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Saturday, February 02, 2013

Melodifestivalen 2013: Heat One

The live blog has begun! Fingers crossed for a nice stream and even better performances!

* Opening with a shot of Danny Saucedo. I keep forgetting that he's one of the hosts this year. It'll be interesting to see how much of a sense of humor he can have about himself. And of course we get a reminder of the epicness of Loreen. Sweden must be so proud.

* As a sight-gag, this Euphoria is pretty funny, but I wish I understood the lyrics apart from a few words. Also, that Tron suit on Danny still looks stupid a year later.

* David, Yohio and Michael & Caisa getting the most cheers before the performances. I'd be happy if that continued.

DAVID: I approve of the NKOTB played as he walked to the stage. I still find him oddly needy when he performs, but the staging of this was pretty cool (loved the fractured camera "collage") and the song's decent. Not as instant as last year's entry, but still a competent dance track. His vocals sounded a bit shaky to me, though. And he certainly didn't have that enthusiastic response from the crowd after the performance that he had last year.

COOKIES N BEANS: Walking out to Bowie. I wish they would do a Bowie-esque song, but they're really not that kind of group. Cookies N Beans is the worst, yet somehow best, band name ever. Overall, I'd say that I liked their previous entry better than this. The verses are okay but the chorus is pretty boring. It really doesn't sound like a Kempe song. I could still see them progressing further if they get the "old" vote over Anna's song. We'll see...

JAY JAY: This was one of the songs I liked least from the previews, but it also seemed that it needed to be heard in full to be appreciated. But... hmm... this is just odd. Rhyming "Paris" with "where is" annoys me straight off the bat. Does he really think this is the kind of song that would represent Sweden in Eurovision... especially after Euphoria? Can you imagine? It sounds like a song a 9-year-old wrote. In two minutes.
reluctant applause at the end.

MARY: I am SO feeling her entry music. Maybe being a contestant on the Voice will help her with voters? I hope so. This is a refreshing change of pace from the last two acts, but it still feels like it's missing something and I don't know what it is. She seems like she's just short of pulling out all the stops. It's energetic but it feels too much like going through the motions, if that makes sense. Audience seems to agree.

ERIC: This seems like an obvious contender for the "serious indie swedish" vote, and if any of the non-dance tracks this week is getting in, it better be this one because it's the best. The production's gorgeous and the melody pleasant, if a little expected. It won't be my favorite for the week, but it'll probably be top three.

YOHIO: Well, you can't beat that stage get-up. I wish the song was a little more remarkable (does it work without the accompanying visual?), but I would still be happy to see this progress, if only to get a successful album from him. And strangely, I get the sense that this could do well today...

ANNA: I swear, that strings melody is borrowed from another song. I'm afraid of this going through, particularly since it's the only ballad and won't probably be splitting votes with any other entries. As far as MF ballads go, it's just really boring. Nothing offensively bad, but nothing of note whatsoever.

MICHAEL & CAISA: This was my favorite based on the previews, and it's still my favorite track of the heat. That said, the performance was a bit underwhelming. Caisa's vocals just didn't sound good, in my opinion. I can't wait to hear the studio version, as the song itself is awesome. Why was the performance so underwhelming, though? Argh... frustrating!!

** My brave predictions: 
I'm finding it really hard to predict this week, as nothing really stood out. I feel like I could be totally wrong, but here goes nothing:
Direct to Final: David and Cookies & Beans
Andra Chansen: Yohio and Eric (or Anna? Or maybe even Michael/Caisa?)

If it was me, I'd probably pick Yohio and David or Michael/Caisa

TOP FIVE: Cookies N Beans, Mary (shocking!), Eric, David and Yohio!
Kocked out: Anna (seventh), Michael/Caisa (sixth), Jay Jay (a deserved last place)

EDIT: Now, I'm feeling it might be Yohio and Cookies N Beans through, while David and Eric take Andra Chansen. Ahhh... I really can't predict this.

EDIT: I imagine the Swedish press will have a field day with the multiple graphics mistakes on tonight's broadcast. Mostly because there won't be much else to write about. A pretty underwhelming heat overall.
Also, this "Mean Ukuleles From Hell" bit is really weird.

EDIT: First to go through the the final is... David! I had him in my initial predictions, but really I wasn't sure in the end. It's deserved in an underwhelming heat, but it has no chance of winning in the final.

EDIT: Next to the final: Yohio!! (very well deserved)
Andra Chansen: Cookies N Beans and Eric
Knocked out: Mary

Overall, though this wasn't a very strong heat (week one usually isn't), I'm pleased with the results. I still love the Michael/Caisa song but that performance was terrible so it pretty much disqualified them. I like both David and Yohio's songs, and particularly Yohio's anime/glam-rock image. Bring on next week!!
Oh, and despite comments to the contrary, Yohio is NO Ola Salo. Not even close.



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