“The Voice” gave competitors a lesson in hard reality Monday, cutting the underdogs in the final battle round before the show’s live competition.
Heartfelt stories mattered little. Talent trumped potential and by the end of the episode, six nice, talented acts, who just weren’t good enough, felt the music industry’s cold ax.
First to be slashed was Nathan Parrett, the 23-year-old former competitive swimmer with a strong voice and limited experience. His coach Adam Levine paired him with 19-year-old Pip, a suspender-wearer with a background in musical theater. Pip’s experience and confidence pushed him ahead of Nathan who was praised again and again for his potential and ability. Being “a natural performer,” — Adam’s characterization of Pip — apparently mattered more.
Adam later cut Angel Taylor who couldn’t come out of her shell enough to compete with Katrina Parker, the smart chatty insurance worker with a big Adele-voice.
Cee Lo continued the slaughter of the innocents by choosing Erin Martin—the model-turned-aspiring singer over the earnest garage band, the Shields Brothers.
“Power is not talent, it's just loud,” Martin said of the brothers before she and the farm boys took the stage to perform a bizarre rendition of Tina Turner's “What’s Love Got to do With It."
Neither act was flawless, but Cee Lo decided he’d “have the most prospect” with Martin.
Christina Aguilera dismissed Jonathas—the father of two, the immigrant with the big American Dream—in favor of Ashley de la Rosa, a 17-year-old with a big voice.
Blake selected Jermaine Paul, Alicia Keys' backup singer with loads of experience, over Alyx—a younger singer with far less experience and ability. It was an obvious choice, as was his final pick: Erin Willett (powerhouse) over Gwen Sebastian (potential).
With only the strongest still standing, the performances are sure to become much more interesting as the show enters its live performance phase next Monday. Catch it on NBC at 8/7 Central.