. “Back to the day job,” she says. Tom thought she was “at her peak at all times.” The coaches wanted more dynamics. – No Turns
Wura – Strange by Celeste – 31 – She’s from London, and sings with a “function band.” She had a baby recently. Her voice is so deep, she sounds like a baritone. It’s….very unusual. She’s probably great singing second alto in the quartet she performs with? But I don’t love this. But it is unusual. The coaches are pointing at Tom for some reason. And he does turn. Will thought she was an 18 year old boy. Will thinks Tom will be a great coach for her. Olly thought her performance stood out. – Only Tom turns
Tom Jones shares a story about meeting Elvis Presley in 1965, and watching him perform “In These Hands.” Olly convinces Tom to sing his own rendition of the song. So, Tom singing every week is now a thing? I am not complaining.
Sweeney – Bad Blood by Nao – 30 – He’s a dancer and fitness instructor from London. He has a very cute doggo. He’s worked as a background for a bunch of stars…including Anne-Marie! But, his first love is singing. He’s a decent R&B/pop singer. His runs are tasty! Anne-Marie turns first. Tom turns, and blocks Olly. But it all happens at the last minute. Anne is laughing her butt off. She recognizes him, but had no idea he sang. Will wonders if he does strip dancing. Huh? Olly says he deserves to be in front, singing. Tom compliments him for having the whole package. It’s clear who Sweeny will pick, and he picks his pal, Anne-Marie. She just happens to have video of him dancing on stage with her on her phone. – Anne-Marie, Tom and Olly Turned. Tom Blocked Olly. Sweeney picks Team Anne-Marie
Sonny James Price – Break My Heart Again by Finneas – 25 – His accent is thick. I have no idea what he’s saying. But, I got that he started singing in school. He’s very close to his mum. Oh. He’s a transgender man. He transitioned at 16. His mother was totally accepting. “He’s finally happy,” she says. He hopes to inspire folks in the trans community. He has a nice tone, but his phrasing is a little flat. But I think he deserves a turn. Olly and Tom were thinking about hitting their buttons…but didn’t. They regret it. Will says Sonny’s voice “didn’t speak to him.” The bad thing about coaches not engaging with no turns–they never learn their story or have the opportunity to lend encouragement. – No Turns
Alex Harry – idontwannabeyouanymore by Billie Eilish – 27 – He’s a full time musician from Coventry who started singing at age 15. He still lives with his mum. Currently, he plays in pubs. He accompanies himself on electric guitar. Alex performs with an aching falsetto. He’s good at conveying emotion. I’m surprised he’s not getting more turns. Olly hits his button so late, Alex thought he was cooked. Yet, Olly can’t believe he’s the only one who turned. Tom thought he was “a little pitchy” in places. A little. Will calls his approach “gentle” and compares him to Thom Yorke from Radiohead.- Only Olly turned
Janel Antoneshia – Love and Hate by Michael Kiwanuka – 27 – She lives with her mum in Dudley. She auditioned in 2018, and didn’t get a turn after some bum notes. Jennifer Hudson, who was on the panel at the time said, “No grit at all.” At first, she didn’t want to try again. But she’s back, better prepared. She chooses a good song for her voice. This time, she stays in tune. Her tone is pretty great, as she wails away on the chorus. Will hits his button almost immediately.Olly turns at the last minute. She breaks down and cries. She confesses that it’s her 2nd audition. She jokes, “Olly did the face.” Anne-Marie wishes she had hit her button. Olly says he understands, having been rejected on a TV show before. Will reminds Janel that he hit his button first. She says “The person I would like to marry…I mean….” She’s a huge fan of Will and chooses him. – Will and Olly turned. Jamel picks Team Will