Welcome back to The Voice. It's time for another round of singing and competitive banter, this time with some much-ballyhooed new folks along for the ride.
As is par for the course by now, we open Season 4 with a coaches' performance. It's The Beatles' "Come Together," featuring Blake Shelton and Usher on guitars and vocals, Shakira bringing her own voice, and Adam Levine drumming his heart out. Appropriate song choice is appropriate, and this foursome sounds pretty good together, too, as you'd expect them to. One of The Voice's few disappointments is that you cannot obtain the coach performances on iTunes, outside of duets with their team members. If you could, this would be climbing the charts like nobody's business. (You can watch it again at the end of this recap.)
But this show isn't about the coaches, it's about the artists, so let's find some, shall we? We need to find forty-eight new singers - twelve for each team (down from the sixteen of Season 3, back to the same quota from Season 2). First up are the Morgan Twins from New York, who say they "do everything together," including dressing alike. Their rendition of Alicia Keys' "Fallin'" immediately draws the attention of both Usher and Blake, while Adam and Shakira turn their chairs a little later on. "Is this really happening right now?" Blake asks. "This is a dream come true for most men." The ladies have their choice of coaches, and despite saying in their pre-audition package that they'd be excited to work with Usher, they sign up with Team Blake, despite Blake's slightly flawed argument.
Adam: Blake basically just said 'I have a wife and you're sisters, therefore we're alike.'
The Maroon 5 front man wastes no time ribbing Blake about how his wife might take this development, showing that the epic Adam-Blake banter has not dulled one iota since we saw them last.
Next, the show travels to Austin, Texas to meet Jess Kellner, who's balancing her musical aspirations with her hairdressing career. Jess talks about her difficult relationship with her mother, who is a recovering alcoholic, and the support she received from her stepmother. Jess's performance of the classic "Can't Help Falling In Love," with a unique sound to her voice somewhat like Xenia Martinez from Season 1, almost immediately catches the ears of Shakira and Usher. Adam's just excited to watch the new coaches fight each other, although Shakira interrupts him, much to Blake's glee.
Blake: By the way, you're losing.
Adam: That's true.
Jess decides to join Team Usher, which prompts a mock pout from a disappointed Shakira. After a brief skit (because it does come off as obviously scripted) with Usher, Shakira and Blake wanting to plot against Adam, it's time to meet Mark Andrew, who's lost two members of his band and is now dedicating his audition performance to them. He comes out with Bob Dylan's "Knockin' On Heaven's Door." Adam turns for Mark fairly quickly, followed by Shakira. Adam pulls out the "I won one year" card, but Mark thinks his wife won't forgive him if he doesn't pick Shakira, so he becomes the first member of Team Shakira.