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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Will You Still Love These Songs Tomorrow?

It's still Easter here but in Europe it's April 1, so I'll make a disclaimer: this is not an April Fool's joke, these is really the next-to-bottom part of my Eurovision ranking.

35. Malta
Gianluca Bezzina - "Tomorrow"
Reaction: This song gets points for relatively unique lyrics in this area (about an unlucky in love nerd), even though they're annoying to actually listen to. Also, this song is way too reminiscent of "Hey Soul Sister" and that's just unforgiveable.
Best Part: Chorus, which doesn't suffer from the above as much
Rating: 2/5

34. Lithuania
Andrius Pojavis - "Something"
Reaction: This has aspirations of being arena rock, but it's too amateurish to be good. The verses are weak, but the chorus is somewhat catchy.
Best Part: the line about his shoes having names
Rating: 2/5

33. Cyprus
Despina Olympiou - "An Me Thimase"
Reaction: Sure, she has a lovely voice, but this song is just boring. The verses are completely unmemorable, and the "thimaseeeeeeee" in the chorus is like a yawn. However, it can sound lovely if you're about to fall asleep.
Best Part: I can't find a "best part", but the "thimaseeeee" is at least memorable
Rating: 2/5

32. Armenia
Dorians - "Lonely Planet"
Reaction: This is a calm rock song with a nice message. It's kind of catchy but it's just uninteresting enough that it's sleepy and even boring.
Best Part: Guitar solo
Rating: 2/5

31. Belarus
Alyona Lanskaya - "Solayoh"
Reaction: This is actually kind of fun, an inoffensive Eurovision ethnic-dance song. However, it adds nothing special or particularly memorable. Is it better than any of the crop that took over 2005 (it's reminiscent of "Tomorrow I Go")? Is it better than any that were performed since? Not really.
Best Part: First verse, before it gets boring
Rating: 2/5

Was that too mean? I hope not. Next week, it's songs 26-30, where I'll get ever nicer.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Facepalm Monday

It's that time again! Eurovision ranking time! Everyone on the internet and their mother has their top 39 ready to discuss and I'm no different. Here's my bottom four.
Note: I usually post these on Sundays but I've been away from a computer for the past few days and couldn't post this until now. So there will be a shorter wait than usual for the next post.

39. Spain
ESDM - "Contigo Hasta El Final"
Reaction: This is definitely the song I can stand listening to the least. Maybe it's the bagpipes? While I'll give it points for being Celtic and unique, it sounds like some pop-rock song from the 90s that would be overplayed on the radio and be annoying even then. Also, it takes nearly 2 minutes to get to the chorus, and it isn't even that good of one.
Best Part: Chorus, when it does eventually happen
Rating: 1/5

38. Finland
Krista Siegfrids - "Marry Me"
Reaction: This gimmick isn't fun or funny, it's just annoying. I'm not sure if this is a parody or endorsement of marriage-obsessed women. If it's trying to be satire, it fails. The ding-dong parts with the church bells are annoying. If this has a life after Eurovision, it will be in promos for wedding reality shows.
Best Part: Not any particular part of the song, but the music video gives it better context and makes the tone a little clearer. Not sure how this will work on stage though.
Rating: 1/5

37. Hungary
ByeAlex - "Kedvesem (Zoohacker Remix)"
Reaction: For something that is a remix, this song sure remains so chill it's practically a lullaby. It's unique and charming for the first minute, but it's more of the same for the following two minutes and it's not in a good way.
Best Part: The spacey sounds during the chorus
Rating: 1/5

36. Latvia
PeR - "Here We Go"
Reaction: This song sounds like a theme song for a children's TV show circa 2000 and thus would have been unhip and dated even then. The sputtering synth part in the bridge hints at a dubstep break but doesn't make it there, sometimes going into dolphin noise territory.
Best Part: "I'm the man on the moon/Call me And Kaufman"
Rating: 1/5

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Is it over yet?

Apparently not yet! This weekend saw the last Eurovision national final of the season, but there's still some songs left to be settled before next week.

Moldova chose their song last. Cristina Croitoru & Karizma performed "Never Fall Again", which didn't win, but is a more interesting ballad than some of the songs that were actually selected this year.

Next week I'll start my annual ranking of the year's Eurovision songs!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

I'm In Heartbreak Hotel

It's down to the last few songs! This week, there were 3 national finals for Eurovision.

A song that didn't make it in Israel is "We Are Free" by Vladi Blayburg. I missed cheesy schlager in Melodifestivalen this year, and this song helps to satisfy that craving.

My favorite song from the final in Romania was "What Is Love" by Al Mike feat. Renee Santana, a dance song with a very catchy chorus.

I am heartbroken (ha ha) that "Heartbreak Hotel" by YOHIO didn't win in Sweden, especially since it won the viewer vote. While I like this piece of typical Melodifestivalen glam rock, I admit the look is the bigger factor here.

"Begging" by Anton Ewald is my favorite song of the whole Melodifestivalen. It gives off a contemporary boy band feeling, like if One Direction or whoever got a hold of it, it would become a big hit. The repeated "ahou what a feeling" is fantastic.

There's only one final left next week, and that's Moldova.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Super Sized Songs Saturday and Sunday

This past weekend included this year's actual Super Saturday, but the rest of the week was busy too, with song selection shows on nearly every day of the week.

Armenia had a four-song final and one of the songs missing out was "Toy Planet." It has a much stronger chorus than the song that got selected.

One of the two songs missing out in Elitsa Todorova & Stoyan Yankoulov's three-song final in Bulgariawas "Samo Shampioni." It's a catchy drum song, what else would you expect?

Missing out in Estonia was "Päästke noored hinged" by Grete Paia. I love this Estonian-language piano ballad that turns dubstep in the chorus. A perfect combination of what we like most from Eesti Laul and the zeitgeist of Western popular music.

Hungary decided not to choose "Élj pont úgy" by Laura Cserpes. I always like a good power ballad, this one delivers and does it job fine.

Israel had four selection shows this week, so here's a non-qualifier from each of them.
"Bo" by Laila Malcos is a jazzy, Latin pop song that sounds a little like hold music, which doesn't sound like a compliment, but it is intended to be. It could be the best hold music ever and I would stay on the line for far too long just to hear this song repeat.

"Mon amour" by Sarit Avitan is a mix of ethnic ballad dance dance that is always welcome in this contest.

"No war" by Bezalel Raviv has some great strings in the chorus.

"Replace You" by Yarden Tzur is very cute.

Missing out in the final in Serbia was "Magija" by Sky's, which like the winning song was performed by a female trio. This one is more sweet and upbeat.

One of the two songs missing out in Spain was "Dame tu voz." It feels very late 90s guitar pop.

I was disappointed that "In and out of love" by Martin Rolinski didn't advance to the final in Sweden. I was so happy to see him return and the song did not disappoint. He sings "wooooooah" like nobody else.

Next weekend: finals in Israel, Romania, and Sweden!