‘The Voice’: Dolly Parton Performs “Coat Of Many Colors,” Jeffery Austin Fights For An Instant Save

Never let it be said that the Voice audience is predictable. The fickle bunch of Twitter-voters made some real dicey decisions this week, and certainly earned some disdain from coaches Gwen Stefani, Adam Levine and Pharrell Williams. Not Blake Shelton, though, who was just fine with the results that trickled in last night. The moral of the story is that you can’t assume others will do the right thing and cast the right votes for you. (This applies next November, too.)

With more votes than ever in the nine-season Voice history, the nine semi-finalists were cut down to just four. On top of advancements, eliminations and Instant Saves, country legend Dolly Parton and Season 3 champ Cassadee Pope got some stage time!

Here’s how it all went down on the semi-finals results:

In a realistic preview of life after Voice, Season 3 Champ Cassadee Pope returns to her alma mater to perform new single “I Am Invincible.” She’s being touted as a country artist — and even nabbed a recent Show Up And We’ll Nominate You People’s Choice nomination for Best Country artist — but “I Am Invincible” sounds awfully pop-driven. Maybe she will become the next Avril Lavigne after all!

(Cue shame for remembering the identity of Cassadee Pope’s idol.)

In a less realistic look at what their careers could become, country icon Dolly Parton also pops by to perform “Coat Of Many Colors,” and to promote her so-named NBC movie of the week. The 69-year-old diva is just a ball of charming energy strumming her guitar of many colors, and it almost makes you want to tune in to see said movie of the week on Thursday.

(I said almost.)

Making it up as he goes, Carson Daly announces the Top 3, followed by the Bottom 3, followed by the 3 that will be performing for the final slot a la Instant Save. You got that? Doesn’t matter: it will change next season anyway.

Moving on to the Actual Finale:

Team Adam: Jordan Smith (many duhs).Team Blake: Emily Ann Roberts (naturally) and Barrett Baber (wait, what?!).

Wait, wait, wait. Barrett Baber? Not Jeffrey Austin? Or even Madi Davis? The Voice audience sure does keep it interesting, at least.

Singled out as Losing:

Team Adam: Amy Vachal and Shelby BrownTeam Gwen: Braiden Sunshine

Farewell, fallen ones. They’ll probably drag you back next week to perform, anyway.

Instant Save Contenders:

Team Gwen: Jeffrey AustinTeam Pharrell: Madi DavisTeam Blake: Zach Seabaugh

How Blake holds the potential to have a fully intact finale team is just beyond comprehension, but it all comes down to these performances. Hope you practiced the lyrics, guys! (Too soon?)

Zach Seabaugh sings Tim McGraw’s “Live Like You Were Dying,” because of course he does. The quasi-inspirational song lacks inspiration when performed by Zach, and he would have been wise to sing “Jail House Rock,” or whatever else could have inspired the ladies to swoon, instead.

“Dude, you’re a star,” says Blake. “The thing that I can’t overstate is what a great country singer you are.”

Madi Davis sings Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over.” Despite her strong showing on Monday night and throughout the majority of the season, she sounds very nervous during this particular performance. It’s a little sharp and she doesn’t quite hit all the big notes on key.

“It’s been such a pleasure to watch you really fight this season all the way through to this moment,” says Pharrell. “I will venture to say that this is a Madi Davis night tonight.” Optimistic.

Jeffrey Austin shouldn’t even be in this Instant Save situation, but on the bright side, it affords him a bonus performance. He sings Ed Sheeran’s “Make It Rain,” and his powerful, flawless delivery leaves no question that the final slot is his. Although, again: Barrett Baber?!

A tearful Gwen is incredulous that Jeffrey is even in this position. “This is so obvious. This is so obvious! Jeffrey has opened his heart up to America right before your eyes,” she says. “If he doesn’t get voted through right now, it’s a crime.”

And the Save Goes To: It’s no surprise that Jeffrey Austin secures that final save, taking both he and Gwen to next week’s finale. What an expertly drawn blood bath, Carson Daly! How you announced winners, singled out losers, gave people hope, and then just took it away. Great practice for next week, when The Voice champ is finally announced.

Have at it: do you agree with all the results? Who got robbed?