Tonight, The Voice is kicking off the first part of their season finale, one that is geared around one thing above all else: Performances. The final four are hitting the stage with a number of different songs: New covers, originals, and also duets with their given coach. There’s a lot that is being crammed in there.
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Chris Kroeze, “Sweet Home Alabama” – Chris performed a song here that is considered by Blake Shelton to be one of the most recognizable rock songs ever. We’re not sure that we can get 100% on board with that, but we do think he delivered a nice rendition here. There’s just not much that separated it from the original. Grade: B.
Chevel Shepherd, “It’s a Little Too Late” – This was a chance for Chevel to show off that she can rock out songs in a slightly faster tempo. Her vocals were good and she wasn’t drowned out by the huge band. Yet, we do wish that she moved around a bit more when she was on stage with them. This got better as it went along. Grade: B+.
Kirk Jay, “Defenseless” – This is a really great original song by The Voice standards. It was soft and poignant when it needed to be and it allowed Kirk to get a little bit emotional … we could hear that in his voice at times. It wasn’t perfect and we wish there were a few more big notes, but this was excellent. This song could have some success. Grade: A-.
Kennedy Holmes, “Love Is Free” – We do think that this was a nice performance for Kennedy in terms of vocals; unfortunately, we don’t really love the song. It just isn’t particularly catchy and we don’t think it’s one that is going to be super-memorable down the line. We wish that she had a slightly stronger original song backing her up. Grade: B+.
Kirk with Blake Shelton, “You Look So Good in Love” – Did Kirk totally out-sing Blake here? Yep, he totally did, but Blake was also game to allow him to have the bigger part of the spotlight. This was a simple, nice performance and the two didn’t try to do too much with it. Grade: A-.
Kennedy with Jennifer Hudson, “Home” – Can you really be shocked that these two completely sang the heck out of this? They’re two of the best singers and, from start to finish, they delivered here. Big notes, emotion, and the perfect amount of theatricality — after all, this is from The Wiz. Grade: A-.
Chris Kroeze, “Human” – The best performance from Chris we’ve seen all season — he’s helped by having a really good song backing him up. This was a simple song in some ways, but it had a great message and he did a wonderful job bringing some of these lyrics to life. It was true to what we know he can be. Grade: A-.
Chevel with Kelly Clarkson, “Rockin’ with the Rhythm of the Rain” – This was energetic, but also fairly forgettable — which isn’t something that we thought we’d ever say for a performance that featured Kelly Clarkson at the center of it. Personally, though, we don’t take duets as altogether important to much of anything. Grade: B-.
Chris with Blake Shelton, “Two More Bottles of Wine” – Yeah, we’re not going to remember this at all, either. It was reasonably fun, but we do think that it was hard to really hear Chris amidst everything that was going on around him with the band, Blake, and everything going on in the crowd. Grade: B-.
Kirk Jay, “I Won’t Let Go” – This was a good performance of a Rascal Flatts performance, and we’re not going to fault Kirk for doing it. Yet, we do think this was a chance for him to do something a little bit different rather than another big country ballad. We don’t want to see his original song get lost. Grade: B+.
Chevel Shepherd, “Broken Hearts” – This was a nice song for Chevel to do — it was personal and it gave her a chance to showcase a soft, vulnerable side. Apparently, Kelly Clarkson at one point had this offered to her as well. We did think that her original would be a little edgier, but we still liked it. Grade: B+.
Kennedy Holmes, “Confident” – We do think that it’s nice that the show ended with an uptempo number for a change! Kennedy’s really a fun performer and she can do something that nobody else can. We don’t know if this is a song that The Voice base will love, but we definitely appreciated it. Best overall PERFORMANCE of the night. Grade: A.
What did you think about tonight’s The Voice episode? Share in the comments. (Photo: NBC.)