‘The Voice’ top eight tour aimed to get fans of the hit Channel 9 series across the country closer than ever to their on-screen idols. Ahead of the final concert in the series in Brisbane tonight, we sent our resident reviewer Brad along on a particularly chilly night in Melbourne to see if any of this year’s contestants could help warm his night.
‘The Voice Live’ came into town and certainly lived up to its name. Unlike their rivals at ‘X Factor Live’, this show had a full live band and backing singers, allowing for a fuller sound during the two-hour show.
Unfortunately, the crowd seemed a bit lethargic, likely due to Melbourne’s poor weather, and didn’t seem as enthusiastic as one would expect.
Newly crowned champion Anja Nissen was quite impressive, and her rendition of ‘I Have Nothing’ was stunning. It made for quite the advertisement for her just-released winner’s album, though it couldn’t quite get a standing ovation.
Runner-up Jackson also killed it with his first solo, but his performance of ‘Kiss From A Rose’ left plenty to be desired.
Sabrina Batshon switched things up by strutting through the crowd and turning two of the female backing singers into Kelly and Michelle to her Beyoncé during ‘Queen Of The Night’. Our only criticism with that is that she probably needed higher heels, as she was too short to see unless you were on the ground floor.
Country girl Holly Tapp also spiced things up by performing unique arrangements that suited her style during her solo performances.
Elsewhere, Johnny Rollins’ ‘Am I Wrong’ was soulful but proved to be a bit of a struggle for his lower register. Also of note was Kat Jade’s version of ‘Memory’ from Cats. It was a bit of an obscure choice for most of the kids in the crowd, but it was one of the best vocals of the night.
We are also tempted to find a booking agent to place a bet on Frank Lakoudis being a lead in the next tour of ‘Rock Of Ages’. He easily got the biggest crowd reaction, even getting people to wave their phones in the air during ‘We Are The Champions’.
Whilst the solos were consistently good, the group and duet numbers were at times very cringe worthy. The show opened with a rendition of Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ that was so awkward, you almost felt bad for them. They sounded fine but it was clear that none of them are dancers, or possibly even very coordinated.
Johnny and Kat’s version of ‘Kids’ was also pretty ill-suited, though at least they had some killer adlibs over the end.
The show ended with an encore of ‘You’re The Voice’ that finally got (most of) the crowd on its feet.
It’s a shame that it was so cold because the vocals throughout the solos were album-quality, but it also illustrated that the contestants are struggling to turn this year’s viewers into a receptive audience. They may have all possessed the ‘Voice’ but it takes more to turn reality TV success into a career.