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‘The Voice’: Amanda Brown & Cassadee Pope Wow As Top 8 Perform

Mon, November 26, 2012 11:30pm EDT by Billy Nilles Add first Comment
The Voice Top 8
Courtesy of NBC

Two new frontrunners owned the stage as ‘The Voice’s top 8 performed, and 50 Cent stopped by to debut his new single featuring Adam Levine!

After the shocking elimination of Bryan Keith last week, The Voice was due for a new frontrunner. During tonight’s show, two emerged to vie for the title: Amanda Brown and Cassadee Pope!

Before the night could officially begin, the audience was treated to “My Life,” 50 Cent‘s new single featuring coach Adam Levine. The producers were trigger-happy with the censor, dropping audio twice on Mr. Cent. This song will not be the comeback Fiddy hopes it’ll be, methinks.

Amanda Brown

Amanda attempted Adele‘s “Someone Like You,” in the vein of a rock ballad. This was one of the greatest decisions she and Adam have made yet. To take a song that is so iconically linked to an artist, the only way to come at it and make it your own it to present it in an entirely new light. Amanda sounded incredible. Adam tells her she “knocked it out of the park,” and he’s not wrong.

Cody Belew

Cody fought with “Somebody To Leave” by Queen tonight, which I immediately thought should be an opportunity to recapture the vocal heights from his George Michael performance. Singing with a full choir, Cody completely owned the Freddie Mercury track. It allowed him to bring his theatricality to the stage, while also providing an opportunity to highlight his range and ability. Cody’s the dark horse of this season — mark my words. (I hope I didn’t just jinx him!)

Why Not A Group Number?

Cassadee, Dez Duron, Melanie Martinez, and Terry McDermott sang “Move Along” by All-American Rejects. First, I thought their voices would be pretty bizarre together, but their harmonies were actually rather great. I did not hate this performance as much as I thought I would. I even enjoyed Dez. Who am I?

Terry McDermott

Terry took on his coach’s song “Over” because coach Blake Shelton wanted the audience to be able to see a different side of the rocker. It was a smart decision. While the song was an attempt to have the singer stretch, let’s be honest — “Over” wasn’t too far removed from a rock power ballad. Also, for the first time, Terry seemed to have a few pitch problems. This wasn’t my favorite performance out of him — not by a long shot. The coaches seemed to love it, though, so what do I know?

Melanie Martinez

Melanie tackled Alex Clare‘s “Too Close,” a dubstep-y dance track, but “Melanie-ized” it, as Adam called it. I think that this sort of song works best with the way Melanie likes to change up things because it isn’t too recognizable, thereby not alienating any fans expecting something in particular. Coach Christina Aguilera was right in that it “didn’t go anywhere” — the song never really built to a power moment. But it was a good performance, nonetheless.

Dez Duron

Tonight, Dez took on “You Smile” by Justin Bieber, but turned the pop track into a jazzy crooner. I still find Dez as bland as a piece of Wonder bread, but this song choice was especially shrewd by Christina. Pander to the girls who watch with a song by one of their favorite artists = win. Dez’ll be around next week. Blah.

Trevin Hunte

Trevin went back to his “big moment” power ballads this week with “The Greatest Love Of All” by Whitney Houston after last week’s dance track stumble. Coach Cee Lo Green must’ve been hellbent on each of his artists singing with a choir tonight, as Trevin belted it out with one as well. He sounded great, which we all knew he would. Though I wonder if an album full of power ballads will really succeed, there’s no doubt Trevin deserves the chance to see.

Another Group Number

Cody, Amanda, Trevin, and Nicholas David tackled Journey’s “Anyway You Want It”. This performance had a bit of a stranger energy, as Cody and Amanda seemed to be jumping out of their skin, while Nicholas was just plodding through. Some of the harmonies were a little bunk, too.

Nicholas David

Nicholas competed with Marvin Gaye‘s “What’s Going On?” this week, after some coaching from the legendary Bill Withers, earning a “Holy buckets!” from Nick! So, real talk: Nick sounded great during the performance, but looked ridiculous with this sunglasses. There wasn’t anyone around who could say, “Uh, let’s rethink this”?

Cassadee Pope

After hitting number one on iTunes last week, Cassadee decided to give it another go with Michelle Branch‘s “Are You Happy Now?” The song fits perfectly in Cassadee’s power-pop wheelhouse, and she sounded pretty great on the track. She brought just the right mix of spite and vulnerability. It was a great number to end the night with.

Who was your favorite tonight, HollywoodLifers? More importantly, who should go home? Let me know in the comments below!

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— Billy Nilles

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