Radio silence from Rosé brought to you in part by moving flat, all the stress that goes with moving flat, all the exhaustion that comes with lugging 53 boxes when you move flat and dealing with the inept and useless staff at the utilities companies when you try to organise your life post moving flat! Add into the mix being generally run down, without wifi, working and a drag show and you'll see why I've not been devoting myself to this oh so fabulous contest!
I wonder if its because of this that I'm not feeling it as much this year? Maybe it's my lack of familiarity with the songs, but I'm detecting fewer 'wow' songs this year and a lot of 'meh' ones. Not necessarily bad meh but meh meh! Hoping to inject some enthusiasm into myself during the next couple of weeks with two preview concerts and a preview house party! Though I'm clearly buoyed by the prospect of pyros a plenty this year...
So back with a few thoughts and ramblings on the first half of the first semi.
That Monty is doing a wonderfully thorough review (10000 words and counting) of all the entries from A to Z and Our Phil and Riigi are dissecting them in performance order segments. Well done boys! Seeing as we have a draw now (or a decision as to where SVT want them to appear), I'll also take them in order and see how they sit together and even try to have a stab at their qualification chances! Call it Rosé's Reckoning.... I did tie for winning the napkin of doom in Baku after all....
So just 16 vying for the 10 places so really you only have to be better than six, so on paper it should be easy to qualify....shouldn't it?
Oh and just to add to the mix... Remember that Italy, Sweden and the UK are voting in this semi....
So opening our first semi we have Natalia Kelly from Austria. Here's our girl giving a cry of MoR, MoR, MoR.. That's middle of the road fodder of course and bejesus we have a lot to look forward to this year! I'm not a huge fan of this, it's schmaltzy R & B and a steady opener but it isn't going to excite the millions, sorry thousands, watching. Still it IS better than a ruddy Montenegrin Trojan horse I suppose! I don't see the votes for this except from maybe UK and Sweden!
Bit of a nightmare for SVT to try to split the MoR's from the MoR's in their controversial manual draw this year! They've tried at least split the MoR R&B from the MoR ballad and this totally pisses on Austria's bratwurst and chips! Stunning melody and the Estonian language doesn't half sound easy on my tone deaf ears. It's Birgit Ifatfirstyoudontsucceed Oigemeel, good on you love! Sailing to the final if there's a god!
Fifty shades of fabulous! I absolutely love this for all the obvious reasons, primarily the predictable deployment of ripped torsos in the official video (I hope she's bringing those boys to Sweden). If it were up to me, Hannah goes straight into the final, never mind the fling with a swarthy Slovenian boy she's crooning about! The original presentation of the song was so wooden and staged, not to mention cheap and nasty that the video seems just delightful, a perfect eurovision example of polishing a turd. I heard that she CAN actually sing it live but I've no proof for this! I wonder, I just wonder?
Borderline, pushed over the line by its neighbours?
Following Slovenia, the juries are just going to love a bit of Klapa here and vote in their droves. I hope they don't as I really dislike this style and this song. I am trying to see the uniqueness of this and hear the music but all four of them are literally banging on my last nerve. After all these years, I can finally separate my personal favourites from those that are qualifying and say that this is sailing to the final. Harrumph! Such Mizerija!!
So after that nerve jangling you'll need a memorable and slick melody then I suppose? And here she is, the ever so slightly slappable, Emmelie De Forest with the ear worm that is Teardrops. Mmmm, it's hot favourite with the bookies and it s instantly catchy yet I can't seem to get to liking it never mind loving it. It's a mild 'don't mind it' from me at the moment and being barefooted and having a man with a tin whistle at the start just isn't doing it for me performance-wise either. But it's strong, very strong..
What's that you want more? MoR ballad more? Ok you've got it. A ballad from Russia for a change and it's not half bad, although it's also not that good either is it? I'd imagine this will be classy and slick onstage in Malmo and will continue Russia's excellent qualification record. Despite Dina Garipova's big old finish and a huge pyro opportunity, it's missing something from me and all this 'heal the world nonsense' really does need moving on from. Are we back in the mid 90s? Gosh I'm turning into such a grump.... Still it IS Russia so should make it.
Gosh I'm going to have to hand back my 'ballad queen' membership card for here's the third one in this half of the semi that's leaving me completely cold. Like listening to the warbling lovechild of Lion King and Wicked. Yes yes, I know this has the Wicked link with the name Gravity and indeed doesn't this sound wickedly cheap and ripped off? This is turgid stuff for me but we all know how this will be blown up into something big in Malmo. Big but not necessarily good, this a hard genre to do well for tv. Are there enough places for all these ballads? Time will tell but I'd happily not see this make it.
Gosh the message boards were on fire weren't they when this was released?! It's Anouk! Finally the Netherlands would qualify! They soared in the betting to third favourite, yes THIRD! I dashed home from work eager to hear a sublime Eurovision masterpiece and was left feeling underwhelmed and bemused by the support this song is getting. It doesn't go ANYWHERE or do ANYTHING and leaves you feeling like you're waiting on death row. I can see some jury points for this but unless they do something spectacular with it onstage, this bird ain't flying!
So that's your first half! Four in and four borderline so far! Nothing like bet hedging! Second half of first semi to follow! Is anyone else missing Portugal?!