HOUSTON - Last night was the premiere of the second season of The Voice, and for those of you who didn't catch last season, here's how it works. There are four coaches — Adam Levine from Maroon 5, Cee-Lo Green, Blake Shelton and Christina Aguilera—who have to build teams of talent over the course of the first few episodes known as the Blind Audition round. During this round, they sit facing away from the talent on stage and hit their "I WANT YOU!" buzzer only if they are impressed by the vocal stylings alone. If more than one judge hits his/her buzzer, the contestant is left with the heart-wrenching decision of who to choose—Tatted guy on the left, Rehydrated California Raisin in the sequins (thanks SNL!), Underdressed and Overcaffeinated, or The Country Guy. Once each coach has assembled a team of 12, they move on to the Battle Rounds, but let's not get ahead of ourselves.
Now there are plenty of musical competitions out there (American Idol, America's Got Talent, X Factor, the 2012 Presidential Race), but The Voice really focuses on what's important about a singer—the musical chops. And the first episode did not disappoint. With voices from all different ages and styles, from country to R&B to folk to contemporary Opera, that one hour of competition was jam-packed with talent and spoke to just about every musical demographic out there (save perhaps Scream-o and underground Hip Hop). And wouldja look at that, the first contestant picked up was from Bay Town! Well done RaeLynn, Blake Shelton was definitely the right choice for you.
The coaches have also stepped it up a notch from last season, particularly in the Crazy Department. Christina Aguilera truly outdid herself—and her wardrobe—and provided some of the most unnecessary and combative moments of the evening. "Now Adam is going to try and sell you a used car—psh Justin Timberlake wanna be—but I'm the one you want to pick for my level-headedness, stability under pressure and all around good nature." If I were picking my coach based on overall mascara content, I would pick Christina hands down.
And I must hand it to Cee-Lo for providing my favorite quote of the night, delivered to Xtina herself: "Hey baby, we're all the same color with the lights off." Not too sensual that I'm uncomfortable and just enough social commentary without going over the top. Maybe all those sequins stimulate brain function, who knows! Either way, I think Cee-Lo has a lot to contribute as a producer who knows how to promote an artist and make him/her simultaneously unique and accessible—no easy feat!
Adam and Blake kept it relatively tame last night, but knowing those two, I'm sure each will have his own "HE SAID WHAT?!" moment in the very near future. I did find it strange that Adam, the reigning champion coach from last season, had the most trouble of all the coaches nailing down a team member. He practically begged Tony Lucca (a former Mouseketeer of Xtina's) to jump on the Adam train. As I have unflagging faith in Adam Levine, I'm sure things will heat up for him very soon. And Blake Shelton gets what Blake Shelton wants. End. Of. Story.
Needless to say, I am breathless with anticipation for tonight's next round of the Blind Auditions and the world premiere of Smash! Check back in for more updates, and thanks for watching KPRC Local 2!
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