‘The Voice’ Recap: Usher & Shakira Perform On Elimination Night Following Gwen Stefani News

Breaking(ish) news: NBC and The Voice confirmed on Tuesday night (April 29) what Christina Aguilera, Gwen Stefani and Pharrell have already confirmed: Pharrell and Gwen will be joining the show as coaches next season. Perennial coaches Adam Levine and Blake Shelton will stay firmly planted in their red chairs, while Shakira and Usher head away for Season 7, Xtina takes time off to have a baby and Cee Lo Green continues tending to his menagerie of exotic animals.

In actual news, Carson Daly announces that the two new coaches are scheduled to perform on The Voice next Monday! Best Cinco de Mayo ever, right?

After kicking off the second live eliminations with that bit of housekeeping, the coaches and their hopefuls are off and running. Usher makes his first team performance of the season with Bria Kelly and Josh Kaufman, performing Lenny Kravitz’s “Always On The Run.”  Usher is as on-point as always, and after a rough performance last night, Bria throws herself into it as if to start her fight for the Instant Save at this early point of the show.

Shakira is up next, and performs her own hit, “The Right Thing,” with Kristen Merlin and Tess Boyer. Shakira owns the stage, and Tess and Kristen serve well as backup singers.

Only eight of the 10 remaining contestants can move on in what Shakira calls a “neck to neck” competition. Here’s who the votes advanced:

Moving on to Top 8: Team Adam: Christina Grimmie, Delvin Choice Team Blake: Sisaundra Lewis, Audra McLaughlin, Jake Worthington Team Shakira: Kristen Merlin Team Usher: Josh Kaufman

That leaves Bria Kelly, Tess Boyer and Kat Perkins in the bottom three forced to compete for the Instant Save. Bria sings Heart’s “Crazy On You” for her chance. Her final plea is much stronger than Monday night’s performance, but likely won’t be enough.

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” Usher says, resorting to clichés for the emotional moment. He hedges with, “Just remember that you’re not defined by what someone else thinks about you.”

In the bottom three for the second week in a row, Tess performs Pink’s “Who Knew?” Her lower register is very soft, and she fades in and out.

A visibly angry Shakira pleads for America to save her second-to-last contestant. “I’m devastated to see you up there again,” she says. “You are a fighter. You just proved that to us.”

It’s game over, though, when Kat sings Grace Potter and the Nocturnals‘ “Paris (Ohh La La)” for her Last Chance performance. She has nerves of steel, and simply wows with one of her best performances to date. Each note is stronger than the last.

Adam praises his contestant’s lights-out performance. “If you save this girl, this girl deserves to go all the way.”

The results of the Instant Save, then, are no surprise.

Saved: Team Adam’s Kat Perkins

Headed home: Team Shakira’s Tess Boyer Team Usher’s Bria Kelly

After two weeks of live shows, both Adam and Blake are left with all three of their finalists, while Shakira and Usher are on shaky ground with just one contestant left each. Can either of the struggling coaches come back to win, or will it be another victory for one half of the bromance?

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