The Voice Australia: Season 5, Top 8 Performances

And just like that, more than half of the girls are gone in one bloodbath of an elimination. Can we all spare a second to bid farewell to the 4 female contestants Mikaela, Kim, Georgia and Lane who were sent home? Speaking of which, next week’s episode will see 1 more member from each team gone, leaving 4 contestants. I would personally love to see a Top 4 with Alfie, Tash and Ellen, but I’m not too sure if everyone else will be voting this way (although, I’ll personally come after you if you don’t!).

Also, thank you for Jessie J for reminding us of something very important. Just because we think someone’s a nice person or we enjoy their backstory, does that mean we’re going to buy their music or see their show? Probably not. Vote responsibly (and for Alfie, Tash and Ellen).

And finally a message to the producers. Over a 2.5 hour broadcast there were only 8 contestant performances? There was soooo much unnecessary filler this episode. They could have let the eliminated contestants perform, or their could have even been some group performance. Heck, even more performances from The Voice alumni like Ellie Drennan would have been better than wasting time with Delta talking about her Twitter emoji, or giving performance slots to The Veronicas and OneRepublic.

Let’s get recapping!

TEAM JESSIE | Mikaela Dean eliminated (NOOOOO!!!!)

Ellen Reed (Kelly Clarkson’s Since U Been Gone)

I will preface this by saying that Ellen deserves a spot in the Top 4 with her impressive body of work (See: Stone ColdChandelier and Hold My Hand) and that I will definitely be voting for her. I must also say that Kelly Clarkson is one of my favourite singers and Since U Been Gone is my jam. However, this song choice in no way whatsoever benefited Ellen. Yes, her vocals were spot on and she worked the stage impressively, but this song isn’t going to get people to vote for her. It’s one of those songs Ellen couldn’t really change up too much, only including a nice dynamic shift that differentiated her version from Kelly’s. I think the vote between her and Jack could go either way, but with the death spot, lukewarm comments from the Coaches and a middle-of-the-road pop/rock song, I’d say it sways against her.

Jack Pellow (Drake’s Hotline Bling)

Bringing more melody to a very bland atonal song, Jack did a pretty nice job in making Hotline Bling work for him. It was moody and he was really adventurous in his approach to the melody and arrangement. His artistry and interesting approaches to songs is definitely one of his strengths, and could be what’s keeping him in the competition. Additionally, he’s tackled the most current fare of any contestant to date. If he’s going to be Jessie’s finalist, I think nailing another angsty blues/rock performance would be his best chance at a win.

TEAM MADDEN / VERONICAS | Lane Sinclair eliminated (*insert sad face emoji*)

Aaliyah Warren (The Chainsmokers ft. Daya’s Don’t Let Me Down)

With the elimination of fellow team member Lane, Aaliyah really needed to prove her place in the competition. However, with a sub-par performance of a middling pop song I think she’s handed the Team Madden finale spot to Andrew. Aaliyah, why didn’t you wait a few years to audition? She struggled a lot with pitch and was overpowered by the band. Additionally, she just didn’t seem invested in her performance. Last week, really sat really well in the pocket, but also struggled with that this week and was ahead of the beat with a good portion of the song. I think she’s in trouble.

Andrew Loadsman (The Black Keys’ Gold On The Ceiling)

If Andrew ends up winning the competition by appealing to the widest voting bloc, I can’t fault him. While he isn’t my favourite contestant, I do commend him for his solid grasp of pitch and passionate performances. While this often results in him screaming throughout the song, an often manic/creepy stage mannerisms (worsened by his baffling singing-only accent), he certainly isn’t boring. Yes, all of this issues applied to his Black Keys cover, complete with double denim (my fashion faux pas), but he did slay the vocal. I guess this has been enough to earn him a ticket to the finale on one of the weaker teams this season.

TEAM DELTA | Kim Sheehy eliminated (these eliminations are really killing me)

Adam Ladell (Alan Walker’s Faded)

Maybe it was because Kim was eliminated not 5 minutes beforehand, but I didn’t really enjoy this performance. No, it wasn’t as bad as his Chasing Cars cover from last week. Still, there was a heretofore unseen strident quality to his usually lovely tone that hit my ear the wrong way. He was quite pitchy too (contrary to what Delta tries to tell us). Similarly with Aaliyah, I just wish Adam had waited a few more years to enter the competition. They need a few more years to toughen up their skins, become more confident performers and working on their vocal technique. The positives of this performance, though was that he gave a really heartfelt, tender performance and the standing O didn’t hurt with voters.

Alfie Arcuri (Bonnie Raitt’s I Can’t Make You Love Me)

Based on overall body of work, and this performance, Alfie definitely deserves a spot in the next round. I think the vote between him and Adam could be really close, being the two most buzzy contestants left in the competition. I haven’t even tried to hide the fact that I think Alfie should win this season, and it’s performances like this that really punctuate my belief. I especially enjoyed the mentoring session, in which Delta addressed the two minor nitpicks I had last week – that he needs to hold out his notes, and to tackle a wider breadth of songs. Singing the perfect nuanced and tender ballad from Bonnie Raitt, I definitely shed a tear or two, and threw my gospel hand in the air. There was tone for days and a load of raw emotion. If this doesn’t earn him a place in the top 4 (or rock the cougar vote), I don’t know what will. VOTE, PEOPLE! VOTE!!!!!!!!!

TEAM RONAN | Georgia Wiggins eliminated

Mitch Gardner (Justin Bieber’s Love Yourself)

Ronan hasn’t been the best Coach in terms of song choice, but I think this was actually a pretty good one for Mitch – it stretched Mitch’s artistry just enough, but not completely throwing him in the deep end. It just seemed an odd choice for such a crucial point in the competition He was pretty solid vocally. His pitch was good, he sat really well in the pocket and threw in some nice melodic tweaks. However, I just wish his vocal ebbed and flowed – it kind of sat at the same place throughout the performance. Additionally, his beige delivery stripped a lot of the groove from Justin Bieber’s original. If he were to stake his claim as Ronan’s final artist, I feel a more heartfelt song choice and performance were necessary to do so.

Side note: thank you Jessie for providing the laughs by sassing back at Sonia’s question, as to whether she thought Mitch deserved a spot in the semi-final – hilariously retorting with “What if I said ‘no’?”.

Tash Lockhart (Leona Lewis/Snow Patrol’s Run)

In opposition to everyone I suppose, I actually really enjoyed last week’s performance. It felt really free and loose, and she slayed Riptide vocally. Likewise, she nailed the vocal this week too. Her pitch was spot on, and I enjoyed listening to her airy head voice and the lovely tone in her chest voice. That high, near whistle run near the end of the performance was equally impressive. My only problems were with the delivery. She just seemed a tad stiff and uptight in this performance. Will a pageanty Leona Lewis cover (complete with a Miss America ball gown) get her votes? I’m not too sure. Out of everyone left, her song choices have been all over the map. I agree that her Bowie cover was the pinnacle of her journey, and I get that she needs to show variety. However, Ronan needs to pick songs that are cohesive in terms of the artist she’s presented as. Songs that lean more towards the folkier side seem to work better for her than the diva belter ones like Run. I just hope she makes it through into next week.

Overall rankings, based on overall body of work and my taste!

  1. Alfie Arcuri (Team Delta)
  2. Ellen Reed (Team Jessie)
  3. Tash Lockhart (Team Ronan)
  4. Jack Pellow (Team Jessie)
  5. Mitch Gardner (Team Ronan)
  6. Adam Ladell (Team Delta)
  7. Andrew Loadsman (Team Madden)
  8. Aaliyah Warren (Team Madden)

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