by Lyn Jensen
We saw three knockout rounds and one steal on The Voice Tuesday night, leaving six knockouts (I think) and one steal before Season 11 moves on to public voting. Here’s how the final field is evolving:
1. Team Blake, Courtney Harrell vs. Bindi Liebowitz: Blake matches two of his bluesy women, who sing bluesy sixties’ classics. Courtney tears through Tina Turner’s hit, “River Deep Mountain High,” like a hurricane. Bindy goes sweet ‘n’ low with “Son of a Preacher Man,” which celebrity guest advisor Faith Hill calls “one of the nastiest dirtiest songs ever written.” The judges’ consensus is for Courtney, and Blake keeps her. Miley suggests during the comments that she might steal Bindy, but neither she nor Alicia do.
2. Team Adam, Billy Gilman vs. Ponciano Seoane: Somebody on Team Adam has to be given the unenviable task of trying to out-sing former child star Billy Gilman. Adam says frankly, “If Ponciano can win this, he can win The Voice.” Seoane sings Ed Sheeran’s “I See Fire” in a style reminiscent of Phil Phillips. Gilman, however, makes the contemporary hit, “Fight Song,” into a personal statement, complete with showy high notes. Blake says about him, “This guy has so much he wants to prove.” Alicia adds, “There was this lion starting to come out.” Although Adam admits to Seoane, “It’s the best I’ve ever heard you sing,” it’s not enough to upset one of this season’s front-runners. Adam keeps Gilman and nobody steals Seaone.
3. Team Alicia, Belle Jewel vs. Christian Cuevas: Alicia says she paired these two because of their individualism. This is the first time viewers have seen what Belle can do, and she’s an amazing goth-punk throwback to the eighties-MTV era. Alicia says she likes how Belle can take eighties’ hits and give them a forties-jazz twist. (The style remains “eighties” even with the classic jazz flavor, however.) Jewel sings a sultry “Don’t Dream it’s Over,” originally a pop-wave hit for Crowded House. She’s no slouch, but neither is Christian, who turns the moldy-oldie “Superstar” (a seventies’ hit for The Carpenters) into a rock-flavored power ballad. It strains his range just a little, enough to give Belle an apparent opening. Miley says after the performances, “I’m watching … what’s Alicia gonna do?” Blake says he’d go with Christian because, “vocally he just explodes.” Apparently Alicia agrees, because she keeps Christian. “He earned it,” she explains. Miley steals Belle, adding her to a team that already includes rockers Maye Thomas and Sophia Urista.
As the final knockouts loom, Alicia is the only judge left who can steal a contestant. She says she wants “somebody fiery.” A girl (or boy) on fire? Tune in next week to see who makes it to the live voting.