April 14, 2015 at 06:40 PM EDT

The Voice

TV Show
Reality TV, Music
run date
Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Kelly Clarkson, Alicia Keys
Current Status
In Season

Merry Christmas to all and to all a frazzled night!

That was basically the gist of Tuesday night’s carol and cringe episode. In between the Christmas song performances were Carson Daly’s grim reaper “America saved…” announcements. The top six became the top five with a very surprising bottom two. Matthew Schuler was eliminated. James Wolpert won the last Twitter save of the season.

It started off on a jolly note, with a performance by the newly pregnant Kelly Clarkson. She sang “Underneath the Tree,” a shoulder-sway-worthy tune from her Christmas album Wrapped In Red. “I’m looking forward to second trimester!” the ever-candid American Idol-winner-turned superstar told Carson when he asked how she was feeling.

The first group performance featured Tessanne, Matthew, and Jacquie singing Florence and the Machine’s “You’ve Got the Love,” amongst the audience and with a harpist accompaniment. Florence and the Machine songs usually have this unique sonic combination of sounding ethereal and punch-drunk-powerful. But this rendition just sounded like a shouting match. Too many singing cooks in the kitchen! I get it, I’ve got the love!

Up next was a Christmas duet by Blake Shelton and his Season 1 artist Xenia, singing “Silver Bells.” This was sweet and simple, exactly the calm the audience needed before the storm of another nail-biting Carson announcement. Also, did anyone else think Xenia’s mic could have been turned up just a tad?

The most interesting boy band to grace the Voice stage was also my favorite group performance of the night. Cole, James, Will, and special guest Extreme’s Nuno Bettencourt on guitar, sang “More Than Words” (also an Extreme song). It felt like James was taking the lead on this one, with the other guys almost singing backup. I do think their harmonies could’ve used some of Nic Hawk’s higher register to help with their voices breaking at points. Also, Nuno, the camera loves you.

The final group performance featured all of the top six artists singing a mash up of “O Holy Night” and “Joy to the World.” What was up with the matching mauve and black outfits? Mauve Avengers, anyone? Oh right, back to the music. So I thought this was just okay, but if I had to give an MVP award, it would go to those three backup singers who got to shine in the spotlight for a bit.

NEXT: All I want for Christmas is to not be in the bottom two…

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