The Voice 2013 Live Recap: The Top 12 Sing For America’s Votes (5/13/2013)
It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, and The Voice 2013 is back with a whole new set of live performances from the remaining 12 contestants. In tonight’s two-hour live show, we will see artists from a variety of genres sing their hearts out to move forward in the competition. Now with the voting is entirely in America’s hands, two artists will be going home in tomorrow night’s live results show (starting at 9 p.m. ET on NBC). Coaches Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Shakira, and Usher each have three remaining contestants in the competition, but no coaches’ team is safe from being eliminated entirely.
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In tonight’s live shows, the air conditioning might have been out on stage, but that didn’t stop the contestants from giving it their all.
Let’s get started:
Starting out the night with some smooth moves, R&B singer Vedo tackled Michael Jackson’s hit “Rock With You.” Though some of his moves (combined with the heat) made breath control tough, he was able to hit the power note when it mattered.
Shakira gushed that Vedo always “leaves his heart on stage” and Blake Shelton complimented Vedo’s choreography saying it only added to the performance.
Ush thought Vedo “paced” himself enough to hit all the right notes, saying it would surely win him votes. We couldn’t agree more.
This newly-confident singer was excited to move forward as a country artist after America voted her through last week. Singing Martina McBride’s “A Broken Wing,” Holly looked more polished and self-assured than ever before.
So apparently all this self conscious singer needed was a few hundred thousand votes from America. Who knew?
As always, her power notes were right on pitch and she ended on a strong note. We also appreciated a more original song choice this time around (#nomoreleannrimes).
Usher scoffed at any of Holly’s previous haters, saying there was no doubt that she was meant to be doing exactly what she was doing on that stage.
Adam Levine even called it one of the “better vocal performances of the show.” And her coach, Blake, called it her best performance to date.
Looking to mix things up, Shakira picked Backstreet Boys’ hit “I Want It That Way” for young Garrett Gardner. Garrett looked a bit surprised to be singing the song, but after Shakira tried to connect with him by saying people compared her to a goat, there wasn’t much he could say.
Honestly we weren’t big on his rendition. Apart from giving it a quicker tempo, Garrett didn’t give the song much of his own flair.
Adam Levine admitted that he wasn’t a fan of Garrett’s performance, while Blake Shelton said that risk-taking is necessary to find out what kind of artist a contestant is going to be.
Ush comforted Garrett saying “constructive criticism would only make him better.”
Shakira was beaming over her “studly” artist saying his version was “cool as hell.” We would continue to discuss Garrett’s performance, but at that point Usher stripped down to his undershirt and we were momentarily distracted. Swoon.
Hoping to assure Adam Levine that he made the right decision in saving her last week, melodic rocker Sarah Simmons gave a moving performance of Brandi Carlile’s “The Story.”
The Memphis, Tenn. native definitely brought her own gritty growl to the tune, impressing us more than she had to date.
Blake Shelton was thrilled that Sarah had shown off the “extremes” of her voice using both the soft and powerful elements of her sound.
Despite not knowing the song, Shakira thought the pick was perfect for the singer.
Sarah clearly did her job considering her coach, Adam Levine, could not stop praising the “defined diversity” in her voice, calling her one of the best in the competition.
The Swon Brothers
Making Voice history, The Swon Brothers were the first duo to make it to the Top 12. These boys wanted to make an impression with their record-breaking song, singing “Who’s Going to Fill Their Shoes” by the recently-departed George Jones.
Unfortunately, the slowed-down, candlelit tune exposed their weak pitch. The duo hit their stride in the chorus, but like a karaoke singer who didn’t quite know the verses, they came off a bit wobbly.
Ush was pleased with the song, noting the duo’s diversity of choices over the past two weeks. Adam said he loved listening to their rendition, which brought him out of the competition and allowed him to simply enjoy the music.
Blake was nothing but smiles, letting America know that The Swon Brothers were the ones who opted to honor George Jones and country music in general on the show. He was quick to call it their breakout moment (but he says that every Monday night so...).
Well folks, apparently it’s that time of year — the time when a powerhouse singer picks Heart’s “Alone” to show off their vocals. This time around, it was Team Shakira’s Sasha Allen.
The former Broadway singer was looking to shed her theatrical tone and turn the ‘80s song into the epic pop ballad it is.
Adam was once again the laughing stock of the coaches panel for “giving up” the singer and Usher once again informed Sasha that she “took us to church.”
Shakira reiterated that Sasha was “one of the best voices” she’s ever heard, calling the performance “fierce and passionate.” We agree that her voice stands out, but at this point, it’s stood out so many times that we’re not sure how far she can really go. Maybe we’ve just been spoiled by her flawless talent.
After a fast-paced performance last week, this heartthrob was ready to slow things down with an acoustic rendition of The Script’s “The Man Who Can’t Be Moved.”
Each week this pretty boy impresses us more and more. Like the Dez Durons of the world, Josiah has to work extra hard to prove that he’s not just a pretty face. And this week, he succeeded. Wearing an Adam Levine-inspired white T-shirt, the singer crooned to the screaming crowd of ladies.
Adam praised Josiah’s journey saying he finally found the “sweet spot” for his voice, calling it his best performance to date.
Josiah’s coach, Usher, had nothing but compliments for his artist, noting that he was responsible for the rendition and even calling him a “young Adam Levine.” Whoa there, Ush. Let’s not get crazy.
Blake Shelton is still desperately searching for the limit to teen Danielle Bradbery’s voice. Apparently there isn’t one. He gave the blonde beauty Carrie Underwood’s tune “Wasted.”
And we’re so grateful he did. The effortless ease with which Ms. Bradbery enchants us each week is quite inspiring. Though we’d like to see her do more on stage than stand and belt, the purity of her sound is unlike anything we’ve heard before.
“When we get to the live rounds, that’s when you really see what an artist is made of. But I never detect an ounce of nerves in you. You’re like a 16-year-old Margaret Thatcher, a mini Iron Lady,” Shakira declared.
Meanwhile, Danielle was thinking, “Who is Margaret Thatcher?
Adam Levine was quick to note that Danielle was indeed the one to beat and that his team has a lot of work to do. Blake made it clear that the cutie on the screen (we’re not talking about Adam) was as genuine and real as you’d imagine. Maybe her next performance will be on horseback.
Opting out of the band’s accompaniment, fan-favorite Judith Hill sat at the piano to sing Carole King’s “You’ve Got a Friend.”
Despite the fact that the coaches have been praising her every move, Judith gave her absolute best performance tonight. The option to eliminate the band was a perfect way to show off her soulful sound and her ease at the piano captivated us from the start.
“You are totally in control of your destiny at this point,” Usher exclaimed, saying he was “happy” America got to see this side of her.
Calling her talent one that "cannot be taught,” Adam Levine praised the “purity” of Judith’s vocals and skillset.
After moving America with last week’s “True Colors,” pop rocker Michelle Chamuel was ready to “move” the nation in another way. Singing Robyn’s “Call Your Girlfriend,” Michelle danced around the stage in her bright red pants. And though the singer occasionally struggled with breath control, we’d be on the ground panting after performing some of those moves.
Adam Levine was quick to call Michelle one of a kind saying there was no one else out there like her on the show. Ush clear adores his artist, begging America to vote for her in the hopes that together they could go all the way to the finals. We’d like to see her stick around just to tackle some more of those robotronic dance moves.
Sharing that he was about to join the Navy before he made it on The Voice, Kris Thomas was looking to prove that he deserved to stick around. Singing Jackson 5’s “I’ll Be There,” the sexy man with the feminine voice was looking to do MJ proud.
Coach Adam Levine gave Kris props for singing a song that had notes up in the clouds, saying it was hard for Michael Jackson to sing at age 10 before his voice changed. Blake echoed that thought and added that Kris always takes risks.
Usher was slightly more critical, but in the end, he declared “no risk, no reward.”
We were a bit underwhelmed by Kris’s performance, but his impressive range certainly doesn’t go unnoticed.
Closing out the night was Adam Levine’s sole country singer, Amber Carrington. This wild card has shocked us each week with her standout performances, which probably earned her the coveted final spot of the evening.
Coach Adam Levine let his artist pick the song she wanted for this week of live shows, and she landed on Martina McBride’s “I’m Going to Love You Through It,” dedicating the performance to her mother the day after Mother’s Day.
By the time she started singing someone nearby us was cutting a giant onion ... yeah, that’s gotta be the reason we were openly weeping.
Amber stayed strong throughout the performance, though we did see her lip quiver towards the end of the song. But in comparison to our sobfest, she was completely composed. Blake thought Amber made Martina McBride just as proud as his artist Holly had earlier in the evening.
Usher said Amber’s voice “defied the laws of gravity,” noting how “on point” her sound was. Shakira was excited to see Amber return to her country roots, thanking Blake and his wife Miranda Lambert for her new-found appreciation for the genre.
Adam told Amber how much he admired her for her personal strength, saying he probably couldn’t do such an emotional song if put in the same position. Sorry, what did you say, Adam? We’re still grabbing tissues.
What did you think of tonight’s performances? Tell us below!