The Voice Recap: Land of the Losses [Updated]

The Voice - Season 6They can’t all be winners.

That was the surprising take-home message on tonight’s installment of The Voice — a two-hour meh-fest during which an unprecedented ratio (9 out of 20) singers failed to get a single button push from the merry band of Season 6 coaches. Unfortunately, said message applied to the entire episode, too, seeing how we only got to see extended footage of six artists bound for the Battle Rounds — and only one or two of ’em exhibited even the slightest hint of championship potential.

With the talent not exactly brrringing it, the focus shifted to the various eccentricities and -isms of the panel. We had Shakira inexplicably referencing Hannibal (possible subliminal NBC synergy?) and Alexander the Great to sway a rock-pop chick onto her team. (I’ll admit it: I had no idea where or why that line of argument began, but so what? An artist who’s bequeathed us a line like, “I’m starting to feel just a little abused like a coffee machine in an office,” deserves the benefit of the doubt.)

And then there was Blake Shelton successfully wooing a pop-soul diva who used to work with Celine Dion — a twist that made a lot more sense on screen than it did in theory. There was Usher playing the Michelle Chamuel card — and losing! (Impossible!) And there was Adam, trying to defend one of his arm tattoos from a character assassination by Shaki — though I suspect he probably has at least some ink of completely unknown origin.

Anyway, enough chatter about The Artists Commonly Referred to by Carson Daly as Superstar Coaches. I’m gonna rank the eight Battle Rounds-bound contestants (shown in more than snippets) from least-to-most promising — with Twitter-esque reviews of 140 characters or less — and then as you to rank ’em, too.

8. Brothers Walker: “Keep Me in Mind” (Team Usher) | Bearded twins made for good TV with their amusing banter and ease in front of the judges. Their actual vocal performance, though, has already escaped my mind like steam from a teapot — never to return again.

7. Sam Behymer: “Royals” (Team Adam) | This nanny’s lilting tone veered into unpleasant squeaks and squaks whenever she tried coloring outside Lorde’s lines. Also, did she get choked up talking about grad school as a Plan B? Come on!

6. Ryan Whyte Maloney: “Lights” (Team Blake) | To my ears, his upper register was almost as thin his unfortunate straight-line soul patch. Can a four-chair turn be Battle Rounds cannon fodder?

5. Deshawn Washington: “Twistin’ the Night Away” (Team Shakira) | Super old-fashioned song choice, but this Louisiana kid possessed pretty accurate pitch and a gruff, throwback singing style. Surprised no one turned except Shaki.

4. Patrick Thomson: “Can’t You See” (Team Adam) | I’m not quite sure I’d agree with Blake that Patrick sounds like he’s been “gargling broken glass” — that’s a better way to describe Britney Spears sans autotune — but his grit and growl do help make up for a slight charisma deficit.

3. Melissa Jiménez: “If I Ain’t Got You” (Team Usher) | I enjoyed the warmth of Melissa’s tone — and the guttiness of her pitch-perfect a cappella intro. Plus, the admission that her failed major-label deal “left some scars” won me over, too, truth be told.

2. Clarissa Serna: “Zombie” (Team Shakira) | As Adam noted, Clarissa didn’t copy what Dolores O’Riordan (or as Adam called her, “she”) does with “Zombie.” Even better, Clarissa’s got an appealing rawness and undeniable power that could be a great match with Shakira’s inner rocker.

1. Sisaundra Lewis: “Ain’t No Way” (Team Blake) | Yowza! You’d expect pretty big things from Celine Dion’s former musical director, but Sisaundra (pictured) displayed a ton of control and finesse on this classic Aretha anthem — without missing a single note, even on the insanely tricky bridge. And while Blake might seem like an odd fit, I couldn’t help but notice the duo really seemed to connect. Plus, wouldn’t he just love to win with another contestant completely outside his wheelhouse?

With that, let me turn things over to you.

What did you think of Night 3 of The Voice‘s Season 6? Who were your favorite wannabes? Did you disagree with any of the coaches’ or contestants’ decisions? Take our poll below, then expand on your thoughts in the comments! And for all my reality TV-related news, interviews and recaps, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Evan says:


    • OhMy says:

      Well, let’s wait and see. That was more style than substance. Usher wasn’t wrong. She should have picked him.

    • Tara says:

      She was not singing. she was shrieking. I had to turn down the volume. Lots of intent, but not much pure tone.

    • Rivka Simons says:

      I have played and replayed her audition video at least 60 times, and have a proven history of success in the entertainment industry. If you think Sisaundra Lewis cannot sing, you need to find a new hobby and television series. Can she win? Now that is the question. She is over 40 which limits her demographic, but she can sing.

  2. ashley says:

    Loved the cover of Zombie!

  3. Bonquisha says:

    My favorite was actually Clarissa. Her cover of Zombie was unique and can go very far in the competition.

    • She was smiling the whole time through singing Zombie though! It’s supposed to be a fierce anti-war song. I was waiting for Harry Connick to come out from under the stage and explain the meaning to her.

      • bobsaccamanna says:

        That’s an excellent point Matthew, but I also thought she did not do a very good job vocally as well, I can’t believe she got all 4 chairs to turn. Very disappointed in the show last night, the talent level was very thin. To my ears, the girl who sang Where The Boys Are had the strongest and most unique vocal of the night, much better than Clarissa, I was amazed not one chair turned for her. I’m a huge fan of The Voice, but last nights show was not good. I have also grown a little tired of this practice of telling these singers how good they are after no one turns around, it has become patronizing and sounds completely phony.

      • analythinker says:

        Fortunately this show is called The Voice so facial expression during audition does not count :D

        • bobsaccamanna says:

          lol yeah that wasn’t exactly pleasing to the eye but the girl had a voice, much better that many of the contestants who did get chairs to turn last night. I’m thinking the judges maybe have secret rear view mirrors installed somewhere on those custom chairs :)

        • Tara says:

          If the performer isn’t in sync with the mood of the song, they are just a parrot not an artist. I, too, liked the 17 year old’s version of Where The Boys Are.

          • claudia says:

            I thought “Where The Boys Are” was completely the wrong song for her. If she wanted to do throwback she should have sung Loretta Lynn or Patsy Cline or a better Connie Francis song. I thought her voice would really fit Patsy’s songbook – maybe “Sweet Dreams” or “Crazy”. Throwback doesn’t mean that you pick some hokey song that died 50 years ago.

    • tealeaves says:

      +1. Loved Clarissa.

  4. Quinn Carson says:

    Sisaundra and Clarissa rocked the night, honestly. I actually loved it when Sisaundra picked Blake, unexpected choices can be really amusing at times.

    Also yes, I don’t understand how Usher can play the “best-voice-contestant-ever-card” and lose. Ludicrous.

    • edward says:

      Well, Country and Southern Rock are not necessarily my favorite genres – though I do enjoy it from time to time. I am classically trained actually, but I do enjoy the voice and seeing musicians strive to achieve their dreams. Blake (as are all 4 of the judges) is a good musician and knows how to mold winners. Not much molding is needed with Sisaundra, She is well aware of what the music world is like – and she has the life experience that not many contestants have. No matter the genre, good musicianship is transcendent. Sisaundra is by far the most talented of the artists so far this season. She is someone who has lived life, appreciates opportunities, and has the experience to know who she wants. It is refreshing to have a mature artist.

    • Guest says:

      Anyone know how close knit the backup singer world is? When Sisaundra was talking about all the great things she heard about Blake, it made me wonder if fellow backup singer Jermaine Paul had touted him.

  5. Rissa says:

    So, “Royals” is definitely this year’s “Rollin’ in the Deep”. Good to know. As for the actual performances, my two faves were the ladies who closed out the hours. Clarissa at 9/8pm and Sisaundra at the end of the episode. Hot damn, they were great. Everyone else will probably be gone after the battle rounds. As for Sisaundra, I’m very frustrated that they edited the show in a way that made her choosing Blake seem obvious. I like being surprised, but thanks to Carson’s trusty Team Additions Update, it was a bit of a foregone conclusion who she would pick.

  6. MAB says:

    To be honest. I was bored out of my mind. It happens to me every season. The first one or two episodes are delightful and then I get so tired of the judges saying the same old thing with every contestants. I want you. We will win together, blah, blah, blah. It gets old and this is the thing that bothers me about The Voice. The other thing that drives me crazy is they show full auditions of contestants that no chair turns for and only show snippets of some that are going on to the battle rounds. If I remember correctly last year they did the same with a bunch of battle rounds and did not show full performances. It just does not seem fair.

    • Tyler says:

      To me, I enjoyed the blind auditions more last season than this season. I’m just not connecting with any of the contestants so far. I don’t think the talent level for this season is the same as last season. if it was, there’s no way both Adam and Usher would’ve turned around for a mediocre performance of the Royals song.

  7. MAB says:

    The other thing that bothers me is this show has had some fantastic older contestants with incredible voices that all the coaches fight over and then they just wind up discarded. Hopefully this does not happen with Susaundra.

  8. JM says:

    I dunno. I liked the two guys who sang the Beyonce song and ‘Weight’. I thought they were better than some of the ones they turned for.
    Sisaundra oversang the song with too much yelling. My ranking:

    8. Deshawn
    7. Patrick
    6. Sam
    5. Ryan
    4. Sisaundra
    3. Brothers Walker
    2. Melissa
    1. Clarissa

    • Woodmeister says:

      I agree that some of the singers who didn’t get a turn were better than some of those who did get a turn. For me the best performance of the night was Alison Bray, the girl who sang Where the Boys Are.

  9. Titina says:

    Clarissa was my favorite hands down! Hope she goes far, let’s just hope Shakira actually does a good job with her. That girl has tons of potential.
    Her cover of Zombie was awesome.

  10. Lindsey says:

    Wow! Am I the only one that totally adored Sam?!? I thought she was so refreshingly adorable and quirky and had such a strong voice! She and the Brothers Walker were my two favorites, and they are ranked as Slezak’s bottom two! My other favorite of the night was Brendan and he didn’t even make a team! Sigh.

    • AlyB says:

      I liked Sam too. She has a really interesting warble in her voice and a rich smooth lower register. She did have issues just loosing control of her voice in places though. If she lets it go haywire cracking into squeaks, I don’t see her getting really far. I hope Adam can help her with that and make sure she gets a song that doesn’t get away from her. She’s got some work to do but overall, I think she’s got an interesting voice and a pleasing tone that could serve her well in this competition if she masters those technical issues.

      • Slowride says:

        If think she might have been better off with Usher though. And although I don’t agree with Michael Slezak on her talent because I liked what she did with the song I have to admit I couldn’t help but laugh when she cried saying “And I’ll have to become a librarian”. HA HA HA HA !

    • Angie_overrated says:

      I think I have to agree with Slezak on the topic of Sam. She’s using strange vocal breaks, half yodels, and yelling on pitch to try to overcompensate for the fact that her technique is severely lacking. I do not expect her to go far at all. Stylized voices can be fun and edgy, but she reminds me of that hot model girl on ceelo’s team a few years ago.

      • HTGR says:

        No way! Anyway all is good in the world again, we viciously disagree once again (VICIOUSLY). Maybe it was doing this and that and was unusual, but it was unusual good, sometimes there is more than traditional technique.

    • Tyler says:

      I felt embarrassed for Sam.

    • tw says:

      I’m surprised too that Sam isn’t getting more love. She was my favorite of the night. Quirky, cool, current. More Caroline Pennell than Michelle Chamuel but I was a big fan of both. Don’t like her choice of Adam though. She’ll get lost on his team.

      • HTGR says:

        I wouldn’t say that, Adam always loves his one quirky different singer. And this one seems to have a lot more promise than that girl he had a few seasons ago who was given that odd song choice near the end with all of those large cut outs walking around the stage. Melanie I think?
        We’ll see. Maybe Sam won’t pan out, but she might and if she does it could be really cool and interesting and with more vocals to her.

    • HTGR says:

      +1 – Sam was awesome. This years quirky, but with the chops.

  11. I’m sorry Michael, I usually like the quirky girl singers on this show, but Sam “Mary Poppins” Behymer was unleashing so many banshee noises I thought she was Diamanda Galas. She’s like one of those adorable Christmas critters from South Park and her voice took me to a Satanic alter upon which I could be sacrificed so that the prince of darkness could be birthed from my nether regions.

    • I was more talking about the “lilting”. There was nothing lilting about the Voice, except in the beginning where her Voice was like a shiny trinket leading me into a dark tool shed.

  12. That being said, LOVED loved loved Sisaundra. Her voice just did everything for me. And that’s my favorite Aretha song.

  13. Ryan says:

    Sam was such a cute little weirdo, and I kind of cracked up at her “sob story” about not wanting to go to to grad school to become a librarian. Definitely not technical perfection there, but I sort of couldn’t help but like her. My four favorites of the night were Sam, Melissa, Clarissa, and the Brothers Walker.

  14. Forwardad says:

    Enough with the spoiler readers. The Voice needs to stop. It takes the fun out of knowing what’s going to happen.

  15. twnkltoze says:

    Totally forgot to watch it tonight. But even worse, this week’s installment of Reality Check isn’t working. Anybody else having this problem?

  16. Quinn Carson says:

    Can’t resist. I have to grade these performances:

    Ryan Maloney — C+/B-
    De’Shawn Washington — B
    Sam Behymee — C+
    Brothers Walker — C-
    Clarrisa Serna — A-/A
    Melissa Jimenez — B-
    Patrick Thompson — B
    Sisaundra Lewis — A-

    I know, it’s too early… But since I’m a rebel I decided to grade them anyway.

  17. Elle Kay says:

    I pretty much agree with your ranking order, but would have ranked Brothers Walker higher and put Sam at the bottom. Harmonies were great, but neither one stood out individually as a singer. The top 2 I won’t argue with because Sisaundra is the best singer I’ve heard this season (maybe the whole show) but I preferred Clarissa. Matter of taste though.

  18. Julie Anderson says:

    I’m LOVING Alex Preston and liking Majesty Rose. I had the same take on Sam’s Unwell. I found it excruciating. However, I do think he has a very good chance of winning it all once he becomes moe seasoned.

    PS. Melinda, you were my favorite your season. Your skill level allowed me to relax and enjoy. I could simply look forward to being surprised and delighted by your interpretations of songs.

  19. Gailer says:

    I’m kinda embarrassed for the show this season. Sob stories, and same old schtick.

    • Griffin says:

      My thoughts exactly! There are some artists that are very, very talented, but a vast majority of all of the artists, regardless of talent level, have some sort of sob story. It gets old. I liked Usher tonight when he said he wanted to recognize the artists based on their voice, not their story.

  20. EJXD2 says:

    Anything I have to say on the show was already said by Michael. The performances Monday night were below what I remember from last week. Sam had the best outfit, but the judges must have had intel on her because based on that audition I don’t know how any of them turned around. And the “graduate school as back up” boo hoo was ridiculous.

    Overall, it’s good to see these “competitions” be more honest about people’s backgrounds. Pre social media boom, Idol was able to sell its contestants as just hicks with a dream, but anyone at this level has worked at the craft for years, probably had some chances, etc.

  21. Miliani says:

    I don’t understand how you rated Sam higher than Brothers Walker. Yea the twins didn’t stand out, but at least their performance wasn’t some kind of demonic ritual. Sorry if that’s harsh, but I was really scared by Sam’s performance. It was like she was choking.

  22. Trisha26 says:

    Patrick, Ryan, and The Brothers Walker for me. Enough with all those women who belt and melisma their way through ballad after ballad. It’s Tessanne all over again.

  23. Viajero says:

    Agree that this episode was a lot of meh. My favorite by far was Clarissa, but I would still rate several people from last week higher. Sisaundra may have been the most accomplished vocalist, but her performance just didn’t click with me. I did like what Melissa did with the Alicia Keys song and thought her vocals were okay. I didn’t like what Sam did with Royals, though I did like the first half of the song before she crashed and burned. None of the men impressed me at all, though I guess I’d rate Patrick highest among them.

  24. Griffin says:

    I personally enjoyed Allison Bray the most of the eliminated artists. While her pitch fluctuated a little, it was no worse in my opinion than Ryan Maloney’s four-chair turn. While his upper register was amazing, he had his own flaws. Her raw power could have been honed by a coach because she had a ton of potential. Hopefully she comes back next year.

  25. lori says:

    Actually really loved DeShawn. I thought he was a great throwback, great choice! Great singer!

  26. donie says:

    Loved Shakira’s apposite discussion of tactics vs strategy. Enjoy her on the show.

  27. Priscilla bernal says:

    There is some good talent on the show. I admire everyone’s courage to stand in front of coaches and be judged vocally. My favorite is Clarissa Serna. Her rendition of Zombie was great. She has a great following from her community and shows great leadership qualities. She inspires child to go after their dreams just like her. I am #teamshakira #teamclarissa

  28. HTGR says:

    I didn’t think it was such a meh tonight. Pretty good.

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