Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Voice: Top 8

With a complete turnaround of rankings this week - and on iTunes - this goes to show that anyone can still win this season - unlike the past two editions where it's already a foregone conclusion that both Cassadee Pope and Danielle Bradbery would win their respective seasons.

So yes, I'm predicting that tomorrow will be a nasty cut. There's not enough fodders left and we're still left with 8 talented people. It's exciting, but terribly upsetting once the results are in. But then again, I digress. That's how the cookie crumbles.

Anyway, here we go!

08. Matthew Schuler
It's Time
Are we going to listen to the whole Imagine Dragons album on this season of The Voice? What was up with the show's fascination with the bands song catalog? Haha. Kidding aside, Matthew blew it! This was absolutely his worst performance to date and unfortunately, of this episode. He struggled throughout the whole performance from finding his pitch to his breathe control. Sure, the dynamics was pretty compelling, but there's too many breaks and too much stomping and clapping that everything felt all over the place. I don't think he'll be in trouble, but he'll be very vulnerable in the next coming weeks. 4.5

07. James Wolpert
Somebody To Love
So, James did Queen. I don't know. The theatrics were fine - if a bit strange - and his vocals were mostly on point, but I just can't shake the feeling that this wasn't a good song choice for him. I did not like the arrangement, his phrasing was weird, and I actually prefer his voice in an acoustic setting rather than when he busts his vocal chords like in this performance - think A Case Of You. I need that James back! This faux-rocker screamo person just isn't working for me. 6

06. Ray Boudreaux
Gimme Some Lovin'
Look, Ray is a competent singer and performer, but his version of Gimme Some Lovin' was a tad pedestrian. It's as if I was watching a bar band singer in cruiseship. That's not to say this was bad, as his vocals were, for the most part, spot on and he added a a much needed energy and character albeit mechanical to the whole performance. He needed to go a lot crazy than this though to make a good and lasting impression. 6

05. Cole Vosbury
I Still Believe In You
This wasn't a bad vocal. In fact, his tone sounded lovely on this song - minus his strong grit in parts - but this was a rather underwhelming and boring performance. Not sure if it was the song choice, he didn't bring his usual flair and energy to the whole number. This had the potential to be a big moment for him, but it somehow didn't happen. 7

04. Jacquie Lee
Who's Loving You
Her a capella was a thing of beauty and the way she owned the verses were outstanding. But between that and her overwrought caterwauling towards the end, her performance ended up as something strangely polarizing. Jacquie was doing pretty great until that last few bars where she screamed her notes like a mother yelling at her kids and her tone sounded unpleasant. To me, she's becoming a little overrated and I don't like that. 7.5

03. Caroline Pennell
Dog Days Are Over
Yes, Caroline needed more energy to pull it all off and the song choice was oddly predictable, but I somehow enjoyed this performance more than Leaving On A Jet Plane from last week. I thought her tone worked well with the song, the way she navigated the verses were pretty interesting, and her vocals were pretty solid. The band and background singers drowned her out during the chorus though, but I digress. 7.5 

02. Will Champlin
At Last
Soulful! Who knew Will could pull something as classic as At Last? I was seriously iffy with the song choice prior to this performance, but he did amazingly well with it. I mean, you don't hear too many guys cover this song on these reality singing shows, but the risk paid off it was pretty riveting. His vocal choices in the verses were good, but when his vocals took off towards the end, everything just soared. It's wasn't perfect by any means, but this was gorgeous. To be honest, Will is starting to remind me of Elliott Yamin for some reason. 8.5

01. Tessanne Chin
Underneath It All
SO GOOD. This was a brilliant song choice and the reggae arrangement fits Tessanne to a tee. The performance was entertainingly unique, nobody else on this show can do it, it made her stand out, and there's confidence and fun to her performance that I haven't seen before from her. Stick with what you do best, Tessanne! 9

Ray Boudreaux
Tessanne Chin


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