The Voice

The Voice proves it’s doing the battle round all wrong


Eight more artists advanced on The Voice Tuesday, setting the stage for the show’s first-ever three-way knockouts.

Battle round winners included Bryce Leatherwood, Omar Cardona, Andrew Igbokidi, Chello, Kayle Von der Heide and Peyton Aldridge. And the husband-wife country duo The Dryes advanced after being saved by Blake Shelton.

Meanwhile, two of the three battles aired — specifically, the save used on The Dryes and the lack of a steal or save to even be considered for Lana Love — prove what I’ve been saying about The Voice battles for seasons.

The show is doing the battle wrong all wrong. Save and steals decisions should be made after the coaches see all the battles.

Meanwhile, in an absolute moment of stupidity, Voice producers decided to lead into a montage segment with this quote from Camila Cabello.

“It’s so cool to see these performances, so see all this talent and be surprised,” she said.

Yep, The Voice, I would have loved to have seen those montaged battles, which lasted all of two minutes and 30 seconds each.

I would have far preferred seeing them to the 10 minutes of airtime you eat up leading into each battle. The show is, after all, supposed to be about music.

And if you couldn’t have done that, it still should be very easy to put the full performances on YouTube.

As for surprises, if there were any in those three montaged battles, viewers sure missed them.

As always, the links take you to profiles of the singers. Many have already released music that you can learn about in those profiles. That includes all three singers eliminated in the montaged battles — Constance Howard, Kara McKee and Sadie Bass.


Team Blake

The match: The Dryes vs. Bryce Leatherwood
The background: The Dryes (the married duo featuring Katelyn and Derek), of Nashvlle, Tenn., performed “Islands in the Stream” by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers. They earned two chair turns. Bryce 22, of Woodstock, Ga., performed “Goodbye Time” by Conway Twitty and turned three chairs.
The song: “Red Dirt Road” by Brooks and Dunn
The feedback: Gwen Stefani said by the end the performance was “so beautiful.” She and Camila Cabello favored Bryce because of his “warm” vocals. John Legend said he favored The Dryes because they brought more electricity to the performance.
The outcome: Blake named Bryce winner of the battle round, calling him “unshakable” on stage. Then he saved The Drys from elimination, calling them super talented.
My take: No folks, this was not the last battle the coaches saw. They’re aired out of order. And I think The Voice just proved what I’ve been saying all along. The Dryes messed up the opening of the song. But the battle round format forced Blake to make an immediate decision on whether or not to save his unique country duo instead of offering him an opportunity to hear all of his battles — there were at least three more to go after this performance — before deciding who to save. He still might have chosen The Dryes. But it would seem at whole lot fairer if he heard everyone before making that choice. And, yep, Bryce deserved that win. Those deep country vocals could take him far on a show where voters love male country singers.

Team Legend

The match: Omar Cardona vs. Lana Love
The background: Omar Cardona, 33, of Orlando, Fla., performed “Separate Ways” by Journey in the blinds and turned all four chairs. Lana Love, 30, of Glendale, Calif. performed “Candy” by Mandy Moore. Only John turned for her audition.
The song: “Into the Unknown” from Frozen 2
The feedback: All of the coaches loved the performance. Blake said it came off so professionally, it was as though Lana and Omar had been performing it on Broadway for eight months. He gave a slight edge to Omar, calling him one of the best singers he’s ever heard. Camila and Gwen were equally complimentary of the duo.
The outcome: John named Omar the winner; Lana was eliminated.
My take: And The Voice just proved my argument again. John called the performance “phenomenal” and “inspiring.” Camila called the performance her “top two favorite moments of the season.” But one of the singers had to go home. Why? Because their battle was taped on day two of the battle round. And every steal had been used on day one. And John had already used his save. Yep, I too would have given a slight edge to Omar. But to have a situation where Lana couldn’t even be considered for a steal or save? After that performance? I mean, how unfair is that? So, The Voice, are you going to finally fix this? Or are you going to keep on staging a blatantly unfair battle round season after season after season?


Team Camila

The match: Andrew Igbokidi vs. Zach Newbould
The background: Andrew, 22, of Hot Springs, Ark., performed “when the party’s over” by Billie Eilish. He got all four coaches to turn. Zach, 19, of Northborough, Mass., sang “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon in the blinds and two coaches turned.
The song: “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” by Whitney Houston
The feedback: Gwen Stefani loved the unexpected choices Andrew made during the song. Blake Shelton and John Legend favored Zach, saying he turned in the more consistently solid performance.
The outcome: Camila named Andrew the winner, saying she had to because his voice and tone are so special and he sounds different from everyone else on the show. Zach was eliminated.
My take: I agree with the guys on this one. Yep, Andrew made some unique choices. Some worked, some didn’t. There were way too many runs. Zach turned in the more consistently polished vocal.


Team Camila

The match: Chello vs. Constance Howard
The background: Chello, 22, of Chester, Pa., performed “Just the Two of Us” by Bill Withers in the auditions. Two coaches turned. Constance, 27, of Katy, Texas, also got two chair turns when she performed “Peaches” by Justin Bieber.
The song: “Leave the Door Open” by Silk Sonic
The feedback: In the little we heard, Camila described Chello as having “this magical star quality.”
The outcome: Camila named Cello the winner; Constance was eliminated.
My take: Who knows since we saw just a tiny snippet of the battle?
Special note: Not a single save or steal remained when this battle took place.

Team Gwen

The match: Kayla Von der Heide vs. Sadie Bass
The background: Sadie, 25, of Bath, Mich., sang “Stupid Boy” by Keith Urban in the blinds and turned two chairs. Kayla, 30, of Bisbee, Ariz., performed “Jealous Guy” by John Lennon in the blinds and also got two chair turns.
The song: “Everything I Own” by Bread
The feedback: In the little bit we heard, Gwen complimented Kayla on her unique “story-telling” voice.
The outcome: Gwen named Kayla the winner; Sadie was eliminated
My take: Who knows since we saw just a tiny snippet of the battle?
Special note: Not a single save or steal remained when this battle took place.

Team Legend

The match: Peyton Aldridge vs. Kara McKee
The background: Peyton, 25, of Cleveland, Mississippi, performed “Can’t You See” by The Marshall Tucker Band and turned three chairs, but John blocked Blake Shelton. Kara, 36, of Cumberland, R.I., said “Woodstock” by Joni Mitchell in the blinds. Only John turned.
The song: “More Than Words” by Extreme
The feedback: In the little we heard, John complimented Peyton on the edge and power in his vocals.
The outcome: Peyton was declared the winner by John. Kara was eliminated.
My take: Who knows since we saw just a tiny snippet of the battle? Oh, and that means Kata leaves the show without ever having a performance air. Nice job, The Voice. If you couldn’t tell, that was typed with tons of sarcasm.
Special note: Not a single save or steal remained when this battle took place.

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