Wings, chameleons and lions – (to the tune of Euphoria) Zootopiaaaaa! Things will get WILD! Or not… Hold on tight for part ten!
10. CROATIA – Roko – The Dream
The Song: This sounds so Belarussian, doesn’t it? The half-baked drama, the clumsy English, the build-up that leads to…nothing much. There are even a few bars in there that are very reminiscent of Min Kärlek (Melodifestivalen 2004, obscure fan reference 911!). Very unoriginal, in other words.
Standout line: “A dream as beautiful as it is extreme” Let me guess: world peace?
The Voice: OK-ish. Don’t mind the lower parts, he’s kind of gliding through the higher bits though. It almost sounds as if he’s never really feeling comfortable singing it, which isn’t very hopeful.
The Performance: Rumor has it Roko will be joined on stage by two dancers. This will probably drag the heaven/hell theme further to … well, hell. Here’s a sentence I thought I’d never say: those wings only belong on the back of a Victoria’s Secret model. And a white leather jacket only on the back of Elvis (are you reading this, JH Fjällgren?). But, as this entry has ‘tacky’ written all over it: by all means, keep them both.
11. MALTA – Michaela – Chameleon
The Song: Probably the more obvious Fuego clone, which is really quite the achievement given Switzerland and especially Cyprus in this year’s line-up. That’s all because of the build-up to the chorus, which is borderline copy-paste. I do like the liquid beat in the chorus, so it’s got that going for it. And the lyrics are…inventive, to give a nice euphemistic ring to it. Fine, they sound quintessential Maltese.
Standout line: “When life brings me trouble this I know, I never walk away na na” Cause I’m way up and I ain’t coming down, keep taking me higher…
The Voice: Dear Michaela will have to pull out all the stops to get those parlando/rap/cool-ass-chick bits come across as good live as they do in the studio version. VERY curious to see how those will turn out on stage.
The Performance: At least the video is promising, even if the projecting of the lyrics is already going out of style again. The esthetic part of it all seems to add up, cross your fingers and your toes it’ll stay that way in Tel Aviv.
In one line: Love it would be easy of the colors were like my dreams – red, gold and green.
WILL IT QUALIFY? I’m gonna give them the benefit of the doubt for once. (Now watch them get stuck in the semi again.)
12. LITHUANIA – Jurij Veklenko
The Song: One of the more decent Lithuanian efforts in recent years, I should think – but as a pop song it’s still rather uneventful. I’m not really feeling the combo of the verses and the chorus for some reason – the verses are promising something more heartfelt, and the chorus is just full on Disney. Something’s off here. Could be the somewhat forced lyrics though…But I guess ‘run with the jaguars’ or ‘run with the wildebeest’ just doesn’t have the same ring to it.
Standout line: “This kingdom is yours and this kingdom is mine” *James Earl Jones voice* Look, Simba, everything the light touches is our kingdom.
The Voice: Apart from a slight slip-up or two, that NF rendition was quite OK. Especially at the start, where Jurij’s vocals are rather impressive. Too bad he has little to work with towards the end.
The Performance: I *really* want some clumsy lion reference to grace (or graze, mwuha) the stage for the fun of it. But seriously: don’t go there.
In one line: Is it a coincidence the release of the live action version of The Lion King is right around the corner?
WILL IT QUALIFY? It’s Lithuania…who knows? Each time I expect them to fail, they qualify – and vice versa. Jurij has the disadvantage of being in the same semi as The Netherlands and Azerbaijan though, who’ll devour A LOT of his votes.