Team Blake's trio of country singers still did their best to stand apart

By Amanda Bell
May 21, 2019 at 12:58 AM EDT
Trae Patton/NBC
S16 E22
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Here we are, folks! It’s finale week on The Voice, and we’re just one day away from picking season 16’s winner. It’s been a very strange season, with the live cross battles resulting in such lopsided team numbers so early on that no one could possibly catch up to Blake Shelton‘s team. As a result, three of the four remaining contestants come from Blake’s squad. The season’s new coach, John Legend, is still upbeat though because Maelyn Jarmon has been on-point all season long and only seems to get better as we go.

This week was no exception, as Jarmon shared the stage with Team Blake’s Gyth Rigdon, Andrew Sevener, and Dexter Roberts, and while each of the three have managed to tap into different skill sets throughout their three showcases (each of the singers debuted a new cover, a single of their own, and did a duet with their coaches) it’s Maelyn who remains the take-notice singer of the evening — nay, the season — in the end. The writing seems to be on the wall already, but here’s a look at the final performances of the Top 4 along with some predictions.

Maelyn Jarmon (Team John)
Single: “Wait for You”

This might be more of a folk-pop roar than fans are used to from Maelyn Jarmon, but she came to slay with this song and manages to show us some textures and warmth in her tones we haven’t heard before. She also reminds us of just how effortless this is for her right now, and the iTunes download numbers should be kind to her. John Legend’s certainly pleased and dances right along, while Adam Levine again insists that it’s her who deserves to win the season (and he promises there’s no behind-the-scenes beef with Blake to blame for that assessment).

Andrew Sevener and Blake Shelton
Duet: “All Right Now” by Creedence Clearwater Revival

Coach Blake is clearly enjoying his sprawling team make-up tonight because his pre-taped jokes are more dadlike than ever. This duet is built to be spirited and playful, and that’s exactly what it is, thanks in no small part to Andrew Sevener’s well-placed growls and adlibs.

Dexter Roberts (Team Blake)
Cover: “Anything Goes” by Randy Houser

Dexter Roberts began his Voice journey with a Randy Houser song and earned four chair turns, so now’s the perfect time for him to draw from that lane one last time to bookend his blinds. Blake hopes that this “more soulful country” number can show off what Dexter is capable of, and well, mission accomplished because he does indeed have that deep, achy sound that works so well with a heartbreak anthem like this one. There are a couple of pitchy moments to pick on, but otherwise, this is lovely. Blake pays him the ultimate compliment by calling him “classy” and “professional” and comparing him to both Ronnie Milsap and George Strait.

Gyth Rigdon and Blake Shelton
Duet: “Take It Easy” by the Eagles (by way of Travis Tritt)

Another duet, another high-energy performance for Team Blake. There are moments when the busy instrumentals drown out their voices, but Gyth does his best to sing above it and show off the signature sharpness of his own sound.

Andrew Sevener (Team Blake)
Single: “Rural Route Raising”

This new original is the kind of campy country number Andrew Sevener excels with, so he hopes to get fans bopping with its catchy chorus and foot-stomping attitude. While there are a couple of breathy moments, his raspy low notes are still well suited to the song, so much so that Blake predicts he’ll be singing it for the rest of his career. Even John Legend has to agree it’s a “great record” and that Andrew has been “in the zone” during this last stretch.

Maelyn Jarmon and John Legend
Duet: “Unforgettable” by Nat King Cole

Maelyn Jarmon’s status as the one non-country singer of the bunch makes her an easy standout, and this timeless classic, in particular, feels like a breath of fresh air to break up the monotony. That said, she and coach John Legend each have strong instincts for their individual performances, and that results in some clunky efforts to harmonize in the beginning. Even the tempo seems to be uneven between them for a while. They’re both — dare we say it — unforgettable singers, though, and still sound very dreamy and dramatic, as the song demands. However, this would’ve really worked better if they pulled their lines apart a bit more in the arrangement.

Gyth Rigdon (Team Blake)
Cover: “Once in a Blue Moon” by Earl Thomas Conley

The pressure’s on for Gyth Rigdon to get this song right since it hails from the recently departed personal hero of his coach. The tenor of despair in the melody allows him to sprinkle in some of his folksier elements but still stick to the rustic staccato of the original. Blake is certainly pleased with what he’s heard, saying that he has “honored” Conley’s memory with it. 

Dexter Roberts (Team Blake)
Single: “Looking Back”

Blake wants to find something that can fit into Dexter Roberts’ wheelhouse, and this song is an, uh, interesting choice for him because it can’t seem to decide whether it’s a country-pop anthem or a moody rock song built for instant radio play. He plays into that middle ground well enough, but is it enough to distinguish himself from the others in the pack? Blake Shelton thinks so and insists Dexter is the most record-ready of the contestants right now (on his team, at least). 

Andrew Sevener (Team Blake)
Cover: “Lips of an Angel” by Hinder

For this third and final performance of the evening, Blake Shelton also wants Andrew Sevener to try his chords with a rockier style, with instruction for him to lean into the angst of the anthem. Instead, Andrew wisely opts to draw it down to avoid being at full-tilt all night long. He still takes his coach’s notes in the final stretch of the song, but the tenderer moments of the number are working better for him, and he knows it. Afterward, even coach John Legend says he’d pick Andrew to win if he had to choose someone from Team Blake instead of Maelyn. “I don’t know what’s happening right now, but this is your night,” Blake says of him sticking the landing with this.

Dexter Roberts and Blake Shelton
Duet: “Hard Workin’ Man” by Brooks & Dunn

For Dexter Roberts’ last performance of the evening, he shares the stage with his coach and rocks out to this gritty ditty. He seems to be enjoying the rhythm and blue-collar vibes of the piece, even if it doesn’t stand out from the rest of his work in this last round.

Gyth Rigdon (Team Blake)
Single: “Proof I’ve Always Loved You”

Blake Shelton doesn’t have to help Gyth Rigdon find his original song because the contestant already has this one waiting in the wings from when he wrote it about his wife years before. The song is a pretty perfect selection for him, too, because it encapsulates his genre-bending talents and shows a more vulnerable, and rounded, side of himself. “You’re the total package,” Blake brags. “You could win this thing.”

Maelyn Jarmon (Team John)
Cover: “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen

Last but certainly not least, we have Maelyn Jarmon putting everyone right in their feels with her haunting rendition of “Hallelujah.” The first verse and chorus might be a bit subdued, but once she dives into the second, it’s pretty much impossible not to have chill bumps. As you’re listening to her escalate in intensity and octave, it feels like she’s about to break — she can’t keep climbing like this — and yet, she never does. It’s an engrossing experience to listen to her, and she’s so many lightyears ahead of everyone else. This is a pitch-perfect end to an enjoyable evening of finale performances, and the standing ovation she receives is well-earned. “Honest to God, you are like an angel from Heaven. It’s unbelievable to hear you sing, I can’t believe it,” Adam Levine says, echoing a season full of compliments. Her own coach John Legend adds that it’s her “best performance yet” and couldn’t have come at a better time for her. Yep, that’s a closer alright.

Predictions:

  • Maelyn Jarmon has to win. She has to. As Adam Levine so often says, she “is The Voice.”
  • Andrew Sevener might just best Gyth Rigdon for the second spot with all the momentum favoring him tonight because he could not seem to miss.
  • Gyth Rigdon will probably get third, but his heartfelt single might be enough to keep him in second.
  • Dexter Roberts has done a nice job but may land in fourth. We’ll see!

TEAM STANDINGS:

Adam Levine (0):

Kelly Clarkson (0):

John Legend (1): Maelyn Jarmon

Blake Shelton (5): Gyth Rigdon, Dexter Roberts, Andrew Sevener

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A rotating chair-full of judges search for the next great superstar singer on this NBC reality show.
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