‘The Voice’ Battle Rounds: Ladies First On Battle’s Last

The Voice - Season 9

We’re down to the final night of the Battle Rounds on The Voice, with the coaches carving out space for the final few vocalists moving forward. At this point, all of the coaches with the exception of Pharrell have used up their opportunities to steal from another team, so let’s see who the smooth-talking, slow-playing coach picks off to join his talented roster. Let’s get into the final night of The Voice Battle Rounds.

First Battle – Team Adam: Amanda Ayala vs. Shelby Brown

The Prediction: It’s a battle of the 17-year-old singers on Adam‘s team. Amanda proved to be a rocking powerhouse during the blind auditions, while Shelby was pretty much the consensus winner of her night with her cover of “Stars.” Adam viewed this as a true victory, picking off a competitor that seemed destined for Blake’s team. Shelby would probably be the front-runner going in.

The Battle: Adam goes the obvious route for the two 17-year-old vocalists, picking the Stevie Nicks classic “Edge of Seventeen.” It’s actually a pretty solid choice, giving both young budding stars a chance to show off their pipes. Shelby admits that she’s not the best with timing, but Amanda is fearful she’ll be straining to match Shelby’s intensity. The final rehearsal finds Shelby once again struggling to find her place, while Amanda is not necessarily connecting with the song either. Will either of the young vocalists overcome their jitters by performance time? When the pair hit the stage, they managed to clean up some of their issues, but it did not turn out to be one of the better battles. Both did a fine job, but there was little to differentiate one from the other as much of the song was performed in unison.

The Decision: Blake compliments both, but says it comes down to a matter of taste on who to choose. Pharrell admits going back and forth on who to choose, and Gwen compliments both as well, but none of the coaches really favor one over the other. Adam calls Amanda a pro, but offers a more complimentary review of Shelby and ends up picking Shelby in the end.

Second Battle – Team Pharrell: Amy Vachal vs. Jubal and Amanda

The Prediction: Amy Vachal’s tender, lilting “Dream a Little Dream” wowed the coaches during the Blind Auditions, while the duo of Jubal and Amanda delivered a solid performance, but made bigger headlines for the onstage marriage proposal. Vachal has the type of voice that could go far in this competition, while it seemingly is more difficult for duos to advance far. Amy would be the pre-performance choice here.

The Battle: Pharrell chooses the Bee Gees “To Love Somebody” as a song that can bring out the best in both performers. Jubal and Amanda have chemistry and soul, but Vachal’s vocals bring the added tenderness. Missy Elliott tells Amy she’s needs to project a little more during the initial rehearsal.  When they get to the final performance, Missy has Amy and Jubal to step away from the guitars, giving everyone a chance to project better.  When they hit the stage, this turns into one of the night’s shining moments. The three part harmony totally connects, and the individual moments show what each can do. From the opening notes though, Amy brings that mix of tenderness and strength that perfectly stands out.

The Decision: Gwen marvels at how beautiful the performance was, especially the ending with three harmonies. She loves it all, but leans toward Amy. Adam says he felt like Amy was the third wheel on a date.  Blake credits Jubal and Amanda for raising the bar over their blind audition, but he reveals that he was truly hurt when Amy didn’t pick him and can’t see how she doesn’t advance. Pharrell ends up choosing Amy, who’s easily one of the frontrunners of the competition.

Third Battle – Team Blake: Emily Ann Roberts vs. Morgan Frazier

The Prediction: The night ends with Blake pairing up blonde country superstars in waiting Emily Ann Roberts and Morgan Frazier. Roberts delivered a winning version of “I Hope You Dance” during the blinds, while Frazier altered the arrangement of Cheap Trick’s “I Want You to Want Me” to fit her country leanings. Roberts might be the favorite by a smidge.

The Battle: Since both love more of a classic country sound, Blake serves up the Patty Loveless favorite “I’m That Kind of Girl,” giving them a chance to show both some power and some sass. Upon the first rehearsal, Frazier seems a little more secure. Blake feels that Morgan is having some issues on a few notes, but Emily Ann needs more energy and attitude. When they return for the final rehearsal, it’s leaps and bounds for both. Brad Paisley feels that Morgan is ready for a career, but Emily Ann could use Blake’s mentoring as a springboard to get her where she needs to be. When it comes to the performance, there’s not that much difference. Morgan’s voice feels a little fuller, but both have their moments. It’s going to be a tough choice.

The Decision: Pharrell, knowing he has a steal left, calls the performance fun, but doesn’t give Blake any inclination of which way he’s leaning. Gwen complimented Morgan’s rich voice, but felt like she was starting to get to know Emily Ann through her performance. Adam says he not only loved the performance, but also loved that Blake was going to have to choose between the two and he relishes giving Blake no help in doing so. Blake loves Emily Ann’s personality, but likens one of Morgan’s notes to Carrie Underwood. He ends up picking Emily Ann, feeling he could make a bigger difference for her. Luckily, Pharrell is there to use his steal on Morgan, making sure that she doesn’t go home and he’s looking forward to the chance to have a country person on his team.

Meanwhile, there were several battles that ended up in the dreaded montage segment. Pharrell advanced Darius Scott over Daria Jazmin in their battle singing “Lean On Me.” Blake sent Nadja Nicole to the Knockout Round as she bested Cole Criskie on “Baby One More Time.” And Gwen chose Summer Schappell over Hannah Ashbrook on “Leave the Pieces.” Catch a glimpse of the battles below.

The Rankings
4. Emily Ann Roberts (Team Blake)
3. Morgan Frazier (Team Pharrell)
2. Shelby Brown (Team Adam)
1. Amy Vachal (Team Pharrell)

That’s it for the Battle Rounds. Come back next Monday at 8PM ET/PT on NBC for the start of The Voice Knockout Rounds. A teaser for what’s to come reveals the Rihanna will be the special guest mentor for all of the coaches, so see what she brings to the competition.

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