In night two of the Battle Rounds on “The Voice,” we got through a staggering three featured performances. This show really likes to take its time and savor every possible moment when Blake Shelton might say something funny or inappropriate. The adorer of teen girls was on point Tuesday, as always, while the best other coaches could do was repurpose Adam Levine’s old jokes (I’m looking at you Usher).
Unfortunately, Shakira didn’t get to coach during Wednesday’s episode, but she did offer a criticism that involved tangerine ice cream, something that sounds magical and wondrous.
We began with Team Adam’s two country guys, Michael Austin (the deputy sheriff) and Warren Stone (the firefighter). “The battle of the civil servants,” Warren described it. Not exactly something I’d pay to see, when you put it that way. Adam gave them Jason Aldean’s “My Kind of Party,” and ceded some control to his guest mentor, Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott. “I know you two know who Hillary is,” he says as his contestants enter their first mentoring session. And probably they are the only two who do.
Michael, it turns out, recently had a tumor removed from his nose, which was his excuse for sounding so gritty compared to super-smooth Warren. Blake actually liked Michael’s sound better, but Usher thought Warren was sexier. Adam, lured by “the diversity that exists with your voice,” chose Warren.
Team Usher’s round matched Jeff Lewis and Josiah Hawley, the two most beautiful males ever to gaze into one another’s eyes and sing about a prostitute. (Their song was “Roxanne.”) Honestly, I could hardly pay attention to their voices, so enamored was I by their perfect smiles and sparkling eyes. Apparently, they oversang and fell flat, Adam said. Shakira? Not impressed. Blake enjoyed Josiah’s look (“He bought one of Adam’s t-shirts”) but liked Jeff’s vocals better. But Usher, who chewed out Jeff for laughing during rehearsal (mean teacher!), chose to continue with Josiah.
We got a speedy look at a few other battles: Grace Askew beat Trevor Davis (who?). Former model Audrey Karrasch beat Jamila Thompson (again—who?). And country singer Tawnya Reynolds prevailed over pop rocker Mark Andrew.
Finally, Team Blake’s hyper-affected indie coffeehouse girl Caroline Glaser faced off against inexperienced country girl Danielle Bradberry. He gave them “Put Your Records On,” which at this point is one of the most overdone and detestable reality music competition songs, and one that naturally appeals to girls like Caroline who speak perfectly normally but sing with some ridiculous accent. It seemed like she would have it in the bag, but Blake proved to be a sucker for Danielle’s perfect pitch and innocent blonde girlishness and the fact that at 16, she’s the youngest in the competition. And, you know, her country twang. So of course his pick was Danielle.
But wait! Adam and Usher both want to steal Caroline! Ugh, we will never be done with these indie girls on this show. Adam went on and on about how unique Caroline is, even though his contestant last time, Melanie Martinez, sounds pretty much exactly like her and every fake-accented indie girl in the universe. Usher already has one of those on his team, Jess Kellner, but he tried to steal Caroline by offering Adam’s Blind Auditions proposition of setting himself on fire. Adam wasted no time pointing out the copyright infringement, so Usher rebuffed, “It worked for you so hopefully it would work for me.” It didn’t.
Tuesday night’s gains:
Shakira: Tawnya Reynolds
Usher: Josiah Hawley, Audrey Karrasch
Blake: Grace Askew, Danielle Bradberry
Adam: Warren Stone, Caroline Glaser