A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
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Saturday, February 11, 2017

Melodifestivalen 2017, semi 2

On a first listen, I wasn't too impressed by the songs in the first semi but then many of them grew on me and at least three of them turned into contenders. So I wasn't alarmed when I felt the same about week two.

Problem is most of the songs failed to grow this time around. This week embodies the problem Melodifestivalen had last year where too many songs were well-produced and sounded slick enough but were also too safe and provoked little or no emotion in me what-so-ever.

This week is clearly weaker and it makes me wonder why SVT let the general level slide already by now. Back in the day, week three was usually the weaker one.

This time around there is just one song I feel really strongly about and it will have to battle it out with some nicely produced fillers. But it is by no means obvious that Sweden will vote the way the should. Here's my prediction for this week:


Allyawan / Vart har du vart
The big problem when big names with cred enters the ESC is that they have no idea what is needed to make an impression in the short time available. The songwriters are big names in Sweden but will not stand a chance tonight with this soporific mid-tempo piece of dullness.

Roger Pontare / Himmel och hav
Not a bad effort, only very dated and a relic from what Melodifestivalen used to be back in the day. Unless Sweden is caught by unstoppable nostalgia, Roger will make an early exit.

5th place:

Etzia / Up
Happy and instant but also distant and surprisingly cold for its genre. If Etzia can give it gas and the audience falls for the roller-skate dancers it can carry as far as to fifth place, otherwise this will swap places with Pontare.

Andra chansen:

Dismissed / Hearts Align
This band got really poor reviews earlier in the week but this is a pretty decent soft rocker, dressed up in dresses and a gender queer expression. The song sounds like a more inspired entry in a Finnish final and I mean that in a good way.

Benjamin Ingrosso / Good lovin'
I suppose this is what a lot of chart music sounds like today and I like contemporary sounds in the contest. But it needs to be far more engaging than this. Young mr Ingrosso is professional and likeable but is that enough to counterbalance the lack of passion here? My guess is it's not.


Lisa Ajax / I Don't Give A
I seriously don't think much of this. A very standard radio song that tries to make itself more interesting by a completely unnecessary use of the f-word. Just like Denmark 2014. But Lisa has a very active fan base and that will lift her into the final tonight.

Mariette / A Million Years
I was never a great fan of "Don't Stop Believing". There. I said it. But this year Mariette stepped up and entered the only song I care for this week. It sounds fantastic in its studio version and should knock Benjamin Ingrosso into Andra Chansen. But who knows what sort of mess the heart app voters  could unleash?

Just like last week, I will live tweet during the show before zapping over to Sanremo. Please keep my company there.

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