Saturday, February 27, 2016
Sweden: Melodifestivalen, semi 4
But the death of schlager? I don't believe it is.
Possibly it is the death of the formulaic schlager. Magnus Carlsson made it to the final last year with a song that felt updated and fresh. Familiar but with a facelift. Recognisable but not the same old thing.
After Dark went wrong by pretending time stood still since La dolce vita came third in 2004 and unless Sweden has had a radical change of mind another schlager veteran is up for a very tough evening this week. While the brave new radio friendly world will keep on winning.
01. Eclipse / Runaways
It seems rock entries don't have the same pressure to develop as the schlager ones. This sounds like almost all rock entries in Melodifestivalen did for the last ten years. Usually it is enough for andra chansen, at least. Not exciting but competent.
02. Dolly Style / Rollercoaster
A complete mismatch of song and performer. What could have been an OK pop song is reduced to a gimmick and a joke as the singing dolls seem truly unable to carry this one at all.
03. Martin Stenmarck / Du tar mig tillbaks
Another type of song that struggled so far this year - a competent and pleasant song that is well performed but that has nothing that reaches out towards the people who vote.
04. Linda Bengtzing / Killer Girl
The mere idea of entering again with a song that sounds like most of your former entries rolled into one is such a dull and uninspired idea that I don't even know where to look. Maybe the final would need a song like this just for variety but it is not going to happen.
05. Frans / If I Were Sorry
The big surprise in the making if Frans goes through the screen like he hit home with the audience at the dress rehearsal. Another breezy radio friendly song of the kind the voters have fully embraced so far this year.
06. Panetoz / Håll om mig hårt
I can't help it but these guys always blow me away with their energy and cheerfulness. Even when their songs are a bit ridiculous I just love them. I think Sweden will do the same and shower them with points a second time around.
07. Molly Sandén / Youniverse
It's a tough job being the big pre-contest favourite. Molly's song is pleasant and pretty but perhaps too much so. If the whole thing comes across as cold and distant then everything is completely open this week.
This feels like another fairly weak semi final. The final is looking good but I had really expected more from the semi lineup. The relative weakness opens up for surprises and very small things can change the whole landscape. But based on the very short snippets released by SVT as well as other people's opinions after the rehearsals, this is how I think things will play out.
Final: Frans and Panetoz
Andra Chansen: Molly and Eclipse
5th: Dolly Style
Out: Martin and Linda
In the afternoon longer clips of the songs will be available on the official Melodifestivalen website.