The Voice grand final will be close
THE Voice Australia grand final is going to be a two-horse race.
I believe Monday night's decider will come down to front runners Karise Eden and Coolum's Darren Percival.
It will be blues singer Eden's raw power versus soul singer Percival's experience and honesty.
While Sarah De Bono and Rachael Leahcar have beautiful voices, both seem to have puttered along through the live performances without pulling out a truly special performance.
I still believe Leahcar's most magical moment was her blind audition and sadly illness prevented her from leaving a lasting impression on this past week's show.
In comparison, both Eden and Percival have gone from strength to strength.
Eden's haunting performance of Joe Cocker's Hallelujah on Monday night sealed her status as the one to beat.
And Percival's soulful, honest performances, in particular his "church tent revival" rendition of Steve Wonder's I Believe on June 4 was his highlight on the show so far.
BetStar has Eden as the favourite to win at 1.65. Her nearest competitor is Percival on 4.25 odds. Sarah De Bono and Rachael Leahcar on 6 and 6.5 respectively.
TomWaterhouse.com echoes those results, placing Eden at 1.25 to win, followed by Percival on 5.5 and De Bono on 6.
But the website has Leahcar much further behind the other finalists at 11 odds.
Talking on the Today show on Thursday, Keith Urban explained why he chose Percival over Diana Rouvas.
"Darren is an incredibly gifted signer," he said.
"More of his deep, deep soul and life experience comes through his voice. I thought 'you know what this is The Voice and for me Darren has the voice'."
Also appearing on the Today show, Percival revealed the personal sacrifice he's made for the show.
"I haven't seen my kids in 23 days," he said.
"My daughter's probably up touching the (TV) screen there in Coolum."
Neither Urban nor the finalists would speculate on a winner.
Eden said it would be "a bonus" for whoever won.
"It's just an added bonus," she said.
"We're just happy. We're doing what we want to do anyway, either way."
The four finalists will perform three songs on Sunday night's show, including a duet with their respective coaches.
It's their last chance to inspire vote the voting public before voting closes at noon on Monday.
Joel Madden will also sing a duet with his famous father-in-law Lionel Richie on Sunday night's show.