It wasn’t just a shock. It was an atom bomb as Christina Aguilera and Blake Shelton sent their best singers home on The Voice.
To be fair, Christina had a difficult choice. Ashley knocked Jewel’s “Foolish Games” out of the park, and though Lindsey’s Katy Perry adaptation wasn’t stellar, Lindsey’s appeal can’t be denied.
That still left soulful crooner Jesse and operatic vibrato machine Chris Mann. Jesse’s version of Beyonce’s “Halo” was shaky for a moment or two, but he ended with one of the strongest performances of the night. Mann sang Coldplay well, but his enunciation was poor, and he didn’t connect with the song.
I expected Christina to send Chris or Lindsey home based on their performances, but Christina made a mistake of nuclear proportions and sent her best singer home, Jesse.
Yes, THAT Jesse. The guy Adam called the guy to beat two weeks ago. Jesse was clearly the best male singer in the show. However, before I was overcome with rage, I took a deep breath and tried to follow her rationale. Here’s what I came up with.
– Jesse was the best singer in the show. However, his coach is Christina Aguilera. The girl I affectionately call Master Exploder after the Tenacious D song. Impressing Christina with power vocals simply doesn’t happen. You can load up all of the bluesy runs you want. You can shatter glass. You can hold a note so long it becomes a song of its own. Yet at the end of the day, Christina’s done it all.
– Christina called Jesse “one dimensional.” True, but that dimension was awesome. The problem is, when it comes to winning, Jesse would essentially have been competing with Jermaine and Jamar for votes. They have similar looks and styles. The difference is Jesse’s age. Much like Kim last week, Jesse doesn’t quite fit with a modern song. Christina likes to keep things edgy and cool. I just don’t think Jesse fit into that mold exactly.
I think Christina should have sent Chris home, but I understand her reasoning. There are always two types of performers at this stage in a talent show. There are the contestants the judges like and the contestants that will sell records. When the reality check comes it can be painful if the ego is overdrawn.
Ashley and Lindsey have the best shot of winning for Christina, but I don’t think Lindsey can compete with Ashley’s range.
Blake had a decision as equally puzzling. He sent Jordis home, citing her low position in the voting two weeks ago.
Anyone who’s followed a TV talent show knows positions very wildly from week to week. Someone can go from being at the top to the bottom in the blink of a bad song choice. (Just ask American Idol’s Jessica Sanchez).
Blake should have sent Erin home. She’s a perfectly fine singer, but she has yet to really wow me. She’s had a rough time with the loss of her father, but that’s no reason to give her a pass.
Jordis showcased a tender side tonight, and though it lacked the dazzle of her other performances it was a solid example of versatility. I think Blake copped out and simply didn’t want to be a “bad guy.” Unfortunately, that’s the job. Your the coach. You have to make these decisions.
Christina went with her guy. I don’t agree with her choice, but it was hers to make. I don’t think less of her for doing it. Blake shouldn’t be worried about that either. We already know it’s a tough choice. We’re all sitting at home trying to make it ourselves. Don’t use two weeks ago to justify a decision tonight.
That leaves Blake with RaeLynn, Jermaine and Erin. RaeLynn gave the worst performance of Blake’s team. The artificial twang she inserts into her singing style crawls beneath my skin every time. I admire her attitude, but she has shown only one dimension. Her future is very bright, but I don’t see her winning The Voice.
Jermaine however, had a break through performance. The elaborate runs were the only real flaw, and I can hardly blame him for doing it in a singing competition. With Jordis gone, I don’t see anyone else who can beat him for Team Blake.
Jermaine’s biggest issue is appearing too aggressive at inappropriate times. There’s just something about the way he hits some of the higher, louder notes that makes me think he’s ready to punch somebody.
I have to think Ashley and Jermaine will win for their respective teams, and, of those two, Ashley has the edge. If she can keep knocking it out of the park, she might just take the whole thing.