And then there were ten. Ten artists performing to make it to next week, when there will be eight. Let’s go.
The evening started with the remaining ten contestants doing a medley of two Elton John classics, “Rocket Man” and “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting).” In my new guise of being kind, the best thing I can say about the medley is that it sounded better on the choruses. The verses were full of struggle. But, it being The Voice, the audience made it sound like the best performance ever. I’ll disagree, but here’s the video so that you can decide:
Kimberly Nichole led off last night’s competition portion with a cover of “Something’s Got A Hold On Me” by Etta James. One thing you can count on with Kimberly, she will give a good performance. This was no exception, as there was plenty of energy present. Christina Aguilera mentioned in rehearsals something about “dirtying it up,” but I didn’t hear that at all. A very solid start, nonetheless, for the night.
Joshua Davis was up next, and he sang “Hold Back The River” by James Bay. This was a case where this song might have been too much for Joshua, who seemed to struggle in the lower register, while it was better when the notes went higher. He also didn’t need the guitar, because he was concentrating so hard on singing the song, he was barely playing it. He did the best he could, but the song choice may have hindered his chances of getting in the last eight.
Hannah Kirby from Team Blake took on “Shout” by Tears For Fears. She promised in the rehearsal piece to “shout and let it all out,” and she did. Unfortunately, her shouting was all there was. Hannah’s voice has a lot of power, but this performance showed power unrestrained and mostly devoid of melody. The drummers were a nice touch, but all this performance made me do was want to hear the original.
In perhaps the easiest paragraph I will write, Meghan Linsey performed and it was good. To that point, it was the best performance of the night. In a tribute to her Louisiana roots, she performed “Home” by Marc Broussard. After hearing Megaan’s performance, I really want to hear the original-but for different reasons. I really liked the song, but I had never heard it before. Hearing it will give me a point of reference compared to what was another good performance by Meghan.
In a mild upset, Koryn Hawthorne’s performance of Ed Sheeran’s “Make It Rain” takes over the top spot for performance of the night. It was a beautifully constructed performance-she didn’t start out at full power like she has in some of her other performances. Instead, she let the performance build, so that the intense moments stood out naturally, and didn’t sound so much like shouting. The falsetto run at the end was very well done. A great performance from start to finish.
Deanna Johnson stepped up next and performed “Somebody To Love” by the Jefferson Airplane. With her voice, this song should fit in her wheelhouse. Given her confidence issues, if she can match her voice with belief in her talent, she could have killed this song. Instead it was merely solid. Some notes were cut off a tiny bit, and the last note was flat out awful. I’m not sure where she will end up, she was the last person to make it through last week.
Rob Taylor was the next to go on, and he applied his wide vocal range to “A Song For You”, best known for Donny Hathaway’s version. He started out the song on the piano, which was good-especially since we had not seen him play an instrument on the show before. And Rob gave another good performance-though not his best. And his killer falsetto made a couple appearances, but it wasn’t as if he had nothing better to do than hit the high notes, as in some of his other performances.
Corey Kent White took the stage to perform George Strait’s “Unwound.” It was solid. Best move for Corey was that he got rid of his guitar, and I think it helped his singing, but not all that much. As the last country singer remaining (according to his coach Blake Shelton), he pretty much has the space to himself and should go through because of the lack of genre competition. What I don’t hear from week to week though, is growth. And though Blake said there was a vocal flub, I have to admit I didn’t even notice.
Next to perform was Sawyer Fredericks, who tackled “Iris” by The Goo Goo Dolls. A 90s classic, if ever there was one. A big part of the rehearsal footage was whether or not someone who hadn’t been in love could feel and sell the emotion needed to perform the song. After his performance, I believe he did a good enough job to sell it. Sawyer has been pretty consistent and he will probably be around for awhile.
Wrapping up the night, India Carney performed “Run To You” by Whitney Houston. It’s a song she performed in an audition for a Broadway musical, but she didn’t get the job. She was a bit leery of performing it again; and I was a bit leery because it was a Whitney Houston song. My concerns were unfounded though; as India gave a good performance. There was less vibrato in her vocal this time, but some of the runs were a bit off to these ears. Usually the last performance is the best of the night, but it wasn’t for me.
For me, Joshua, Hannah, Corey and Deanna were the weakest of the night. I believe that at least two of them will be on the block to be sent home. But I’ve been wrong before. Leave your opinion in the comments.