Norway Melodi Grand Prix Semi Final 1 - Aussievision's winner
This weekend is the first semi-final of Norway’s national selection Melodi Grand Prix and yesterday broadcaster NRK revealed the first four artists to compete.
This semi-final features four artists competing for only one place in the grand final where they will join the six artists who have already pre-qualified. Unlike last year’s Melodi Grand Prix format, hope is not lost for the losing three songs as a new ‘wildcard’ round is introduced this year. After the five semi-finals are completed, one more show will announce which of the excluded acts has earned the golden ticket to the grand finale.
The songs were released on Spotify (you can listen here) and the Aussievision team has each chosen their favourite entries in this weekend’s semi-final.
Here are the results:
1st: Jorn - 'Faith Bloody Faith' (8 votes)
Dale: "This isn't just about the big heavy rock sound; the chorus is catchy as hell and you can tell Jorn is going to give this an epic performance. The use of an Eastern sound at times is a little odd but gives it another element. Not a genre I normally go for but damn this is good bloody good!"
Kyriakos: "This track isn’t just good it’s bloody EPIC! So with it I’m expecting mind blowing rock staging. It’s a risky choice for Norway and out of their comfort zone and I’m all for it!!
Steven: “Eastern-influenced Scandi rock isn’t a genre I thought I’d gravitate towards, but this track stands head and shoulders over the other three. Assuming Jorn can deliver vocally at the live performance, then I’ll be sold on it completely. The potential for dramatic staging and lighting is clear!”
Guy: “It took a few listens to decide whether this had interesting twists and turns or if it was a hot mess. There’s a lot of elements to this song, but I think it has been done well and it works. It’s definitely the stand out and the one I want to keep going back to listen to.”
Miles: “What I thought was starting off as a slightly more ferocious version of Safety Dance really started to elevate (sorry Stina) as it went along. It developed that soaring quality which is critical to any solid Eurovision entry, and if the live vocals match that energy, this could be a real goer.”
Emma: “Not actually my favourite of the songs to listen to but this is the only one that is Eurovision worthy in my opinion. The eastern rock/metal sound makes it stand out a mile from the others and I like the message behind the lyrics. Great potential for staging here too.”
Fleur: “No surprise that this one is my favourite. I love a good rock song, but the Eastern elements gives it this it’s own identity. There are so many layers in this song, and of the four this was the only one that kept my interest. It is not a song that you will forget quickly. I just hope that Jorn’s vocals are stronger live.”
Ruby: “On first listen this song felt unpredictable, in its alternating of rock and eastern elements, but with excellent outcome, delivering the standout, if risky for Norway, choice of the semi-final. It’s allusive and intriguing Norwegian rock, need I add more?”
2nd: Stina Talling - 'Elevate' (3 votes)
Josh: "Airy, clear and soft vocals give this pop song an angelic vibe. While this may be hard to pull off live, if Stina can manage to do so and have some interesting staging, I can see the song being successful. It’s catchy, cute and inoffensive. Almost any Eurovision fan could find something to like about it.”
Wade: "This sounds like if someone forced Vallis Alps to make a Eurovision song against their will, but it somehow works. The production borders on heavy-handed, but what really sells it for me is the voice, by the end of the 3 minutes the song is almost anthemic and ethereal.”
Cooper: “I originally had Faith Bloody Faith as my number one out of this semi but after a few more listens I keep coming back to Elevate. It’s truly elevated a lot from the first listen and enjoy it more and more. This may be a problem in terms of Eurovision success in terms of it not being instantly a first choice but in terms of this semi, its most suited for ESC.”
=3rd: Beady Belle - ‘Playing with Fire’ (2 votes)
Mike: "A very simply produced electro track with a heavy 80’s influence. A lot will depend on the performer’s vocal and the choices they make with staging and presentation. Intriguing entry.”
Chris: "I’m liking this 80s vibe. I’m just really interested in this one. I’m not convinced she’ll pull it out but I know I’m excited to see if she can. TBH I hope none of these are the one”
=3rd: Blåsemafiaen ft Hazel - 'Let Loose' (2 votes)
Ally: "The clear stand out for me. Its fun, and going to get people up and dancing, and with the state of the world these days is just the kind of song I think we need. The lack of lyrics may be an issue for some, but not me. I actually like the extended "dance breaks" (for want of a better word) and don't generally rate a song based on it's lyrics anyway."
Laura: “This song is a lot of fun! I'm in awe of the singer's androgynous-sounding voice and it's helping realise my dreams of a Sunstroke Project and Electric Fields collaboration. It's the dance breaks that really make this song enjoyable for me, those brass solos get me bopping in my seat every time. That said, because it's such a vocally sparse song, I think the staging will make or break this for sure. I really hope they will do something awesome with the staging during the instrumental sections of the song, that would be amazing!”
So its clear the Aussievision team have a clear favourite but it’s all up to the Norwegian public to choose who advances to the Grand Final.
Semi-final 1 will also see pre-qualified acts Tix and Keiino performing their entries ‘Out of the Dark’ and ‘Monument’ respectively alongside the four competing songs.
The first semi final takes place 19:50 CET Saturday 16 January which is 05:50 AEDT Sunday 17 January.