The battle round concluded on NBC’s The Voice on Tuesday with one last steal from Alicia Keys. Celebrity mentors Julia Michaels, Trace Adkins, Shawn Mendes and Hailee Steinfeld helped prepare artists alongside Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, ?Alicia Keys and Kelly Clarkson, respectively. Next week, the knockout round begins.
The first battle of the night came from Team Adam. Jackie Verna and Stephanie Skipper sang “These Dreams” by Heart, with Levine believing that singing such a classic would push both artists to find their artistry. Both singers struggled a bit to blend their harmonies in rehearsals, but Levine and Michaels worked with them to push through nerves and doubts.
They both showed improvement in their final performance, but still weren’t as in sync as other battle pairs have been. Their performance did have solid momentum, and they put on a good show. Keys praised Verna’s raw talent, and Levine ended up choosing her as the winner. Skipper went home.
Team Alicia was up next with a battle from Livia Faith and Terrence Cunningham, who was a four-chair turn during the blind auditions. Keys had them sing “Stars” by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, coming up with a delicate arrangement that suited both of their voices. Both artists showed experience in rehearsals and a willingness to listen to the coaching.
Cunningham was at the piano, but Faith didn’t upstage him, and they connected well despite the instrument’s presence. The simplicity of the arrangement worked in their favor, allowing them to focus on the vocals and sell their voices. Still, since Keys was the only coach with a steal remaining, so one had to go home no matter what. Keys was moved by both of their singing, but she ended up choosing Cunningham as the winner, and Faith was eliminated.
In montages that did not fully air, Team Adam’s Gary Edwards bested Angel Bonilla in a performance of “When You Believe”; Team Blake’s Austin Giorgio beat out Brett Hunter in a performance of “Me and Mrs. Jones”; and Team Kelly’s Alexa Cappelli beat Hannah Goebel in a performance of “Pray.”
The final battle of the season went down between Team Blake’s Dallas Caroline and Spensha Baker, and it was guaranteed that one would be stolen by Keys heading into it. They sang “I Could Use a Love Song” by Maren Morris. Baker seemed ahead of Caroline in the first rehearsal, but by the stage rehearsal, they were singing on the same level.
Caroline, however, succumbed to nerves a bit in the final performance. It was another understated delivery, but one that allowed both artists to focus on their vocals. Caroline was belting a little too much at times, and Baker showed more versatility, but it was a solid Team Blake battle. Clarkson said that Caroline needed a little more confidence and more time to really hone her skill, saying she would pick Baker. Shelton picked Baker as the winner, and then Keys swooped into steal Caroline.
The knockout round starts next week on The Voice. What did you think of this season’s battles?
This article originally appeared in THR.com.