In the second night of Voice Battle Rounds on Tuesday evening, coach Blake Shelton opted for a Nineties pop radio classic instead of his standard country picks. The maneuver clearly worked, as all four coaches raved over Mitchell Lee and Dennis Drummond’s breezy cover of the Counting Crows’ 1993 classic “Mr.Jones.”
During rehearsal, the two worked on the song with Shelton and guest mentors the Rascal Flatts watching closely. “I picked [them] because both of these guys are Nashville guys but they’re not necessarily country, they’re their own thing, they’re more rock,” Shelton commented.
During rehearsal, Shelton and Rascal Flatts praised the raw quality of Drummond’s voice but urged the professional guitarist to improve his showmanship, while Lee was called out for his mumbly diction. Both stepped it up for the official performance, soaring through the chorus with Lee channeling Crows singer Adam Duritz and Drummond bringing a bluesy vibe, consciously working to amp up his stage presence (“Yo, his footwork is crazy!” quipped Miley Cyrus mid-performance). Drummond had the more interesting-sounding voice, but Lee’s perfect pitch and obvious comfort on stage were tough to ignore.
“This is the closest battle that I have this season and that’s a testament to y’all’s hard work,” said Shelton, who chose Lee to move forward. Before Drummond could get his thank you speech out to Shelton, coach Adam Levine pounded his buzzer for the steal.
The Battle Rounds will continue when The Voice returns next Monday, October 23rd at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.