The Voice recap: 'Live Top 12 Elimination'

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The Voice

type:
TV Show
genre:
Reality TV, Music
run date:
04/26/11
performer:
Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Miley Cyrus, Jennifer Hudson
broadcaster:
NBC
seasons:
13
Current Status:
In Season

The people have spoken, and voters, you’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do.

The Voice‘s first live elimination round lands two from Team Adam Levine in the bottom, vying for the go-ahead vote. And at least one of those is a complete surprise. But before we get to that, let’s talk about the night’s performances and results.

For starters, it seems like the rest of America wasn’t quite as put off by what Addison Agen and Noah Mac brought to the stage last night because the two join Chloe Kohanski as the first three artists sent through to the top 11 tonight. I’ll take my licks for misreading those moments (while still hoping that they harken back to some of their more impassioned performances going forward). Addison’s certainly been strong all season, and Noah, well, he’s doing enough to earn some love from audiences this week.

After the first names are read, we get a sampling of what Jennifer Hudson’s team sounds like en masse by way of their rendition of “Let It Be,” and it’s probably one of the most dramatic interpretations of the song you’ll ever hear. Between Davon Fleming’s feathery riffs, Noah Mac’s rocker railing, and Jennifer and Shi’Ann Jones’ matchy-matchy diva belts, there’s not a trace of the Beatles’ earthy original. But it’s got J. Hud Productions’ own rhythm running through, so it works.

The next two contestants to receive their green lights to the next round are Brooke Simpson and Keisha Renee. No shockers there, since even if their showcases of this week weren’t your absolute favorites, they’ve done enough this season to earn some more time on this show and did nothing last night to hurt their chances. Good call.

And after Maroon 5 treats us to that radio-takeover tune of theirs (“What Lovers Do”) and we get to hear the whole top 12 team up with the Barden Bellas for a Pitch Perfect 3 tribute video, we learn that Shi’Ann Jones and Ashland Craft have advanced as well. Ashland had the more competent performance of the two last night, even if it was devoid of sentimentality, while Shi’Ann was doing her best to replicate every single punch note of her Mariah Carey classic. She hit enough to pass muster, at least this time.

That’s when Miley Cyrus joins Adam Levine to introduce his Snapchat winner (and show off her life-sized-scrunchie-inspired dress) before Blake Shelton takes the stage with his team. Annnnd we’re basically treated to three different songs at once during their delivery of Hank Williams Jr.’s “If It Will It Will.” The first verses belong to Blake and Red, and singing side by side, it’s clear why he’s so fond of Red Marlow this season; they’re practically music twins. I can just picture them both sitting on a rocking chair, sipping on moonshine and telling stories about the good old days. They’re clearly kindred spirits. Then, we’ve got Keisha Renee coming in with her song-saving soul factor, followed by Chloe Kohanski throwing in her own emo girl moments, and it’s just…different. If it will land with you, it will… (Recap continues on page 2)

The three final artists advancing without having to hit the mic tonight are Davon Fleming, Ashland Craft, and Red Marlow. Fine, fine, fine, and all, but that leaves Jon Mero in the bottom two with Adam Cunningham.

What is this?!

Granted, Jon Mero has not been a central star of the contestants this season, but he’s had at least two wow factor moments that should’ve spared him at least a little longer. Adam Cunningham I get; he had a really bad night last night. But Jon? He was good, even if a little scattered. Adam Levine looks pretty dismayed to see two of his own in the bottom tonight, especially since he can’t truly prop one over the other to advance.

Adam gets the first shot at redemption and goes with a very familiar classic rock favorite in “Fortunate Son.” This time he does not lag with the lyrics — if anything, he’s a step ahead of the beat — and he manages to play to the crowd with a few spoken lines and one last power screech. His coach calls him “badass,” without giving any specific endorsement.

Then comes Jon, with a similarly well-known song in “I Want You Back.” It’s probably not the wisest choice for this moment because it’s taking him right back to that time, earlier in the season, when he leaned into his energetic stage play instead of his formidable vocal skills. He’s breathy in spots, he’s not able to hit any mega-notes of value, and it’s frankly a little more generic than his past standout moments. Even so, Adam Levine does explicitly state that Jon shouldn’t go home (crediting the studio audience’s reaction for that assessment instead of his own, to keep it classy).

Alas.

It’s a shame, but based strictly on these two save-me performances, it’s understandable why Adam wins the internet vote this time. While Jon might have given us some more emotionally resonant moments before, that’s not what happens tonight.

So, Jon Mero goes home muchhhhhh too soon.

Onward we go.

Saved by America (in order of announcement by Carson Daly):

  1. Addison Agen (Team Adam)
  2. Noah Mac (Team Jennifer)
  3. Chloe Kohanski (Team Blake)
  4. Brooke Simpson (Team Miley)
  5. Keisha Renee (Team Blake)
  6. Shi’Ann Jones (Team Jennifer)
  7. Janice Freeman (Team Miley)
  8. Davon Fleming (Team Jennifer)
  9. Ashland Craft (Team Miley)
  10. Red Marlow (Team Blake)

Saved by the instant vote: Adam Cunningham (Team Adam)
Sent home: Jon Mero (Team Adam)

TEAM STANDINGS:

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