The second live show on “The Voice” arrived Saturday, and we had an opportunity to witness the best of Jessie J and Danny O’Donaghue’s teams.
Thankfully, there were more than a few shining stars among the group — and we actually feel that as a whole, the talent here was better than what we saw from will.i.am and Sir Tom Jones.
Toni Warne (Jessie) – Toni is in many ways the inspirational story of the season, and with that we were actually rather surprised to see her go first in the show — the time that many have referred to as the “death slot” when it comes to landing in the bottom two.
As much as we liked her earlier performances, we have to take issue with Jessie picking a song here in “Proud Mary” that was frankly not right for her in any way. Why take an adult pop singer and give her 1960s soul? While she did a good job vocally, it never felt natural.
Max Milner (Danny) – It’s pretty obvious already that Danny is going for a “big happy family” vibe on his team, and Max’s funky spirit certainly seems to be a right fit for the team.
While we were at first disappointed to hear him getting saddled with an old song like “Free Falling,” he really did a rather good job with the track, and made it into a rather relaxed, subdued jam that we wish we saw more often.
Ruth-Ann St. Luce (Jessie) – The sheer inclusion of Ruth-Ann onto this season is something that certain caused a few people to be surprised, and for good reason — while she has a good voice, she has no idea how to use it.
Most of the coaches were actually tough on her for a vocal that was a bit like a runaway choo-choo train — you never know what’s going to happen, and it could very well end by crashing. There were just too many pitch problems for this stage in the competition.
Hannah Berney (Danny) – How many times is this show going to remind us that Hannah is a cheerleader? She doesn’t need some sort of cheesy background story!
Four performances in, we think that Danny’s team is blowing Jessie’s out of the water. What a creative mash-up with “Cry Me a River” this was — there was some soul, some rock, and some great intensity. After hearing this, we are seriously considering her a potential winner for this show.
Vince Kidd (Jessie) – For his performance, decided to create a “Lion King” arrangement to an Elvis Presley classic in “Always On My Mind” — and it worked. There was some falsetto, some low notes, and a great stage presence. We haven’t seen a contestant on any reality show all year to pull so much out of his bag of tricks as this guy did.
Just as we gave Hannah the “possible winner” declaration, we now have to do the same thing here with Vince.
Aleks Josh (Danny) – Who doesn’t love a little Michael Buble? We didn’t know this guy had much of a crooner in him that he does … and it made us love this performance all the more.
We don’t know how voters will respond to him, but he is a guy that has a great shot so long as voters become enamored with his votes.
Cassius Henry (Jessie) – After being torn over his battle rounds performance, this was a bit of a comeback for Cassius. We never imagined him singing Coldplay’s “Paradise,” and he did a great job with it — even if he didn’t end up moving around on the stage as much as we expected him to considering the song.
David Julien (Danny) – David is one of those wild card performers in that he’s incredibly shy, doesn’t have that much experience performing, but he has a quality to his tone that sounds a bit like a male Florence Welsh.
While David and Aleks couldn’t be more difficult vocally, we still think it’s possible that they could be blended together by the public.
Becky Hill (Jessie) – Did we enjoy Becky’s performance? Sure, but in looking back on the night we are actually worried about how much she actually stood out from the mold compared to everyone else.
The saddest part here is that Becky was a solid performer in the early rounds, but we think she could be in some danger now.
Bo Bruce (Danny) – Bo not only ended up going last, but she had a rather sad story as she performed while her mother was battling a health crisis.
We admit that the song was not that familiar to us, but it was one of the best examples of pure talent and expression that we have heard all season. Now, we just have to hope that she has a more positive edit next time around and that things work out with her mother.
Who was your favorite during the show?
Photo: BBC One