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'The Voice' recap: Elimination is fun!

June 15, 2011 |  7:30 am

Elimination is so much fun! OK, it's not for Christina Aguilera: it made her cry. How the system on this show works: audience votes advance one singer, then the coach selects one other of their singers to move on to the next round. It's a Sophie's Choice of singing contests, except they aren't children, they're singers, and they're not going to the gas chambers, they're just not coming back to a TV show. Nevertheless, tears ensue.

The new Team Christina: Raquel Castro, Beverly McLellan (audience save), Lily Elise, Frenchie Davis. "I love you all so much, so very very much," a teary and tanned Christina said.

The new Team Blake: Jared Blake, Dia Frampton (audience save), Xenia, Patrick Thomas. "I hate this moment," Blake said, and lets both his guys go.

Also in this episode of "The Voice," the singers on Adam Levine's and Cee Lo's teams all peform. In order:

For Cee Lo, Tori and Taylor Thompson: The sisters are cute, but they're so stiff they make the Andrews Sisters seem as funky as the Pointer Sisters. In their hands, "The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" blows.

For Adam: Casey Weston's version of "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" by KT Tunstall isn't super-original, but she nails it.

For Cee Lo, Vicci Martinez with a hasty version of the seminal Dolly Parton song "Jolene," adding a miscalculated rocker-chick outburst toward the end. Going throaty doesn't mean you feel it more. All the judges say nicey-nice things.

Maybe this show needs a Simon.

For Adam, Devon Barley, who sang "Stop and Stare" by One Republic. He seemed anxious, kind of feeling around for the notes mid-song. Poor Devon Barley. Oh, now I see, being mean is hard. Good luck, Devon.

Now a break where Cee Lo, in a red and black semi-dashiki that looks like it came from the closet of the Sith, meets with his team, all bundled in white bathrobes. They look like bunnies. He claps and summons in masseuses. Cut to: the stage, where we get to see them do "Everyday People" by Sly Stone. Cee Lo's foot-high afro wig is a bit more magnificent than the performance, which showcases Vicci Martinez as the talented one. And the backup dancers.

Back to the competition:

For Cee Lo, Nakia, singing Kings of Leon's "Sex on Fire," and backed by -- what else? -- two fire dancers. Is Cee Lo being mean, forcing the clearly soulful Nakia out of his comfort zone this far?

For Adam, Jeff Jenkins singing Carrie Underwood's "Jesus Take the Wheel." A strong performance, but I hope he gives a really big hug to his offstage backup singer, who made his (struggling a little) high notes pretty.

Adam Levin takes his team out to a healthy meal, and calls them his friends. Then, onstage, he sings The Beatles "I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends"  with them. Get it? Sigh, they get a high school choir as backup. Cheaty! Even my neighbor's asthmatic cat would sound good backed by a full choir.

For Cee Lo, Curtis Grimes, who sang "Addicted to Love" by Robert Palmer with his country flavor, amidst gyrating cowgirls. He picked up momentum about halfway through the song.

For Adam, Javier Colon, who sang "Angel" by Sarah McLachlan. Pretty much perfectly. Will anybody care that he's already put out two records with Capitol?

Although the show is live on the East Coast, it's delayed here in L.A. -- by just enough time for Cee Lo, reportedly, to hustle over to the Hollywood Bowl to see the New York Dolls and Motley Crüe, who he joined on "Don't Go Away Mad (Girl, Just Go Away)" adding a few lyrics from his 2010 hit, you know what.

Next week: More elminations! I mean, more eliminations. :(


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-- Carolyn Kellogg