Let's play rough and get it on!
First up, Lina Gaudenzi vs. Preston Pohl (Adam). Lina chose "I'd Rather Go Blind" by Etta James. A rather ballsy song choice, but she gets told to focus on doing the right things with the song. Preston chose "No Woman, No Cry" by Bob Marley. He wanted to to show his reggae side, but Adam was briefly nervous because the song is very low key [which may result in a boring performance]. The round commences and Lina sounded her best (Graded against herself, of course.) but not stellar enough to win anyone over to me. Preston then took the stage and he sounded like he has in past performances. This isn't too bad because he has consistency; versatility is something he needs to work on as soon as possible. The coaches give their banter and Adam ended up picking Preston to advance to the Live shows. Lina ends up eliminated but she went out with a marked improvement to her name; more than I ever expected *shaaaaaaaaaaaade*
Second, E.G. Daily vs. Ray Boudreaux (Blake). E.G. chose "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Raitt. She loves her some Bonnie Raitt; Ray chose "Hard to Handle" by Otis Redding. This was Cody Belew's audition song, so he had some living up to do. The round commenced and E.G. sounded angelic singing her favorite country artist [most likely]. Ray then took the stage and dared tempt me to mute my TV. His rendition was so emotionless, I was wondering if Cody's golden rollerskates lost their luster when he fucked up that song (Luckily, they didn't but Ray must be sentenced Capital Punishment for his sins against the TV Lord). The coaches give their two cents and Blake ends up picking Ray to advance to the Live shows. E.G. Daily was robbed as neither Adam or X-Tina stole her. This was sad as E.G. was really the only Team Blake person I liked genuinely.
Third, Anthony Paul vs. Jacquie Lee (X-Tina). Anthony chose "The Other Side" by Jason Derulo. His song choice raised concern for X-Tina because she can't take the song choice seriously (I agree). Jacquie chose "Stompa" by Serena Ryder. She's essentially told to be as ballsy as her song choice [frankly, I'm surprised she knew of this song.] The round commences and Anthony sounded too nasal and couldn't project through the song. A case of terrible song choice strikes again. Jacquie takes the stage and she surprised me by being really clean yet unique. The coaches give their vantages over what happened, and X-Tina ends up picking Jacquie to advance to the Live shows. Anthony ends up being eliminated and I am not shocked in the least.
Fourth, Stephanie Anne Johnson vs. Tamara Chauniece (Cee-Lo). Stephanie chose "Don't Know Why" by Norah Jones. This song is tough because Norah's version is completely different than what Stephanie offered. Admittedly, I thought it was OK on the surface. Tamara chose "No One" by Alicia Keys. The Voice and Alicia Keys songs don't always benefit the artists who do it, so this was scary. The round commenced and Stephanie sounded very pleasant. It isn't vulnerable like Jones did it, but Stephanie sounded very clean and very ethereal for most of the performance. Tamara then took the stage and while she was being slinky, I was surprised that she was able to benefit from doing an Alicia Keys song. Her cleanness made this match so even. The coaches give their perspective on what happened and Cee-Lo ends up picking Tamara to advance to the Live shows. Stephanie ends up being stolen back by X-Tina. O_O Honestly, I wasn't mad at this, but honestly this is the only match in The Voice I declared even.
Fifth, James Wolpert vs. Juhi Pathak (Adam). The ugly match of S5 over fandoms. James chose "More Than A Feeling" by Boston. He's told to keep up with the song and not end up fender ketchup. Juhi chose "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" by Marvin Gaye...as done by Clearwater Creedence Revival [or however it's said]. She's told to not be flat while singing it. The round commenced and James kind of botched it; so many missed high notes despite his lung capacity. Juhi then the took the stage and was fabulous as she conveyed more grittiness than previously inferred. The coaches gave their take on who should've emerged victorious and Adam ends up picking James to advance to the Live shows. Oh this hurt bad as Juhi was screwed out of more on The Voice. This decision may or may not have Twitter friend of mine, @ImageFighter13, crying uncontrollably [don't blame me; don't be angry...OK; simmer down].
Sixth, Austin Jenckes vs. Brandon Chase (Blake). Austin chose "I'll Be" by Edwin McCain. He was mainly inspired by his deceased father and made a love song a father-son devotion song. Admittedly I think he had edge because he had motivation to it. Brandon chose "Even If It Breaks Your Heart" by the Eli Young Band. He's given credit for his attempt at range but is told not to end up fender ketchup. The round commenced and Austin sounded as great he did in his initial rehearsals. Consistency does mean something in this case. Brandon then took the stage and he hits some bum notes when his lower register was showcased and the rest of his performance was bland to me. The coaches try to enlighten the decision making, and Blake ends up picking Austin to advance to the Live shows. He had motivation on his side, so I wasn't that surprised. Brandon ended up being ousted from the competition.
Seventh, Caroline Pennell vs. George Horga Jr. (Cee-Lo). Caroline chose "The Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson. This is the best choice for her. It's whimsy but without its nauseating tendencies. George chose "Because of You" by Ne-Yo. He's told to make use of the stage. The round commenced and Caroline sounded the best she has to date and honestly, this is adding her previous efforts (And even better, she no longer has the nervous system of a leaf.) George takes the stage and he sounded competent but nowhere near good enough to garner favor with me. The coaches give their take [and adorable Shevine fodder] and Cee-Lo ends up picking Caroline to advance to the Live shows. DUH; she sang a song that worked 110% for her. George ends up eliminated (Oh no; what a travesty; think of the children not affected by this...oh dear...-_-)
Closing out the Knockouts of S5, Matthew Schuler vs. Will Champlin (X-Tina). Matthew chose "Cosmic Love" by Florence + The Machine. DAMN...anyone who takes on a Florence + The Machine song gets credit in my book. He's told to pace himself because Florence Welch does not make any song she sings easy. Will chose "When I Was Your Man" by Bruno Mars. He's told not to be a copycat of Bruno Mars whilst singing and be vulnerable. The round commences and Matthew sounded like he knew what he was doing whilst singing. For God's sake, the man's jaw looked unhinged when he hit the high note O_O (Yeesh; you're not at the doctor's office with a tongue depressor in your mouth.) Will took the stage and his rendition marked against himself is improved, but not by much. The coaches give their final bits of banter for the Knockouts and X-Tina ends up picking Matthew to advance to the Live shows. Will ends up being stolen back by Adam because he had to steal someone. No T, No Shade but that's what it was.
All in all, this show is still going to be in my heart but the Live shows better make up for the overall taste of Knockout rounds this season. Round 2 was better, but I can never forgive the Round 1 atrocities.
Up next for scrutiny, the Live Playoffs (Side note: who the hell came up with adding sports references to singing competitions? Can they be court martialed or some shit?)