The Voice

Song by song grades for the Top 4 on The Voice

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Red Marlow performs “To Make You Feel My Love” on The Voice Monday night.

Red Marlow performs “To Make You Feel My Love” on The Voice Monday night.

With two number one songs already under her belt, Chloe Kohanski entered Monday’s Top 4 show as the Season 13 favorite in the eyes of many Voice fans.

If so, the competition just got a lot closer.

Red Marlow, Addison Agen and Brooke Simpson each turned in victory-worthy performances during a night that featured three songs from each member of the Top 4.

Each contestant’s original song — see the music videos here — and new cover song will count toward the voting.

The duets with their coaches will not.

The winner will be announced tonight. The Season 13 finale begins at 9 p.m., preceded by a clip show reviewing Monday’s performances.

Here are the song by song grades for Monday’s performances.

Addison Agen (Team Adam)
The song: “Humble and Kind” by Tim McGraw
My take: Addison says her grandfather introduced her to this song. Hmm, interesting strategic move by Adam and Addison to do a country song in the finals. But, you know what, Addison is nailing this vocal. And she looks like a star tonight, doesn’t she? Great way to start the show. And Addison chokes up at the end and can’t quite finish that last “humble and kind.” Actually, seeing how emotional she became might have made that performance even more effective. Grade: A–

Chloe Kohanski (Team Blake)
The song: “Wish I Didn’t Love You” (original)
My take: This is the first original we’re hearing tonight, and Blake says the “haunting melody” is perfectly suited to Chloe. I loved the opening verse. The bridge sounded great. But let me get this right: It took three songwriters to come up with a chorus that’s not the least bit catchy. As for Chloe, she sounded great on the parts of the song I enjoyed, but every time she hit the chorus it sounded like her voice was shot. Sorta reminded me of Ashland Craft the last couple of times she performed on the show. Grade: B–

Red Marlow and Blake Shelton
The song: “I’m Gonna Miss Her” by Brad Paisley
My take: Well, that’s about as country as you can get — a novelty song about a good ol’ boy who chooses fishin’ over his wife. And except for the part in the middle where the sound mix got out of whack and drowned out the vocals coming from Blake and Red, they performed it as well as they could. But that song for the finale? When viewers are expecting fireworks and emotion? Ah, not quite. Grade: C






Brooke Simpson (Team Miley)
The song: “What Is Beautiful” (original)
My take: Let me get this out of the way first. Whoever designed those big black shoulder pads for Brooke should be fired from the wardrobe department. They were distracting as hell. As for the song, early on the lyrics were more heart-wrenching than the performance, and I wondered if Brooke might have been better off stripping the song down and performing it acoustically. But, dang, by the end, it was impossible not to get caught up in the passion of her performance. No doubt she’s got the most dynamic voice we’ll see on stage tonight. Grade: B+

Addison Agen and Adam Levine
The song: “Falling Slowly” by Glen Hansard, Marketa Irglova
My take: I’ve heard some great versions of this song. This was not one of them. Addison and Adam really didn’t sound all that great together. And when Adam took over the vocals … well, I don’t know what the problem was, but there was a problem. Shame, because this is the performance I was most looking forward to when the song list came out today. If you were as disappointed as I was, head here to hear the song done correctly by singing show contestants. Grade: C

Brooke Simpson and Miley Cyrus
The song: “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus
My take: As a viewer, this was my favorite duet yet. The only problem was, Miley and Brooke settled on a Miley song. And Miley seemed like the lead singer and Brooke like her background vocalist through most of the performances. And, not surprisingly, the song seemed much better suited to Miley than Brooke. The best Voice duets come when the coach allows the contestant to shine brightest on stage. That didn’t happen in this performance. Grade: B–

Red Marlow (Team Blake)
The song: “I Pray” (original)
My take: Another solid performance for Red. Smart move, too, because songs with a religious theme always seemed to bring in the votes and do well on the charts. Plus Red gets huge kudos from me for having a hand in writing his original. He wrote it with a friend (Larry McCoy) after the friend’s father passed away. Grade: B

Chloe Kohanski and Blake Shelton
The song: “You Got It” by Roy Orbison
My take: Early in this song, I was really beginning to worry about Chloe’s vocal health. I mean, her vocals were drowned out by the music more than once. But she got stronger as the song progressed. And, considering the musical mismatch, this turned out pretty well. By the way, Miley, notice how Blake let the spotlight shine on Chloe for the big ending. That’s how a duet is done properly on The Voice. Grade: B

Red Marlow (Team Blake)
The song: “To Make You Feel My Love” by Garth Brooke
My take: Damn. Great song choice. Great decision to strip down the song to just Red and his guitar. And a great, heartfelt vocal. The perfect performance for Red as a closing statement. And, honestly, my favorite performance to this point tonight. That is now my favorite Red Marlow performance. Grade: A

Brooke Simpson (Team Miley)
The song: “O Holy Night”
My take: Interesting strategy — singing a religious-based Christmas song on the performance finale. But it’s not a stretch for Brooke. Remember, she grew up singing with her parents’ ministry. And Brooke once again showed why she’s the best pure vocalist among the final four. That ending was pretty remarkable. That will go down as her best performance of the night as well. Grade: B+

Addison Agen (Team Adam)
The song: “Tennessee Rain” (original)
My take: I was hoping we’d get to hear Addison sing one of her own songs, because she’s a heck of a songwriter. But you know what? That was the best of the originals tonight. Addison sounded great on it, especially with all the emotion she poured into the ending. And she made it to the end this time. And you’ve gotta love Addison’s distinctive tone. Grade: A–

Chloe Kohanski (team Blake)
The song: “Bette Davis Eyes” by Kim Carnes
My take: The good news, Chloe’s voice sounded much better on this performance. The bad: That song choice, and the fact that Chloe went back to a “Call Me” style cover where the performance seemed more like idol worship than Chloe providing us with something original. Not sure what the knee-drop was doing at the end either. That song really doesn’t call for it. Honestly, each of the preceding three performances would have been a better way to end the show. Grade: B

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