Little seven-year-old Jesús del Río made his return to The Voice Kids in Spain after wowing coaches and viewers alike with his rousing version of AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” for his blind audition. This time, during the battle round, he was paired with two other singers for a rendition of Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out of Heaven”. And while he seemed out of his element, the result was in his favor.
Jesús went viral with his cover of “Highway to Hell” a month ago, belting the song with a powerhouse vocal that belied his small stature, and causing the coaches to mob him onstage like a rock star. For the battle round, he had to tone it down, singing Bruno Mars’ hit while sharing the stage with two contestants named Lucas and Alejandro. Unlike the AC/DC performance, Jesús looked uneasy throughout, suggesting that he is way more comfortable with hard rock than pop. Still looking like a rocker in a leather jacket, his vocals certainly weren’t as strong as his blind audition, but he did hit a couple of pretty solid high notes.
After the performance, Jesús’ coach, Spanish singer Melendi, admitted that the song may not have been the right choice for Jesús. However, when making his decision, he ultimately chose Jesús to move on to the next round, citing the seven-year-old’s spark and personality.
Jesús, meanwhile, looked a bit melancholy, even as he was chosen the winner. Tears seemed to be welling up in his eyes as the coaches were hugging and congratulating him. Perhaps it was all a little bit overwhelming for him, as he obviously seemed uncomfortable with the song choice.
That said, Jesús’ journey on The Voice Kids continues, and hopefully he’ll be able to sing something a little heavier next time.
Watch Jesús and the other contestants perform Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out of Heaven” below, followed by his viral performance of AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” (which has now racked up more than 3 million views on YouTube). Plus, see other standout performances on The Voice Kids here.