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‘The Voice’ Recap: Matthew Schuler Continues to Impress

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NBC

Tonight’s live episode of ‘The Voice’ started with the Top 10 performing ‘Say It, Just Say It’ by the Mowgli’s. Not sure about you, but we have been feeling extremely underwhelmed with the group performances this year, and this one was no exception. When the gang all sings in unison, everything is peachy, but as they each take their solo turn during these group numbers, suddenly everything feels very messy and uncomfortable and wrong. So wrong.

Luckily, it didn’t last for long, and we were quickly on to the individual performances, beginning with Austin Jenckes, who sang the Outfield’s ‘Your Love.’ There is something so endearing about Austin. The beard? His eyes? His teddy-bear-like physique? Whatever it is, we just want to give him a big hug. His performance tonight started off a bit slow, and the coaches enjoyed it, although wished he didn’t wait until the very end to show his range. This might not have been his best performance of the season, but we still think Austin deserves to stick around for at least another week. Mostly because he’s just so darn lovable.

Next was youngest Voice member Jacquie Lee, who for some reason was doing yoga with Christina Aguilera before her training session. Jacquie took on the hit song ‘Clarity’ by Zedd, attempting to do a more stripped down version and resist her natural urge to belt out every note. We haven’t been huge fans of Jacquie in the past, with her tendency to over-sing, but tonight, she totally won us over. Wow. Jacquie! Where did you come from? Hearing the beautiful tone in Jacquie’s voice, which is so often overshadowed by her screaming, was a refreshing change. Blake commented that he liked seeing this “broken-down” side of Jacquie but he wants her to go back to her loud, belting self for next week. We love you Blake, but could not disagree more. New Jacquie rocks! We hope to see more of her next week.

Next was Will Champlin, shown talking to coach Adam Levine, with his wife and little baby girl. Could his family be any more adorable? No, they couldn’t. Will wins for #1 cutest family in the world. But can he win ‘The Voice’? Based on his performance tonight of ‘Love Me Again’ by John Newman… well, we’re not sure. Will is talented, but we’re not so certain he’s up at the same level as the top competitors this season. After being tossed around between coaches, Will feels like the definite underdog of the season, which naturally makes us want to root for him. But we’re just not sure if he can go the distance.

Then it was Caroline Pennell, who sang John Denver’s ‘Leaving On a Jet Plane.’ Caroline explained that this was a favorite song of hers, and very fitting as she has just gotten into college and will be leaving home soon for the first time. Ah, Caroline. You are just adorable. One would have to have a pretty cold heart to not instantly love this quirky young girl. Her performance tonight was classic Caroline — sweet, understated, and lovely. Coach CeeLo encouraged her to open up even more with her voice in the future, and Adam commended her for picking a song that stayed true to what she was feeling and showed her artistry.

Cole Vosbury sang ‘To Be With You’ by Mr. Big. Big props to coach Blake for giving a song to Cole that perfectly suits his style and voice. Cole’s performance was soulful, beautiful, and all around perfection. Blake said he “sang the daylights” out of the song and told him he would be here for awhile. Oh Blake, we sure hope you are right because we’re nowhere near ready to say goodbye to our wonderful bearded friend.

Adam gave Tessanne Chin Gladys Knight’s ‘If I Were Your Woman.’ Tessanne gave a fierce performance, as per usual, although we’re starting to feel like she is a bit of a one-trick pony. It would be great to see the softer side of Tessanne Chin, as the coaches have been exploring with their other team members. Christina made note of this, commenting that she would like to see some different elements of Tessanne in her future performances.

Next was single-dad Ray Boudreaux, who sang another Ray’s song — ‘You Are the Best Thing’ by Ray LaMontagne. Ray looked like a star during his performance, with his guitar firmly in his hands and his hair perfectly coiffed. This was by far Ray’s standout performance of the season, again another knockout song selection by coach Blake Shelton. We were losing a little bit of faith in Louisiana Ray, but after tonight’s performance, we would be floored if he somehow ended up on the chopping block on tomorrow’s elimination episode.

James Wolpert sang ‘Without You’ by Harry Nilsson. Oh, James. We loved you so, so much at the beginning of this season. But unfortunately, you have been slipping and we’re growing increasingly worried that you might be returning to your job at the Apple store in the near future. Although, the audience and coach Adam seemed to disagree, ignoring the cracks in his voice and his many pitch problems (which Christina did touch on, albeit ever so tactfully).

Then it was rocker chick Kat Robichaud, singing the 1980s hit ‘We Belong’ by Pat Benatar. Kat had much to prove with this performance, after being the first Twitter instant save recipient last week, saving her from her pending elimination at the last second. CeeLo gave Kat some theatrical choreography tips, telling her he never wants to see her in the bottom three again. Yikes! Determined not to let down her coach, Kat gave it her all, standing on top of a grand piano while belting out “weeeee beloooooong” as intensely as she possibly could. But will it be enough? We shall see…

The show finished off with frontrunner Matthew Schuler, who sang Labrinth’s Top 40 hit ‘Beneath Your Beautiful.’ Matthew confessed that he would be singing the song for his “future wife” who he is still looking for. Cue the collective “awwwws.” Matthew gave another crowd-pleasing, emotional performance. His voice is so incredibly radio-friendly that it’s difficult to imagine him not going on to success after the end of this season, regardless of his fate on the show. And as Adam Levine noted, it’s also difficult to imagine this guy having any trouble finding a future wife — we’re fairly confident many young gals will be lining up for that job.

Next: Read Our Interview With 'Voice' Contestant Will Champlin

Watch Matthew Schuler’s Performance of ‘Beneath Your Beautiful’

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