Bryan Bautista The Voice

The Voice Recap: T-K-Of Course

And the winner of this Knockout Round is… obvious!

Indeed, even if you were severely distracted during the final six-and-a-half* head-to-head showdowns of The Voice‘s tenth season — organizing your tax receipts or folding laundry or contemplating the reasons for Adam Levine’s cotton candy-hued tresses — the mismatches were screamingly obvious.

Carson Daly tried to misdirect with his standard-operating “You’ve got a tough choice in front of you” platitudes. And Blake, Pharrell, Xtina and Adam played their roles by hemming and hawing and apologizing as dramatic music swelled behind them. But it was clear that not even one of Pharrell’s patented Jedi mind tricks — saving his lesser vocalist in the hopes the real victor might receive a steal — was a possibility.

(*Oh, I mention six-and-a-half because for the third straight round this season, contestant Katharine Ho got reduced to the dreaded montage treatment — this time only being mentioned as the vanquished rival of Caroline Burns, with not even a note or two of her performance making the telecast. Did Mark Burnett catch her backstage mocking the ratings for his canceled A.D. series, or was her cruel fate utterly random?)

With that said, allow me to count down this week’s Knockouts in order from least- to most-promising:

7. Team Xtina: Kata Hay – Reba McEntire’s “Why Haven’t I Heard From You” defeats Joe Maye – The Weeknd’s “Earned It” (Joe stolen by Blake) | Kata was definitely more in tune than in her prior performances, but her enunciation made her less intelligible than an adult character in a Peanuts cartoon, so what was the point, really? I think Xtina likes the rowdy country gal, and needing some Live Playoffs cannon fodder, figured she’d give her one more week on the teevee. I’d have given the nod to Joe, but his overwrought efforts to rock out the latter half of “Earned It” approached “pass a gall stone” levels of uncomfortable.

6. Team Adam: Caroline Burns – Christina Perri’s “Human” (shown in snippet) defeats Katharine Ho (not shown at all) | Eh, what they showed of Caroline’s performances sounded OK, but nothing about it screamed “potential winner,” either.

5. Team Adam: Laith Al-Saadi – Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” defeats Jessica Crosbie — Avicii’s “Wake Me Up” | “You both gave solid performances,” said Xtina, but I’m pretty sure her eyes were screaming “Hated it!” (She tries to keep it sweet, but girlfriend’s honesty always finds its way to the surface.) Laith definitely deserved the win over Jessica (whose pretty tone couldn’t trump her deflated-balloon energy level), but to my ears, maybe he shouldn’t have taken Adam and Miley’s suggestion and switched to a higher key. There were more than a few notes that his voice threatened to give out.

4. Team Adam: Brian Nhira – Bruno Mars’ “Grenade” defeats Nate Butler — “Let’s Stay Together” | I know I sound all Negative Nelly tonight, but not many of the advancing singers stand a chance against last week’s Knockout winners. Case in point: Brian. Dude’s got a voice that can go from zero to 60 so quickly, he could probably score an endorsement from BMW. But his emotional approach remains too paint-by-numbers to get me to truly invest.

3. Team Blake: Mary Sarah – Loretta Lynn’s ” You Ain’t Woman Enough (to Take My Man)” — defeats Brittany Kennel — Shania Twain’s “Still the One” | I can’t really fault Mary on pitch or stage presence — there’s clearly a reason she came thisclose to being a breakout country star a few years back. But dare I say her throwback country vibe is already wearing a wee bit thin? If she wants to connect with the voting public, she needs to  make sure her artistic POV reads entirely authentic, and not like a gimmick. I’d love to see her tackle a modern pop song in her retro-twangy style — just to show some versatility — or, better still, tear down some of her performance walls and show us a little vulnerability. She lucked out, though, when Brittany (so great with her Battle Rounds “The Chain”) fell apart on her Shania cover like a granola bar in the bottom of a grade-schooler’s bookbag.

2. Team Pharrell: Caity Peters – Sam Smith’s “Leave Your Lover” defeats Abby Celso — Hall & Oates’ “Rich Girl” | I only heard two contestants on this telecast who could give early faves Curly Sue, Adam Wakefield, Hannah Huston and Tamar Davis some serious competition, and Caity’s one of ’em. My natural instinct was to roll my eyes when Pharrell waxed poetic about Caity moving spirits or mountains or something he heard in yoga class, but dammit, dude was right. Caity’s emotional investment in the lyrics was even more impressive than her effortless and appealingly unique lower register. Poor Abby, on the other hand, aimed for a jazzy twist on Hall & Oates but that strategy proved as misguided as Rick Santorum seeking campaign donations at a Human Rights Campaign event.

1. Team Xtina: Bryan Bautista – Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” defeats Trey O’Dell — OneRepublic’s “I Lived” | Could Mark Burnett maybe institute one more steal this season? Because with Bryan’s scorching reggaeton twist on The Biebs, he’s now joined Alisan and Tamar as must-haves in the Season 10 Top 12 And with the very, very good Ryan Quinn, as well as Kata, under Xtina’s guidance, that increases the chances of a soul-crushing elimination during next week’s Live Playoffs. Bryan’s performance not only showed creativity, but showcased a magnificent range of swooping full-voiced glory notes, praise-hands emoji-inducing falsetto and a ridiculously sexy, hip-swaying demeanor that got me thinking the dude could be a legit pop-breakout success in a post-show environment. Hey, there’s only a week left of Idol, so The Voice kinda sorta has to pick up hitmaking duties now, doesn’t it?

What did you think of The Voice‘s final set of Season 10 Knockouts? Any potential winners in the mix? Take our poll, then sound off in the comments!

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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87 Comments
  1. Kim Moores says:

    A snippet of crapoline was better than all of Kata?
    The disrespect.
    Kata was really good tonight, too. If anything she’s polarizing, but she was certainly overall better than a dang snippet of prepubescent nonsense.
    Bryan was the high of the night, the other guys (Joe, Paxton, Brian) aren’t nearly as astounding as this guy is. Gives me new age Usher vibes.

    • TK says:

      Probably because of diction issues. I couldn’t make out 90% of what Kata was singing lol. It sounded good though.

      • Kim Moores says:

        I could make out all aside from like…4 or 5 words.
        She was entirely clear for me.

        • Mo Saïd says:

          Me too. I loved her conviction with those lyrics.

        • Kaba says:

          Jumping on board with this sentiment.
          If you couldn’t understand her then you probably just have poor hearing to begin with. I was doing chores and could understand every word and I don’t listen to this song.

      • OhMy says:

        TK — correct

      • Mike says:

        For me it’s her growl, which is more than half of her singing voice. Remember when they tell people to pick their moments with them…yeah for her that’s most of the time and it’s bothered me since her audition.

      • JM says:

        I will agree that Kata needs lessons in diction (where is Patti LaBelle when you need her?) However, she still sang better than most tonight, (which unfortunately, isn’t saying much…)

      • I thought the same thing, sounded good, but not one word could I understand.

        • Larry Davis says:

          I don’t have to understand ANYONE’s lyrics to enjoy it…that’s why I can listen to something in a foreign language I don’t know, or gibberish or words that make no sense…as long as it SOUNDS good, that’s all that matters…I learned that lesson from listening to the Pixies…Kata was like a fireball and I loved it…

        • Kathryn, I didn’t know that I didn’t understand. Her performance overtook me. She looked great, moved great. and moved great but something was missing for me and it wasn’t the words. Something authentic. She was acting, not bad though

    • davmon says:

      I am with Slezak on this! Xtina indulged her own worst tendencies. Both Kata and Joe were unrelentingly stuck in their upper range at full intensity. Joe was better, due to a sweet pocket. Kata was fun but erratic. Both songs were badly overcooked! No matter, the coaches praised and both advanced.

      • MC says:

        I’m not sure that Xtina has another tendency. This was very useful two seasons ago when she had awesome divas on her team. It may not pay dividends this season.

    • Jenna says:

      I didn’t care for Kata personally. I feel like her diction is awful and she sounds like she’s wasted, and she consistently only has one dynamic in all of her performances and that is manic shouting, which is not my style. I thought most of the performances were pretty weak last night but if I had to give it to anyone I would give it to Caity, I thought her Performance was beautiful.

  2. Ames says:

    If I could cast all 3 of my votes to Bryan Bautista, I would. I swear that man’s smile could melt the polar ice caps!

    • daynamonet says:

      I mean…yas, he makes me melt. Best performance by a mile. I don’t think it’s ever been a guy like him to win some singing show. I mean we could use the next usher, Chris Brown, trey songs and he can sing better than chris and trey AND he can move. I know it’s all about Alisan this season, but if he mixes a little of that current vibe with the old school and the consistent vocals he’s had, I definitely think he has a chance.

    • JM says:

      Even though, IMO, he sounded better in the rehearsals, he still outperformed all tonight.

    • Jules says:

      He’s such a cutie pie. Made even cuter by the way he interacts with his little brother!! Sigh…… One of the few “complete packages” we’ve seen on any season. He just needs to watch his song choices.

    • Timmah says:

      Bryan was great technically, but he expressed none of the sentiment of the song. Granted it’s a Bieber song but I still think you can do a better job of communicating it.

  3. OhMy says:

    That Sorry song — I know it’s a big hit, but it’s a lyrical mess.
    And I like Brian, but way too many flat notes and runs.
    And my last gripe — why can’t they show all the contestants??

  4. Sara Jacobs says:

    YAS Bryan. I hope he makes it through the first week of lives since Xtina’s team is going to be a bloooodbath. He just seems like a star to me. So commercial. And super talented.

  5. Mo Saïd says:

    Seriously you can’t possibly hate Kata so much to rank her below a montaged battle that wasn’t even shown. Plus, she was great tonight. Loved the attitude.

    Team Christina is unreasonably good this year. It’s crazy.

  6. Andres says:

    I don’t think kata was that bad, she should at leat be above Caroline. I wish that the producers at the voice can show the Montages at least on YouTube like they did in season two. They deserve some recognition at the very least.
    Bryan won the night with sorry, he had a certain grove with it that was nice.
    Hopefully the wild card comes back and we can see Abby, Mike, Brittney K. and ayanna/malik back

  7. Christian says:

    Kata Hay is giving me Bria Kelly vibes and I’m over it!

  8. Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

    Bryan, Kata, and Caity REALLY stood out for me. Kinda expected a bit more from Mary, it was vocally fine, but had little to no emotion. I’m so pumped for this season, especially team Christina!!! 😍🙏🙌

  9. Diogo says:

    Kata is polarizing, sure, but she defnitely wasn’t last smh
    On another note Bryan was fantastic

  10. Kaba says:

    Kata below a montage?
    Well we know who you simply dislike.

  11. Davey says:

    Maybe Katherine Ho isn’t fantastic but she got through the blind audition and the battle round to be defeated by wimpy Caroline. I don’t think you get through two rounds without some talent. Just bizarre. Talk about being voiceless.

    • Redred says:

      Exactly! Thank you.

      Maybe Katherine Ho is a terrific singer. Perhaps she posed a threat to the coaches/producers Chosen One(s).

      No one should ever be montaged on “The Voice.” However, both Katherine Ho and Rebekkah Samarin put their talents out there and were montaged three times.

      Neither of their cruel fates were random.

      Where’s Michael Slezak’s anger about this injustice? Imagine if they did this nasty trick on “American Idol.”

      • Larry Davis says:

        yeah, like what’s the deal?? was very peculiar and strange and NOT random…she was pretty good and I wanted to see that KO with Katherine & Caroline…and it’s on, um, ADAM’s team??!!??!!

    • Actually Miss Ho is very good.Youtube her & see for yourself.

  12. Redred says:

    Poor Katharine Ho. She’s a triple montage victim. That’s just cruel,

    She’s 16 years old. All that time, money, and effort she put into the competition. For what?

    Five seconds of airtime and a place in the “Voice Book of Robbery” next to Rebekkah Samarin.

    Where’s the rage about this?

    • JM says:

      Oh, I’m right there with you. It’s beyond cruel to not show her sing. I was yelling complaints at the TV, and my family thought I was crazy.

      • Redred says:

        Tell your family you have a right to be upset.

        I’m relieved that people here feel as livid as I do.

        The posters on EW’s “Voice” board are such sheeple.

    • davmon says:

      Absolutely! Katherine Ho made 3 rounds, but was montaged all 3 times. Reminds me of casting couch stories, when some poor gal refused an “offer”–and paid with ignominy. Clearly, Katherine had some talent; but what it was we will never know. Sad! There is no excuse for such blatant and singular disrespect of this young woman.

  13. Nickii says:

    I thought Nate Butler’s tone was beautiful. Would have loved to have seen more of him and I was surprised that he wasn’t chosen. Brian has charisma, but I wonder if he’ll ever be able to let loose. (That religion thing seems confining when your song is about sex.) I was also sorry to see Abby Celso go. Loved her “lows” and she sassed up one of Hall and Oates more boring songs — but it was the wrong song choice. Re: Katherine Ho montage — NBC producers can be real ba$tards.

    • Redred says:

      “NBC producers can be real ba$tards.”

      That’s an understatement of the year.

      Katherine Ho can be found on Twitter @Iamkatherineho.

      Let’s give her some support (and followers)!

    • JM says:

      Thank you!!! I also enjoyed Nate Butler’s performance. And I couldn’t believe he didn’t win his battle. But then I remembered that we’re talking about Adam. Idiot, pink-haired Adam.

      • Redred says:

        “The Voice” is all about the coaches (judges).

        It took some people so long to realize that about “American Idol.”

        I wouldn’t be surprised if next season Adam dyes his hair orange.

        Or that Blake and Gwen smooch in their coaches seats while a contestant is performing.

      • Lee says:

        I really think Adam is throwing it this season–probably because he won last season–and wants Xtina to win it this season. Otherwise, why is he getting rid of some of his best singers like Mike S., Ryan and Nate? I personally think Adam has the weakest team this season.

      • Don says:

        Nate has a nice voice, but that performance was very loungy. I thought Brian won that battle hands down.

  14. Mike says:

    And Laith…I don’t know. I do enjoy his voice but I much preferred Jessica tonight.

  15. John Anthony says:

    Mary Sarah and Alisan will be there in the end even if Alisan had a big drop off with her knockout performance. Not much depth in talent this season.

    • Jules says:

      I disagree. This season is deeper than most. Bryan, Brian, Alisan (who bothers me btw), Hannah, Katie, Ryan, Owen, Tamar, Shalya etc. There are several contenders. I know Alisan is getting the “pimp” edit but there are a few others that could snatch it away from her.

    • Mo Saïd says:

      Woah Alisan had a big drop off with “River”? Hyperbole much …

  16. John Anthony says:

    Mary Sarah and Alisan will battle it out this season. The rest are just show fillers this season.

    • MC says:

      I am interested in what Hannah has to offer. There could be a few surprises, but this is only an average season for me so far. I will follow Laith and Angie K. going forward because I like their grit, passion, warmth and professionalism.

    • Eleanor says:

      I also think that Adam Wakefield will also be top three.

  17. Jules says:

    “Earned It” should’ve been retired after Rob Taylor SANG the mess out of it a few season ago. One of the few Itunes purchases I’ve made. I like it better than the original.

  18. TexasBrigade says:

    It would be hilarious if Katharine Ho becomes a big star

    • davmon says:

      Indeed….Meantime, i submit the fair prospect that Katherine Ho, this season’s mirage, should hereafter remain a ghost to haunt the show in perpetuity as well as in honor of all the ghosted denizens in the montage archives…She not only fell to the guillotine of the editor thrice; but she could not escape this night in which the dynamic range no doubt expanded to include “adorable”, but aborted ahead of “exotic”. Such is our variable justice.

    • MC says:

      She sounded good in one of her earlier montage snippets. I would love to hear her sing a full song.

  19. analythinker says:

    Michael, I hope that was an error on your list??

    Anyway, I loved Brittany Kennel singing Sheryl Crow and Stevie Nicks and thought her voice was one of a kind. But she chose to do Shania, whyyy?? “It was utterly the wrong song choice for you,” Simon would say. She has the potential to be versatile (just not Shania), while Mary Sarah would stay in her own lane, methinks (not that I didn’t think she’s great).

  20. davmon says:

    My faves tonight were Bryan Bautista, Caity Peters, and Laith Al-Saadi. Bryan is solid and should go deep. Caty has been on my radar, but I needed to hear consistency–which she surely gave us tonight. Laith is also solid, despite having to overcome misdirection from coach.

  21. analythinker says:

    Also, I think Kata redeemed herself. Her battle was a mess, she wasn’t in the pocket at all.

  22. davmon says:

    My notion of team rankings and the 3 likely to advance on each: 1st) Xtina: Tamar, Bryan, Alisan; 2nd) Adam: Owen, Shalyah, Laith; 3rd) Pharrell: Hannah, Caity, Moushumi; 4th) Katy, Adam, Mary….But the talent is easily four deep on each team; such that a good Lives outing by Ryan, Brian N., Emily, or Joe could easily happen and shake up the voting….And then there is no accounting for some voting…there is a lot of Kata talk, there is the “adorable” vote, and sometimes permanent tans ironically become invisible when voting commences.

  23. I don’t know, I’m just not that excited by any of this year’s contestants. This is the first year I’ve fallen asleep during several episodes of the show.

  24. Angie_Overrated says:

    Weird, I had Brian worship leader from Africa as my #1. I guess no one agrees with me here. Whatever. Fine. See if I care.
    There were a few solid ones. I think my next favorite was Mary. Where the Boys Are this was not, but the little lady has talent. I hope we get some excellent song choices for her because she’s got it in her to nail them.

    • Timmah says:

      Brian was definitely in my top few of the night. I liked the way he really connected to the Bruno Mars song, which is what I found missing in some of the other performances being lauded, including Bryan’s. Also I think that Mary has great potential. She’s so old school that she fits today’s throwback scene and is ironically maybe the most current.

      • Angie_Overrated says:

        Wow, we’re not typically crazy diametrically opposite, but this might be the first time we’re in close-to-full agreement. :o)
        Brian’s the technical singer (when he’s in tune, which is most of the time) whereas Mary is going to be all about song choice. I hope Blake does her well cuz she’s got a very interesting voice.

    • Jules says:

      He’s one of my faves. I always look forward to his performances. He can sing his face off and he’s so darn adorable and humble. I hope Adam keeps him.

  25. Ethel says:

    So far I am not overly impressed with any of this season’s contestants. Hoping someone starts to shine and why does it seem those contestants who are “stolen” are then usually the first to go in the next round?

  26. Cynthia Balducci says:

    I haveta say a little thrill went through me when I saw Caroline Burns being montaged!! I still haven’t gotten over Mike Schiavo being cut – take that Adam!!

  27. Russ says:

    I think it is funny that Michael lists Tamar as a front runner. She is not even a sure thing to be in the final three of her own team. I see america saving Alisan and Brian, that leaves Ryan who was considered to have a shot at the finals by many until last week. Kata who Xtina seems to love, and Tamar. Not much of a stretch to see Xtina pick Ryan, or Kata over Tamar. Or in another scenario that would make Michael lose his brain next week, the country vote steps up and saves Alisan and Kata. Leaving Xtina to chose from Bryan, Ryan and Tamar. Like it or not Xtina team goes 5 deep and no one is assured a spot in the final three. Although we all pretty much expect Alisan to be there. The only thing that is guaranteed is two really good singers will be leaving this team next week.

    • davmon says:

      Well, Tamar deserves to be; she is the best powerhouse soul singer since Koryn Hawthorne. But you are right about Xtina’s team. She and Bryan B have been spot on incredible! Alisan, and Ryan are a bit less perfect, but are sometimes exquisite. All 4 have the stuff to reach Top 6 or so. And there is this wild card Kata, who is vocally erratic, but grabs attention, and has a robust following–sort of like Hannah Kirby of Season 8….Then again, Tamar and Bryan have those permanent tans which, as I said above, can wax “invisible” when the voting starts, so we shall see whether the two best are ghosted….

      • Russ says:

        As I said, an argument can be made for each of the five that they deserve to be there. If Tamar was on any other team I could see her making that teams final three. Unfortunately she is on team Xtina, where any of the five could go home next week. As far as your race comment goes, I will agree to it if both Bryan and Tamar goes next week. But if Bryan makes it like I think he will, and Tamar does not. It has nothing to do with her race.

      • Russ says:

        Oh and that is two best in your opinion. Others might think the two best on that team are Alisan and Bryan. Others might think Ryan and Kata could be in the two best. I guess next week we will see who america thinks are the two best on this team.

  28. Timmah says:

    Mary Sarah for the win! Time to give her some Patsy Cline and watch her crush the competition.

  29. S. Senicka says:

    please get Miley Cyrus off the show and don’t bring her back. I’ve watched the show since the beginning and when she came on as a coach I turned it off and stopped recording it.

    • Russ says:

      I felt the same way when they announced she would be on this season, and really felt the same way when they announced she would be a coach next season. But after watching her on the show I have been very impressed. To start she let it be known she studied all the contestants she would be working with. She takes detailed notes during their rehearsals. When she makes suggestions, she then sings it out for them to hear what she is suggesting. Her suggestions have been pretty good for the most part. She seems to have chemistry with Blake and Adam. She definitely did not show up and say I am Miley here is some token advice now worship me because I am the diva like another coach on the show is known for. I look forward to seeing what she does as a coach next season.

  30. WBL says:

    Disappointed that Katherine Ho was given 5 seconds of air time. The show spends too much time on contestants’ back stories. In fact you are determined to be ‘boring’ if you have no story. To make it through three rounds you have to have some talent. What are the editors thinking ?

    • davmon says:

      The Voice is taped until the Lives. Producers choose what to edit & show….Katherine Ho turned TWO CHAIRS and was in 3 rounds, while Theresa Guidry also turned 2 then lost her Battle; neither was ever given a backstory nor given 90 seconds of TV time….Meantime, during the Blinds….Usually every hour of each night, one performer is edited in with sob story and song, who turns ZERO CHAIRS!…Of 13, who turned ONE CHAIR, 7 were given story & song (including Shalyah and Matt); 6 were montaged….Of the 17 who turned TWO CHAIRS, 15 were given full story & song (Bryan B, Abby, Adam, Caroline, Laith, Brian N, Brittany K, Malik, Kristen, Justin, Daniel, Maya, Brittney L, & Joe), while only Katherine & Theresa were montaged. Theresa lost to Angie next round in a 2nd montage. K-Ho beat Lily next round in her 2nd montage, then lost in her 3rd round Knockout with Caroline—in her 3rd straight montage! How can an artist turn 2 chairs, win a Battle, and lose to Ms. Adorable—yet never get story & song? Did her immigrant Chinese scientist parents with advanced degrees fail to be awed by Hollywood schlock and manage to offend? The parents came from a land of censored media; now the daughter finds herself in the same circumstance on a silly TV reality show.

  31. abaconw48026 says:

    I said at the start that allison porter would win and I still think that.

  32. Ericka oggs says:

    I think Brian got cheated on this show I stopped watching