The Voice

Song by song grades for the Top 8 on The Voice

Gina Miles of Team Niall was one of the five artists advancing on The Voice Monday night. (NBC Photo)

Gina Miles of Team Niall was one of the five artists advancing on The Voice Monday night. (NBC Photo)


The Top 8 take the stage tonight on The Voice, trying to earn one of five spots in the Season 23 semifinals.

For the first time this season, fans will decide which artists advance.

And, for the first time ever on The Voice, that will be done with live voting.

So if you have a Season 23 favorite, be sure to vote on The Voice app or the show’s website during the voting window tonight.

I’ll be providing song by song grades for the Top 8, live if technology permits.

See also …
Ranking the Top 8
Reba McEntire replacing Blake Shelton

Ryley Tate Wilson, 15, Montgomery, Ala., “”Vienna” by Billy Joel — Playing piano, Ryley immediately shows off his wonderful tone. Then he steps away from the piano as the music swells and hits some pitch issues. This song choice is not going to pack nearly as much of an emotional punch as his playoff performance. All in all, a pretty solid vocal though. Grade: B

Ray Uriel, 24, Tempe, Ariz., “Can You Stand the Rain” by New Edition — Ray has a great voice, but absolutely no idea what songs are going to win over Voice fans. This ain’t it. And the vocal isn’t one of his best either. Not sure whether it’s nerves or what, but he sounded better than this in the taped shows. Grade: C–

Holly Brand, 22, Meridian, Mississippi, “Rumor Has It” by Reba McEntire — This is going to be the best performance so far tonight on The Voice. A much better song choice, and Holly sounds fabulous on that chorus. The arrangement gives her a chance to show off her range too. Very well done, Kelly and Holly. Grade: B+

Noivas (Savion Wright), 30, Hutto, Texas, “Skyfall” by Adele — An Adele song. An emotional story behind its selection. Yep, unless I’m surprised Noivas and Blake win Season 23. Sure enough, Noivas put on a show and displayed his huge voice, earning a standing ovation in the process. The last 60 seconds of that performance were pretty amazing. Grade: A–

Gina Miles, 18, Sacramento, Calif., “All I Want by Kodaline” — Confession: Gina’s voice is my favorite on the show. And I’m glad to know she has fans supporting her in Illinois, because anyone relying on West Coasters alone with these voting rules has zero chance of advancing. As for the performance, I wish the entire thing had been stripped back the way the ending was. That’s when we heard how special Gina’s voice is. Grade: B

Sorelle (Madi, Ana, Bella), Lexington, Ohio, “Fallin'” by Alicia Keys — These girls are fun to watch. And, once again, they wisely focused on their harmonies, rather than breaking the song down into short solos. Those harmonies are their magic sauce. And that was live, folks. Nary a nerve on display. And a superb finish. Grade: A–

D. Smooth, 25, Birmingham, Ala., “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran — Here’s the benefit of having a veteran coach. This unexpected song choice improves D. Smooth’s chances of advancing. Liked the way he started the song sitting center stage. In fact, he might have strayed from that spot a little too soon from a dramatic standpoint. Grade: B

Grace West, 19, Nashville, Tenn., “‘Til I Can Make It On My Own” by Tammy Wynette — Grace gets the pimp spot, singing classic country. And she sounds great. That was her best performance on the show, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. That very likely earned her a spot in the finals. Though with these voting rules, who knows? Grade: B+

Advancing to the finals:

Grace West (Team Blake)

Gina Miles (Team Niall)

D Smooth (Team Kelly)

Sorelle (Team Chance)

Noivas (Team Blake)

That means the elimination of Ryley Tate Wilson, Ray Uriel and Holly Brand.

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