Xtina saved her over the vastly superior De’Borah: perhaps a stripped-down arrangement where her voice isn’t competing with against the band and background singers will remind viewers of her excellent Blind Audition?
11. Melanie Martinez
Has never quite lived up to her stellar “Toxic” audition. Needs to break out the guitar again — and really flip a well-known track upside down — while not losing her grasp on pitch. That’s a tall order, but she might just be capable.
10. Dez Duron
His Live Playoffs rendition of “Wanted” was rather pedestrian. Needs to veto coach Xtina if she leads him astray from his blue-eyed soul roots.
9. Cassadee Pope
Former Hey Monday singer’s cover of Avril Lavigne’s “Happy Ending” felt like middling karaoke. She’d be wise to cover a tune by a male artist (like she did with “Payphone”) — especially if it gives her a chance to show her vocal strengths. After all, her former fan base can only care her so far.
8. Cody Belew
He’s got good looks and a great personality — and has yet to really hit a bad note thus far. Needs to be cautious that his campy shimmying and showman tendencies don’t get mistaken for a lack of seriousness about the competition.
7. Nicholas David
Grooviest guy in the competition — with a buttery smooth voice that’s very distinctive. His personal style stands out, too, but a wee bit of facial-hair grooming might go a long way toward courting viewer votes.
6. Sylvia Yacoub
Had a breakout performance when she got behind the piano for “The One That Got Away.” It’s crucial that Sylvia keeps playing the role of sensitive artiste rather than revert to the generic pop-diva persona she’d been previously portraying.
5. Bryan Keith
He’s been a consistent favorite since his audition, but he’s definitely at his best when choosing songs that allow him to show off a little bit of swagger. In other words, j’enough with the Bryan Adams ballads, sir!
4. Michaela Paige
Inexplicably needed Blake’s “Save” after a terrific rendition of “Everybody Talks.” Might need to display a more vulnerable side to capture the public’s fancy.
3. Terry McDermott
Ho-hum rendition of “Don’t Stop Believin'” seemed to be a case of a guy with a grand voice getting stuck with a song he’d never sing in real life. As a seasoned vet, Terry needs to make sure the remainder of his Voice journey is a collaborative effort with Blake, not just an exercise in following his coach’s game plan.
2. Trevin Hunte
He’s build a big fan base with a series of bombastic ballads. He’s going to need to stretch his artistic boundaries — maybe covering something uptempo and funky — while making sure not to go sharp when he’s tackling the big glory notes.
1. Amanda Brown
She’s tackled everything from Mariah Carey to Aerosmith, from Amy Winehouse to Grace Potter, without a single bad step. If she can continue to balance diversity of song choice with the notion that she’s a fully fledged artist ready for the pop charts, the competition is hers to lose.
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