By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com
The Voice: Season 11 Top Eight has been revealed!
The remaining finalists have one last chance to impress voters for a spot in next week’s season finale.
So far, Adam still has his team (Billy Gilman, Brendan Fletcher, and Josh Gallagher) intact, while both (Christian Cuevas and We McDonald) and Miley (Aaron Gibson and Ali Caldwell) have two artists respectively. Sadly, the four-time Voice winning coach, Blake Shelton just has Sundance Head to represent him in tonight’s semi-finals.
Which artists rose to the occasion and made both of their coaches and fans proud? Who will duke it out for the final Instant Save of Season 11? Read on to find out!
(Editor’s Note: Yet again, The Voice is running out of song ideas! Half of the songs that the artists performed tonight were songs that were played on other singing competitions.)
Christian Cuevas opened the night by going back to his Gospel roots: “To Worship You, I Will (Away).” This was also the first time that he sang in Spanish tonight (somewhere two-time Voice coach Shakira was swooning when he sang). I think it was a significant risk to sing a song that this unknown to the American public, but I had to give Christian, big props for taking such as calculated risk during this round of the competition. Unfortunately, there were some screeching that went in-and-out of the performance and the choir outsang him in the chorus section. Based on this performance, I believe that Christian might have to sing for a spot in the finale. D+
I do not understand why Miley constantly has Ali Caldwell paying homage to the former Hannah Montana’s godmother: Dolly Parton! Tonight, Ali sang “I Will Always Love You,” a song forever immortalized by the late Whitney Houston and friend to the blog: American Idol: Season 11 Runner-Up Jessica Sanchez. Did Ali one-up Jessica or did viewers rush to YouTube to watch Jessica’s performance once again? Answer: Ali stepped up to the challenge and delivered a performance that made me smile. Minus the mosh pit’s failing to “waive the wheat,” Ali hit all the right notes and gave one of her most magical performances since the season began! I think she earned her place in the finale. A
Week after week, Brendan Fletcher has won over America with spectacular performances such as “To Love Somebody,” “Whipping Post,” and “True Colors.” When I heard about Brenden covering Sarah McLachlan’s “Angel,” I reminisced about a friend to the blog, LeRoy Bell’s haunting and a goose-bump inducing cover of the track during the inaugural season of The X Factor USA. I named LeRoy’s performance in my Top 30 Greatest Reality TV Performances of All-Time earlier this year, so Brendan’s challenge to match LeRoy’s heartfelt intensity that I felt five years ago. From the first note, Brendan grabbed my attention and gave me the case of the goosies that I was looking for! I hope that he makes it to the finale. A-
We McDonald has been one of my favorites since her standout Blind Audition performance. Tonight, she covered Alessa Cara’s “Scars to Your Beautiful, ” and she broke my heart yet again. I could feel the pain in her vocals, nd for being 17-years-old, the sky is the limit. The performance gave me Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation” vibe and We commanded the stage and interacted with all the musicians on the stage. I have been saying this since day one: “See you in the finals, We!” A
If I was at the Universal Studios Hollywood soundstage and I managed to have one of America’s Got Talent’s dreaded buzzers on me, I would use it on Aaron Gibson. The Team Miley WGWG (White Guy with Guitar) and Phillip Phillips clone made history last week when America saved him for the third time this season. This week, he sang Bryan Adams’ “Everything I Do (I Do It for You),” a song that Season Five finalist Will Champlin poignantly sang to his family three years ago. Will put so much heart and soul in that performance that he had me in tears at the end. In all honesty, this was a train wreck of performance. F
I hate to say this, but Josh Gallagher bored me to tears. “Danny’s Song” is the type of tune that would not only go over the audience’s head, but it is not a “get off of your couch and vote for me” song! I wished that he performed something like “Beat It” or “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting,” because I believe that Josh just eliminated himself from being a contender for the finale. F
Sundance Head is Team Blake’s last artist standing. He tackled the Judds’ “Love Could Build a Bridge.” After some encouragement with Wynonna Judd herself, Sundance took the stage for one of his most heartfelt performances this season. I got chills when he first sang, and throughout the song, I believed that Sundance could be one of the last artists left standing in this competition. Win or lose; Sundance will have one hell of a career after this season wraps up! A+
In my humble opinion, Billy Gilman is one of the best male singers; the show has ever seen. But, at times during the competition, I feel that he did not emote any emotion during several of his performances. Tonight, he tackled Celine Dion’s “I Surrender,” the song that transformed Kelly Clarkson into a household name. 14 years later, Clarkson’s performance still gave me chills and set the standard for any singer performing on Reality TV. Tonight, Billy finally gave me what I have been looking for from him during the live shows. He gave me goosebumps and every lyric that he sang pierced my heart. Plus, I believe that Brian Justin Crum and Branden James might be jealous of Billy’s ability to sustain the high notes! A-
Tomorrow night, Blake Shelton, Hannah Huston, and OneRepublic provide the entertainment, while the Season 11 Final Four will be revealed.
I do not own any of the media clips featured in this article. They belong to the following companies:
*American Idol: 19 Entertainment, FOX & FremantleMedia North America
*The X Factor USA: FOX, FremantleMedia North America & Syco Entertainment
Will Champlin’s cover of “Everything I Do (I Do It for You)” belongs to Republic Records.