And this week we meet the rest of the contestants eight more groups square off to boot off the bottom two and leave us with twelve… before the cutthroat ruthlessness begins though, they’re all joining together as one to bring us a fresh new version of Sing by My Chemical Romance… Nick Lachey introduces the judges and they justify why they boot off who they boot off… and with all these “offs” in the opening paragraph… i’ll end it with… off we go…

now playing: Motownphilly by Boys II Men

the Dartmouth Aires lead off with a Stevie Wonder/Red Hot Chili Peppers jam, Higher Ground… i wonder if you have to special order shirts that bright… i like the background vocals a lot, but the lead singer shouts more than sings and it just made my dog start singing along in his sleep… Shawn says this is what he’s talking about… he was tapping along the whole time… Sara says they were spot on and they had her from hello… Ben says it was nice work, but the background was a little too loud, making Michael (the lead) work too hard to be heard (a.k.a. shout)… he liked it though…

Pentatonix take it to the club with Katy Perry’s E.T. probably without the Kanye touches… so, i guess i never noticed this before, but i wonder if there’s a reason all these groups feel the need to dress in fluorescent colors… as if singing wherever they go doesn’t earn them enough attention… this was alright, but i feel like it got pretty sloppy here and there and the tempo made it tough to stay on board… Sara says it was sick, they channeled Katy Perry, and she liked that they all got a shot to shine… Ben said it was a good blend, but it might have been a little too fast… Shawn says he loved it and Scott was a beast…

Messiah’s Men choose purple over pink and bring us People Get Ready… this group hails from Liberia and they have a pretty big sound and it’s pretty smooth… it’s a nice sound, something you’d expect from a really good church choir, but probably not the best for this competition… Ben says they had a big sound and he enjoyed it… Shawn says it wasn’t the best technically, but it makes you feel good… Sara says when they circle up and sing together, she really feels the emotion…

Sotos is singing Wicked Game which is a pretty old tune from Chris Isaac… immediately, i don’t like the tempo, but i can’t deny that this group is tight… sorry T-I-G-H-T!… best technical performance thus far even if they weren’t true to the original song… really solid… Shawn says the arrangement was ambitious and fast and he didn’t feel it like he wanted to feel it, but they have lots of potential… Sara says they’ve come a long way since she sang with Chris (from the group)… she thought it was sexy… Ben says it was a little thin only because they have a bass track and a lead track, but not much in between…

and now comes the first elimination… i was initially pretty sure that Messiah’s Men would head home, but now Sonos is giving them a run for the money… i’ll stick with Messiah’s Men for good measure, but we’ll see… two groups are safe… Dartmouth Aires and Pentatonix… and now we’re down to one… going home is… Messiah’s Men… singing Swing Low, Sweet Chariot and heading out…

now playing: Love Song by Sara Bareilles

The Collective represents Nashville with Adele’s Rollin’ in the Deep and i’m supposed to really like this group because Rachael Lampa is in it, but i’m really having a hard time with this arrangement… not really sure what they were going for there, but at times it sounded like a hot mess… Benn says it was very solid and they’re all very good singers, but they have a little bit more work to go before they crack the code and gel… Shawn says the same thing, but says they’ll probably get there eventually… it was solid enough… Sara steals the word solid since Ben and Shawn used it, but it was missing something for her as well…

Soul’d Out airs out Aquarius which is at least twenty years older than any of the members of this group… but they’ve done alright with the slow section… the transition to Let the Sun Shine and the closing portion of the song totally fell to pieces for me with pitch trouble and tempo challenges… Shawn points out that these were intricate songs that are older then them, but they did well… Sara says there was good energy, but the chord structure got a little muddled… Ben says that they’re parents probably weren’t even born when these songs came out… he says the first half worked out well, but it tore apart at the end… (sounds familiar)…

North Shore, donning matching bowling shirts, polishes off a classic Dion DiMucci tune Runaround Sue and right now, they’re the only thing possibly keeping Soul’d Out alive in the competition… strictly based on marketability… they sound really sweet, but this is gonna be a tough elimination to call… Sara says she’s in love with them, they feel like family, and she hopes they don’t ever stop singing… Ben says they have a controlled energy without all the drums and percussion and beatbox… Shawn says it was neat, clean, classic, and timeless and they did it right…

the Deltones round out the evening with Feels Like Home which is from How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days… i’m comfortable sharing that… it’s a solo vocal with a really strong cast of background vocals… and it sounds really good… she did shake a little on some spots, but it was a really good, emotional performance… Sara says she felt the power and it was like she took a journey with them… Ben liked the slow build and it was a moving performance, despite some minor glitches… Shawn says it was sincere and it felt good… they have a lot of potential…

and now comes the second round elimination… and the safest of the groups are the Deltones… i suppose The Collective is pretty safe as well based on their potential, which leaves us with the youngest and the oldest… i’ll say that Soul’d Out is heading home… and Nick is back with the results… first two are safe… North Shore and The Collective… which makes this an easy guess now… going home is Soul’d Out… their swan song is – and we all hope for a Miley Cyrus classic – instead we get an Ozzy Osbourne song and a reminder of why they’re going home… that was rough…

now playing: Gone by Ben Folds

and that’s a wrap… we’re down to 12 groups and i kind of hope they’re not all going at once… okay… looks like 2 songs each from the first bracket… that’s right… 3 perform, 1 leaves, 3 perform 1 leaves, then 4 perform… 60s and Top 40… that will be fun…

peace… love… bdg…