Reality TV

The Voice 2014 – Recap – The Battles Premiere, Part 2

Welcome to the live blog and recap of “The Battles Premiere, Part 2″ on The Voice 2014 Season 6! Which singers will advance? Which coaches will use the Steal?

The Voice 2014 - Recap - The Battles Premiere, Part 2

Credit: NBC

Will tonight’s matchups be able to top last night’s battles? Add your thoughts in the comments!

RECAP

-We kick things off with a brief recap of last night, and a preview of what’s to come tonight. You know, the usual stiff for The Voice. I’m still convinced they give away WAY too much in those previews, but thankfully, they keep it pretty short tonight.

TEAM SHAKIRA: CLARISSA SERNA VS. JEREMY BRIGGS

-Clarissa is excited to work with Miranda Lambert, while Jeremy is stoked to receive “Cold As Ice” by Foreigner, since he’s been listening to this song since he was “a little guy.” Clarissa is a bit intimidated by Jeremy’s effortlessness in singing hard rock, so she sets out to prove she can hang. Miranda feels Clarissa has real grit, but is clearly holding back.

-In the studio, it sounds really rough and out of tune for both singers. Shakira strangely decides to get on their case for sounding like they’re competing against each other, arguing that they need to work together. Again, is this the “duet” round or the BATTLE round?

-I love how Carson introduces Jeremy as the Rocking Office Worker, which sounds like a crazy early 90s wrestling gimmick, like Irwin R. Schyster, the wrestling taxman.

-Clarissa looks amazing and sounds just a slight hair better than Jeremy on the verses. However, Jeremy slays the choruses. I have absolutely no idea who I’d pick here. I think Clarissa is slightly more marketable, but Jeremy is an eensy bit better in terms of pure potential. His voice is just incredibly raw, but still nuanced. But I think I might actually pick Clarissa, since I think Shakira could do more with her than she could do with Jeremy.

-Adam says the ending was powerful, applauding their talent. However, he says he’d have to go with Clarissa. Blake shouts out Jeremy for singing in the exact same key as Clarissa, which impresses him. But much like Adam, he feels he has to give it to Clarissa. Usher, however, gives it to Jeremy for his effort and “tenacity”. Shakira feels Jeremy fell out of the pocket at certain points, while saying she wishes Clarissa were less dramatic. Ultimately, she makes her decision…

CLARISSA WINS THE BATTLE!

-Clarissa is understandably stoked. I like her. I really do.

-Jeremy thanks the judges for the opportunity, saying he came here to get better. Nobody steals him, unfortunately, and Jeremy later confesses to the camera that he wanted to win that battle more than anything, although there can only be one winner. Usher rationalizes that he’s saving his Steal for something incredible. No need to justify yourself, man. You’re good.

-Back from break with Aloe Blacc gushing about how The Voice produces awesome moments you can’t see anywhere else on TV. Adam praises Aloe for his soulful singing style, stating how happy he is to have him helping as a mentor.

TEAM ADAM: CALEB ELDER VS. DELVIN CHOICE

-They’ll be singing “The Man” by Aloe himself, and Aloe recounts the story behind the song. Apparently, he once met with Dr. Dre, who told him he needs to write better songs. Both singers want to do justice to the song for Aloe, who performs the song for them so they can get the hang of it. It’s a good song, but I’m not sure it’s a good song for these two.

-In the studio, Aloe is disappointed when it becomes apparent that neither man fully learned their parts for the song. Adam straight up tells Caleb and Delvin that their performance wasn’t good at all, and Delvin notes that hearing that felt like your father telling you he’s disappointed in you.

-Aloe and Adam put the guys through a unique exercise, in which they rap the song lyrics to the beat of their own clapping, in order to get the rhythm and lyrical song of the content down before they apply melody to it. The effects of the exercise are immediate, as Caleb and Delvin sound a thousand times better, like they actually get the song now. Maybe I was wrong about this being an iffy choice on this.

-Adam gives both men a war-like pep talk backstage, getting them shouting, in an amusing moment. Caleb then recounts how he left his donut shop job to further his music, so he intends to do everything he can to advance. Delvin, meanwhile, vows to leave it all on the stage.

-This is a unique battle that I really enjoyed. Caleb made some strange vocal choices that didn’t always work, but I mostly appreciated the idea of where he was going with it. Delvin, however, seems like the clear winner in this, just owning the choruses and nailing the big notes throughout the song, whereas Caleb faltered.

-Blake loves both singers, but calls out Caleb on his mistakes. Usher also praises both men, particularly Delvin, whom he feels took it to church. Shakira is also going with Delvin. Adam then, before making his decision, notes that Shakira speaks English as a second language better than Blake Shelton does as his first, to which Blake notes he speaks “Oklahoman” (HAH!). Adam basically tells both guys how proud he is of them, and how much they’ve improved, but Carson notes that he needs an answer (not sure why. It’s not like they’re live or anything). So Adam makes his choice…

DELVIN CHOICE WINS THE BATTLE!

-Delvin is gracious in victory, while Caleb is similarly gracious in defeat, saying he’s happy no matter what happens. Unsurprisingly, nobody steals him. Still, the guy is a class act.

-We then get a BATTLES MONTAGE:

TEAM BLAKE: MEGAN RUGER VS. RIA EATON

WINNER: Megan Ruger

TEAM SHAKIRA: DDENDYL VS. LINDSAY PAGANO

WINNER: Ddendyl

TEAM USHER: BROTHERS WALKER VS. MORGAN WALLEN

WINNER: Morgan Wallen

(The Brothers Walker eliminated?! NOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Seriously though, this looked like an AMAZING battle. Why couldn’t they have montaged one of last night’s snoozers instead of this?! In fact, I would have rather seen any of the three battles they montaged over half of the battles we actually saw last night. I swear, this show sometimes…)

-Back from break with Blake and Adam joking backstage as we get things going into the next battle…

TEAM USHER: BRITTNEE CAMELLA VS. MELISSA JIMENEZ

-I love that everyone has the good taste to be starstruck by Jill Scott. That woman is incredibly talented, and needs to be way more famous than she is.

-Their song is “Give It to Me Right” by Melanie Fiona, which is just a great, great choice. And both girls sound excellent on it, to boot; which, honestly, I wasn’t expecting. Mostly because I’m not that high on Brittnee Camella, who just seems kind of off-putting. Coincidentally, Jill Scott comments on this almost immediately, saying that when she hears Brittnee, she hears a story, but when she sees her face, she just sees an attitude. Jill feels it’s a wall between her and the audience. Brittnee understands exactly what she’s talking about, and does her best to adjust.

-In the studio, Melissa goes sharp on a high note, causing her to worry about her chances in the battle. Usher notes that the powerhouse nature of both these singers could easily lead to this becoming a catfight. At the very least, it should be a hell of a showdown.

-Every time I hear the opening of “Give It to Me Right,” I keep forgetting it’s not “Time of the Season”. Of course, it’s kind of the point, but whatever. It’s a great song. And it fits both women here like a glove. This is probably the toughest decision so far for me, personally. They’re both about even to me, with Melissa a wee bit ahead on the verses and Brittnee really digging into the chorus. I’m seriously impressed with both, but even though she gets a bit sharp towards the end, I think I’d go with Melissa. I just feel like Usher could do more to shape her and help her grow. This is a rare case where coming into a competition fully-formed as an artist can work against you, since I think the coach has already seen everything Brittnee can give. I don’t think there’s anything new to find there in Brittnee, yet Melissa has potential to reach new heights.

-Shakira thought it was an awesome battle, and Adam loved both, although he thinks Brittnee might actually be the better singer. Blake, however, feels Melissa’s high note at the end won her the battle, in his eyes. Usher thinks the big notes from Melissa were great, while he praises Brittnee for showing control. He regrets putting them onstage together, because he wants to keep both. But, of course, he can’t. And so he makes his choice…

MELISSA JIMENEZ WINS THE BATTLE!

-Usher calls the battle “epic,” but states that Melissa gave just a little bit more. Melissa breaks down backstage after getting embraced by her family.

-Carson is hardly into his “Brittnee is available to steal” spiel when both ADAM and SHAKIRA hit their buttons. They pitch for why she should pick them, with Shakira saying “I’m your girl,” only for Adam to insist “No, I’m your girl!” Blake tries to intercede, and Adam says, “Don’t screw this up for me, Blake!” Blake notes that Shakira turned her chair for her in the blind auditions, but Adam responds by saying he’s thinking of finish lines, since he’s won the show twice. Brittnee mulls over her choices, and says she’s just going to go with her gut…

ADAM STEALS BRITTNEE CAMELLE!

-Shakira notes that it’s hard to win female singers when she’s sitting next to The Sexiest Man Alive. Adam and Brittnee celebrate their newfound partnership, and that’s a wrap!

-So yeah, that last battle was pretty great, but I’m still miffed that they montaged Morgan Wallen and the Brothers Walkers. I mean, seriously, you montage THAT?! And HOW DID NO ONE STEAL THE BROTHERS WALKER?! Come the hell on, Blake!

-We get a brief preview for next week, and it sounds like somebody is going to be singing “Give Me Love” by Ed Sheeran, one of my favorite songs. So you can bet your ass I’ll be here next week to cover next week’s battles.

As for now, what did you think of this week’s battles? Did the coaches make the right choices? Sound off in the comments!

-That’s it for me! Thanks for hanging out, everyone!

Goodnight!

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