Nini Iris sparkled again and five other singers advanced to the knockouts as The Voice continued its battle round episodes Tuesday night.
Singing “Heart of Glass” for Team Niall, Nini won a match with Sophia Hoffman in what was clearly, easily the best performance The Voice aired on Tuesday.
Also winning battles were Rachele Nguyen, Chechi Sarai, Lila Forde and Caleb Sasser.
Mac Royals, a four-chair turn from the blinds, found himself on the brink of elimination after his battle with Rachele. Until John Legend swooped in and stole him for a team already loaded with four-chair turns.
Oh, and get this, The Voice montage the battles won by Caleb and Lila.
That’s right, they montaged them. After wasting an hour of airtime between 8 and 9 p.m. eastern time airing a recap of Monday’s episode.
Which makes even less sense than The Voice’s decision to montage three singers who made the shows during the blinds while featuring full auditions for 14 singers who didn’t.
On with the recap.
BEST OF THE NIGHT
The match: Nini Iris vs. Sophia Hoffman
The song: “Heart of Glass” by Blondie
The background: Nini, 27, of Brooklynn, N.Y., turned four chairs in the blinds. Sophia, 18, of Chula Vista, Calif., turned two.
The feedback: John Legend called it “so much fun to watch” and said both of them came off as “stars.” Reba McEntire was the only coach to voice a preference (or at least one we heard); she gave the edge to Nini. Niall called it “incredible” and said they “sung the roof off this place.”
The decision: Niall advanced Nini. Sophia was eliminated.
My take: Sophia deserves to be commended for holding her own against Nini, both vocally and with her stage presence. But I thought Nini was among the Season 24 front-runners after her blind audition aired. And absolutely nothing that happened in this battle changed my opinion. She was superb again.
Special note: Judging from the spoiler site idolforums.com, there might have been just one steal left when this battle was filmed.
THAT EARNED A STEAL?
The match: Rachele Nguyen vs. Mac Royals
The song: “How Deep is Your Love” by The Bee Gees
The background: Reba was the only coach to turn for Rachele, 17, of Lakewood, Calif., in the blinds. Mac, 30, of Wrightsville, Ark., coaxed chair turns from all four coaches.
The feedback: Niall said he thought the performance was “so good.” He gave the edge to Rachele. John said he loves Mac’s tone and would give him a slight edge. Reba said she was proud of both of them.
The decision: Reba awarded the victory to Rachele. John then stole Mac Royals
My take: I hated the song choice. But Rachele turned in a solid performance, seemed to be carrying the harmony parts and showed nice confidence on stage for someone so young. Mac’s opening to the song was so shaky, I’m really, really surprised this performance resulted in a save. It’s one thing to make a song your own — and I can see where he’d want to do that singing this song — but it still has to work.
THE COACH GOT IT RIGHT
The match: Chechi Sarai vs. Calla Prejan
The background: Calla, 22, of Houston, Texas, landed the very last spot on Season 24. Chechi, 32, of Pontiac, Mich., was a four-chair turn in the blinds.
The feedback: Reba called it a very good performance and gave the edge to Chechi. John seemed to be leaning in the same direction. Niall called it a super performance by both singers and said she was proud of both.
The decision: Gwen advanced Chechi to the knockouts; Calla was eliminated.
My take: Chechi showed off ample vocal firepower, great range and was the more consistent over the course of the song. She also looked like a star as she worked the stage.
Special note: No steals remained on the day this battle was taped.
The match: Lila Forde vs. JaRae Womack
The song: “Killing Me Softly” by Roberta Flack
The background: JaRae, 35, turned four chairs during the blinds. Lila, 24, of Seattle, Wash., was also a four-chair turn.
The feedback: Who knows? The only coach we got to hear from was John, who said Lila has a “unique magic to the way” she expresses herself musically.
The decision: John advanced Lila; JaRae was eliminated.
My take: The Voice shouldn’t be airing clip shows in the 8 p.m. hour, then montaging singers in the 9 p.m. hour.
Special note: No steals were available to these contestants on the day their battle was taped.
The match: Caleb Sasser vs. Talakai
The song: “Too Good At Goodbyes” by Sam Smith
The background: Caleb, 27, of Goldsboro, N.C., turned four chairs in the blinds. Talakai, 34, of Sacramento, Calf., was also a four-chair turn.
The feedback: Who knows? In the tiny snippet we saw, John called Caleb’s tone “intriguing, mysterious and ethereal.” Well, he got the mysterious part right since it’s a mystery to viewers who didn’t get to hear Caleb sing.
The decision: John advanced Caleb; Talakai was eliminated.
My take: Again, The Voice shouldn’t be airing clip shows in the 8 p.m. hour, then montaging singers in the 9 p.m. hour.
Special note: No saves remained during the taping in which this battle was filmed.