Sunday, April 30, 2017
Tobson's Big ESC 2017 Review, part 6
Something like six qualifiers feel solid while the final four places would be up for grabs and then the final details will be decisive. Anything that would make anyone stand out will be most important. Even standing out in a bad way could be good.
Ilinca feat Alex Florea / Yodel It!
Talent show yodeller Ilinca teamed up with aspiring rock star Alex in this schlager meets rap meets Heidi on a mountain top meets tons of cheese meets pure madness. It could be Alex is throwing away his chances to ever be perceived as credible again but the gamble could be worth it. This breathtakingly wacky entry is precisely what the ESC needs this year: someone who is distinctive and utterly bonkers at the same time. Nobody will forget Romania this time around, that is more than sure.
Yes. Not only because Romania is yet to fail in a semi final but also because this manages to be awful and adorable at the same time in a pretty irresistible way.
My grade: 4/5
Ilinca feat Alex Florea / Yodel It! (Romania 2017 preview)
OG3ENE / Lights and Shadows
It's not what I would have expected, but maybe the world will wake up one morning to find they miss Wilson Philips so much they need a revival and will celebrate anything that resembles the original group at all. If that happens, these sisters will go far and knock the rest of the competition out. If not, they will struggle. This entry showcases a lot of lovely harmonies but fails big time in the songwriting department. In short, there is no song going on here and that is a problem in a song contest.
No. Too weak and too meek. And isn't it time for the Dutch to ditch country music and come up with something new?
My grade: 1/5
OG3ENE / Lights and Shadows (Netherlands 2017 preview)
Joci Pápai / Origo
Deep down, this is another one of the many entries this year that is tailor-made to suit the airwaves. It is slick and it is contemporary, but it lacks a bit of build-up and has very little of a climax anywhere. Luckily for Joci, he has his very ethnic sound that sets him apart from the others. He is also the Nano-type of this lineup - someone whose back story helps him to stand out and be remembered - but it is not an easy song to keep interesting for three minutes on a stage.
Yes. It should be distinctive enough to beat some of the more generic contenders, but how far will it carry in the final?
My grade: 3/5
Joci Pápai / Origo (Hungary 2017 preview)
Anja / Where I Am
I wasn't that impressed at first, but Anja is doing a good job vocally and this chorus has been growing. This is easily the best Danish entry for me in many, many years but then again it doesn't mean it lot. Denmark has developed a passion for songs that are easy and polished, void of personality and that leave no trace. We are still moving in this territory and as always I am left wondering if there is any kind of more demanding music being made in Denmark? Some noisy rock? Experimental hardcore trance? Punk? And could we please have a bit of it at the ESC?
Borderline. Another one of those that are totally impossible to call before you know how all countries perform on stage. This could as easily land in 7th place as in 13th.
My grade: 3/5
Anja / Where I Am (Denmark 2017 preview)