You’d think we’d be ready for this kind of thing by now; just when we think we know what’s about to happen on The Voice (Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on CTV TWO), a twist is revealed that makes us wish we had a giant red chair to sit in and turn in order to deliver a dramatic response. We would use that chair every day.
Just announced, The Voice is switching things up yet again, this time with a new round called the Live Cross Battles, which has been used in international seasons of The Voice. Instead of the traditional Knockout rounds, the Live Cross Battles will pair singers with battle partners from other teams, unlike the Knockouts where teammates faced off against one another. The Cross Battles will be performed live and the audience watching at home will get to vote on who won through Twitter and The Voice app. Coaches Kelly Clarkson, Blake Shelton, Adam Levine and John Legend will still have saves and steals, but it’s unclear how many artists they’ll be able to protect.
Oh. Snap. This is going to drastically alter the makeup of teams going into the finals. We’re nervous, but also excited, but also nervous.
But before we get to the Live Cross Battles, which begin on Monday, we need to finish the pre-taped Battle Round, which suddenly sounds so much tamer. Tuesday night’s final performances didn’t boast any of the jaw dropping duets we’ve seen on previous nights but did include the most evenly matched performances of the season. Some people wait a lifetime for a moment like this, only to have a celebrity break their heart on national TV.
PERFORMANCE OF THE NIGHT
Our favourite part of Tuesday night’s top three performances was that the artists sounded so different from one another but were also evenly matched in terms of talent. It gave everyone a chance to shine and show their strengths, while also resulting in surprising covers. Our top pick was South African singer Selkii, who loves men that give crushing hugs, and high school music student Cecily Hennigan. The pair put their own spin on Avril Lavigne’s moving ballad “Head Above Water” and had us going back and forth on who we picked to win with each line they sang. Ultimately, Selkii’s experience as a seasoned performer and the emotional growl in her voice won her the battle, a decision we support… just in case Blake wanted our opinion.
The final pre-taped battle of the season (Live Cross Battles start on Monday people!) didn’t have the earth-shattering power of other performances this season, but it did give Coach Blake the chance to use the word scat, so there’s that. Teen singer Kayslin Victoria took on barely-no-longer-a-teen singer Oliv Blu, with Kayslin putting a pop spin on guest mentor Khalid’s “Location,” while Oliv performed a jazzy remix of the single. Kayslin had a few pitch issues, but Oliv didn’t showcase the power or range of Kayslin, making the winner a toss-up. Coach John Legend chose Kayslin with Blake Shelton stealing Oliv, but we could have seen both the save and the steal going either way.
ADAM’S POOR SONG CHOICE
Let’s be clear – we think Adam Levine is hugely talented. But he can’t pick songs. Case in point, “Free Falling” by Tom Petty. Can anyone sing that song? Tom Petty is no longer with us, so the answer is now ‘no.’ Country hipster Andrew Jannakos and dad hipster Patrick McAloon did their best and actually impressed us with their duet, more so because it was a passable cover of an impossible song as opposed to stellar vocal performances. Again, this one could have gone either way for us, with Adam choosing Andrew. Let’s hope the contestants get to pick their own songs in the Live Cross Battles.
NIGHT FOUR OF THE BATTLE ROUNDS
Selkii (Winner) vs. Cecily Hannigan
Carter Lloyd Horne (Winner) vs. LiLi Joy
Karen Galera (Winner) vs. Alena D’Amico
Kayslin Victoria (Winner) vs. Oliv Blu (Stolen by Team Blake)
Andrew Jannakos (Winner) vs. Patrick McAloon
Watch The Voice Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/MT on CTV TWO. Catch up with new episodes online the day after broadcast.