The Voice Recap: To Kill a Knockout Bird

The Voice Recap Michelle ChamuelFor the breakout star of The Voice, Blake Shelton sure has been a total energy suck the last few weeks of Season 4.

Oh sure, his rakish charm remains as reliable as ever. Who else could get away with yelling “kiss my ass!” to Adam Levine and making it land without a hint of toxicity? But Blake’s sudden and inexplicable “I only want country artists!” mindset has been a smudge on the show the likes of which we haven’t seen since Xtina’s wayward lipstick exploits of Season 3.

Yes, I know Blake’s heart belongs to Nashville, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But why did he string along a fascinating blues artist like Grace Askew or an enigmatic R&B hipster like Luke Edgemon given his formerly secret agenda of bringing four “tobacco-spittin'” country acts to the Season 4 Live Playoffs? That’d be like ordering the last chocolate soufflé off the dessert menu at a restaurant, tossing it on the floor to the horror of your fellow patrons, then telling the waitress to fire up a scoop of vanilla ice cream. “We don’t go in for none of that fancy shmancy sooo-flay stuff, no sirrree! I’d rather have me a Hoodsie Cup with a flat wooden scooper, mmmmhmmm.”

Anyhow, before my tidal wave of anger and disappointment washes over this entire recap, let’s cut to tonight’s Knockout Rounds results — listed in order from least- to most-promising winner:

Team Usher: Josiah Hawley (Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black”) defeats Jess Kellner (James Morrison’s “You Give Me Something”) | Okay, sure, maybe Jess was a tad lackadaisical in her delivery while hitting intermittent flat notes. But seeing Usher rate her performance below Josiah’s mumbly, growly affectations and ridiculous Blue Steel posturing was as much a mystery to me as the enduring popularity of the 147 Kardashian-themed shows on that E! network. My only explanation is that keeping Josiah on the airwaves for another week will just make Michelle Chamuel seem that much cooler. Okay, that’s an insane theory, but do you have anything better?

Team Usher: Cathia (Kelly Clarkson’s “Mr. Know It All”) defeats Ryan Innes (Gavin DeGraw’s “I Don’t Want to Be”) | Cathia definitely hit some hinky notes in the verses, which had me thinking she was playing the role of Sacrificial Lamb in a movie called Ryan’s Pimp-Slot Coronation. But holy vocal meltdown, her bearded opponent (and early front-runner) delivered “I Don’t Want to Be” with all the musicality of a grizzly bear snarfing down a cooler full of uncooked hamburgers. The coaches clearly entered the matchup expecting Ryan to emerge as a clear winner, but dude gave Usher no choice but to throw his support behind Cathia (who I still argue was strongest in her Blind Audition).

Team Blake: The Swon Brothers (Dobie Gray’s “Drift Away”) defeats Grace Askew (Tina Turner’s “I Can’t Stand the Rain”) | Grace certainly wasn’t flawless as she swooped and flitted her way through a bluesy, boozy take on “I Can’t Stand the Rain,” but there was a delicious brazenness to the liberties she took with the original. I loved the way she dipped low and conversational-like on “get off my window!” and the break in her voice when she reached her upper register. Plus, that shredded leather skirt and jaunty flip in her hair added a little fashion fun to the proceedings. And yet Blake went with a straightforward, totally uninventive but decently sung “Drift Away” that you could probably hear in a saloon in any mid-sized city on an average Thursday night. But the Swon Brothers are from Blake’s home state and so of course, you’ve got to factor that in, too.

Team Usher: Josiah Hawley (Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black”) defeats Jess Kellner (James Morrison’s “You Give Me Something”) SRSLY? [Sorry! Bad cut-and-paste job by your humble recapper — Josiah definitely ranks last for the night!]

Team Blake: Holly Tucker (Tim McGraw’s “Live Like You Were Dying”) defeats Luke Edgemon (Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream”) | I wasn’t a huge fan of Luke’s run-heavy Blind Audition, but I appreciated the bah-chicka-wah-wah R&B sensuality he brought to Katy Perry’s ditty — and the way he managed to show his pretty crazy vocal range without going overboard with unnecessary runs and trills. To be fair, Holly hit the majority of her notes, too, but there was a nasal quality to her tone — and a rather unengaging stage presence — that dragged her down from an A- to more of a B+/B level performance. Luke, I could imagine in the Season 4 Top 10; Holly, not so much.

Team Blake: Justin Rivers (Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb”) defeats Savannah Berry (Justin Bieber’s “As Long as You Love Me”) | I was kind of ambivalent about who won the night’s opening Knockout. Savannah’s reworking of “ALAYLM” wasn’t amazing, but at least she went beyond basic karaoke. The problem was that she got drowned out a bit on the verses, and didn’t manage to bring much personality to the lyrics aside from her peculiar shade of lipstick. Justin definitely showcased greater vocal firepower, but his glory notes at the end felt more like a “look what I can do!” trick more than a genuine way to punctuate Miley’s hokey lyrics. Dude did listen to his coach, though, and dial back on the runs, so perhaps we’ll see further improvement in the coming weeks?

Team Blake: Danielle Bradbery (Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus Take the Wheel”) defeats Taylor Beckham (Rihanna’s “Russian Roulette”) | Not a great song choice for Danielle. I mean, the inexperienced teen obviously has an enormous instrument and Ginsu-accuracy, but what she doesn’t yet possess is the artistry or life experience to scale Mt. Underwood and sound like anything more than a decent imitation. Blake, though, might be able to help his young protégé make savvier (and less predictable) decisions, and bring a little more emotional heft to the proceedings, too. As for Taylor, let’s take the “if you don’t have something nice to say…” approach to her Rihanna cover, shall we?

Team Usher: Vedo (Bryan Adams’ [Everything I Do] I Do It for You”) defeats C. Perkins (Chris Brown’s “She Ain’t You”) | I loved how Shakira summed up C. Perkins’ failures by noting that he should have focused more on his vocals, and less on his stiff-armed “wind up the audience” foolery. Vedo’s song choice could’ve used about 10 fewer packets of Splenda, but he definitely felt every word and

Team Usher: Michelle Chamuel (Pink’s “Raise Your Glass”) defeats Audrey Karrasch (Lil Wayne’s “How to Love”) | Oh em gee, Michelle’s fun, fearsome and very physical twist on Pink’s outsiders anthem was the most fun I’ve had watching The Voice in four seasons (and yes, watching her drop and match Usher’s pushups in rehearsal definitely added to the Joie de Knockouts. I loved every part of her performance, from the tiny tweaks she made to the core melody to her seemingly involuntary punches into the air. If she doesn’t at least crack the Season 4 Top 10, then I’m gonna throw my TV out the window.

And with that, it’s your turn. What did you think about Night 2 of The Voice‘s Season 4 Knockout Rounds? Was anyone robbed? Who lucked out with their pairings? Did Blake’s treatment of Grace and Luke bother you? Take our poll below to vote for your faves, then hit the comments and expand on your thoughts. And for all my reality TV news, recaps and interviews, 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. I am so disappointed that Blake let Luke go! He was the best one on his team!

    • Cagney says:

      I wanted to vote for Luke in the poll but alas….he was one of my favorites from the entire show. The girl who beat him – very ordinary. Actually of all the performances tonight only Michelle and Lukw stood out for me.

      • Joy says:

        Michelle, Luke, and Grace would have been my top three of the night. Thanks for nothing, Blake!

        • Deena says:

          Luke is amazing. Blake has an agenda with pre-formulated selections. I think that kind of spoils the show.

          • Lisa says:

            Amen. Blake is a buzzkill this year. If I wanted to hear nasally country girls singing “Jesus Take the Wheel,” I’d watch Idol. Cutting Luke was a travesty.

          • Lee says:

            I agree. And it seems like as soon as Blake found out that Grace wasn’t as country as he thought she was–he cut her. It’s amazing how blatantly bias he is. And I still don’t understand what Blake sees in the Swon Brothers. One of them hardly even sings! Both Christian and Grace were better than the duo. As Michael said, they sound like someone you would hear at your neighborhood pub.

    • Danny says:

      @Lesa- Odd at how people perceive things. Maybe it’s me who’s odd, but I thought Holly was an easy winner on that one.

    • roger jarema says:

      No one of Blake’s steals have ever won a knockout battle…even when they performed better than his original team. I happen to recall one of his unfair decisions from last season: Julio Cesar Castillo vs MarissaAnn. MarissaAnn performed better & other coaches seemed to be of this view, Blake didn’t disagree, but he picked Julio. Because…from his own words “I have invested more time with Julio.”

      So, you basically already know what you’ll get when you get stolen by Blake. Haven’t watched this episode with Luke yet. But it sounds like Luke is another victim of this.

      • Happy says:

        Shakira should have kept Luke, She knew he was better but kept the other girl for the Latino community (who did not last the Knock Out anyways). So now she knows what happens if you don’t take care of your own team.

    • Teeny Bikini says:

      The only person I remembered was Michelle Chamuel. That was AWESOME. The rest were derivative and boring. Blake’s clear agenda aside, all of his country singers were ordinary at best. I hope Blake’s team has an early exit….

      • Lisa says:

        Agreed. Maybe Blake truly is burned out. I love him, but his decisions haven’t been great so far this season.

      • Tom22 says:

        I’m not going to knock Michele’s singing and it isn’t her appearance and shown personality that bother me. What bother’s me is that I suspect she is an actress playing the role and ready to make the trajectory into taking off the glasses and wearing sexy dresses with high slits up the thigh and sexy legs by the end of the season. I mean, some of her humble looks seem just a tad too perfect to me. If it is all genuine I love her…but, if this turns into a fictional reality show like Repo-man its going to make me really sort of disgusted.

        I’m ok with some demographic favoring because, after all not only are they making a TV show that needs some personas, but also 95% of performas need some persona and raport with audeinces. Bing Crosby had more than a good voice and Billi Hoilday had a mystique that extended to how she was off stage.

        But if the act includes a transformation from a false start to a false end it is something different just for the show.. maybe I’d be ok with the accentuated persona at either end but a soap opera act of progress will be galling

        Hopefully that is not the case

        • Mikel83 says:

          Check out her website & look up past bands My Dear Disco & Ella Riot. She’s been the same from the beginning.

        • HitTheGroundRunning says:

          Yeah I’m sure her look is plenty calculated in the way every hipster’s look is as calculated as anyone else’s (if not more so actually, despite incessant claims otherwise hah).
          But that is her style and I think you are crazy off-base about her doing a 180 change (of course we will see) and think it is some sort of Clark Kent thing. I don’t see her changing at all (and I don’t see the possibility of her changing into some sort of singing super model anyway, no way she is Nina Agdal, Bar Refaeli, Adriana Lima only hidden under frumpy glasses and hipster styling). What she is doing is working for her and I don’t think she plans to change it.

          • Tom22 says:

            I hope so and if you read what I wrote It was all about if’s and all about excusing her for having a persona if it was the same one at the end . I came right out and said it is GOOD to have a persona and named Bing Crosby and Billion Holliday –

            ” If it is all genuine I love her” and ” a TV show that needs some personas, but also 95% of performas need some persona and raport with audeinces. Bing Crosby had more than a good voice and Billi Hoilday had a mystique that extended to how she was off stage.”

            I was knocking what I was worried about and I do like her a lot as it its if it isn’t an act. Oh.. yeah “hip” is a compliment for most people in the big cities. Milan is hip, etc. .. hiptser. I guess not so much I guess. But like I said eslewhere I guess some people thing Main stream is a compliment and other’s think Hip is a compliment and others want to be Real, or lots of other words.

            I like people who come from different attitudes and “mainstream” is one of them. Hopefully we have a couple hipsters, 4 commercial radio types, 2 or the country stars and a couple R&B ish musicians and turn it over to the audience… something for everyone! If anything I’d put her in the hipster category.

        • smk says:

          I have been watching Michelle perform since 2008 and have met her several times. I can tell you there is no contrived persona happening on the show. That personality and look is solely hers, and has always been. She’s amazing.

  2. Jane says:

    Adam and Shakira’s teams are way stronger than Usher and Blake, IMO. Usher has an extremely weak team (team will lose first).

    Blake’s problem is the lack of diversity. He definitely has talented Country performers, but this isn’t the Country talent show. His mistake was letting go of Luke!

    • ES says:

      ‘His mistake’ has been his calculated country bias.

    • Teeny Bikini says:

      I have no issues with Blake, except that he wasn’t transparent. It is not fair to accept non-country singers on your team “knowing” that you only *want* country singers to be on your team. I mean really. I think he has the weakest team because he has weak singers. The best country singer is on Adam’s team. I mean she is light years better than his entire team. I think he has done himself a disservice – by not taking actual singing ability into consideration – first and foremost, second is probably the diversity thing. You are spot on with that one. He won with a pop and R&B singer – I am not sure why his memory fails to recall that….

      • Sarah G. says:

        Maybe Blake changed his game plan once he realized no one is going to come close to Sarah Sims, Judith Hill, Michelle Chamuel, and maybe a few others…. So, by going all country, he’s guaranteed to get all country fans to vote for his team members. Split the vote, if you will. He does seem pretty down in the dumps, though… and I really thought Savannah could win the show. I have a hard time understanding how/why Blake didn’t talk her into a better performance of that (it WAS a bad decision).

    • Vinny says:

      uh i wouldn’t say he has a extremely weak team. i think your exaggerating just a bit. Michelle, Cathia, and Vedo are all solid contestants that could make it somewhat far, but yeah I don’t think usher has a chance to win this year either

    • Lee says:

      Not just Luke–Blake’s mistake was also letting Christian go.

  3. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Arrrrr they did it again. Just like Sarah vs. Warren now we had Cathia vs. Ryan!!!
    I agreed with who won in each case for sure. I was plenty relieved Cathia survived.
    But damn if the one who didn’t win in each case wasn’t better than many another who made is continuing on.
    Ryan had a few little shaky bits but it still woulda been nice to have him moving along (in addition to Cathia).
    Man we lost two good ones in those pairings alone. Each who went home was better than others who stayed on their own team alone never mind overall where they were better than a number who are still around.
    We lost two of the perhaps better guys this season due to what turned out to be odd pairings.
    But at least I am happy with who won in each case and both the winners did win the rounds! Sarah just blew it and Cathia, man, her too. She both won their rounds for sure although in Cathia’s case it was probably not the expected (although it would have been against the others on her team perhaps) and in Warren’s case he probably brought it a lot more than expected.
    A shame we had two lose two good ones though.
    But Cathia was awesome (again).

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      I told you Cathia was placed absurdly low at #20 on that Voice ranking list posted a few days back.

    • Danny says:

      @Hit- I agree w/ that being the wrong pairing. I would have sent Ryan on to the next round though. I’d base it on if 2 people are close, I’d go with the one already on my team.

    • The Beach says:

      I have really liked Ryan in earlier rounds but tonight was not good for me. Maybe the song was too wordy or face-paced for him but he mumbled and slurred the lyrics so badly that I could hardly understand a word he sang. Too bad because I think he’s very talented.

      • HitTheGroundRunning says:

        Yeah he didn’t do as well as I expected. And his voice went really cracky and wonky when he tried the rock screams. He still had promise, but the fact that moving just a trace away from pure soul went a bit ring does give on pause. I still would have taken him over some of the other guys who made it though.

        • HitTheGroundRunning says:

          I was even thinking early on in his performance that wow Cathia actually just may not have been buried with the pairing she may win it by enough to overcome the initial huge bias in favor of Ryan.
          But as I said I’d still give Ryan a try over some of the other guys who made it, some were not so hot and hadn’t been as hot prior.

  4. Laura says:

    Luke was absolutely robbed tonight. And while I know that Cathia did better than Ryan, Ryan was my absolute favorite this year and I am so, so sad that he did not make it to the live rounds.

    • Chris says:

      Totally agree.

    • Danny says:

      @Laura- Unlike Chris, who totally agrees, I 1/3 agree. I thought Holly won vs Luke. I thought Cathia/Ryan were pretty even. Where I agree is Ryan was one of my favorites, so it’s tough not seeing him make the live rounds.

      • HitTheGroundRunning says:

        I think it was more than even and that Cathia won tonight, Ryan kept trying to scream and cracking in weird ways and didn’t quite bring other times too. Cathia really brought presence and it was solid throughout and she did some mad things with that high note bit.
        It was too bad they were paired together. It was a touch danger sign that Ryan went a bit off moving from soul to soul rock though. But still woulda given him a shot over some others who have gone through. It is interesting that Ryan, Luke, Warren are all gone. Luke was a touch duller tonight though. Warren brought like never before.

      • Teeny Bikini says:

        Love Ryan, but he was just off last night. He kept missing those notes – it was definitely hard to watch, but I think the right choice was made.

  5. forwarddad says:

    Hoodsie—-so a Boston thing….

  6. Pat says:

    Slezak, I don’t enjoy the Swon Brothers at all but you can’t say with a straight face that Grace won that. She was a slurry, disjointed mess.

    Also, Cathia delivered one of the best vocals of both nights. And I thought she was throwaway fodder entering tonight.

    As for rankings:


    1. Judith Hill
    2. Sarah Simmons
    3. Sasha Allen
    4. (Warren Stone, le sigh)
    4. Cathia
    5. Amber Carrington
    6. Holly Tucker
    7. Kris Thomas
    8. Michelle Chamuel
    9. Danielle Bradberry
    10. VEDO
    11. Justin Rivers
    12. The Swon Brothers
    13. Karina Iglesias
    14. Josiah Hawley
    15. Garrett Gardner
    16. Caroline Glaser

    Winner’s Chances

    1. Judith Hill (Adam)
    2. Sarah Simmons (Adam)
    3. Justin Rivers (Blake)
    4. Josiah Hawley (Usher)
    5. Danielle Bradberry (Blake)
    6. Amber Carrington (Adam)
    7. Sasha Allen (Shakira)
    8. Cathia (Usher)
    9. Holly Tucker (Blake)
    10. Garrett Gardner (Shakira)
    11. Kris Thomas (Shakira)
    12. VEDO (Usher)
    13. Caroline Glaser (Adam)
    14. Michelle Chamuel (Usher)
    15. The Swon Brothers (Blake)
    16. Karina Iglesias (Shakira)

    • Hpl says:

      So correct on Grace — not sure what Michael thought he was listening to. She was a total mess.

      • MamaLis says:

        SO funny, so true!! I adore Slezak but I just watched that Round and Grace was a Bizmarck, North Dakota Club Act if I ever saw one… at least in that Battle Round! I was almost going to say that the Swon Brothers fit the “Country” bill but isn’t that song like, Harmony 101 for Aspiring Harmonists? Country-ish cute as they may be, they’re voices aren’t even particularly strong. Yeesh.

      • The Beach says:

        I have never understood why Slezak was so enamored with Grace Askew. I have always thought she was one of the weakest contestants. I didn’t like “Boots” and tonight was a disaster and her weird pronunciations aren’t country or blues…they’re just annoying.

        • HitTheGroundRunning says:

          because she is hipster/indie-ish and far from high school cheerleader miss popularity type in style I think is why.

          • Tom22 says:

            seems like a decent reason to connect with someone ; ) unless “mainstream” is a complement not an insult for a person.

    • Heidi says:

      Were you listening to Josiah or just checking out his butt? And Cathia over Holly? Garrett over anyone? Nearly everyone over Karina, or more hilariously, over Michelle?

      • Pat says:

        I’m playing the game with the second rankings. I think Karina has no shot at winning The Voice. And Michelle very, very little. Cathia’s got an untapped market while Holly has to fight for the country vote with Amber and Danielle.

        And I think mildly talented good looking guys do way better than they should on this show (See: Dez Duron). That’s why Justin and Josiah are that high on the winner’s chances ranking.

        • Beth says:

          Totally agree. So many mediocre young guys they hope to turn into heartthrobs get a pass and move on.
          Two that I’d be happy to see go–Soon– are Garrett and Josiah. That guy spends way too much time posing or working on his facial expressions in front of the mirror. It all just comes off as insincere and very annoying.

          • MamaLis says:

            True that, except I actually though Dez Duron had some talent. And remembering back, he put on a good show, as well. Watching the Josiah clip – ugh! The guy is a serious Poser! That he could sing about “dying 100 times” while barely making a connection was blasphemy to the soul of Amy!

          • soso14886 says:

            See, I’m one of the saps who likes the good looks. Call me whatever you want, but I like my reality show singers to be good looking. People shout me down by saying, “It’s about the voice!” Well, maybe in the Blind Auditions. But in reality, it’s not just about the voice and we all know that. Josiah is pretty to look at…and he can croon with a guitar in his hands, that’s more entertaining to me than watching the judges swoon over someone we all know is going to lose (*ahem*Karina*ahem*)

    • You are completely undervaluing Caroline and may be letting your dislike of her cloud your judgement because she is one of only two artists who managed to have all three songs chart on the overall iTunes chart this season (Sarah being the other). All three of her songs are still on the Pop charts. So people are clearly are ready to vote for her. If you do not like her, fine, to each their own, but she should be much higher on the “Winner’s Chances” list just based on her early iTunes success. I would not be surprised if Adam has three of the top four (but I would have Sarah over Judith as #1 as best chance for winning). I also think you are overvaluing the cuteness factor of Justin and Josiah by putting them that high. Sure Dez went a round or two further than his talent dictated last season, but MacKenzie and Diego were also quick outs too.

      • Pat says:

        Caroline is a poor singer. She may be an interesting one, but Itunes votes only go so far and she will not hold up well over multiple performances.

        She’s proven that she can’t stay on the beat or on pitch on an uptempo song. Her vocal technique is not good whatsoever. She missed a ton of notes, ran out of breath, and got behind the music for most of the song. It was total karaoke. And bad karaoke at that.

        • Again, you do not have to like Caroline, but I was just trying to say there are a lot of people out there that do. She has been one of the best selling artist on iTunes, as I write this all three of her songs are in the top 100 on the iTunes pop charts which are the second, fourth and fifth best selling songs from The Voice on that chart (Judith and Sarah are the other artists in the top five), one of the most followed contestant on Twitter, and one of the most viewed contestants on The Voice YouTube page (including the most viewed Battle Round performance). Based on the numbers she definitely has a better chance than finishing better than fourth to last and I’ll take those numbers over your hunch. It is certainly silly that half the contestants above Caroline one your “Winning Chances” list have not cracked iTunes overall charts once and she has done it all three times. I will not go as far as saying she is a lock to make it to the top five because I can see a scenario where Sarah and Judith get America’s Vote (they both have numbers as if not more impressive as Caroline) and Adam saving Amber. But if Caroline does manage to advance to the top 12, I would be very surprised if she does not make to at least the top five. If she does, Adam could very well have the top three artists (which would make the conspiracy theorist in my think the producers may torpedo her just to make sure at least one of the other coaches gets a spot in the finals).

    • Teeny Bikini says:

      Yup, Grace was off for sure. Too bad. She gave it to that boring duo – The Swans.

    • Abby says:

      I’m surprised that so many people are surprised by Cathia making it this far, actually. Once she was the only Latin pop singer left, she was a shoo-in. I thought that, of the three girls like her they had in the knockouts, she was the least likely to advance, but perhaps she had the benefit of going last among them all. With a judge like Shakira, I felt like a Latin pop singer was a definite must for the producers this season.

  7. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Yeah the suddenly switch where Blake went all country through all those who seemingly used good strategy for a loop this time. it’s now obvious that he decided that it was ridiculous that he has won 50% of the time and yet not with a country singer. But as you say that sorta meant he lured in people for the sacrifice.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      That said, tonight, the Swan Bros did bring it better I think, although perhaps Grace could have been more interesting long run. Holly did well. LUke was a touch bland tonight. Still he (and Ryan and Warren) had some of the best promise of all the guys and all are gone.

      • The Beach says:

        I totally agree with you about Warren (he killed it) and Luke (really wished he had picked a different song) and until tonight I was on the Ryan bandwagon but just no on Grace.

    • allie says:

      the funny thing is he never won with a country singer and last year when Christina went all pop that strategy totally backfired. Diversity is key – if not, the voting block cancels each other out.

  8. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Sometimes maybe they pair good ones because they wanna insure their favorite fav makes it perhaps? And maybe they know an early fanbase is key and don’t wanna split it?

  9. Rain says:

    UGH, I’m so disappointed with how these stupid knockout rounds have turned out. First I lose Midas Whale yesterday and today Ryan Innes, NOT COOL!

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      It was a shame to see Ryan go (although not if it had to be at Cathia’s expense and she did win that quite clearly). Although I am a little less certain about him though he did have a few pretty shaky things there were it came apart and another part where he didn’t quite blow me away as much as I had expected. But yeah.

    • Pat says:

      Ryan blew it tonight. Blame his performance. He shoulda stuck with soul.

      • Tiff says:

        I actually kind of agree. I really liked Ryan, but I just felt like he was screaming – badly – at me. Cathia brought a lot of sass and control to a pretty difficult Kelly Clarkson song. She won the round, unfortunately.

  10. ABC says:

    Blake’s team is boring and bland. He’s not going to win this year.

  11. Willow says:

    I was impressed by the Swon Bros tonight….but am I the only one who compares them to Midas Whale, like, “MAN! I wish Midas Whale’s enthusiasm and charm was moving on rather than them….” Happy for Michelle, royally bummed for Luke. Shoulda gone with Usher….Wonder who Usher would have paired him with? Josiah?

    • allie says:

      No, sorry. I really enjoyed Midas Whale and hoped to see them in the live rounds. I wouldn’t pay to see the Swon Brothers in a dive bar and while I hate to say it – they are really unattractive.

    • ES says:

      I am so disappointed about Midas Whale not advancing to the live shows. It’s not even funny how much better Midas Whale is than the Swon Brothers. But yes, I will agree with The Beach that the younger one is a cutie… lol.

      • Teeny Bikini says:

        Oh, such a good point. Midas Whale was amazing.

        • tnsmoke says:

          But Midas Whale, and a lot of other Knock Out Round singers made the critical error of picking WRONG songs! This tells their coach that they don’t have a vision of what they’re all about. Last year Terry and Nicholas and Cody stuck to what they were good at and the niche of music they felt they fit into. Bad song choices are not a good sign to coaches.

  12. Alex says:

    Ok. So I’ve loved every season of idol. But this season the voice won me over…until tonight. Blake has proved himself even more useless than Mariah or Jlo. He’s coming across as an incompetent moron who knows nothing other than country music. Does Shakira ONLY coach Latin artists? Usher only R&B? What the hell, Blake. Please get a new job….or a serious talking to from the producers.

    • B. says:

      Well this is the first season out of four that he’s done that… he usually has NO country artists as finalists.

    • Danny says:

      I think it’s a huge stretch to say he’s more useless than Mariah & JLo- and Nikki if ya wanna add her in there. Yea his team is all country, but the only one I didn’t agree w/ him on is Justin over Savannah. I see where a lot of people thought Luke should have beat Holly, but I thought Holly won that one.

      • HitTheGroundRunning says:

        I expected to prefer Luke by a big margin, but it didn’t really happen and I could see people saying Holly did better. I really thought Savannah would blow Justin away but she seemed kinda off tonight.

        • The Beach says:

          I thought Holly and Luke both were really good and wish they could have both made it through. I don’t remember hearing much of Justin before tonight but the dude can really sing,

    • Jenny says:

      I think Blake’s team is generic in terms of country. There’s no real outstanding star. And I agree I think his coaching is the worst. He talks to them like he’s their friend not their teacher/coach/mentor. He’s so lenient with his advice. I’m disappointed. He still cracks me up but come on Blake, do your job!

      Usher, Shakira and Adam on the other had are great coaches, especially Usher. Real hands on, constructive criticism, and they truly care for their contestant to do well.

      • tnsmoke says:

        I disagree, country radio could use a really good country male duo. Blake is a great coach and people are just pissed because he wants a country singer to win. Knowing this, why do his artists pick NON COUNTRY songs to battle with??

    • Tom22 says:

      Be prepared, the longer the show goes and the higher quality the remaining contestants are.. the more gushing and the less critiquing you will hear.

      They are artists and at some point, it really doesn’t make sense to quibble about imperfections in a good show. They wouldn’t have other’s critiquing their live performances in terms of line by line pitch and they probably feel it is low class to pick on an artist/cotestant they feel made the song what the way that the contestant felt was their own expression.

      Stephen Tyler and Keith Richards and Adam Levine have all had ways of putting that….as have others. Hopefully their gushing is constrained to talking about true things they liked rather than moving into over statement. Blake did say over the top things like saying he felt like he was watching a legend with Nicholas David.. I loved Nicholas David in many of his songs but it was just a step a little too far… I’d have been ok with a compliment that he peformed the song as good as the legends did.. and Bill Withers, the legend that wrote one of Big songs did seem to hold the quality of Nicholas’s performance up at really high level. It just got a little cloying just how far Blake went on that one, and more than a few comments for Cassadee Pope.. who deserved large praise but perhaps a bit less gushy in adjectives (I didn’t mind him complimenting her on her knack of telling him a story or loving how she brought alive in a new way that very personal song of he and his wife….but his compliments bordered on saying she was better than any singer he’s ever seen.. and he’s seen a lot of amazing artists. “On the level with on this one” ? maybe

  13. Jack says:

    Holly-Luke was a great battle. Luke was probably a little better. Grace was terrible. Sorry – she loads up her songs with weird, quirky gimmicks because she really doesn’t have that great a voice. I’m tired of her already, and we’ve only seen two full performances (they only showed a snippet of her battle round performance). The Swon Brothers’ harmonies were spot on, they were perfectly in sync with their phrasing, and they have been the best duo on the show (Midas Whale was good, but they struggled with harmonies in their Knockout Round performance).

    • Pat says:

      Definitely have to agree. Grace was probably the 5th worst of the entire night (after Ryan, Savannah, Audrey, and C Perkins of course).

    • MamaLis says:

      Ya but come on, the song they did is like, “the” go-to harmony song of every duet that has sat around a campfire or table of beer mugs for the last twenty years. They might be good enough, but they’re not “special.”

  14. P says:

    Well at least now it’s definite that anyone who plans on auditioning for the voice, who isn’t a country artist, should avoid Blake at all costs. His ridiculous plan for an all country team has made sure that some of the most interesting performers are gone.

    • Alex says:

      Yea. He’s really got to go.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      He had very mixed teams, even almost devoid of country before though, especially last season. I guess you can’t blame him for trying to give it a pure country go for once. Then again it was a bit rough for those others who thought they were being smart going with him and yeah we did lose some diversity…. so maybe so.

      • Tom22 says:

        He selected a beautiful and experienced country singer last year, gave her a perfect song for her and she performed it in a very plain way against an inspired and talented Cassadee Pope… he went with quality and she ended up winning the whole thing. I think he might have expected the other girl to hit the softball pitch out of the park. He did shift Cassadee, a rock and roll singer, towards country songs which seemed to fit her perfectly in the cross over way she performed them. I still listen to Cassadee’s performances.

    • mackdazzle says:

      Maybe Blake should have taken notes when xtina had a serious fail last season as she tried to build an all pop team and had her entire team eliminated a few weeks before the competition was over. In the end – this is a competition and Blake’s not doing his team any favors by spreading the vote across all those country artists.

    • Danny says:

      @P- Overall he’s done pretty well. He’s won 2 out of 3. Yea he’s all country this year, but it’s not like they’re terrible singers. I think Adam’s team is the strongest, but I don’t fault Blake. If Judith or Sarah had picked him, I’m sure they’d still be on his team.

      • P says:

        Yeah, I’m not saying that he hasn’t done well in the past, he obviously has. However, this year he has thrown away some really good singers that had large followings for several country artists who are decent singers, but aren’t really all that interesting. They are going to pull votes from each other, making it almost impossible for any of them to actually win. Fact is, Judith and Sarah aren’t on his team and he really did nothing to give his team a chance against those two. People from now on should know that choosing his team is a very serious risk if you aren’t country cause you may very well be cast aside for “what he knows best”.

    • Jenny says:

      Blake might as well wear a sign that says “don’t pick me” next season. He was doing well with a variety of acts and that’s what made him popular. Now he’s limited to country, ppl won’t go to him no matter how much they like him.

      • Mike says:

        Why do people keep saying this? He’s done it for just this one season. He’s won twice without country artists. Maybe next season he’ll change his strategy again. You can’t base everything on one season. Playing devil’s advocate though, maybe he’s getting pressure from within the genre to use this opportunity to bring out new country artists. We really don’t know what he’s thinking unless he decides to spill the beans.

        • Danny says:

          @Mike- That’s a good point. I don’t know who his country friends are, but I was thinking maybe Martina McBride and Shania Twain (or those types of people) were telling him to pick some country artists for his team this year. I also agree that one year doesn’t set a trend. We want the artists to change it up. Maybe he was thinking as a coach he should change it up to stay fresh. I’m not sure what’s going through his mind, but I can’t really fault the guy.

    • Jack says:

      Like others have said, he’s never had a go-to country singer on his team, largely because there haven’t been many good country singers on the show yet. This season is loaded with country talent. Holly and the Swon Brothers are absolutely talented enough to stick around – did I think maybe Holly lost to Luke? Sure, but we’ve seen other judges pick people based on what they think they can do with them before. Usher seems to be picking people based purely on showmanship. Let’s at least recognize that Blake is putting through talented singers. It’s not like he’s advancing someone who can’t really sing *ahem*SHAKIRA*ahem*

  15. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Wow Audrey is so fine. Most unfortunately she didn’t bring quite as much of the star energy something to it all tonight that Michelle did so that was a rough pairing for Audrey with Michelle coming in as the big favorite.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      Not sure she made quite the choice, maybe something else and she coulda snuck by. Michelle brought some energy and performance but then again directly compared to Pink, that wasn’t Pink.

      • The Beach says:

        I really enjoyed Michelle. She’s quirky and different and energetic and fun. Is she Pink? Nope, but who is?

        • ES says:

          Well said. I love Pink, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy Michelle’s performance.

        • HitTheGroundRunning says:

          Yeah Michelle was fun. It was good.
          It does go to show what phenom Pink is though. Even another level of stage performance and vocals all at once.

  16. Jane says:

    I’m calling it now: Shakira VS. Adam for the finale!

  17. hi says:

    Luke and Holly were paired? Seriously? both of them were much better than the first battle of the night.

    • Danny says:

      @Hi- True, but it’s not like the coaches know who’s going to go out there and sing well and who’s not. Occasionally 2 will do real well while 2 others do terrible. I’ve got to believe that the pairings are made based on a lot of things that we don’t see. I’m guessing the coaches are also thinking “dang, why didn’t I make a different pairing” when they see how it plays out on stage. Im sure Usher did one of those V-8 slaps on the head when he saw Cathia vs Ryan. Overall these 4 are light years ahead of the 4 judges on AI.

  18. jen says:

    I really liked Savannah Berry and was sorry to see her cut.

  19. Jake says:

    I kind of thought Jess was robbed. I preferred her over Josiah for sure.

  20. dani n. says:

    You’re trippin Mike.

  21. Trace says:

    You got to be kidding about Grace. So annoying and affected. Too bad about Luke though, I thought he was really good

  22. Jane says:

    Usher picking Josiah was strategic. He’s not really talented, but he’s extremely good looking. Mostly women watch talent shows, and are the ones that vote. All he needs to do is add a guitar and girls will go wild.

  23. Hpl says:

    Bad song choice tonight.

  24. mdtindc says:

    I missed it.. did Luke Edgemon do Teenage Dream like he did when he was a Warbler on Glee?

  25. Spycigal says:

    I have a feeling Blake’s team will all go first just like Xtina’s did last year, because just like last season when you have the same type or genre they will split votes with each other. The other three coaches have diversity so I believe anyone of their artists could win – it won’t necessarily be the best voice but the one in their own genre!

    • mackdazzle says:

      Thank you! I’ve been saying this too. He shouldn’t ignore that he’s already been successful with non country artists. And how many times has he said he can’t decide and then just defaulted to the country artist in the battle round. If he winds up winning, good for him but . . . hmm.

    • Jake says:

      I’d love to see Adam win with country singer Amber.

      • mackdazzle says:

        Good Point – that would be nice.

        • Jake says:

          I think it would be absolutely hilarious if Blake screwed over all of his non-country team members for a country winner, only for Adam to swoop in and win with a country singer he nearly eliminated in every round.

  26. NedPepper says:

    Usher has a really crappy team. Blake’s isn’t much better. Adam is going to run away with this. Sarah Simmons, for the win.

    • Tiff says:

      Usher’s secret weapon is Michelle Chamuel. She won the entire night, in my opinion. But I think Adam’s one-two punch of Judith and Sarah will be hard to beat.

    • Jenny says:

      I think Josiah and Cathia are the weakest on his team. Vedo is pretty good. But Michelle is a true contender.

      • Kay says:

        You think Cathia is one of the weakest in Usher’s team? Really? She has one of the strongest voices in the competition. In addition, she brings out a lot of emotion in her songs, just like Cassaddee Pope did. I think Usher was very strategic in keeping her for the live rounds because there hasn’t been a legitimate Latin singer in the Voice yet. So, I’m sure she will get all of the Latin votes. Overall, I think Cathia is underrated because she is a great singer and clearly deserved to advance to the next round.

  27. adys says:

    Really upset about some decisions with these two coaches but the main one is how Blake could let Luke away from the competition. I guess he actually meant the fact that he was building a Country Army. Some of them work out, some don’t.

  28. MoshiMoshi says:

    Luke was amazing!!! Holly has a nice voice but zero stage presence, boring! Big mistake Blake.

    PS: Love Michelle’s energy!

    • Hpl says:

      I didn’t like either of them tonight.

    • diana says:

      luke was robbed….killed the R.B STYLE..LOVE IT…

    • MamaLis says:

      Luke WAS amazing and it was a travesty that Blake let him go. Especially when you think how over-the-top with praise Blake was in choosing Luke during the steal. If he wasn’t gonna commit then he should have let Luke go with Usher. I mean, these people have one shot at this and when someone has that much talent, they’re trusting their Coach is going to act with some logic. If I were Luke I’d be TICKED. On the Voice online clip, the other Coaches literally pummel Blake for his choice. They cut most of it out on TV but Adam literally says to him, “Seriously Blake, don’t be stupid. I’m not kidding.”

  29. paula says:

    Blake is just choosing wrong almost every time! Very disappointing. Usher made great choices, though. I was the most happy about Michelle and Vedo making it through.

  30. Danny says:

    I’m surprised at Ryan leaving. He was one of the ones I thought could win the thing. I liked Holly, Danielle, and Vedo as the 3 best today. Overall though, I think the winner will come from Adam’s team.

    • The Beach says:

      Ryan reminded me a lot of Josh Krajcek (sp?) from XFactor. Big, burly, a bit disheveled but with strong raspy voices but Josh had a lot more experience and his voice was more fine-tuned.

  31. asherlev1 says:

    The HELL is Blake doing?? I stopped watching the show he let Christian Porter go. NOW HE LETS GRACE ASKEW GO?!! AND LUKE?!! ….WOW. JUST. WOW.

    • asherlev1 says:

      sighss I’ll probably just end up youtubing Michelle’s performances. Usher seems to have really done right by her, no? (Well, I mean, I say this not having seen the show, but the fact that she’s made it this far is promising. Sighss. Christian and Grace should have both picked Shakira. T_T)

      • Jake says:

        Dude, you’re clearly still watching the show. You could say any of the coaches seem to have really done right by any of the contestants remaining based solely on the fact that said contestants are still on the show.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      Grace wasn’t her best tonight.

    • The Beach says:

      You obviously didn’t watch the show if you’re upset that Blake let Grace go.

    • diana says:

      ikr..luke I need to find you..we need to do duo together..are write a you was hottt…fosho.

  32. Caitlin says:

    My heart hurts right now. No Luke or Grace? What kind of crack is Blake smoking?

  33. EVPandHC says:

    I don’t wanna jinx anything, but I think Michelle is gonna be De’Borah’ed. And I’m gonna be ranting.

    • The Beach says:

      I fear you may be correct.

    • ES says:

      What happened with De’Borah last season? (I didn’t start watching Season 3 until the last couple of live shows.)

    • Mike says:

      Funny you say that. The minute she was picked I had the same reaction. Clearly talented. Clearly not the typical star. Should probably go further but won’t get voted through. Last year Christina had a chance to save her but didn’t. Will Usher make that same mistake?

  34. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Cathia, Danielle, Michelle tonight

    • The Beach says:

      I was surprised by Justin tonight. I didn’t really remember him from earlier but the guy has got some pipes.

  35. Timmah says:

    I must be the only one who thinks Michelle is overrated. Take away the jumping around on stage, and she’s a pretty average singer for this competition.

    • lucy27lucy says:


      • HitTheGroundRunning says:

        I actually thought Cathia and Danielle did better and Michael has Cathia as nearly worst winner of the night!! (He does tend to go for hipster types and so on and punish ones who seem too pop to some extent especially if they are hot, certainly unless the latter long prove themselves. I’m probably talking nonsense though or certainly generalizing a bit much though.)

        • MC says:

          ITA. It’s not nonsense. Mary (“shark eyes”) Miranda and Katie Stevens are two of the more infamous examples. Sometimes Michael and I share the same opinion, such as with Amanda and Candice. I like someone with strong opinions, but sometimes the negative ones become too vicious for my taste.

    • Jenny says:

      Michelle was a whole lot better in her audition vocally. But she has a unique star quality and you can’t help but enjoy watching her. The right songs that suit her voice and she could go far

    • Mike says:

      No, I’m with you. I can appreciate she’s got talent. She’s definitely something new than we we’re used to. But maybe I’m just more mainstream. She just doesn’t interest me. Though Audrey didn’t cut it tonight. I would have been interested to see how Michelle would have compared to a tougher opponent.

    • MC says:

      Lo, someone had the guts to say it. These shows are always a popularity contest. Michelle is the anti-cheerleader that everyone loves to root for. I’m not saying she’s terrible, but slightly overrated due to her likeable personality. I am more excited about this season’s top 16 than I was at this stage last year. I really hated some of the top fifteen or sixteen from last season (including the winner). I’m liking almost everyone that is still in it this time. I feel this is a more joyful group of people who love music while last season came across as a game show (with apologies to Amanda and Melanie and anyone else who was trying for something authentic).

    • syb says:

      She’s overrated because she’s pretty much the only one who is interesting and who we haven’t seen before on the show in some vestige or another, at least after this round of cuts. She’s not that great of a singer, though that’s true.

  36. lucy27lucy says:

    I realize she is young and needs a drop more movement and a bit more connection, but did nobody notice how silky smoothe and beautiful Danielle sang? And she will continue to grow and get better …Blake’s only hope.

    • Timmah says:

      I thought she was the best tonight by a wide margin.

    • MC says:

      Danielle is my fave from his team. She’s very good, potentially great. She is reminiscent of Janelle from AI this year, but with a stronger set of pipes. Danielle vocally is a cross between Janelle and Hollie (last season) from AI.

  37. NedPepper says:

    Also, Blake seems uninspired this season. Bland picks. Is this the same guy who backed quirky Dia Frampton (who by the way is the only Voice contestant to put out a listenable album)? Grace Askew had SOMETHING. The Swonn brothers are just a bland cover band you’d see at a bar. What irritates me is that he fights so hard in the Blinds for people he has no intention of really wanting to work with. If some of that talent had landed on Usher or Shakira’s team, we wouldn’t have three uneven teams and one powerhouse team. (Adam has this in the bag.)

    -One last thing: Since Blake is determined to turn Casadee Pope into a country singer (?!?), she will undoubtedly get lost in Nashville, where no one will take her seriously.. Which means I don’t see her album doing anything. Which means The Voice REALLY needs a winner to at least do SOMETHING. I’m not expecting the glory days of Clarkson and Underwood level singing competition winners, but the winner having just a small presence would be a nice change of pace. Even Dia Frampton’s success was tiny and pretty much carried over from her original band.

    • Jenny says:

      He seems uninspired yes and bored. Where is his energy?! It seems like he doesn’t even want to be there. In the past he has shown more excitement towards the show and it’s talent. Hopefully this is temporary.

      • Dinamgaber says:

        I have had the exact same feeling too , it looks like blake isn’t even trying .. He is just taking the easy way and “sticking with what he knows” while before he was the one who used to take lots of chances that really paid off … But this season he looks bored and that will def backfire in the presence of adam’s team ofcourse … I soo don’t get blake’s weird picks at all ..
        He could have had a great diverse team if he had kept savannah and christian and caroline with danielle ..or luke instead of christian .. But his team has plummeted to fourth ranking on everyon’s lists amd there is no hope for it anymore .. Yes maybe danielle .. But i am not sure she will stand a chance when she is pitted against the rest of the contestants, i am so disaapointed in blake .. Simply because i don’t get his bias this season or his strategey .. It is like he is sabotaging his team on purpose … Or like he wants to stop being on the voice .. But anyway no matter what blake did this season i am not sure the show would be as fun or as popular if he were to sit out next season .. Such controversy

  38. EM says:

    Cathia vs. Ryan – The little Mariah-esque trill Cathia did was pretty, but otherwise she was meh. Ryan picked completely the wrong song, but still should’ve advanced on past performances alone.

    Danielle vs. Taylor – Danielle was good, but still generic. Taylor sings straight through her nose and is honestly painful to listen to. Good call, Blake.

    Holly vs. Luke – OMG SO ANGRY. Holly, to be fair, has a good voice. In fact, she deserved to advance over everyone else on her team… except Luke. These two should not have been paired together.

    Josiah vs. Jess – Josiah is pretty to look at. I guess he sings too. Jess’s pronunciations annoy me as much as Caroline’s. Right winner here.

    Justin vs. Savannah – Savannah was… whatever. Justin was decent, but having been montaged twice he’s gonna have a real “climb” in the voting rounds.

    Michelle vs. Audrey – What in the hell did Audrey just vomit-sing all over the stage, and why was she wearing that outfit? Thank God for Michelle. Love her. She literally won the second she opened her mouth.

    Swon Brothers vs. Grace – Grace is another one who I just hated because of her pronunciations, but the Swon Brothers aren’t anything special. The skinny one doesn’t even do anything but harmonize, he’s his brother’s backup singer.

    OVERALL THOUGHTS – Tonight really sucked. Teams Adam and Shakira are clearly superior in my book. Michelle is great, but the other 7 who’ve advanced here do nothing for me.

    • EM says:

      Oops, I forgot:

      VEDO vs. C. – C. was all over the place with his pitch and just… ugh. VEDO was much better, but I couldn’t help but imagine Jessica Childress on the same song.

  39. Deena says:

    Ok. I have officially had it with that overgrown bumpkin Blake! What he did to Luke was particularly offensive. Clearly Luke never had a chance against Holly—Blake’s Miranda wannabe look-alike. One of several. Indeed, Blake seems to have quite the thing for the vanilla-blonde, traditionalist country pageant-bot. How boring! How unimaginative! Why string-along an amazingly talented non-country artist like Luke when he never had any intention of choosing him? That seems cruel to me. Blake has left a bad taste in my mouth for the show.

  40. Ryan had such a bad song choice. He should have wiped the floor with her. … Usher is going to make Vedo a star!

  41. The Beach says:

    I suppose there are signs that say “Stand Up” and “Scream” because every time anyone hits a high note or key change, up they go. It’s really pretty silly.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      You do have a point. There were some pretty bedraggled performances there and then someone just goes up for one high note and the audience is giving a standing O all of a sudden!

  42. Jeremy says:

    Sasha Allen’s Facebook page tells me she was a backing vocalist for Christina Aguilera and Usher. I really hope this doesn’t mean she’s going to be a producers’ pet. I expect she’ll be stylistically like Trevin last season in the inability to sing uptempo songs.

  43. Stephen says:

    Michelle Chamuel is awesome – like a discount Lady Gaga

  44. trimaran12 says:

    wow. What a waste of talent. Yes, some blew it, like Ryan. maybe next time let them all perform and have the coaches pick their top 4-5. some of the eliminations were criminal.

  45. Linda says:

    Can you imagine how good Ryan would have sounded singing “The Thrill is Gone”? He was my favorite of this group going into tonight, but boy, I sure didn’t enjoy his scream / singing. Such a disapp

  46. Jenny says:

    I like Michelle and Vedo from Ushers team. Blake’s team is boring in my opinion. They are good singers but soooo generic. If he coaches her right Danielle could be his only chance at winning this. But honestly I don’t see Blake winning this year.

    Can we just note how god awful C Perkins was?! I can’t believe Usher stole him. It was so amateurish… Bordering on bad karaoke. Also Audrey on her rendition of “How to love”. Sounded like someone was dying, it was so painful.

  47. ES says:

    I’ve been trying to comment only about the teams I really care about (i.e., Adam and Usher), but Blake has been making so many irritating decisions that I can’t help myself…

    Savannah vs. Justin
    Savannah’s performance could’ve been great, but the band overpowered her. I think it was a good show of artistry in any case. On the other hand, Justin’s performance was nothing more than decent karaoke. And that incessant finger point! Ugh. Did anyone else notice that? It was so distracting and such an amateur-ish thing to do.

    Holly vs. Luke
    When Blake so enthusiastically stole Luke, I really thought he’d give Luke a fair and fighting chance. When he put him up against Holly, I realized I was wrong. Granted, Luke screwed himself with his song choice, but Holly wasn’t particularly impressive either (and this is coming from someone who thinks she’s the best one on his team).

    Josiah vs. Jess
    I was ready to hate whatever Josiah did with “Back to Black” (the Amy Winehouse catalogue should be reserved for those who can truly deliver an emotional performance), but it wasn’t that bad. Of course, “not that bad” is not going to win him this competition. Let’s just say he’s lucky that he’s so good-looking. I agree with Adam that he and Jess should’ve sang each other’s songs. It’s a shame about Jess. Hers was one of my favorite voices in the competition.

    Audrey vs. Michelle
    I really misjudged Usher! I thought if given the choice between Audrey and Michelle, he would go with Audrey because of her looks (and because he never seemed that into Michelle). But he picked her, and I was so happy! Michelle had me smiling throughout her entire performance.

    C. Perkins vs. VEDO
    I thought VEDO was great tonight! I had previously written him off as a mediocre Usher wannabe, but his performance impressed me; I thought it was really moving and tasteful.

    Other thoughts: It is a travesty that the duo advancing to the live shows is the Swon Brothers and not Midas Whale. A travesty, I say! Cathia really impressed me tonight, but Ryan gets my respect for singing the theme song from “One Tree Hill.”

  48. A says:

    Sometimes I wish that they wouldn’t let them pick their songs for the Battles and Knockouts. Grace’s song choice was not great at all, but I really liked her from what I’ve seen before. I wish she chose something better.
    I really like Michelle. She was so energetic and she really had me interested in the performance unlike some others that I was quite bored with (Taylor, Savanna, C. Perkins, Jess).
    Vedo really surprised me. i really enjoyed his performance and C. Perkins clearly lost that one.
    I still would have picked Ryan over Cathia.
    Luke is not my favorite so far but I think he would’ve been a good addition to Blake’s team in the Live Rounds and give it a little more diversity.
    Overall, I think Team Adam is clearly the front runner this season for sure. Judith Hill FTW!! With Team Blake second, then Team Usher and lastly Shakira (I love Shakira, but Garrett?? come on really, WHY?! And I really don’t see Karina, Kris or Sasha winning)

  49. DaysGoBy says:

    Luke was saved by Blake only Blake no one else turned around!!! I think his song choice did NOT showcase what he is CLEARLY capable of singing his *** off. It may have been great on Glee but he should have picked a song that showed his range better…Usher didn’t get it!!! Neither did I!!! The Grace Askew thing too much twang seems a bit ungenuine to me!!! Michelle was awesome…Cathia “Killed It” and Danielle is a natural talent I agree shes no Carrie Underwood but throw more confidence and she could surprise people!!! She is my dark horse!!!

    • Kenneth says:

      Both Blake & Usher hit SAVE for Luke. It’s was Luke’s “strategic” decision to go with Blake — which I felt at the time was a big mistake. It was pretty obvious that Blake was focusing on the Country thing pretty hard this season, but Luke thought that would work to his advantage. (Surely he’s watched the show before and seen how doggone stubborn Blake is.) So, even though I think Blake chose wrong in cutting Luke, it’s not like Luke didn’t have a hand in his own fate.

  50. Sheilalala says:

    What an annoying, surprising-in-a-bad-way night!
    I get that it’s a ‘knockout round’, but killing off your top ranked contestants over a bad song choice (or one bad performance) when you can tweak that in the Live shows is unforgiveable when the people you are keeping are so mediocre they will be axed and forgotten quickly.

    Luke Edgemon did a sexy, killer arrangement that will fly off shelves-Cut! WTF. I bet he is wishing he didn’t turn Usher down twice as he BEGGED for him (made me wonder if he had heard that Usher is difficult or something-I wasn’t digging the pushups or weird face staring tactics on his team)

    Grace Askew-Ya the vocal theatrics were kind of annoying, but she has something-that’s why she needed your coaching Blake. Swon Bros? Ditto everyone else on here-flyover state dive bar..Midas Whale are WAYYY more deserving.

    Ryan Innes-Tried to get growly and raspy and wasn’t my favorite, but he could easily have been top 5-Cut for Cathia who did a good job and ‘may’ get some of the latin vote but not as much of a star as Ryan. HUGE rookie mistake Usher. Just as bad as booting Jessica Childress….

    Savannah Berry-bad song choice, but she could have given Blake a MUCH better chance at a win than the bland blonde girls, her voice is hauntingly beautiful. Justin is technically good, but forgettable. I bet Warren is cursing his choice to go Team Adam, esp after killing it last night!

    I think Blake is so in awe of Sarah that he is like ‘screw it, may as well get some country artists on itunes, I ain’t gonna win’. I’m Team Sarah for the win-from her first audition; but really looked forward to seeing the other artists bloom and become successful. Usher and Shakira should have sat in on some sales classes or something-Adam is a crafty snake in the blinds, and Blake knows how to sell with humor…
    Ones I will continue to enjoy:
    1. Sarah
    2. Judith
    3. Amber
    4. Sasha
    5. Danielle

    1. Caroline (when I can even hear her over backup)
    2. Cathia
    3. Holly (please god, a decent song, there is some country I like)
    4. Kris (again, with a better song)
    5. Karina (see above)

    FF the tivo:
    The good looking dude, the country dude with a high upper register, the snore bros, and the others I have already forgotten.

    I really hope I’m wrong, I was so getting in to this season.