Fall Out Boy, Nicholas David, AND the most intense elimination of the season?! Oh The Voice, you spoil me!
Season 4 champion-in-waiting Danielle Bradberry and acceptably harmonic Swon Brothers are virtual locks to advance to next week’s Finals, thanks to overwhelming iTunes sales. That leaves one spot open for the motley crew of Amber Carrington, Sasha Allen, and Michelle Chamuel.
Even knowing the iTunes results, you could make a case for any of them. Sasha’s got the lowest sales, but she’s defied iTunes once and appears to have a whole lot of support through other means of voting. Amber had the worst performance of the night – a Katy Perry-inspired disasterpiece – but also cracked the iTunes top-10 with “Sad”. And Michelle, assumed to be a shoo-in as the runner-up this season, picked a bad time to have arguably her most lackluster night of the competition and is now at risk.
I’m on record predicting Sasha and Amber go home, but it truly is a toss-up. Drama! Let’s get to it.
-Low-key steampunk robot Carson Daly kicks off the night. Normally these results shows drag a bit, but…Fall Out Boy and Nicholas David!! Can you tell I’m psyched? Because I’m psyched.
-Would be pretty sweet if right off the bat, Carson announced that Danielle and the Swons were safe. Let’s cut to the real drama! Nope, time for a long recap of last night’s performances. Fine, we’ll do this YOUR way.
-FALL. OUT. BOY. Yeah I like them, so what?? Singing the (characteristically) embarassingly-titled “My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark”. Michelle is allegedly participating, but she’s mostly out there just to stomp around. Enjoying this. How can you not enjoy Fall Out Boy?? What is wrong with you???
-Time for Carson to interview the coaches. Adam, as usual, doesn’t reeeally understand how to get votes for his contestant; Shakira looks gorgeous and says some words and also looks gorgeous; Usher slyly credits Blake for turning him into the Machiavellian tactician he is today; Blake revels in the success of his artists and carries himself like a supervillain.
-Now it’s time for…THE #1 SOUL BROTHER HIMSELF, MR. NICHOLAS DAVID! I’ve gone through season 4 without really rooting for anyone, but if you were with me in season 3, I was driving the Nicholas David bandwagon from the auditions. I love this man. Highlights of his interview with Carson include him referring to his family as “three deep” (in other words, having three children) and asking if he can sit on the couch. Holy buckets, HEY NOW!
-Confessional! We discuss “Ursher” and his dance moves, Adam’s tattoos, Blake’s Santa Claus laugh, and then the Swons dress up like Shakira and quote Anchorman. Not going to lie, I’m starting to come around on the Swons.
LET’S GET DOWN TO BUSINESS! Our first artist MOVING ON TO NEXT WEEK’S FINAL is…
MICHELLE CHAMUEL! Well then. Didn’t expect that one to come first, let’s just say. Does this mean Sasha and Amber are goners, or are we in for an even bigger surprise? Some will make the case that both Sasha and Amber were better than Michelle last night, but while I certainly understand that opinion, I don’t agree with it. Michelle wasn’t great, but like the judges said, she is VERY consistent. Amber crashed and burned on “Firework”, and Sasha’s “I Will Always Love You” was bold but probably foolish. And based on the strength of her season, Michelle 100% deserves to be here.
-Christina Milian interviews make me want to hide under my couch.
-Tony Lucca’s back! He’ll forever have my respect for his rousing re-working of ’99 Problems’ and Christina Aguilera’s hilariously outraged reaction. Probably my favorite moment in The Voice history, and maybe my favorite in TV history. Anyway, his single is pleasantly forgettable. Hey, he could be the third Swon Brother!
-Time for all 5 contestants to perform together, and the chosen song is…”Every Rose Has Its Thorns”. Okay. Going out on a limb and guessing the Swon Brothers picked this song. I guess…I mean..okay. Whatever. It’s a feel-good performance, I guess.
Next announcement! Has to be Danielle or the Swons, right? Our next act moving on is…
DANIELLE BRADBERRY! Of course. At least the show had the savviness to leave a tiny bit of drama for the final announcement, though it’s very hard to imagine anyone overcoming the Swons’ iTunes dominance. Anyway, Danielle is winning this season. Michelle briefly challenged her claim to the throne last week; but like Tywin Lannister crushing all that oppose him, Blake engineered Danielle’s best performances to date last night, cementing her as the season champion thanks to cumulative iTunes votes. Michelle was left standing in the middle of the banquet hall, surrounded by dudes holding crossbows.
-Hey, it’s Terry McDermott! He was the Swon Brothers from last season for me. I didn’t believe in Terry at all when the season began, but he won me over as it progressed. Granted, I ended up liking Terry quite a bit more than I like the Swons, but I’m coming around on the latter. Anyway, this is a really good song. Rock on, Terry.
And now, the final announcement of the night. Our FINAL ACT moving on to the final is….
THE SWON BROTHERS! That was anticlimactic. They couldn’t have saved Michelle for last? Oh well.
That means we are saying goodbye to…
Ranked #4 out of 48 following auditions.
Ranked #3 out of 16 entering the live shows.
Great run for Sasha, and a great job by Shakira bringing her back from the brink of elimination a few weeks ago. Not sure she was ever winning this season, especially with Danielle taking everyone’s corners like Marlo Stanfield, but Sasha went about as far as she could hope for. She mostly bucked the “Broadway singer” label and almost reached the finish line. All-in-all, a tremendously successful season for Sasha Allen.
Ranked #19 out of 48 following auditions.
Ranked #5 out of 16 entering the live shows.
On the other hand, I feel like under different circumstances, Amber Carrington could have won this season. Credit Blake’s 100%-committed chess move of turning this from a pop-country hybrid season into a pure country season, and blame Adam’s inability to choose songs (or steer Amber towards songs) that connect with the audience still watching the show. “Firework” is a case-in-point. Not only is that a song Amber cannot sing (can ANYBODY sing that song??), it’s not at all in the wheelhouse of a voting audience that put the Swon Brothers’ rendition of a Kenny Loggins song at #2 on the iTunes chart this morning. In the end, what Adam claimed to be Amber’s greatest strength – her ability to sing a variety of genres – turned out to be her undoing, as she never quite developed the same kind of fan base as the three artists that advanced to the finals. From a talent standpoint, I’m not sure there wass anybody better this season.