‘The Voice’ battle rounds: Pip shines, Cee Lo Green gets strange

Cee Lo must be stopped!

We want to say that we are loving “The Voice” just as much now as we did during the blind auditions, but that simply isn’t happening. While it’s obvious that battle rounds are orchestrated to come across a certain way on TV, they have ultimately become so formulaic that you can predict what will happen before it begins. The singers come out, talk about their issues, perform a good-but-not-great performance, and then ended up getting overpraised by the coaches for it. Just once, we’d love to see all of the coaches agree on who is the winner, but that never happens either and it just feels strange.

As for the battles this week, there were some standouts — though there was also a pairing that is making us currently question the sanity of coach Cee Lo Green even more than when he dressed up in bird feathers to sing with Gwyneth Paltrow at the Grammys.

Pip vs. Nathan Parrett (Adam Levine) – This duel was one we could have chalked up to Pip before it even started. Did Nathan do a pretty good job? Sure, and he has to feel rather happy about his overall performance — but Pip has such a tremendous and unique voice, he may be a serious threat to win this entire competition. Now if only we could get him to change his name so he doesn’t sound like a puppy. Winner: Pip

Erin Martin vs. the Shields Brothers (Cee Lo Green) – In two seasons of “The Voice,” this may be the most genuinely terrible thing we’ve ever seen. Hats off to the brothers for trying to rock out a song in “What’s Love Got To Do With It?” that has never really been rocked before, and we actually preferred them far more to the screeching and howling that Erin puked all over the stage.

Yes, we’re pretty sure that Adam saying it was “weird” was his way of punching Cee Lo in the stomach for making him listen to this. Our coach really seemed to make this decision based only on the fact that the brothers border on self-parody, even if they are far more endearing to watch. Winner: Erin

Ashley De La Rosa vs. Jonathas (Christina Aguilera) – At least for this battle, we had two singers who are actually supposed to be singing the genre of music they were given in “No Air.” Why is it, though, that no one really sounds good covering this song?

While Ashley was behind on the versus for pretty much the entire song, Christina did at least pick a song that proved that she has a better vocal range than Jonathas — who may be smooth (and certainly has the moves like Jagger) but has a voice that is a bit more like an Usher tribute act. Winner: Ashley

Jermaine Paul vs. AlyX (Blake Shelton) – This was the second coming of Pip’s battle, mostly because we knew that Jermaine was going to win. The only real winner here was Jermaine, though, since this battle was too competitive and lacked the sense of “fun” that Blake said he was looking for.

The thing we’re worried about with Jermaine moving forward is that while he is a great singer (one of the best on the show, even), he’s so intense that he could end up keeping people away from him. Note to Jermaine: smile more! Winner. Jermaine

Angel Taylor vs. Katrina Parker (Adam) – Finally, a surprise! This was probably the best duel of the episode, since it allowed for something to happen that we did not necessarily see coming. Angel was the favorite going in here, but there’s no question that Katrina dominated her with a vocal on “Bleeding Love” that was the best on the entire night.

There’s just something refreshing about Katrina. She doesn’t look or sound like anyone else out there, and could be a major darkhorse once we get to the live shows. Winner: Katrina

Erin Willett vs. Gwen Sebastian – One of the sad stories typically left in the auditions made its way into this battle, mostly because Erin’s father took a turn for the worse in a health struggle and she wasn’t sure how she was going to be able to handle her emotions. Her father wanted her to stage on the show, though, and she ended up doing a rather solid job here.

The good news is that this performance of “We Belong” was rather strong, and in between this and Katrina we managed to almost forget about Erin Martin screeching to Tina Turner earlier in the night. Almost. Winner: Erin

Who was your favorite from this performance? Feel free to share your thoughts both in the comment box and in the poll!

Photo: NBC

Love TV? Be sure to like Matt & Jess on Facebook for more updates!