Season 13 of “The Voice” continued Monday night with the penultimate episode in the blind auditions round. Veteran coaches Adam Levine and Blake Shelton each started the night with five open spots on their teams while Miley Cyrus had four and Jennifer Hudson had only three. Last week, contributing writer Denton Davidson and I both agreed that Miley scored the strongest artist by bringing Moriah Formica in on her four-chair performance of “Crazy on You,” and that’s after she had already snagged the best two performers (Brooke Simpson and Ashland Craft) in Week 1.
Is Miley’s team of all women headed for a total sweep of the blind audition round? Or did one of the other judges manage to grab the night’s best artist?
Check out my take on the strength of Monday night’s performances below, where I’ve power ranked the 11 artists from best to worst. Then take a look back at our live blog from Monday night Week 3 with minute-by-minute analysis as well as our full power rankings from Week 1 and Week 2.
1. Jon Mero – “Versace on the Floor” (Age: 31; Atlanta, GA)
Even though Miley was after an all-female team, I wasn’t surprised to see her make Jon’s audition a four chair turn because his stage presence and vocal prowess were evident from the start of his performance through to the end. He’s definitely one of the most energetic performers we’ve seen this season, but gives off the vibe of a seasoned performer primed and ready to jump into the business immediately. He could go all the way, especially with Adam as his coach. Chair turns: 4; Team: Adam.
2. Chloe Kohanski – “The Chain” (Age: 23; Mt. Juliet, TN)
It was bold of Chloe to take on one of Fleetwood Mac’s group songs (as opposed to one by just Stevie Nicks, for instance), but she really turned it out! The rasp and gritty texture of her voice is interesting and while it sounds a lot like Miley’s, it feels unique at the same time. The choice to join Team Miley might have been too obvious here, but I can’t imagine another judge curating her style and independent spirit to appeal to the audience more effectively than Miley will. Chair turns: 3; Team: Miley.
3. Whitney Fenimore – “Hold On, We’re Going Home” (Age: 28; Tulsa, OK)
Adam has a pretty good track record with singer-songwriter female artists and though Whitney isn’t exactly that, she has that sort of essence that gels well with Adam’s. As is always the case with artists as niche as Whitney, song choice is going to be key, but I get the sense that she’s willing to experiment and expand her point of view throughout the competition. My only hesitation of calling her one of the best of the night is whether or not her voice is big enough to really blow the audience away week to week. Chair turns: 2; Team: Adam.
4. Brandon Brown – “Georgia on My Mind” (Age: 19; Bronx, NY)
In both his performance and his decision to choose a coach, Brandon came off as a calm and collected guy that seems serious about his craft. In this competition that kind of attitude can be tricky, especially in terms of gaining a follower of fans, but I think it shows that he will work hard and knows exactly what type of artist he wants to be. He sounded lovely on the Ray Charles classic and in choosing Team Adam he acknowledged that he wants to be brought out of his comfort zone. Chair turns: 3; Team: Adam.
5. Ignatious Carmouche – “Latch” (Age: 23 ; Opelousas, LA)
Thankfully Ignatious saved all his nerves for after his performance when he was speaking to the judges, but I’m worried that he might suffer from not connecting with the television audience if he doesn’t show more personality in those moments. As for his performance, he proved he has the vocal chops, but was uneven with a bad arrangement. Even still, Jennifer is a perfect match for him and hopefully her confidence will rub off on him. Chair turns: 2; Team: Jennifer.
6. Dennis Drummond – “She Talks to Angels” (Age: 27; Nashville, TN)
Prior to his audition, Dennis said that Adam would be his ideal coach, but after both he and Blake turned for him Dennis went with his gut in the moment and joined Blake. That’s unfortunate because while I think Dennis has a good enough voice to go deep in the competition I think he needs to perform something unexpected to actually win. Blake usually takes a more conservative approach with his artists so I anticipate Dennis being too predictable to inspire votes in future rounds. Chair turns: 2; Team: Blake.
7. Meagan McNeal – “Can’t Feel My Face” (Age: 31; Chicago, IL)
There’s no question that Meagan and Jennifer are a perfect match, but in order to bring in enough votes to top the competition, they’ll need to broaden the scope of Meagan’s blind audition. The choice to sing a song by a male artist is a good one, but next time it should be a song by an artist outside her genre to prove that she can truly make anything her own. On a couple notes she seemed to be screaming rather than singing so they’ll need to even that out, too. Chair turns: 1; Team: Jennifer.
8. Ilianna Viramontes – “New Soul” (Age: 18; Brentwood, CA)
Given her quirky personality and odd voice, Miley is the only coach that will know how to work with the tools Ilianna has. I do think she’ll be pigeon-holed into picking folksy songs and that might be her downfall, so her test will be elevating her voice to a point where she gets the audience excited about what she’ll do next. Chair turns: 2; Team: Miley.
9. Nathan Graham – “Nobody to Blame” (Age: 27; Chicago, IL)
Someone should have turned their chair for Nathan (probably Blake) because even if his vocal ability wasn’t at its best in the song, the growl was distinct and appealing enough to be worked into something richer. I think this was a huge missed opportunity for one of the judges to add a good country rocker to their team. Chair turns: 0.
10. Rebecca Brunner – “Believer” (Age: 22; Mason, MI)
I’m not at all surprised that it took until literally a second from the end of her song for a judge to turn around for her because I found Rebecca’s performance to be awfully boring. Her voice lacked a sense of passion, resting in her bottom register the whole time and never growing into anything dynamic. Chair turns: 1; Team: Blake.
11. Olivia Kay – “Ghost” (Age: 13; Edmond, OK)
As the youngest in the competition this season, Olivia was at a disadvantage in terms of experience, but her potential is larger than most peoples were at 13 years old. There’s depth and power in Olivia’s voice, but it’s clear that she just needs to settle her nerves and let her voice grow into itself before coming back in a future season. Chair turns: 0; Autographed photos of Blake: 1.
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