After 5 episodes of Blind Auditions, the NBC Program with Ratings continues its quest to not make a much needed Kelly Clarkson (It wouldn't kill the coaches OR the voting public to stick with someone no matter how much I hate that winner.) Hope for me comes with 6 good contestants overall; 4 on Team Pharrell and 2 on Team Adam (Blake is pretty much CMT with his team but it's Gwen with the worst taste. How the fuck did that happen?)
Over the course of the Battles, I'll be checking to see how the Original Six [Ivonne Acero, Evan McKeel, Madi Davis and Celeste Betton on Team Pharrell and Regina Love and Shelby Brown on Team Adam] fair against the bland and overpraised. Sydney Rhame of Team Pharrell is on deck for favorite status granted if Pharrell brings potential out of her and keeps her and she DOESN'T GO COUNTRY.
NOTE: I will be implementing and adapting my policy for the Battle Rounds as a safeguard; my policy being if all my favorites are eliminated well before the finale, I jump ship from the recapping season.
In this case, I jump ship from S9 if all my favorites [with and/or without new favorites] are eliminated before the Knockout Rounds.
Time to find out how this turns out. These are the nouns, pronouns, gerunds, banter, marklar, fuckery, FlirtCruiting and questionable song choices that transpired...
Let's play rough and get it on!
First up, Jordan Smith vs. Regina Love of Team Adam. They were assigned "Like I Can" by Sam Smith. Rehearsals indicate this is a case of experience vs. "raw talent" as Regina was given credit for her "ear" for harmony [and that this show is probably trying to make Jordan happen].
Come showtime, Regina's lowered singing voice was a bit weird at first but it ended up possessing resonance. Jordan ended up looking like a Glee audition tape; All T, All Shade but I ain't about him now. Sans fuckery, Adam ends up picking Jordan as the winner. Ugh, so this Glee audition tape moves on.
Gwen does the right thing and steals Regina for her team. It's about time she has someone on her team that I like.
Second, Tyler Dickerson vs. Zach Seabaugh of Team Blake. They were assigned "I'm Gonna Be Somebody" by Travis Tritt. Rehearsals indicate that while Tyler's style was connected to the song, vibe might favor Zach which is actually kind of cool to point out.
Come showtime, after having to flip on a light switch, apparently not much changed form rehearsals. Tyler fit the song, but Zach sounds like the standard country dude and that apparently means he was competition. Sans fuckery [and Pharrell calling out Zach for a cracked voice], Blake ends up picking Zach as the winner. Tyler ends up getting the boot from S9.
Third, Ellie Lawrence vs. Tim Atlas of Team Gwen. Overrated vs. Montage victim. OH GOD... They were assigned "Sweater Weather" by The Neighbourhood. Rehearsals indicate that Tim's clarity might not be enough given that Ellie's quirk seems like an unfair free pass. Also, Tim had his damn guitar as a crutch.
Come showtime, Tim's potential was as abundant as that skinned mess on his head. Ellie relied on tired, played out parody quirk [the type BuzzFeed wrote about]. Sans fuckery, Gwen ends up picking Ellie as the winner. -_-
Pharrell does the right thing and ends up stealing Tim. HI NEW FAVORITE, Tim.
Fourth, Celeste Betton vs. Mark Hood of Team Pharrell. They were assigned "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Marvin Gaye and Tami Terrell. Rehearsals indicate that Celeste is both self aware and cognizant about her opponent; intensity is something he has but she has the actual chops for this song.
Come showtime, Mark's enunciation was forced and weird as fuck. Celeste's singing and delivery were way more developed and just better than his by miles on end. Sans fuckery, Pharrell ends up picking Mark as the winner. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Celeste is not stolen and is booted from S9.
Fifth, Dustin Monk vs. James Dupre of Team Adam. They were assigned "Fortunate Son" by Creedence Clearwater Revival. John Fogerty, mind you is the advisor for Team Adam's battle rounds. Rehearsals indicate that this was a case of "powerful voices" that need to learn adaptability especially for a song written by the dude in the band that they're singing.
Come showtime, I don't know why this "powerful" voice trope was given to them. They both don't have resonance or actual power/projection on their sides. Dustin's vibrato seemed unchecked and James' vibe was miscast for this song. Sans fuckery, Adam ends up picking James as the winner. Dustin is not stolen and gets the boot from S9.
Finally, Barrett Baber vs. Dustin Christensen of Team Blake. They were assigned "Walking in Memphis" by Marc Cohn. OH MY GOD, THIS SONG BLOWS CHUNKS. Rehearsals indicate that some home court advantage was in Barrett's head with vibe while Dustin's clarity was apparent.
Come showtime, these two were simply put more white and safe than baseball*. Sans fuckery, Blake ends up picking Barrett as the winner. Adam and Gwen offer to steal Dustin and after that bit of fuckery, he picks Adam as his new coach.
[*GO CUBS! That was for Steve Grand whose stellar debut album All American Boy has outsold most Voice alumni in its first week alone and is available now!]
All in all, peace out Celeste and hello new favorite Tim Atlas.
Up next for scrutiny, Part II of the Battle Rounds.