Thursday, 27 June 2013

A win for Danny's Team: Andrea Begley is The Voice

Was it a shock? Really? The moment Jessie told everyone to Vote Leah was probably the turning point, cos us viewers are a bit funny like that.

I think it will always be the most mainstream artist to win - the demographic of the audience suggests it. But like last year, all the finalists will get their shot.

Andrea is a deserving winner, any of them would have been. With the right songs she'll gain an appreciative audience, and Danny has proven himself when it comes to the right songs. I wouldn't say she blew me away on the night, but I could definitely sit and listen to an album quite happily. Ho Hey was my favourite by her.

Leah did blow me away with the extended version of Lovin' You. The way her voice soars and dips I find incredibly moving, although I wasn't so sure of I Will Always Love You, a good start gave way to a bit of dodgy section, I thought. As for the duet, fantastic production but really dear Will, a little bit indulgent, maybe? More Leah, less Will next time, eh? But I loved her dad. I reckon he probably got as many votes as she did.

Mike did well but I guess it's not really my thang. But if there is a market for country here, he will do well. Biggest shock and final 'One that got away' was undoubtedly Matt, who won the first and second rounds for me, by far the strongest performances. My only explanation is that soul singers are less of a novelty now, it could have easily been Trevor up there. Only topped by Leah's Lovin' You as far as the performances on the night go.

So there we go, over for another year and I can hopefully get back to more straight dance news. In fact, I'm musing on changing the blog ever-so-slightly so it can be a bit more consistent on the dance/theatre front, with less on the reality shows - the Sleeping Beauty post I did recently proved to be far more popular!

So I shall see you soon, probably with a few snippets while I decide how to re-design. Not sure I can part with the Glitter Balls though ...

Monday, 17 June 2013

The Voice: Semi Finals

Not one but perhaps two shocks? I thought Joseph would have made it through but it looks like Tom's earlier instinct was correct with Mike. And if left to Jessie, I'm pretty sure Ash would be sitting pretty in the final, although on the night I have to say I also preferred Matt.

Our finalists then: the Gentle Folky sound of Andrea, whose pure vocal again created goosebumps, versus Country Boy Mike, with that lovely tone that's gotten stronger each week, versus Soul Boy Matt, as watchable as he is listenable, versus In-A-Genre-All-Her-Own Leah, smashing it again. I agree with Jessie though - a safe song for her. They couldn't be more different and we have no idea who the public are favouring. Isn't that fantastic?

The team performances were also a major contrast. Jessie and her boys just saaaaang it; Danny has a knack of choosing great songs to show them off and delivered again; Tom tended to drown out his two and as for Will? Love him to bits but that was pants by the girls, it was fun but Will was the star.

Losing Ash was a blow to my team, but appearances suggest Jessie will not let him fade away. I'm left with just Leah although Cleo went out fighting, giving it everything. Karl seems assured of support from Danny, while Will told Joseph and Cleo he wanted to work with them.

Relive the semi final performances again here. The final begins at 7.15pm, see you then :)

Friday, 14 June 2013

The Voice: Quarter Finals

It's public vote all the way tomorrow - who'll be the shock exit, I wonder?

My team of four are intact: Joseph; Leah; Cleo and Ash, although that will definitely be reduced to three at most, since both Leah and Cleo are Team Will. And since Leah went to no.3 in the downloads this week with her awesome rendition of I Will Survive, I'm pretty sure it'll be her going through. Star of the week again for me.

Joining Leah in the Semi's on a Fast Pass were Ash (Lego House, good interpretation), Andrea (Hey Ho, got the place rocking) and Joseph (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher, didn't blow me away as much as I thought it would).

Through on the public vote were Cleo (Imagine, brave and great to just hear her sing) Karl (A Thousand Years, quite lovely) Mike (When I Was Your Man, the best I've heard him) and Matt (Wonder, such amazing presence).

Out went Sarah and Leanne, both given high tempo so so songs (Love Sensation and  Where Have You Been respectively) which showed off their voices but didn't capture emotionally, whereas Alys did turn Jamaican reggae into Welsh folk but with a few wobbles (Is This Love) and Mitchel, the best of them, with a terrific performance of Radioactive, full of energy and confidence.

Song choices will have a major impact tomorrow, let's hope they choose wisely!

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

The Voice: Knockout Rounds

Last weekend saw the coaches cull their teams down to three each. By and large you couldn't argue with their decisions, although I lost a lot of my favourites *sad face* And most of the performers excelled, making their coaches decision much tougher than anticipated.

Due to the odd number, each team had one member sail through on a Fast Pass to the live shows. They were able to show off what they can do at the end of their team's section. For Team Will, Leah was the Chosen One, with the absolute best performance of the night for me, singing Minnie Ripperton's Loving You and making it her own. Goosebump City, absolutely stunning.

Tom chose Mike Ward and while he's a nice guy, I thought vocally he was one of the weakest. Danny sent Karl through, whose performance didn't really set me alight, while Jessie opted for Ash, who did well with Beyonce's Sweet Dreams but I think can do better.

The one that got away - best performance that didn't make it through was Trevor (Team Jessie), who was awesome, losing out to Sarah, who I again found too screechy. Danny, sadly, never got into his stride. Tom and the other coaches were a little perplexed, because Trevor was That Awesome, with a fantastic song choice delivered perfectly.

Revelation of the night was Alex (Danny's steal) who I actually preferred to Andrea and Abi. His lower register was actually quite lovely, although he did most in the falsetto - but he was in tune this time! It was always going to be Andrea though, the emotional response she induces in Danny (blubbing like a baby) sending her through. Connor's energy wasn't enough to counter the power of Mitchel, sent through to join Andrea and Karl, though Sean ran him close, his version of Ain't No Sunshine the best I've heard him.

Jessie's other group was just as tough, Lovelle's lovely tone and unusual vocal not enough to oust Matt, who was just On It. Letitia was more confident but the vocal lacked a little something. My fave, Jamie (Team Tom), lost out to Alys, but no complaints because her voice too is wonderful. Cherelle gave her best performance, although lost her way a little halfway through.

And we lost one of the Medway boys, as Adam was up against Joseph and Ragsy in Team Tom's other battle. All three were excellent but Joseph has that special indefinable something and duly made it through.

Disappointment of the night was losing Moni, who only had to repeat his rehearsal for Will to put him through. But he went over the top, and Leanne's stunning vocal gave her the nod. Jordan was terrific too, and a close third. Cleo was succesful over Lem and John - although, had Jessie not intervened, I think Will may have put Lem through. He has a special quality too, although  enjoyed Cleo's scatting.

The Teams:
Tom - Alys, Mike and Joseph
Jessie - Ash, Sarah and Matt
Danny - Andrea, Karl and Mitchel
Will - Leah, Cleo and Leanne. He can at least call them all together at once: Cleahanne.

The remnants of my nine, sadly reduced to a measly four: Ash, Joseph, Leah and Cleo.

The live quarter final is this Friday at 7pm. If you want to re-live the knockout performances, you'll find them all here.