These ‘Voice’ performers carry the night
A concert tour featuring the top eight from NBC’s singing competition “The Voice’’ has a lot of shadows to emerge from: the singers’ own televised performances, the original artists of the covers they perform, the show’s superstar mentors, and especially an elephant in the room called “American Idol.’’ On a perfect, cool Thursday night at the
Whether by accident or design, the “Idol’’ comparisons were brushed off right away with an all-hands-on-deck mashup of George Michael’s “Freedom ’90’’ and “Faith.’’ Unlike the other show, which brings its singers together in an unblended clump of voices and subjects them to stiff, awkward choreography, the “Voice’’ contestants meshed well (if not especially intricately) and grooved as their natures dictated in their designated spots.
The lineup wasn’t nearly as regimented as “Idol’’ concerts, with a constant turnover between singers. There was also plenty of camaraderie: Vicci Martinez and Beverly McClellan banging on buckets during Casey Weston’s “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree,’’ Nakia and Javier Colon supporting McClellan’s “Beautiful,’’ McClellan saluting ousted contestant (and Bostonian) Casey Desmond in the audience.
McClellan had the fullest command of the stage, nailing “Baba O’Riley’’ with the same tone, range, and power as Roger Daltrey while her eyes shone brightly enough to be seen from deep in the crowd. Others flourished without the pressure of competition. Martinez’s coiled and dark “Rolling in the Deep’’ was more controlled than her blow-it-to-the-rafters show performance, even with her in-song apology for forgetting the lyrics to the bridge.
Newly impassioned runner-up Dia Frampton showed more personality than ever on “Heartless’’ and the steady smolder of “Losing My Religion.’’ Even earnest teen Xenia seemed looser and more easygoing than the tentative 16-year-old from television, though her smoky alto had trouble cutting through the mix. Oddly, that was a problem shared by Frenchie Davis, whose more traditional pop belting also got lost.
For show winner and onetime Spirit of Boston singing waiter Colon, performing at the Pavilion was akin to a homecoming. He didn’t disappoint, offering a pillowy “Time After Time’’ and a “Fix You’’ that was appropriately solemn and then anthemic, shining on both parts. Like the others, he proved that he had star power of his own. Which was, after all, the point of “The Voice’’ in the first place.
Marc Hirsh can be reached at email@example.com.