Love this song. The story is heart-touching. I love the way TIX has cinematized the reality of his life in this song. It makes me sad for him and happy at the same time. The lyrics, sounds, rhythms, and his voice are superb! I am not a critic but it encourages me to write up some words for Norway. The story represents his life. It is inspiring. The disorder is not a burden for him, it is his CROWN. This song is the appropriate answer to the people who bullied him. The song tells how diverse Eurovision is! It absolutely fits in this Eurovision and deserves to win. It is not only lovely but also powerful.
The appeal or prayer that Blas showed in this song is brilliant. His voice and gesture dazzled me though I did not understand his native language. It reminds me of my grandma and makes me emotional for her. I think diversity is definitely something that reaches everyone’s heart in their very own way. The song is really very touching. I love the line “I am going to stay and I promise to love you more than yesterday” which is heart-stopping.
Neo-pop punk metal dance track with a catchy chorus, gorilla/dog grunting and a dude hanging back whispering echoes to the lead singer. The hair styles are very 90s Nirvana/Silverchair, which I really like (90’s- early 00’s metal punk rock tragic here, don’t @ me), and the song ends with a very impressive scream (very similar to sounds I’ve often heard in the PhD offices), but no key change in sight. Are Blind Channel blind to the rules of Eurovision? You have to have a key change to get into the finals.
I just read that they call their music a brand of ‘violent pop’ but I’m not sure if they realise how cute they all are with their eyeliner? Also, they wrote on their profile that if they were playing Mariocart, they’d pick Yoshi? ADORABLE. Can we sneak them into the country for a tour with our Finnish researchers next year, please??
Review by Georgina Binns
Israel: Eden Alene- Set me free
Damn, what a queen! Eden is a powerhouse with a catchy middle eastern themed tune and a fantastic voice. I would have liked to have seen her ballet talents highlighted here, but this is an absolute banger, and with a key change! Eden knows what’s up! Her white outfit in this video is very striking against everyone else dressed so darkly, but is reminiscent of Kylie’s ‘Can’t get you out of my head’, which was frankly also a club banger back in the day- and if you ask DJ Merciless to play this song, she probably already has it lined up, so don’t even bother.
I have a lot of feelings about the chosen lyrics, particularly the continuously repeated ‘Set Me Free’, which is a lovely sentiment, but a bit on the nose under current circumstances? Why do I always want to be so political about this? This is Eurovision, politics are not allowed! Anyway, it’s super catchy and I already can’t get it out of my head.
Review by Georgina Binns
Spain: Blas Cantó – Voy A Quedarme
Blas, how on earth do you get so much height in your fringe? I am truly impressed. Yeah, your voice is lovely and you can hit those high notes like a god-damn nightingale, but that quiff, seriously, what a dude.
And there’s nothing like a cute very young man with no shoes hugging his grandma, singing what I imagine is an ode to how much he loves his maternal old lady. I am going to relish in this lovely feeling before I read the English translation of the lyrics and what I hope remains this sweet and innocent ballad or regard for older women.
Ok. “Of memories of your skin..”… “Just inches away from me…” ok… “I’m going to kiss you very slowly like the first time…” err.. “Just leave behind the fear..” right. Maybe it wasn’t his grandma.
You know that final song the DJ plays at 3am to clear the dancefloor of drunken buffoons? Well, this is it! Delivered with the confidence often found in people with curly hair, Spain’s sunny boy, Miki is having a great time. And why not – La Venda will inevitably be on rotation in clubs on Ibiza this summer … around 3am.
One might easily conclude that Italy’s entry is a happy, toe tapping ditty, probably about summer love or gelato or both. But the upbeat tune is in fact a grim commentary on war, terrorism and displacement. The main message is well illustrated in the video, let’s see what Ermal and Fabrizio dish up on stage. Will political commentaries go anywhere at Eurovision in the 21st century? Probably not…sorry Italy!
The title and bio pic is deceptive – no sign of Barbara Streisand anywhere in Laura’s performance. There is some staccato singing, a modern version of voguing and a combination of jazz trumpet and cello, leaving me utterly confused. Will Europe be as confused and erroneously allocate douze points?
Look, Spain has sent much, much worse to Eurovision and I am grateful for young and inoffensive Amaia and Alfred. Still, this sickly sweet, and slightly nasal number will send you to sleep at around 0’21”. While effective, this is somewhat elaborate for a sedative.
The UK has cloned Annie Lennox for Eurovision. Obviously, the real Annie declined politely, having seen the humiliation experienced by UK Eurovision entries (cue Engelbert Humperdinck and Bonnie Tyler). And it almost worked: short blond hair (tick), long, angular face (tick), string riff from Walking on Broken Glass (tick). Yet, CRISPR was unsuccessful in removing the highly annoying For eh-he-he-he-he-ver chorus. More humiliation awaits!
This years’ French entry is surely scandalous in France – its clear there has been far too much focus on this year’s election and they have sorely neglected their responsibilities as ambassadors of Europe. The song frankly suffers from confused cultural identity. Of all the nations, this is somewhat shocking as the French nation are so proud of their culture and yet this song has not a sliver of romance nor the welcomed gypsy chaos of a raging accordion in fact this song is a mile-long baguette from any beret. To be honest if I had not known this a French number before listening to it, I would have mistaken it as poor verson of a Gloria Estefan pop number. And to make things even more confusing Alma throws in three English words in the chorus! When asked about that Alma replied: “We decided to add English to the original version in order to reach a larger audience, I hope that if people can understand a part of the song they are more likely to like it!” Since when does France care about the rest of the world!! Don’t get me wrong Alma is very kind on the eye but I found my thoughts continually drifting off as the song is pretty dull and seemingly very long for Eurovision song. I do hope though Alma brings her shimmering jeans and they manage to have tango dancers dancing along the walls that would certainly increase the interest.
What do you get when you put youtube sensations ‘Epic sax guy’ and ‘Epic violin guy’ in the same room as a deadringer for Justin Timberlake? You end up with the band Sunstroke project with a pretty catchy little ditty about erotic baking. Well that’s what I gleamed from the film clip – the egg breaking sequence is priceless. It’s a real toe tapper and it has some classic elements such as Alexander Rybak inspired violin but with neon edges and a night wearing sunglasses sax player that Corey hart would have died for. My only real disappointment is that there is not an epic sax/violin solo off in the middle – it is surely a missed opportunity given the epicness of the band members. When asked what is one of the most interesting aspects of their entry they replied ‘Our performance looks like a small wedding on stage’. Small weddings are genuinely associated with Vegas and apparently, what happens in Vegas is meant to stay in Vegas so not sure who let them out nonetheless their offspring are bound to be epic.
I will put it out there right now. This is just not Eurovision. This Jack Johnson inspired number is too mainstream for this competition. I just spent a field trip in North Queensland where every second song on the radio was Ed Sheeran and between those songs were announcers mentioning Ed Sheeran. I feel this song is commercial radios attempt to further promote Ed Sheeran. Oh by the way this song is not sung by Ed Sheeran but Manuel Navarro whose key inspiration is apparently – yes you guessed it – Ed Sheeran. His other apparent inspiration is Bob Dylan this is not is not so evident. The chorus is far too repetitive and frankly is pretty frustrating. He just states Do it for your lover over and over without actually tell us what IT is? Unless it turns out Manuel Navarro is actually Ed Sheeran I cannot see this one getting too far up the charts.
Verdict = Ed Sheeran will sell another million records on his way to total world domination…oh and this song will tank badly at the Eurovision song contest
Well Triana Park have truly brought it to Eurovision this year for Lativa. This Kate Bush-Bjork-esque inspired pop number is sophisticated and musically intriguing for an electronica-drum-guitar combination. It’s not a toe-tapper that will bring the house down but it is surprisingly intellectually engaging. And as a result, they have not a hope in hell of winning Eurovision. Although according to their profile they love banana pancakes with Nutella and we all know I loathe bananas and consider them to be the devil’s fruit which means their direct connection to the devil potentially gives them some hope even in hell.
Verdict = Quirky, intriguing and cool so not a chance of winning
Hip, trendy, upbeat, and in English. It is a shame Barei chose an entry in a language other than Spanish. Very disappointing. It has already caused quite a stir in Spain, and I must say, I agree. While the tune is catchy, and Barei’s image is edgy and cool, I feel the idea behind all the glitz is to distract the audience from the lyrics.
Not unlike many other young pop stars, she comes off as trendy but with little substance, the “fairy floss” of the music scene as it were. I’m not sure if it is because English is not her native language but the song does little to convey any deeper meaning other than to “sing with her lalalala”. I suppose some songs don’t have to be about much more, and it’s enough that they make you feel happy and are easy to sing. Perhaps that will be enough to get her over the threshold? The idea behind performing a song in English was for it to be appealing to a wider audience. Maybe the gamble will pay off.
Review by Giselle Muchette
No Degree Of Separation by Francesca Michielin
Francesca Michielin presents “Nessun grado di separazione”, “No degree of separation”. It is a lovely melody, reminiscent of Laura Paucini. The song is about a girl who lives in a drawer or a small box, isolated, protecting her heart and holding herself distant from life and one day finds the courage to leave her small, confined and safe space to experience the outside world, real life. With no degree of separation between her and the reality that surrounds her.
The video is somewhat too literal in its interpretation, with Francesca singing from within a neon “box”, but her vocals overcome the slight lack of originality of the visual concept. The music starts off soft and slightly romantic and builds up to a chorus conveying strength and courage. The message conveyed can be familiar to many people in different situations. Anyone can identify with the concept of feeling constrained and finding the courage to explore, to love, to take a risk. I feel Italy is a strong contender for the top prize this year.