12. Tim Conlon (Team Delta)
Strengths: Tim has a really nice tone in his lower register. He’s also a really good looking WGWG (white guy with a guitar), who always seem to do well on reality singing shows.
Areas for improvement: Anyone who has read any of my recaps of Tim’s previous performances will know that my main issue with him is with his inconsistent pitch, particularly when he sings in the higher parts of his range. He also needs to do not sing another Ed Sheeran song, and venture out and explore more adventurous song choices.
11. Berni Harrison (Team Seal)
Strengths: Her vocal control is pretty solid. And her vocal at the beginning of her California Dreamin’ Battle with Annalisse hinted at a really lovely tone. She also proved with her Blind Audition piano-driven take on Dancing in the Dark that she isn’t afraid to rearrange a song.
Areas of improvement: When she pushes her voice too hard, her tone becomes a little harsh and displeasing to my ear – perhaps it’s an acquired taste? She also has a habit throwing in a squeak/upward inflection at the end of her phrases, which becomes quite grating.
10. Spencer Jones (Team Kelly)
Strengths: Spencer’s got an incredible rock voice, with great pitch and tonnes of power.
Areas of improvement: All of his song choices have been pretty on the nose. He desperately needs a current, out-of-the-box song choice that will show how he can be a current artist. He could do a little more subtlety as well – even his ‘tender’ Aerosmith cover was a little over the top.
9. Fasika Ayallew (Team Kelly)
Strengths: Fasika looks, sounds and works the stage like a potential pop star. She backs this up with solid vocal ability. She has a really pretty tone, too.
Areas of improvement: I need to see some emotion from her, so a nice ballad would be a good move. She can’t just do uptempo pop tracks, or she’ll struggle to survive the next few eliminations. But she needs to avoid overly ambitious song choices, like Remember Me, that aren’t flattering for her – she’s not really a belting kind of singer.
8. Bojesse Pigram (Team Kelly)
Strengths: He has a solid grasp on pitch, dynamics and phrasing. He’s also a WGWG, so that helps.
Areas of improvement: His overall presentation is a little black and lacklustre – he needs to inject more personality or emotion into his performances. His Battle performance of Dancing On My Own with Sally gives me some optimism, though. He also needs to not look bored on and off stage.
7. Robin Johnson (Team Boy George)
Strengths: Robin has a huge range, a really nifty tone, and his runs are super clean. He can work the stage like a pro, dancing effortlessly without missing a note or a beat – and the fact he never loses breath while doing so is definitely impressive.
Areas of improvement: While he has incredible ability in executing his runs, he needs to show more restraint. His Battle against Russel on 7 Years was an opportunity to show emotional connection, but he kind of disappointed in that aspect. So like Fasika, he needs to show some genuine emotion in the next few rounds.
6. Rennie Adams (Team Seal)
Strengths: Rennie possesses a really nice, rugged tone. He has huge amounts of vocal horsepower and intensity. This is complemented by his ability to dig into the emotion of a song.
Areas of improvement: Aside from his awkward stage presence, Rennie needs to work on dynamics; not every performance has to be revved up to 10 the whole time. I think he definitely needs to nail a stripped back performance to move up from the middle of the pack.
5. Claire Howell (Team Delta)
Strengths: Claire has a marketable, pop star-ready look, and the voice to match. She’s current, and has incredible vocal control and ability to back this up. And she’s a returning contestant from another season, which is probably a good sign, because the audience might be more connected to her.
Areas of improvement: Some of her performances have exposed a tendency to be a little overbaked in her vocal delivery. This also translates to an overly dramatic, sometimes disingenuous emotional connection to her songs.
4. Lucy Sugerman (Team Seal)
Strengths: Her strongest asset is her full, mature tone. She’s also got a fully fledged sense of artistry, which is complemented by her solid vocal ability. Lucy’s proved that she can work with modern song choices too, like She Wolf and Issues. She’s also gotten a lot of hype, which doesn’t hurt.
Areas of improvement: Her quirky stylings might become polarizing unless she shows she’s got more dimensions to her artistry.
3. Hoseah Partsch (Team Boy George)
Strengths: Hoseah is extremely likeable; his persona on and off the stage is endearing. He has a really pretty voice, and tonnes of soul. There isn’t really a contestant like him on the show this season – his pop/RnB flavour and piano-playing ability differentiates him from the rest of the pack.
Areas of improvement: I think it’d be a good idea to go back to more current song choices, like with his Blind Audition cover of Almost Is Never Enough. I’d hate to see him become dull with dated (and more cliche) song choices.
2. Sarah Stone (Team Boy George)
Strengths: Sarah’s emotional connection to a song’s lyrics is incredible. Her voice is equally beautiful, with a stunning tone. Her vocal delivery is intimate and intricate, yet also powerful and heart-wrenching. And her sad backstory is something that viewers can connect to.
Areas of improvement: At the moment, Sarah’s bubbling underneath the radar. I think song choice will be vital in creating a ‘moment’ that pushes her to front of the back.
1. Judah Kelly (Team Delta)
Strengths: Unless he has a major stumble over the next few weeks, Judah looks like he’s on track to inheriting Alfie Arcuri’s crown at the end of this season. He has a lot of soul in his tone and an insane vocal range, and his vocal ability and musicianship is unquestionable. He backs this up with plenty of emotional connection, as evidenced in his performances of When We Were Young and The Climb. He’s also really likeable, and has gotten plenty of hype from The Voice producers.
Areas of improvement: I think Judah’s biggest challenge is topping his already pretty impressive body of work each week, and exceeding the hype he’s been getting. But I don’t think this will be a challenge for him.