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'The Voice' Battles commence with 9 artists moving on, including three steals!


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 10/17/2017 

The Voice Battles began and nine artists survived the cut during Monday night's Season 13 broadcast on NBC starring coaches Adam Levine, Miley Cyrus, Jennifer Hudson and Blake Shelton.

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"The Battle Round" kicked off Monday night, with a coach pairing two of his or her team members up at a time and picking a song for them to sing in a duet. While the team members must blend their different sounds, the goal is to out-perform each other for only one spot on the team moving forward.

However, Adam, Miley, Jennifer, and Blake are each allowed two "Steals" during this round, which means he or she may select two losing artists from opposing coaches' Battles to join his or her own team for the upcoming "The Knockout Round" and potentially beyond.

For the Battles, Joe Jonas is serving as Adam's team adviser, Kelly Rowland is serving as Jennifer's team adviser, Billy Ray Cyrus is working with his daughter Miley, and the Rascal Flatts are helping out Blake's team.

"Team Jennifer" was up first for the Battles, and she paired Lucas Holliday, a 26-year-old convenient-store cashier from Lansing, MI, with Meagan McNeal, a 31-year-old singer from Chicago, IL, because they're both "unique artists with an R&B feel."

The pair sang "My Prerogative" by Bobby Brown and received a standing ovation from the coaches.

Jennifer said she was proud of her team members because they stayed true to who they are. She didn't want to make the decision and noted that choosing between them was "so hard," but she ultimately determined Lucas needed to advance.

For "Team Miley," Moriah Formica, a 16-year-old from Latham, NY, went up against Shilo Gold, a 26-year-old from Denver, CO, because they were Miley's "rocker girls." The couple performed "American Woman" by The Guess Who.

Miley felt like she was going to pass out when having to choose between the girls. She said Shilo was a natural, while Moriah was "a powerhouse rock goddess." Miley admitted that she even got nervous to be around Moriah because she's so cool.

In the end, Miley named Moriah the winner, telling the cameras that she "could win" the season -- a sentiment both Adam and Jennifer agreed with.

On behalf of Blake's team, Keisha Renee, a 30-year-old backup singer for Nicki Minaj from Las Vegas, NV, faced off against Noah Mac, a 17-year-old from Dublin, CA, and the pair sang "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" by Elvis Presley.

Blake paired them up because they're powerful singers who could fit into many different genres of music.

After the Battle, Blake told both artists they are "uniquely gifted." He wished one of them performed poorly to make his decision easier, but that definitely wasn't the case. Blake said Keisha and Noah gave the duet everything they had, and while they're so different artistically, they both sang with so much heart. Blake told Noah that he sang with honesty and Keisha proved she can fly.

With that being said, Blake declared Keisha the winner of the Battle because her vocals are "out of control."

However, the coaches agreed Noah is a special talent with a "timeless" quality about himself, so Jennifer opted to steal Noah for her own team at the very last second. Jennifer appreciated Noah's "care and compassion for music," noting that he also has a pop-star quality she'd like to explore further. 

Jennifer then partnered Chris Weaver, a 29-year-old worship leader and drag queen from Freeport, NY, with Kathrina Feigh, a 24-year-old from Quezon City, Manila, Philippines -- who moved to the United States around age 10.

Jennifer paired them because, although they're both powerful singers, she wanted to discover who could be more memorable. The pair sang "Dangerous Woman" by Ariana Grande.

Jennifer acknowledged that Kathrina held her own in the Battle and has a huge voice. Kathrina "sold the moment" onstage, but Jennifer called Chris' voice a "freight train." Because Chris' talent is undeniable, Jennifer sent him through to the next round.

However, Blake decided to steal Kathrina since he didn't want such a great vocalist to escape them on the show. He also liked the fact Kathrina never seemed to back down from a challenge.

"Team Miley" was up next with Brooke Simpson, a 26-year-old from Hollister, NC -- who is part of a small Native American community -- facing off against Sophia Bollman, an 18-year-old from Norco, CA.

Miley matched these women because they have the biggest voices on her team and would sound beautiful together. Miley had them perform "You're A Big Girl Now" by Bob Dylan, and she was impressed by how they each made the song their own.

Miley explained that Sophia was amazing and showed growth but Brooke is a "superstar." Miley said she'd continue being their coach on or off the show and then advanced Brooke, saying she can't wait to do "the unexpected" with her. 

The last Battle of the night was on behalf of "Team Adam." Adam Pearce, a 31-year-old from New Orleans, LA, sang "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" by Tom Petty and Stevie Nicks against a fellow "rock and roller," Whitney Fenimore, a 28-year-old from Tulsa OK.

Levine said the pair "killed it." While the coach was initially leaning towards choosing Pearce, he was surprised by a high noted Whitney hit in the song and called her "refreshingly different." Adam fell in love with both of them and saw them as being "100 percent equal" after the Battle.

Levine ultimately chose to advance Pearce because he thought the artist was too special to eliminate, but then Blake and Miley both pressed their buttons to steal Whitney.

Miley reminded Whitney that she had turned around for her Blind Audition, adding that "the Adams" should stay together. Blake explained there's something truly special about her and they'd make a great team.

Adam, however, pushed for Whitney to join Miley's team, because the all-female team had "no one like her." Adam was hoping to see what Whitney and Miley could accomplish together, and he told Whitney that Blake is "an old horse" and a "mule."

Adam confessed how Blake has won The Voice a lot, but Whitney decided in the end to join Miley's team. Whitney said she picked Miley because the coach believed in her from the beginning and is "a genuine person of her word."


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