The Voice Season 17 moved along with the Knockouts rounds on Monday (Nov. 4), with coaches  Blake SheltonKelly Clarkson, Gwen Stefani and John Legend making decisions about their strongest artists pitted against each other in singing challenges. Helping things along again this week was "mega-mentor" Taylor Swift, who had pieces of advice for everyone.

This evening, Shelton had some work cut out for him with his knockout pairing, in which Kat Hammock tested her mettle against Lauren Hall. "Both of these girls have similar approaches to singing," Shelton noted. "They have a softer side to what they do, but they also get up there and belt when they want to."

Hammock told the audience she'd be doing the sweet-natured and genre-fluid "Kiss Me" by Sixpence None the Richer. "It's one of my mom's favorite songs, which is why I chose it," she said, noting that her mother is a "huge influence" on her. "My mom is super stoked that I'm singing this song. When I told her, she was, like, freaking out. I'm the youngest of five kids, and my mom has made every sacrifice for me and for my siblings."

During Hammock's delicate performance, Swift observed, "Kat doesn't remind me of anyone who's out there." That's something of a fantastic compliment, but we still had Hall's effort to check out. And Hall had something up her sleeve indeed, namely doing a Kelly Clarkson song in front of, well, Kelly Clarkson.

"Blake used his steal on me, and I was so thankful. I'm just learning so, so much, and I want to continue to keep learning," Hall related. "I really wanted to challenge myself, so I picked 'Breakaway' by Kelly Clarkson for the knockouts. I feel like it tells my story."

"You sing that better than I do," Clarkson marveled, explaining that when she originally recorded the song, she was young and didn't quite grasp the meaning of the lyrics.

Shelton, of course, had the final say however. "I'm really happy for both of you because this is a big stage and you both have handled this thing really well," he said. "Lauren, one of the things that we talked about in rehearsal was, I wish you would embrace that part of your voice that starts to break up. That's the sweet spot. And, Kat, I am literally blown away by your originality and your talent and how humble you are."

With that said, Shelton ultimately chose Hammock, sending Hall home without any steals.

 

We'll be following along each week to keep up with the Season 17 competition, so be sure to check in weekly to check the progress of your favorites on the show.

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