Sticking closely to the safest of formulas is a dull thing to do, but a real professional can shake life also into a predictable entry.
Željko Joksimović - Nije ljubav stvar (Serbia 2012)
Maybe we got off a bit on the wrong foot, the Serbian entry and I. After the fun and energetic entries from Nina and Milan Stanković, I found it overly dull and safe to call in Željko Joksimović again.
And despite being the kind of bombastic Balkan ballad that should go straight to my heart, I never really warmed to this song either. It is nice, but nothing much more than a rewrite of previous, better, entries.
Not quite Lane moje, to put it nicely.
But in sharp contrast to Bosnia and Estonia, where I thought strong songs were taken down by the performances, Željko knows how to work his stuff. He is a very powerful performer - the voice is there, the gaze is there - who could blow life into any old song. Which is basically what he did in Baku.
Had he given us a tiny bit of surprise, just a fragment of a new idea in the old concoction, he could maybe even have given Loreen a run for the money. Now he just gave us the same old song, and that was not exciting enough.
My grade: 3/5