The Voice Emily Keener

The Voice Top 12 Performance Recap: It's Not Over (Unless It's Over)

Like Christina Aguilera executing a run during a contestant’s rehearsal package, or Blake Shelton spiking the comedic volleyball in Adam Levine’s face (over and over again), The Voice‘s Alisan Porter is pretty much perfect.

And Monday night, as she detonated a vocal bomb shaped like Demi Lovato’s “Stone Cold,” she seemingly left a barren wasteland (think Mad Max: Fury Road, without any cast members) where the Season 10 competition used to be.

Still, as Blake Shelton begged Alisan to make some mistakes, wondered aloud if it was boring to be so good, I couldn’t help but wonder: Will viewers’ infamous desire to see a “growth arc” — which, granted, has been prominent on American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance than The Voice — somehow derail Alisan’s momentum? Could Coach Xtina’s relative toughness (in comparison to her fawning counterparts) cost the former Curly Sue star the title? (Note: Xtina was the only one not to give a Standing O to Adam Wakefield tonight.) Or is it possible that a couple of upstarts are already performing at such a high level that Alisan’s crown would be available for the snatching following even the slightest misstep?

I’ve seen stranger things happen — remember when Jermaine Paul beat Juliet Simms, Tony Lucca and Chris Mann (not to mention Jamar Rogers) in Season 2? But one thing is clear: There’s a clear delineation forming between wheat and chaff in Season 10, and I suspect we’ll have a few weeks of easy eliminations before any results-night sweat forms on the brow of Alisan (or Adam W. or Hannah or Emily).

With that said, let me offer my letter grades and reviews for this week’s performances:

Mary Sarah – Carrie Underwood’s “So Small” — Grade: C- | Adam described this as “a very unique version” of the inspirational country anthem, which led me to believe that either, a. he’d never heard the song before, or b. he was throwing subtle shade, seeing how Mary’s was like reasonably OK karaoke, with more strident, less rounded high notes. Meanwhile, Pharrell’s whole critique — focusing on whether or not Mary imagined she could make it to The Voice live shows when she worked at Boot Barn — made me think he’d missed the Nashville vet’s backstory about recording a country duets album with Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, the Oak Ridge Boys and more. Maybe dude’s planned break from Season 11 is coming at just the right time?

Laith Al-Saadi – Albert King’s “Born Under a Bad Sign” — Grade: B | Laith’s not the most surprising artist of Season 11 — if he (or rather Adam) really wants a shot at winning, they’d flip an out-of-left-field ditty into his preferred blues-rock wheelhouse — but his gruff authenticity fit his song selection quite nicely, even if his guitar solo got a little muted in the aggressive sound mix.

Daniel Passino – Michael Jackson’s “Human Nature” — Grade: C- | Daniel was a surprise standout of the Live Playoffs, but he regressed badly this week, delivering cheesy choreography that, by comparison, would make The Carlton look like Beyoncé’s “Formation” video, and then ending the performance with a series of falsetto runs that collapsed like an overbaked soufflé.

Emily Keener (pictured, above) – Jeff Buckley’s “Lilac Wine” — Grade: A- | There was one weird moment in Emily’s performance — following a big vocal run — where she grimaced and gulped and had me worried she was about to make history as the first Voice contestant to vomit on live television. Luckily, the horrors passed, and were quickly erased by a lovely, lilting vocal that might’ve sounded at home on ’70s AM radio alongside Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell. Pharrell needs to drag her – quickly — into 2016, and apply her singular skills to something more recent (to avoid the “she’s not current!” criticisms that are sure to come). But for now, Emily’s looking like a solid bet to be with us at least through early May.

Nick Hagelin – Blake Shelton’s “Mine Would be You” — Grade: D | For at least half of Nick’s performance, I thought I’d accidentally woken up during a Friday night showing of 48: Hours Mysteries, with the case focused squarely on the suspicious disappearance of Nick’s gaspy, featherweight vocals, wrapping with a violent and bloody crime scene in which (eventually) no note of Blake’s country hit was left unpunished.

Adam Wakefield – Allman Brothers’ “Soulshine” — Grade: A- | “Somebody at home needed to hear that message,” cooed Pharrell, at the end of Adam’s organ-driven and gorgeously heartfelt “Soulshine.” And while there’s part of me that knee-jerk rejects such sappy mentality from any panelist on a reality singing competition, in this case, Pharrell mmmmaybe had a point. Adam’s southern-rock grit has so much soul behind it, that he’d probably sound like he was testifying even if he covered LMFAO.

Bryan Bautista – Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose” — Grade: B- | Bryan’s Battle and Knockout Rounds were so flawless, I had myself half-convinced he could be The Voice’s first major radio star. But “Kiss From a Rose” was like a bouquet you buy at the supermarket at 50 percent markdown on Feb. 16. Bryan shed certain words and notes as easily as past-their-prime roses shed their petals. The gorgeous falsetto ending helped restore a little luster to the spotty vocal, but dude (and his coach Xtina) need to do work on accuracy, emotional investment and, generally speaking, more interesting song choice if Bryan wants to have any shot at the finale.

Owen Danoff – Lukas Graham’s “7 Years” — Grade: C+ | Adam was beyond excited about Owen’s mid-performance walk across the stage, which left me flummoxed, considering that the soft-spoken soul singer looked as awkward executing the move as an Obamacare poster at a Ted Cruz rally. Add the weird “birthday candles” backdrop and Owen’s strain as he tried to wring added emotion out of a song to which he didn’t seem particularly connected and it’s hard to see this Blind Auditions front-runner in a season-finale light anymore.

Alisan Porter – Demi Lovato’s “Stone Cold” — Grade: A+ | Alisan navigated Demi Lovato’s rangey ballad with equal parts moxie, expertise and effortlessness. Taking the performance from a whisper to a shout, extending her run on the word “caaaan’t” into a tidal wave of emotional release, and even pausing for dramatic effect to add an exclamation point on the moment, Alisan once again kept up her end of the bargain in a season where exec producer Mark Burnett seems determined to get Xtina the show’s first win by a female coach. And, frankly, Alisan is performing at such a high level that I struggle to be mad about it.

Paxton Ingram – Selena Gomez’s “Hands to Myself” — Grade: F | Poor Paxton got stuck with an utterly insipid song and a sparse, shapeless arrangement that left his thin, reedy voice exposed like a hairless cat in subzero weather. The whole performance was so mumbly and out of tune, it made me discover my still unprocessed feelings of rage against Blake for choosing Paxton as his Save last week, instead of the far superior Joe Maye or even Katie Basden. See what happens when coaches make their decisions based more on friendship than talent? Blerg.

Hannah Huston – Etta James’ “Something’s Got a Hold on Me” — Grade: A- | What the heck was with Adam’s critique about Hannah’s “alien soul” vibe — which he tried to pass of as a compliment, but which sounded more and more like a putdown as he rambled on? I loved the way Hannah lost herself in the ditty, tossing off ends of certain lines with casual grit, while never losing the explosive “woman in love” vibe of the lyrics or her grasp of pitch. The pinstripe pantsuit and the confident, lioness-level stage stalking only added to the excitement — making me think Hannah is one of the few remaining artists with the chance (and the skills) to keep Alisan on her toes.

Shalyah Fearing – Patti Griffin’s “Up to the Mountain” — Grade: B | Oh, how I wish Shalyah was still on Team Xtina or Team Pharrell. Because while the teenager has unbelievable vocal horsepower and a delicious sense of musical abandon, she doesn’t yet possess the complete technical prowess to pull off some of the monster runs and belty notes she’s attempting. And I’m just not sure Adam has the interest or the know-how to fix what’s ailing her. That said, the kid could go pretty far on heart alone — and flaws and all, she’s still in the top half of the Season 10 pecking order, no matter how you slice it.

Should Be Bottom 3: Paxton, Daniel, Nick (Paxton going home)
Will Be Bottom 3: Paxton, Daniel, Mary (Paxton going home)

What did you think of The Voice Top 12 performance night? Who ruled? Who should/will be at risk? Take our poll below, then hit the comments with your thoughts!

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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169 Comments
  1. Angie_Overrated says:

    Emily with an A-?
    Scratches head.
    I thought Paxton was a heck of a lot better than her, which is not to say that I thought Paxton did well.
    Alisan did really well but she’s got a bit of that Christina Grimmie unpleasantness in her top notes.

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      But I liked that ALISAN really felt and did not force it in

    • OhMy says:

      Yes, on Alisan.

    • JM says:

      Thank you, Angie. Between the 4 standing O’s, Michael’s A-, and her high ranking on LivePopBars, I thought perhaps my hearing was off when Emily sang. I thought she had some major off notes. In fact, a lot of the singers weren’t that great tonight. So disappointed in Bryan, Daniel and Shalyah. Hannah, however, improved greatly from last week.

    • TJ says:

      Loved it! I thought it was great.

    • analythinker says:

      Agreed, agreed, agreed… and I might as well just let you speak my mind all the time, heh.

      • Angie_Overrated says:

        Even when no one else agrees with us, at least we’re consistent. :o)
        I wasn’t crazy about most of the performances tonight. Alisan I thought was easily the best, but 2nd place with Hannah felt like it was a few galaxies away in terms of quality.

    • Leah says:

      Why oh why are people saying Alisan was so good?? Seriously, she was screechy as hell. It was painful! She must have one heck of a PR team because people are buying what they are selling. Not because of her singing ability though.

      • Angie_Overrated says:

        Her PR team?! What are you talking about? You’re sounding like a few of those supporters of certain political candidates with paranoid fantasies of conspiracy theories.

      • suebrody says:

        What? Her PR team? What PR team?! She is amazing. #factnotopinion

      • CMG says:

        The song as sung by Demi Lovato is pretty much sung the same way that Alisan sang it. Look it up on YouTube – try Demi’s performance on The Late Late show, for example, or SNL as well. It’s a very emotion-laden song that one person might interpret as heartfelt while another hears it as you do as “screechy.”

      • Sally says:

        Leah, I agree with you. She screeches like a tortured cat and hurts my ears. I don’t understand this hero worship of Alison Porter. She is the worst singer and Adam and Laith are the best.

        • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

          She DEFINITELY NOT the worst AT ALL

        • AlyB says:

          The mere fact that she’s doing so well, earning praise from all quarters and selling so well exemplifies the fact that the problem is not Alisan, it’s your ears.

      • Sandy Gonzalez says:

        Omg! I so agree with you! I don’t understand why everyone things she is so amazing. I think she’s squeaky. It pusses me me off because I bet she she will win.

        • Meme says:

          She deserves to win!! Take another listen to all the competition and compare again. This is about the voice and all the elements it entails. Alisan has it all while others are lacking an element or 2. Are you a vocalist yourself? If you are, then you should be able to recognize those qualities.

          • Jenna says:

            The rest of the competition (or at least some of them at least) can sing with emotion and feeling. Alisan has proven she cannot over and over. For me, I don’t care how many over the top unpleasant runs you can do if you can’t connect with the song and make the listener feel something. I would buy an album of Emily or Owen or Adam, and even though it’s not my style I can give props to Hannah and Shalyah. Never in a million years would I buy an album of Alisan, my least favorite on the show besides maybe Mary Sarah.

      • Meme says:

        Wow, you couldn’t be more wrong in your appraisal.

    • Puzzled says:

      Honestly, I can’t stand listening to her upper register! Please go back to mommy land!!!!

    • JM1 says:

      I thought Emily did great. The feeling she conveyed mattered more to me than whether she hit all the notes.Some songs/performances are like that, and some you can’t fudge the notes (Mary).

      Alisan also did a great job.

      There’s no one yet this season, though, that has just made me dying to see and hear more of them. Anyone else feel that way, too?

    • danin says:

      Angie you hit this nail straight on the head w/all these observations.

    • Nani Tavares says:

      Agreed, she cracks all the time. I can’t believe the judges like her so much. Honestly, I replayed her first audition and don’t get it. Since then I just skip past her.

    • I thought it was a good show. Paxton wasn’t that bad. Allison was not screaming, every note was perfect, Yet, Emily is most interesting, a dark horse perhaps

    • danin says:

      Wow! Michael Slezak…since when is Owen a soul singer?? Not in this lifetime. Kid is a straight up neo-folk singer.

    • Cldahlman says:

      I’m not an Alisan fan – mostly because her upper register is like fingernails on a chalkboard to my hearing. I know that I’m in the minority, but I can’t listen to her for very log, try as I might.

      • Saragee says:

        I totally agree! I think Alisan has a beautiful voice and knows how to deliver a song, but when she goes into her upper register, it sounds so screechy to me, it turns me off. I wish she would stay in her lower register because it is beautiful.

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

    HOLY CRAP!!! ALISAN PORTER JUST GAVE ME THE PERFORMANCE OF THE SEASON!!! 😍😍😍 SLAYSAN!!! Loved shaylah, Hannah, laith, Owen, and Bryan, but ALISAN MAN!!! 😍🙌😭 Mad me cry

  3. OhMy says:

    I’m a fan of Alison, but no Michael that wasn’t an A+. First, the song isn’t good, and s cond there was a major screech in there. I know that’s a regular thing on The Voice, but let’s not reward it. She’ll be ok and will be back next week I’m more than sure, but . . .

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      Was much better than last week, and last week was life!!! 😍😍😍

      • OhMy says:

        No, a step down from last week. I blame the coaches — they coach the contestants up to do things their voices don’t want to do. That, and song choice continues to be an issue on the show.

        • JM says:

          Yes, song choices were pretty bad this week.

        • Smokey says:

          True, song choice can be the key factor in going way up or way down in viewer perception each time.

        • Sally says:

          I notice this year the singers seem to be choosing their own songs instead of the coaches which I think is the way it should be.. In previous years, Adam and Christina especially were guilty of trying to turn their singers into someone they could never be and assign them a song in the wrong genre and range for their voice and they would go home. The singers should choose songs that are right for their voice. I agree that sometimes the coaches are off on the way they instruct them to sing the notes.

      • Leah says:

        You’re related to Alison, or you work for her PR team. Which is it??

        • TeamXtina says:

          Oh my god stfu with this PR team crap and move on, I don’t like Alisan that much either but she has talent so stop complaining, honestly just log off hoe

          • Leah says:

            LOL, aren’t you the epitome of class! I have ears and I know what good singing is. You are a tone deaf low class imbecile. Congrats!

        • kevstar says:

          Leah is just a nasty person. Ignore her. She’s used to it.

          • Leah says:

            Nasty?? Calling screechy singing screechy is nasty?? How much does the PR team pay you?

          • TeamXtina says:

            Leah you’re a trash person. You should have a PR team to improve your horrid personality. Stop being such a bitter old bitch 😘

    • Angie_Overrated says:

      I think Alisan is singing too high for her voice. Yes, she has those top notes, but that doesn’t mean they are notes that necessarily are the strongest for her voice. The upper-middle part of her voice is where the magic happens and where she needs to stay.

      • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

        I like how everyone’s critical about Alisans high notes, but don’t realize Mary Sarah’s voice becoming overbearing at times, shaylahs screaming, and Hannah’s growls. Why is that?

        • Angie_Overrated says:

          I think Alisan is getting more attention because she’s the front runner. I don’t think there are many people who would argue Mary or Shaylah did better than Alisan tonight. I certainly wouldn’t!

          • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

            Yes, but the idea is to be critical to everyone equally, isn’t that how it works?

          • Angie_Overrated says:

            Not necessarily. Kind of like how a teacher picks on a student whom the teacher expects more from. I think the expectations just happen to be higher for her. I’d rather be in her spot getting more criticism than in the spot of someone like Nick whom no one is talking about because he can’t sing very well.

        • JM1 says:

          Yes everyone is nit-picking over Alisan – it’s hard to be a frontrunner! People want a diamond in the rough, I guess?

          And yes the other singers all have plenty to criticize. Am already tired of Shalyah screaming at me (plus Kelly Clarkson sang that song better). Hannah needs to dial back her next performance. Mary SARAH needs to head back to Boot Barn. (Love that Xtina will only call her Mary.) Daniel Passino needs to stop asking me “Why? Why” and doing those silly movements. I could go on and on!!

    • Leah says:

      shhhhhh. Her PR team does not allow criticism of Alisan. You are supposed to praise the screeching! Best screeching,er, singing ever!

      • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

        I really don’t hear any screech at all? Maybe a bit of rasp but if you want to hear screech, Jacque lee is an example. ALISAN just has a powerful voice, nothing bad about it. And did you not hear the whole performance, she started and ended quietly

      • Puzzled says:

        I honestly can’t stand listening to her. She really needs vocal coaching on high notes and just on everything!!!

        • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

          Well someone seems kinda harsh. On everything, now that’s just TO FAR. In a periscope, she said that she never really worked on mixing her voice, so maybe that’s the problem. But other than that, she’s experienced and has been for awhile

      • analythinker says:

        Had to laugh on this, haha. I was grateful she started slow and quiet, until that part.

        • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

          She should sing something tender, like some Bonnie raite or some patsy cline

      • kevstar says:

        Come up with a new line. If you don’t my PR team is gonna find out where you live, and do what everyone who knows you wants done to you.

  4. Andres says:

    A decent night with some pretty good performances with the best being from alisan. I would give second to hannah. Emily surprised me today which was nice, maybe because of the song choice. I was a little dispointed with Bryan this week mostly cause he has had amazing performances since the battles. Hopefully he is not in danger. If I had to sacfrice any chance I have in passing my classes and choose someone to go home it would be Paxton. They guy was terrible and is mostly likely going to be the braiden sunshine of this season.

  5. Logan says:

    I have never seen Slezak give out an F… Nor do I watch the voice, but I read his recaps anyway. Wow.

    • Andres says:

      He gave one last season of the voice if I remember correctly.

    • Gailer says:

      I know! An F?!

    • davmon says:

      I have to think the F was for the song choice…Holy Cow! what a pitiful lyric Paxton tried to give it some life, but anyone sounds ridic saying the same thing over and over…But honestly, Owen’s song was not a lot better lyrically–a good idea, badly written….But both should be ok this week since Daniel & Nick did a Bad Singing Sing-Off…just because guys can sing falsetto, does not give license to throw it in haphazardly with no redeeming purpose–and off key! ..

  6. Mike says:

    I agree with all the grades tonight(maybe giving Mary Sarah a slightly higher grade like a C+). My only problem with Emily’s song is I’m not sure it translates to the typical Voice voters. You could tell that the judges were very impressed with it. I don’t know. It wasn’t my thing. I much prefer Alisan, Adam and Hannah.

    • Smokey says:

      19 Adam Wakefield Soulshine
      26 Alisan Porter Stone Cold
      50 Emily Keener Lilac Wine
      81 Nick Hagelin Mine Would Be You
      84 Laith Al-Saadi Born Under a Bad Sign…
      89 Hannah Huston Something’s Got a Hold On Me

      itunes at the moment

      • The Beach says:

        Finally, there’s some sense on this board. 50,000 post about Alisan, blah, blah blah, when Adam was hands down the best of the evening.

      • Belle Ferrar says:

        Adam is the real deal. Alison yells too much for my taste. Why does Christina push all the loud screaming notes? Why can’t people just sing with emotion and let that be what’s special about their performance!

  7. kevstar says:

    Bring on the haters to say that Alisan had her chance, how it’s unfair that she’s getting a spot that someone less well-connected. The ones who say all she does is scream, what are the judges listening to.
    Probably the same ones who said Jordan Smith wouldn’t sell after the Voice. (#2 behind Gwen Stefani, the week of release)

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      Exactly. They are just jealous of her artistry and vocal control

      • Jenna says:

        See I think my issue with her is that I don’t think she has any vocal control, nor any emotion when she sings. It’s great she can do runs but when you put a ridiculous run on every word to the point where you can’t even understand what she’s saying or what emotion she’s trying to convey, that is a problem for me.

    • Nothing, nothing makes me madder than someone else, esp when they don’t know the person or their life or struggles, appoint themselves the judge and jury of who “deserves” a “2nd” chance…I’m not sure she has ever gotten a real chance as a singer and for Pete’s sake people, she was in a hit movie 25 yrs ago!!!! 25 yrs ago!!! She was, what, 9? Give it a rest. Look at her IMDB page…Very sparse…very few projects since then. I even read 1 comment about how “she is rich..(how do they know her bank account?)..she had her shot (yeah..25 yrs ago when she was 9..like 1 can decide their true career path at 9!), and it’s UNFAIR to the other contestants because she has music connections (if she had them why would she be on The Voice? If she was RICH couldn’t she buy a contract?) How does being a former actress give you music connections? Okay, she knows Adam Lambert. Maybe she doesn’t want to ride his coattails?
      Apparently, these folks have NO IDEA how many of the contestants are more than likely “well-off financially-should only poor people audition? Or how many of these contestants HAVE REAL MUSIC connections, like Judith Hill, who was Michael Jackson’s backup singer, how about Owen, who’s if from Washington DC, went to Berklee College Of Music, very expensive school, with a very, very successful singer/songwriter father, who in fact has a Grammy and has written many #1 songs? He must know half the big names in music, yet nobody complains how he doesn’t deserve it. What about Will Champlin, who’s father was in Chicago? Should he have been disqualified? What about Meghan Linsey who was runner-up a few yrs back who had a previous record deal and top 10 country hit? Kick her off, too?
      I thought the show was to find the next big VOICE…I didn’t know they had to be plucked off the farm & out of poverty with no connections or no previous success. Missed that part of the rules.

  8. Toba7 says:

    I do not get the hype about Alisan. She’s okay but screeches and sounds a bit like a chipmunk. I’d have kept other team Xtina singers over her.

  9. Cagney says:

    Michael- thank you for crediting Patti Griffin for Up to the Mountain/ it annoys me when they select the more well known artist- in this case Kelly Clarkson.
    Alison- I thought the beginning was absolutely gorgeous but as she continued I was thinking that sometimes less is more.

    • Ani says:

      I don’t think Kelly Clarkson is known for this one, is she? I love Patty Griffin’s, and do you remember when Crystal Bowersox did it on Idol? That was awesome!

  10. Trent says:

    Slay Alisan slay

  11. davmon says:

    Shalyah’s soulful intro was stunning; then she just went wherever she wanted effortlessly and beautifully (A+). And no overcooking….She eclipsed our two soul wanabes,.Hannah & Alisan. I had Hannah (A) a bit ahead of Alisan (A-). Previously, Hannah & Allisan have gone high and gotten thin; tonight both found ways to manage that better. But Shalyah had soulful textures throughout her lower and upper range; she moved to another tier in this competition.

  12. Gailer says:

    Blake Shelton’s Mine Would Be You, is one of the very few country songs I’ve ever loved….that was a train wreck tonight by Nick, just awful.

  13. dj says:

    I don’t know if it’s me, but I wasn’t super impressed by anyone tonight, and I felt like some contestants picked songs that did nothing for them, like Bryan Bautista.

    While I don’t think Paxton deserved the save, I don’t think his performance was an F. That seems like a little harsh resentment rearing its head.

  14. analythinker says:

    My “Will Be Bottom 3” are: Paxton, Daniel, and Owen. Never had I ever seen such number of dislikes on a contestant performance’s YT video than I saw on Paxton’s. Daniel was just hit with a wrong song case and Owen is just too subtle to get many votes (as much as I like him).

    • Angie_Overrated says:

      Daniel picked a very strange song that he couldn’t deliver on. Bad choice.
      I’d say my bottom three would be Emily, Bryan and Nick with Emily and Bryan going home. Looking at the iTunes it doesn’t appear that the voters agree with me, but I’m ok with that.

      • danin says:

        Absolutely agree w/you on bottom three.And also agree Alison sings too high and her voice is too thin at the top.

      • Smokey says:

        itunes in wee early hours of Tuesday —- Bad song for Mary Sarah, bad choice, Carrie Underwood songs have killed a lot of talent show wannabe’s and this was not a good song period, no matter who sings it.. Paxton is way over his head in this group anyway, plus horrible nasty song choice by him and/or his coach..
        12 Adam Wakefield Soulshine
        13 Alisan Porter Stone Cold
        31 Emily Keener Lilac Wine
        44 Hannah Huston Something’s Got a Hold On Me
        48 Nick Hagelin Mine Would Be You
        53 Shalyah Fearing Up To the Mountain
        56 Laith Al-Saadi Born Under a Bad Sign
        61 Owen Danoff 7 Years
        80 Bryan Bautista Kiss From a Rose
        95 Daniel Passino Hu man Nature
        106 Mary Sarah So Small
        178 Paxton Ingram Hands To Myself

      • analythinker says:

        Yeah, I picked based on the history of the show too, not my own preference.

      • daynamonet says:

        Um no, Bryan’s not going home and only 1 person goes home tonight until top 9

  15. Puzzled says:

    Seriously, is a 35 yo woman with money going to make it in the music industry if she hasn’t already??? Lord let someone fresh and new win! PLEASE!!!!!!

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      Yeah, who will that be. Stop bashing ALISAN and just let the woman live and do what she wants, she’s doing this for her family

    • kevstar says:

      My prediction came true. Boy, why do we hear the same things ALL THE TIME from typical posters? If you’re waiting for things to be “fair” in life, you’re gonna be disappointed.

  16. davmon says:

    Adam (B+) and Laith (B+) did well with their rugged sound. Adam usually gets a bit thin up high, but not as badly tonight. Laith has a bluesy guitar and rich voice, but there are wobbles here and there that keep it from transcending. I have them trailing Shalyah, Hannah, & Alisan.

  17. suebrody says:

    Alison, Adam W, and everyone else. Alisan will, as she should. She is perfection. If Alisan doesn’t win, someone will still sign her to a recording contract.

  18. Puzzled says:

    I think Michael Slezak must know Alisan and is on her PR team too! A+???? For goodness sakes, he is getting dumber and more deaf with each season!!!

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      Well u are just plain disrespectful. How dare u say harsh things behind Michael slezaks back.

      • The Beach says:

        Now I’ve heard everything…”behind Michael Slezaks (sic) back”…in a post…on the general board…on Slezak’s own blog?? As Michael himself would say: “I can’t, I just can’t”

    • JM1 says:

      Enough with the “PR team” stuff! It’s FINE if you don’t like Alisan . . . but annoying that you think no one else could or should like her. To each his own.

  19. Russ says:

    With a single elimination this week. Is anybody else wondering if we are going to have another mass elimination night this season?

    • Florence+TheMachineRulez!!! #TeamMariah says:

      Most likely, unless u are ALISAN or Adam, u should be worried

      • Russ says:

        I agree about the Alisan and Adam part. I hope Hannah will be there as well. But I would rather two go home a week than single eliminations and then after 3 or 4 weeks bam blood bath time and here is your final 4.

  20. TeamXtina says:

    Hannah needs to stop singing these soul songs. Her rendition of “Aint No Way” was tragic and this week wasn’t much better. Christina clearly was NOT feeling either performances and neither was I.

    • JM1 says:

      Agreed! And when the Voice first aired, I used to think Xtina was so bitchy compared to the other judges. Now, I totally appreciate her. She’ll find SOMEthing nice to say but will not lie if the performance was bad.

      • kevstar says:

        That’s because Christina is the only one who actually critiques the singers. Everyone else just wants to be liked.

        • TeamXtina says:

          Notice both times they didn’t ask Christina her comments on songs sang by her two biggest inspirations? Two songs she slayed when covered might I add? I’ll give Hannah credit that this week was an improvement but an A-? Maybe a C. Last week she should have gotten an F and she should’ve been arrested for butchering such an amazing song; Ain’t No Way Hannah will have a career after this show.

  21. davmon says:

    Bryan and Emily were a B. He has been the most perfect before tonight– a great pocket till he went high and got lost, then ended ok. Emily’s voice was ethereally lovely, but there were breathing lapses so that some lines could not be heard. I have them in 6th & 7th place tonight.

  22. scott says:

    I would have to say, after last week’s overall bad nights, tonight was more than redeeming. I especially enjoyed all the soul/blues. Also, they definitely seemed like they ironed out all the sound issues.

  23. davmon says:

    My bottom five were Mary Sarah in 8th (c+) with an unremarkable song and voice, Owen in 9th (C) with a mediocre lyric and voice Paxton (C-) with an ok voice but abominably bad song. Daniel & Nick, the comeback boys, were a D and tied for last; they started in a decent pocket but got pitchy and tacked on falsetto riffs that seemed disconnected. They ended awful! We should see them—what—in an instant save? How does this work?

    • Davey says:

      The lyrics for 7 Years are not mediocre. The song is no. 1 on iTunes. But it wasn’t the right song choice for Owen who still deserves a B, not the grade here.

  24. Davey says:

    Adam should not tell Owen to sing without his guitar. The studio recording of 7 Years is miles better.

  25. 1humbleopinion says:

    Truth Bomb: Alison Porter is a technically talented singer. But her voice is also somewhat thin and reedy. And yes, it can be rather unpleasant in the upper range (as several others have noted). On a relatively weak season (and this season is VERY weak) she excels by comparison.

    I personally find her performances a little overwrought and devoid of a real emotional connection to the lyrics. She emotes, and certainly has the “diva” gesticulations down. But I don’t believe for a second that she’s actually feeling what she’s singing. She feels the notes, but not the words. And that’s a problem.

    So, yeah, a technically good singer who does not move me and who’s music I would never buy. And Voice season iTunes performances aside, I don’t see anyone rushing out to buy an Alison Porter album (based on what I’ve heard to date). It all feels like a Cruise Ship or Vegas Lounge performance. I’m not tryin to be an Alison hater. I was rooting for her through the first four episodes. And maybe she can turn it around. But I’m just not feeling it.

    Fact is, no one nailed it tonight, although Laith and Adam are kind of critique-proof, solidly and competently in their own lanes.

    Hannah Huston? Like, okay, we get it — you love singing these belty Soul/R&B numbers, but the next Etta James or Aretha Franklin you are not and will never, ever be. So what the heck are you doing? Who ARE you? What ARE you? I don’t get it.

    Shalyeah impressed me tonight. She had much more control this week. Sounded great. Good stage presence (at 16!). And is rocking the “Korin Hawthorne” lane this season (what ever happened to Korin Hawthorne!?!).

    But for me, Brian Bautista still shows the most potential to become a contemporary artist and actually break out and do something post show (although this was solid, but not his best night).

    • SoozinCA says:

      That’s life that what moves one person leaves another Stone Cold. I was in tears at the end of Alisan’s performance tonight, and I do not cry easily. To me it was her most emotionally connected performance so far. I admit that I was a fan of hers before she was on the show – I remember back when she was a 5 year old on Star Search, and I saw her in concert several years ago when she fronted a band and I really enjoyed their music.

    • The Beach says:

      Wow,1humbleopinion, that is a really well-stated post and is so spot-on about a number of points. This was an excellent read.

    • patdamico says:

      humble: couldn’t have said it better myself. Agree with all your points.

    • Jenna says:

      Thank you for saying everything I’ve been thinking about Alisan from the beginning! Yes she can hit notes but it’s unpleasant to listen to and is robot-level emotionless. I would much rather buy a cd of Owen or Adam or Emily who may not do as many distracting vocal acrobatics, but can sing with feeling and dynamics. I can’t stand Alisan and the judges are shoving her down our throats as the winner already. Which I think is disrespectful to all of the other very talented contestant.

  26. MynameisNO says:

    Interesting performance order tonight. To start, there were definitely some sound problems and pitch problems throughout the night. Laith, Mary Sarah, and Bryan were all drowned out by the band. Pitch issues for Those 3 as well as Daniel and Emily toward the end of their performances.Blake didn’t help Or challenge Mary Sarah at all which must mean they feel safe based off her votes last week. Also, how are you not familiar with a song you are supposed to be helping your artist with? #TeamBlake. Nick was better than last week but still very pitchy, even continued to sing, off key, after the band was done playing. How great. Adam is consistent and very ready for the big time. The loud band sucked the life out of Kiss from a Rose(Bryan’s performance) for me. Bad song choice. When he wasn’t drowned out by the band his voice stayed high and shaky at that. For Owen’s performance, I think his song was the wrong tempo and though it looked like he was coming out of his shell, it looked like he was trying to catch up to the song the whole time. Showed some growth vocally however. Alisan is consistently great. Grade A performance. Of course she’ll win, wish it wasn’t so obvious. She is humble And it’s great to see that and how she’s enjoying every moment of this. Paxton had a great performance, and since only one will go, I’d be upset if it were him. I disagree with what Pharell said, Paxton should stay in the contemporary lane he’s been in. Bryan should’ve sang Hands to Myself w that arrangement tonight. The last two performances were great. Pharell advice to Hannah was spot on and we get it she’s from Nebraska. Shalyah showed grace and excellent execution in her performance. I’m interested to see if producers continue to put Hannah and Shalyah next to each other in performance order like they did tonight so that viewers can compare the two while keeping Alisan in her own area of the show far away from the other divas and belters. Prediction that Paxton goes tomorrow night. Bottom 3: Paxton, Owen, Emily. Should be Mary Sarah but people like her.

    • Smokey says:

      Mary Sarah trails the pack on I-tunes, bad song choice and if there is a save, they may have to use it on her.

    • patdamico says:

      I mentioned last season that I noticed a big drop in sound quality on this show. I used to marvel at how it was the only show that managed great sound engineering during the Live performances, but something has definitely changed.

  27. danin says:

    O my god. I give Emily kudos for choosing Lilac Wine but she was awful.And for Xtina to give Bryan kiss from a rose killed that kid.He was equally awful. I think Adam’s good but he doesn’t blow it out of the water for me. Alison is very good but her voice is thin at the top. Hannah is still the one for me.

  28. JJ says:

    Is it just me or are the song selections the last two weeks the most boring songs they could find. Even if they are sung well, they are so un-entertaining I fast forward. Not a bumper crop this year

  29. Song choice problems, sound mixing problems and some performance problems…overall a rather disappointing night. Remember how promising so many people seemed during the blinds?

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

    Is it me, or could Hannah and shaylah potentially lose their voices due to them growling and belting way to hard. That worries me deeply

  31. TexasBrigade says:

    Mary Sarah may not be technically perfect but I love her voice

    • Timmah says:

      I think Mary Sarah has a very radio-friendly voice, unlike the screechers. Emily is good too, I really like the colors and inflections in her voice, reminds me just a bit of Lana Del Rey.

  32. AlyB says:

    Alison, Hannah & Emily served up some sublime performances. Everyone else tonight was a bit of an also-ran except for Adam who is terrific, just not really what I’m looking for in a competition like this.

  33. Karen Anderson says:

    Shaylah’s “Up On the Mountain” was a direct steal from Kree Harrison’s definite version on American Idol. Sorry, but Kree owns that song.

  34. Carfield says:

    I don’t think I am totally on board with Mike’s comment this week, but when it comes to a show like the Voice, it is very subjective. However I agree with Mike 100% about Alisan, who is simply amazing tonight. The whole performance showcases her range and her ability to control her voice. Most importantly, I really felt the emotion and her connection to the song. While I think Paxton was screwed by Blake’s song choice, I don’t think he is a F. He tried to make the song a bit better than the original. Adam Wakefield is good but needs to enunciate and I just can’t understand what he is singing at all. I felt that so much was lost without being able to actually hear the lyrics. But based on the iTunes chart tonight, Mike is right that poor Paxton possibly will be in the bottom 2. BTW, are they doing bottom 3 this season? I got so confused about Voice Save. Mary Sarah is also not going well in the chart. Nick on the other hand seems to have a strong fan base. Tomorrow my prediction is Daniel, Mary Sarah, and Paxton in the bottom 3 with Paxton going home.

  35. Gayla Sutton says:

    Soooo beautiful!!!! And 1 of a kind!!!!!!

  36. Don says:

    Overall, I thought tonight was a step up from the very disappointing live playoffs. At least we got 5 quite good performances.

    I agree with those who think Alison’s upper register is a bit reedy, but I still think she gave the overall best of the night. You could tell she really felt that song and gave her usual technically gifted performance. The other good performances came from Hannah, Shalyah, Adam and Emily. Hannah’s voice remains my favorite, but she needs to stop picking from the Kimberly Nichole songlist.

    In contrast, I thought that there were only 3 truly bad performances. Paxton and Nick are good performers, but their vocals tonight were a complete and utter mess. Daniel was back to being his cheesy self and that attempt at a falsetto at the end was a fail. Unfortunately I doubt Nick will be in the bottom 3 and expect to see Bryan or Owen there instead.

  37. VeryConfused says:

    I completely understand the overwhelming disappointment that Paxton went through to the top 12 over much, much more talented vocalists, but there is no way that he was worse than Nick tonight (in spite of his terrible song choice). I know Nick has some strange cult following (presumably thanks to his good looks and adorable child), but the man simply cannot sing in tune, or with any semblance of a decent tone. Christina made a very poor choice bringing him back, and I fear he may be around for a while yet.

  38. Joyce says:

    I think it’s going to come down to Allison and Adam

  39. jenni4955 says:

    I don’t even LIKE Alisan but grudgingly have to admit that she kills it every single time. Just wish she would quit CRYING. I’d never buy a song of hers for the express reason that I’m afraid there would be CRYING on it. However, I did vote for her as one of my top 3 along with Adam Wakefield and Hannah Huston. Damn, there are so many good and diverse singers on the show this year that personal taste in music will come into it a large way for voters.

  40. Zee says:

    I never heard most of the songs they are singing, the coaches need for them to stay with songs
    that goes with their tones and voices , is to make them better not to fail.

  41. AS says:

    I think the show is definitely falling into the “the thrill is gone” category of long shelf life nearing expiration date. Alison is really good…I like Hannah..not understanding the song choices…the blues and southern rock are good, but not show stopping unique talents. The rest are not contenders and not worth buying…I’ve been a faithful i-tunes buyer since the beginning…something is wrong this season. I hope it’s producer manipulation to assure Xtina the win and not that the show is no longer new and fresh.

  42. Blackprint says:

    Jermaine Paul beat Juliet Simms, Tony Lucca, and Chris Mann in Season 2 under the old “Voice” voting system of “one judge apiece, one contestant apiece” in the finale.

    Under the current voting system, Jermaine Paul may have not won.

  43. Jenna says:

    To me, Emily and Adam were in a league of their own last night, and I thought Shalyah did well as well. I normally love Owen but didn’t think he did enough to change up the song to stand out. I never usually like Alisan but thought I might when she started out the song more subtle, but by the second half it turned into her overwrought shrieking self, adding ridiculous runs that make it impossible to hear the words or feel any emotion from the song. And it’s getting old hearing the coaches shove her down our throats as the winner, especially last night she paled in comparison to Adam and Emily’s beautiful and moving performances. Her Nick and Paxton were probably my worst of the night, though Daniel was pretty cheesy.

  44. Meme says:

    I totally agree with you, Michael, on every single thing you said! Really am enjoing this season and am hoping Alisan will take the title as she really is nearly perfect and I can’t wait to buy her album.

  45. Alisan isn’t “navigating” her way through anything. She’s a good singer, but it’s Meghan Linsey part two. The last 30 seconds of that was just yelling. Any “meaning” that mediocre song had was lost, not enhanced, by it.

  46. Patricia Butler says:

    The worst voice season ever

  47. PATRICIA BUTLER says:

    The best new voice out here is americans idols Trent Harmon fabulous! !!

  48. Yes to Alisan, Adam and Hannah. Sort of yes to Shaylah. (In a couple of years she’s be a definite yes.) Can’t seem to muster any excitement for the rest.

  49. Really was impressed with Emily Keener last night – but I also like Alisan Porter. Hard decision.

  50. Mary says:

    I would love to hear Shalyah Fearing sing How Great Thou Art