Welcome to the end of The Voice Season 3 Premiere Week! How time doesn’t fly when you’re on the hunt for the best voice in America. Tonight, Adam has 14 spots on his team left to fill, Blake has 12, Cee Lo has 13 and Christina has 12. Let’s laugh at how the “previously on” makes Adam look like the last kid picked on the playground at school.
First on deck tonight is Samuel Mouton, who sings Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song,” getting Adam, Cee Lo, and Christina’s attention, in that order. One thinks Cee Lo will be naturally intrigued since Samuel likes cooking. Christina wants to know what Samuel’s “turn ons” are. Adam pulls the “I pushed my button first” card. Samuel joins Team Adam, and I am excited about that. I’m not even going to try and pretend otherwise. Hey, “One More Night” has a bit of reggae in it…
Next up is Chris Trousdale, who used to be in Dream Street with Jesse McCartney, and had his music career take a nosedive after the band broke up. I’m not a fan of boy bands, myself, but it’s hard not to feel for the guy. That said, I’d have advised him against picking a song from another boy band – The Wanted’s “Glad You Came” – for his blind audition. One wonders how he might have fared if he’d stepped outside his previous sub-genre. As it is, Chris can’t get any of the coaches to turn their chairs (in fact, their reactions look a little bit pained), though he does get Blake to dance. This then becomes the time when NBC cues up the montage of more singers who won’t be sticking with us.
Hoping to get back on the right track, we move on to Nelly’s Echo (that’s his stage name), whose family escaped political unrest in Nigeria, except for his wrongly incarcerated father. Thankfully, Dad has since been exonerated and now is watching his son’s blind audition backstage with Carson. Nelly’s version of Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine” makes me stop loathing that song for ninety seconds. I might actually go download this one. It also makes Christina and Adam push their buttons. A particularly aggressive Christina cuts off Adam in mid-spiel and the fact she turned first convinces Nelly to join Team Christina. Adam says he doesn’t know what happened there, and I have to agree, but I’m honestly just pleased he’s in the competition.
Now we finally get our first duo of Season 3, and it’s a mother-daughter team out of a family band. Mom says that she had to quit her job so that they could come to The Voice. That’s our introduction to 2Steel Girls, who give us Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats,” meaning it’s time for the camera to cut repeatedly back to Blake. Bet you didn’t expect Cee Lo to push his button first, did you? Even if Blake follows all of a half-second later. Adam calls the ladies “a freight train of angry, jilted women” and admits that “duos confuse me. I don’t know how to handle them.” I laugh at the first and as for the second, give him credit for being honest. The duo pick Team Blake.
And…we get into the montage of artists who make teams, yet we don’t get to see their full auditions. I have never understood the decision not to show the full blind auditions of people who are in the competition. If they’re people I’m supposed to be caring about, I should get to know them and hear them sing for more than twenty seconds. As if that’s not awkward enough, it’s also a montage of people that Team Red Zone can’t land. In quick succession, we find out that Cee Lo loses Lisa Scinta and Marissa Ann to Christina, and Loren Allred to Adam. Yeowch. Or is that another trick of editing? Maybe both.
I’m a little bit thrown by the next blind audition, as the Bronx-born Domo shows up declaring herself the “next superstar” and declaring herself “The Voice” before she’s even made a team. Given that The Voice has thus far avoided huge egos, I’m a bit uncomfortable when her hip-hop dance-filled rendition of “Don’t Cha” gets Cee Lo to turn his chair, as it’s just as much dancing as singing. Even if you judge her on vocal talent alone, she’s solid but not outstanding. Especially since Chris was earlier called out for being more of a dancer than a singer, it’s a bit perplexing that she’s not also questioned on that. When she decides she wants to do an “exercise” with the audience in saying her name, well, that’s just too much for me. It’ll be interesting to see how the fans react to Domo, especially since there’s a segment of the fan base that’s criticized Christina Aguilera for her perceived ego in the past.
The last artist of the night is Nicole Nelson, who tackles Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah.” Adam gets a serious case of Contemplative Face before he goes in, and it’s as if everyone else was waiting on him, because they all push their buttons right after he does. Nicole came out thinking she’d pick Blake, but the reaction makes her change her mind, and she joins Team Adam. My coach is so excited he ends up on his knees thanking her. I’m certainly interested in seeing what Adam can do with Nicole, who had the performance of the night in my opinion. She reminds me a little bit of Kim Yarbrough.
The talent in volume three is stronger than that from Tuesday night, but I’m still waiting for someone that’s really going to blow me away. There have been some great singers, and even some four-chair turnarounds, but perhaps I’m spoiled by having heard Javier Colon because I find myself listening for the “OMG” factor. Having said that, this is but phase one: it took us all awhile to catch on to the likes of Tony Lucca, Katrina Parker, and Dia Frampton, just to name a few of The Voice‘s most pleasant surprises.
The updated total is as follows: Team Adam with 5 members, Team Blake with 5, Team Cee Lo with 4 and Team Christina with 7. We’ve still got awhile to go before the final rosters are set – tune back in next Monday night at 8 PM ET/PT to find out who else will join the competition!
(c)2012 Brittany Frederick/Big Red Chairs. Appears at Starpulse, Examiner & Fanbolt with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.