Well it had to happen sooner or later, I’m outed as a Eurovision fan. I guess I can’t really deny it, not only have I been listening intently since 2009 and casually since I was a kid, I’ve also been to the last two shows in Oslo and Dusseldorf. As a result, I have a large number of a recent Eurovision entries on my iPod, and this is a great one to kick off with.
Probably unknown to most Brits, but Dima Bilan is one of the biggest stars in Russia, I’m led to believe. With Russia’s attitude that it’s fine to send big names to Eurovision (and it should be, really, as long as the songs are winning the contest, not the names). So t.A.T.u. represented their home country in 2004, and two years later Dima took to the stage in Athens and narrowly missed victory behind Finland’s goblin-faced rockers Lordi. He returned to Eurovision for 2008’s contest in Serbia and won, with a weaker song in my opinion, but it made up for the injustice of his 2nd place result before. Russia held a magnificent show too, so all the better.
ANYWAY, I love this song. His gimmick of choice (apart from several rather off-message Busted-style jumps) was a ballerina who emerged from a hole in a grand piano. All very pretty, but it was just window dressing for a great mid-tempo ballad. I love the faint electronic backing to it, just adds a Soviet chill to the track. He’s a good singer for a quite vocally undemanding song, and the odd lost-in-translation turns of phrase give an interesting slant on the track. Very catchy, much better than the song that beat it.