It isn’t like any week is easy on NBC’s The Voice, but the battle rounds seem particularly brutal since the coaches decide which members of their team will sing with each other, forcing the coaches to choose one. Fortunately, there is a celebrity mentor for each of the teams and although they don’t have a voice in the final decision, they can at least offer some unbiased insight. But on the second night of battle rounds, coaches Kelly Clarkson, John Legend, Adam Levine, and Blake Shelton seemed to pair up teammates that were quite different from each other.
The night kicked off with coach Adam Levine and his mentor, Charlie Puth coaching Team Adam’s Karly Moreno and Celia Babini. Performing Marshmello and Anne-Marie’s “Friends,” each of the young women offered their own unique vocal texture to their collaboration. With both singers so different, Adam’s fellow coaches were no help with the decision. However, 18-year-old Celia pulled off the win. “Celia just has the whole thing, the persona, the voice, the presence,” Adam said. “There’s something about her that is unbelievably special.”
Karly was pretty special, too, at least as far as Blake was concerned. As she was leaving the stage after thanking Adam, the country star quietly slipped his hand to his red button and stole the beauty for Team Blake.
It was and R&B battle between Team John Legend’s Julian King and Denton Arnell next. With both gentlemen impressing mentor Khalid with their incredible vocals, he encouraged them to tap deeper into their emotions for their performance of Bruno Mars’ “Grenade.” Again, the fellow coaches were on the fence with the two singers, so deciding was difficult, but John ultimately selected Julian.
“The reason I picked Julian is because I just think his voice is exciting,” John explained. “I think he has a really great opportunity to do well.”
Kelly Clarkson and mentor Kelsea Ballerini put their heads together while Team Kelly’s Presley Tennant and Rizzi Myers put their voices together for Adam Lambert’s dynamic “Whataya Want From Me.” Kelly explained, “There were only two girls on my team I thought could really handle that, and that’s why Rizzi and Presley got it.”
“You both have an incredible range,” Kelly said after the performance. “Literally, I could not have made a poorer decision putting two females together because you’re both incredible. Please believe me when I say this that I could say either one of your names right now.”
Unfortunately, she could only choose one and she picked Presley. John admitted he was close to stealing Rizzi, but he never reached his button.
Blake was up next and with the help of the legendary Brooks and Dunn, contestants Dexter Roberts and Dalton Dover prepared to tackle Luke Combs’ “Hurricane.” “The way you put the song together was actually awesome. There wasn’t a dull moment,” Adam told them following their performance. With none of his fellow coaches giving him any preference of one over the other, Blake said, “This moment is going to suck for me. it literally is sucky.”
However, when host Carson Daly pressed the coach for a decision, it was Dexter that came out on top.
Team Adam was back in the ring for his second battle of the night, and he paired up Ciera Dumas and LB Crew on mentor Charlie Puth’s “Done For Me.” With decidedly different vocal approaches, the two singers created a new arrangement of the song to better enhance each of their R-and-B strengths. Consequently, the coaches were choosing between apples and oranges after the performance. As a result, there was a major division in perspective.
However, the decision was Adam’s and when push came to shove, he selected LB. However, Ciera went on to The Comeback Stage.
The show ended with one of the fiercest battles of the night. Team Blake’s Kendra Checketts and Kim Cherry were early favorites by all of the judges and while the young women shared very similar styles, Kim had rapped for her audition piece so her voice tended to naturally be more percussive.
Singing Alessia Cara’s “Here,” the duo dazzled the coaches so thoroughly, that after, Blake told them, “You have to be talented to do that song. You have to have pocket, you gotta have pitch, you have to have personality. To do it right, you gotta have all of those elements. Then add in the passion that you two have.” Then, based on gut feeling, he chose Kim.
And while double steams are pretty rare, viewers of the second night of battle rounds got to witness the rarity. Both Adam and John hit their “steal” buttons for Kendra.
With that, “Last Word” Levine enticed Kendra to his team.
NBC’s The Voice returns on April 8 for the third epic night of battle rounds. The Voice will also air on April 9 to wrap up the battles.